Tuesday, January 04, 2011

Taiwan -- Day 12 Tamsui, LAX, and Home

This was our last day in Taiwan. We all met for one final breakfast in The West before heading back to our respective rooms to repack our cases and organize all the information we had collected along the way. After our late checkout we loaded all our bags on the bus and headed over to the Miramar Mall for a last ditch effort at buying some souvenirs.  After some unsuccessful shopping we met at a local Thai restaurant for lunch. It was another delightful experience delivered by John. The steamed fish and coconut rice were fantastic.

View of the pool and green "skytrain" line.
Grand Victoria Hotel, Taipei

Bev and I at the Grand Victoria Hotel.

He doesn't look too happy but he tasted divine!

Mark trying one of the most disgusting drinks on the planet.
It looked like cold grease from  spaghetti sauce.

Next stop was the Jiannan Rd Station to take the Neihu Line train to Tamsui.  Tamsui or Danshui is a small seaside town at the northeastern tip of Taiwan.  It was once a small fishing village that is now home to three universities. Our original intent was to visit the Hongmao Castle (Fort San Domingo) but it was closed due to it being a Monday.

Train Route Map

Can you imagine? This is the water line from another typhoon.

Self explanatory.

This is nice to know.

Tamsui has beautiful views of the Taiwan Straight from Tamsui Fisherman's Wharf and the Lover’s Bridge.

View of Taiwan Straight

View of Taiwan Straight

Wireless Mark, Kate, Bev, myself and Cola Mark
Lover's Bridge, Tamsui

After walking around for a while we found a little shopping district, Tamsui Old Street and waterfront and all split up.  Eureka! I finally managed to buy some souvenirs for my parents and mother-in-law back home.

Not a bad price for "Sexy Look"

This is actually a space between two buildings being used as storage.

Isn't this beautiful?

Doors on a building in Tamsui

After shopping we met up with John again for our final meal before heading to the airport for our flight back to LAX.

Our final dinner. Tamsui

Our final dinner, The Taiwan 5

Our airport experience was again efficient and obstacle free. We checked our bags, passed customs and headed to the airport bar to have a final drink before boarding our 11p China Airlines flight back to Los Angeles.  The ten hour flight back to Los Angeles was great.  The attendants seemed a little nicer but they were also incredibly concerned with the call button if it was used. The only drink offered was water and even to get a pop I had to ask several times. 

The most expensive beer in Taiwan. $10 CAD a glass in the airport.
Thanks Wireless for picking up the tab.

Once we arrived in Los Angeles I collected my bags and caught a hotel shuttle bus to the Holiday Inn Los Angeles Airport.  The hotel was a fine airport hotel but after the 5 star dreams we had stayed at in Taiwan it made me feel like I was in the Bates Motel.


LAX Coastline

The next morning I was up and ready to catch my Westjet flight back home to Vancouver.  My two weeks in paradise had come to an end and it was time to head back home and my daily life.

I would like to offer a sincere Thank You to the Taiwan Tourism Board.  Not only did they put together a marvelous trip and allow me to participate in it but I also meet a fantastic group of people that I believe will friends for a long time to come.

The goal of this trip was to introduce Taiwan as a cycling destination to the world. That goal was at least partially accomplished as they converted me.  Within two weeks of arriving home my husband and I both purchased bicycles and can’t wait for better weather to be out on them all the time!

If you would like to know more about Cycling In Taiwan, booking a trip to Taiwan or Taiwan in general, please feel free to contact me at anytime.


Margaret said...

The views are amazing and the beer looks delicious, even at 10.00. Niamh you look awesome, you had a bit of a tan? You are glowing, but then two weeks without the kids can also do that.
I to am thinking of a bike for the summer...but with a battery operated motor. The braking charges the battery...I might be tired after a day at the diner.

Anonymous said...

Hi, I was so excited to read about your visit to the Giant Factory. I am going to Taiwan next week for 10 days, and I would like to figure out how to visit Giant's factory. Please advise when you have a chance.