October 27, 2008

Taiwan.. Touch Your Heart

The journey was so tiring...coz I had a transit flight at Hong Kong.

Took the Cathay Pacific instead of MAS. The return flight for MAS was at 8am! Huhhh.. takda masa I nak bangun awal pagi check in kol 6.. so CP pon CP laa... Anyway, bagus jugak cos at least I had a quick glimpse of HK before my actual trip next year. I am so impressed with HKIA. It is so big and also cantik and so damn ramai orang but very organized. No wonder it has been voted as world's best airport for 7 years!
Back to the trip, upon arriving, I straight went off to Hsinchu or popularly known as the Windy City. Tempat ni sangatlah berangin.. kuat pulak tu and that's where it got the nickname. This is a city situated south-west around 1 hour drive from Taipei.
I am heading to Hsinchu Science Park, one of the world's most significant areas for semiconductor manufacturing. Saya sangat kagum OK sampai area ni. So many big companies, beautiful buildings, and the area is very well developed. Ala2 Cyberjaya la tapi lagi canggih berkali ganda.
Stayed at Hsinchu Lakeshore Hotel Metropolis 1 cos my allocated budget is only USD100 per night. Masa tengok booking arrangement I thought it is the sister, Hsinchu Lakeshore Hotel. The sister hotel lagi posh and tepi tasik pulak tu. But anyway, the hotel is nice and the location is very convenient. Near to attractive places and shopping malls. And it is very popular with business travellers. During breakfast, tgk semua foreigners berbusiness suit saja. Moreover, it provides free shuttle service to Hsinchu Science Park. Tapi I tak naik la shuttle van ni, naik taxi je senang. Boleh claim.. heheheh...
Typical street in Hsinchu... I think jalan di Taiwan adalah pelik. Mungkin kerana tak biasa, driver nye adalah di sebelah kiri. Traffic light dia pon macam menipu je. Jangan fikir anda selamat melintas jalan semasa lampu hijau utk pejalan kaki, sebab at the same time akan ada kereta juga yg lalu. Kereta tu bukan langgar lampu merah, tapi turn dia mmg tengah hijau jugak! Macam mana tu? Everytime I crossed the road I didn't feel safe.
Taiwanese pon macam Japanese, not many of them can speak English. I can only say 'Ni Hao' dan 'Xie xie' sahaja. Nak cakap excuse me pon taktau. Huhu.. mmg lost in translation betul laa... But they will try to help. Somehow, I like to go to countries yang bahasa dia bukan English. Walaupon akan ada communication breakdown, but for me ia adalah experience yang best. Maybe you think I'm weird but for me, kalau semua orang tau cakap English, senang sangat hidup ni.. nak apa semua dapat. Where's the challenge? hehehhe...
Hsinchu Railway Station... agak old skool.. nice! Tetibe teringat kat Station keretapi Tg. Pagar sbb sama2 old skool.. dun have the chance naik die punya train though. Next trip I will make sure that I will try the Taiwan High Speed Rail (THSR) to Taipei.
Cheng Huang Temple or better known as the "City God" Temple of Hsinchu... It is regarded as the highest-ranking of all City God temples in Taiwan, due to the superior spiritual power of its City God in protecting the town. There is a night market in front of the temple, with a lot of small stalls selling Taiwanese snacks.
I didn't try anything here, coz I can't stand the smell. I watched Amazing Raze Asia the week before I left to Taiwan, and coincidently their destination is Taipei. So I watched it eagerly to get a rough idea of what I'm expecting in Taiwan. One of their roadblock is eating Tauhu Busuk.. I dunno how busuk it is but surely it taste like hell coz the participants siap muntah menangis suma.. but then how come the Taiwanese can eat it??

This is the East Gate, the most famous landmark in Hsinchu. Accordingly, Hsinchu residents refer to it as the "Mother of Hsinchu", protecting the city and its people. This East Gate is the only gate left from the initial 4, for 4 directions: "Yi Suang" in the West, "Ying Xi" in the East, "Gexum" in the South, and "Gongcheng" in the North. However, the Japanese destroyed 3 of them in 1902 while building a new road system. Ada rasa macam baca buku sejarah tak? hahahahha...
There's also an attractive leisure square around the East Gate, providing a great stage for a variety of shows and entertainment programs. Fortunately this place is quite near to my hotel, so lepas balik kerja I went to Sogo window shopping, kemudian tapau McD and kat sini ler saya melepak melayan perasaan seorang diri sambil makan dan tgk budak2 muda menunjuk bakat menyanyi.
View from my Hotel in Taipei.. I wanna ride the Ferris Wheel!! But it's too far from my place.. fyi, this picture was taken with 8x Optical zoom...
I think their MRT system is almost similar to Japan's JR. The fees are affordable, with a trip from 1 destination to another cost only around NTD20~.
I thought Taiwanese is very patriotic coz I saw their national flags everywhere. But later I got to know that they've just celebrated National Holiday the week before. Oh no wonder... but who knows maybe the flags are there all year round..
Hahaha.. I dunno what statue is that.. saja camwhoring sorang2 di tengah jalan..
101 mall... just like in Puchong ;p
The magnificent Taipei 101 or better known as Taipei i-ling-i among the locals. Huhh.. inilah dia building yang telah merampas title "world's tallest building" from Petronas Twin Tower. But it was overtaken in height on July 2007 by the Burj Dubai in UAE, upon the completion of that building's 141st floor. The title of "world's tallest building" still rests with Taipei 101 though, as international architectural standards define a building as a structure capable of being fully occupied. The Burj Dubai is on course to claim the title once its construction is finished, expected in September 2009. Semua negara pon berlawan2 nak buat building yang paling tinggi..
My Taiwanese counterparts' office... how nice! coz the building is just around the corner of Taipei 101...
Sun Yat Sen Memorial Hall. It is a memorial to the Republic of China's National father, Dr. Sun Yat Sen, and was completed on May 16, 1972. When I was here banyak orang tua je.. jogging, bawak anjing jalan2, buat taichi, line dancing.. it has become a public park utk beriadah..
Malangnye ia under renovation so I just berjalan2 di luar saja..
Located in Shilin district, this Shilin Night Market is the largest and most famous night market in the city. The market is a huge draw for locals and foreign visitors alike. I think it's more or less macam Petaling Street.. Di sinilah tempat saya memborong my gladiator sandals.. hehehe...
I dunno what temple is this.. but it is situated in the night market area. Quite big and beautiful I must say.
OK lah..enough with gambar berjalan2.. Sebenanyer ini adalah misi utama.. heheheh...
Too bad I didn't get to take pictures at Hsinchu Science Park.
All in all, I love Taiwan.. especially Taipei. I love big cities, I love the energy and excitement of city life, I love the hustle and bustle and how alive the city is.
My boss asked me to go again in December.. can't wait  :D


Fiza Azmi said...

murah tak barang2 kat sana mun?? ada ala-ala macam perasaan shopping kat bandung tak?

best2!! gamba sume best! dah la xplore sorang2...hehe...tabik sket!!

* bila la nak penuhkan passport mcm ni...? :p

rara said...

ade certain barang yg murah ade certain barang yg mahal.. tapi yg pasti mmg tak dapat la nak shopping mcm kat bandung tu..heheheh

wahahhaha.. tu berani jalan sorang2 sbb dah buat research mengalahkan buat thesis.. pegi keja tapi otak asyik pk nak jalan je.. ;p