Sunday, May 7, 2017

Taichung | Taiwan

Taichung City is located on the west coast of Taiwan, and is the third largest city in Taiwan. We decided to stop there for a couple of nights after our stay in Hualien because of it's proximity to the Sun and Moon Lake, the largest lake in Taiwan and a popular sightseeing destination. It is only about an hour and a half from Taichung to the Sun and Moon Lake.

We took the train from Hualien to Taichung. It was actually the first train ride we have taken in Asia, and we were super impressed by how punctual, efficient, and clean the train was. Each stop was announced in English as well as Chinese, and the name of the stops was displayed on a screen at the front of each carriage.

 This was a Hello Kitty train that pulled into the station right before ours did! Sadly this was not our train :( Even the inside was pink, and decorated with Hello Kitty!

We arrived in Taichung on a Sunday evening, and the city was packed with locals out shopping and eating in restaurants. We took a quick walk around the city after checking into our hotel, and had some lunch before letting Charlotte have a rest in the hotel.

One of the things that Taichung is famous for is it's night markets and street food, which pop up in a few different places in the evening. That first evening, we took a walk and checked out what was on offer, and Charlotte and I shared some pork and cabbage dumplings. This girl likes her dumplings too!

Taichung City Park

A little book library in the pavilion by the lake

A very old tree in the park

A very large goat statue in the park (we're still not sure of its significance?!)

A pretty little waterfall

The next morning, we decided to take a walk to the Taichung city park, which was a short walk from our hotel. In the middle of the park there is a small lake, and a pretty Japanese style pavilion overlooking the lake and the red bridge.

Have I mentioned before how much I love the trees in Asia? The trees in Asia are so different to ones I've ever seen before. Here, trees don't care about city planning or walkways, or even walls; their gnarled, twisted trunks and roots spread out wherever they like and form such complex and interesting shadows and shapes. Pretty different to a skinny, straight up and down eucalyptus tree!

Yummy treats!

After walking through the park, we decided to peruse the shopping district. We didn't have much planned for the day because it was a Monday, and all the museums were closed, so there wasn't much sightseeing or activities to do in the city. We did however have to buy nappies/diapers, so to the shopping mall we went!
We didn't find nappies, but we did find a fancy bakery with the most delicious looking desserts, above. Which one would you choose? I like the look of the strawberry macaron personally 😋

The busy streets of Taichung

A baby friendly cafe!

Pretty plant pots in the street
Our day continued with us wandering around the busy streets, with no direction in mind. We eventually found another shopping mall with a big Carrefour supermarket, like one you'd find in the US or Australia. This is one of the few big supermarkets we've found on our trip. Asian countries definitely depend more on their local markets, rather than supermarket chains. We found the nappies, and we also experienced the joys of finding a wonderful, super clean baby changing station in the mall! Yippee! After months of traveling through developing countries such as Laos and Cambodia, we've finally found nice clean public toilets and changing areas. Plus, we found a whole shopping mall level devoted to kids, with the baby friendly cafe in the picture above, (with the most amazing high chairs) and a big kids play area.

I hope you've enjoyed reading about our quick stop over in Taichung. I'll be back soon with pictures from the beautiful Sun and Moon Lake :)

Hannah xx

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