The next day we went to Taipei Main Station's information center so we could get advice on what to do in Taipei. There were other cities that I wanted to go to but they were a bit far and some of them were pricey. The staff advised us to go to Juifen, Shifen and Beitou. Juifen & Shifen were about an hour away so we decided to go there today. Juifen & Shifen are located north of Taipei. On the bus ride to Juifen it was very scenic, you could really see the old Taiwanese buildings, mountains and temples.
From the bus I saw this temple, it was so beautiful. Later I found out it's called Jade Buddha Temple.
We got off the bus at the top of a hill and followed the crowd to the Old Street which was minutes away.
In the walking street there were so many souvenir, clothing, food, tea, etc. stores. A lot of the food looked really good but I wanted to get a cheap meal. I love calamari and I saw a place selling some so I bought it. It was so delicious! It was very well seasoned and had mayo on it, which is new to me. You can never go wrong with calamari though.
Oullie got this snack. It's like a crepe with crumbled peanuts and two scoops of ice cream.
After eating we walked by this man selling eggs in some strange brown water and were intrigued. We saw other buying it so we asked what it was and were told it was just eggs soaked in tea. What they do is boil the egg then they crack it and boil it again in tea, which is the brown liquid. So we each bought one, it didn't really have a taste though.
Walking around I felt like a kid in a candy store. I wanted everything I saw, especially food.
We came across this cute tea house so we went inside. Having traditional tea in the tea houses here were super expensive. We weren't allowed to explore the teahouse since we weren't paying, which was fine.
There are many lookout spots here, so make sure to stop and snap some pictures. It's so beautiful!
Walking along the path was just more food.... Oullie got some Kumquat juice. I tasted it but it was a bit too sweet for my liking.
I loved the outside of this store, its very vintage.
Every time we were outside there were amazing views. After all Juifen does sit on top of a mountain.
We finally found the way to the largest tea house. Hence the paper lanterns.
A Mei Tea House has over 100 years of history. This tea house is well known amongst locals as well as visitors. I had never heard of it before but Oullie told me there was a movie filmed here, Spirited Away, that was very popular. We didn't go inside because we weren't interested in sitting and spending money on tea because it was overpriced. You can see a large patio on the second floor which probably is very scenic. I hear it looks more beautiful at night, but I didn't stay that long.
I came across this building which is obviously a flower shop. It's the nicest looking flower shop I've ever seen! It's got so much personality and flowers hanging from it.
I needed to take one of these pictures.... I love the whole abandoned road with old style houses look.
While walking around in this little town I saw a lot of art. It reminded me of the mural village in Korea, but not paintings.
Walking around Juifen Old Street is really relaxing. Even though Taipei wasn't busy like other cities it was just a nice getaway.
Check out the second part of the post about Pingxi.
Getting to Juifen:
-- From Taipei Main Station take the TRA to Ruifang Station (Pingxi Line), transfer to Keelung Bus (#1062, 788).
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