26 January 2013


JiuFen is a food paradise.  There are many food stalls around but our bellies were not big enough to accommodate all.

We ate at the dessert store  to fight off the cold once we reached Jiufen.  The shop is on the right side of the old street entrance.   There are many choices to choose from and the dessert was nice and tasty.  I liked the chewiness and softness of the glutinuous balls made from yam and pumpkin.  The balls were flavored with ginger syrup, beancurd or red beans soup.

Savory fermented meat balls

Take some courage to bite into these ice-cream popiahs on a cold night

Gigantic mushrooms grilled till smoky

Publicity for her popular sausages.  She is a well-known celebrity in Singapore through a popular Taiwan variety show

A glass of hot sour plum drink after all the eating

Last sticks before we call for the day

25 January 2013

JIUFEN (九 份)

After Shifen we took a train back to Rueifang (瑞 方)station and took a 15-minute bus ride, opposite the station, to go up to the mountain to Jiufen village.

It was believed that long time ago there was only 9 families in Jiufen, a small town located at the hill of Northeast Taiwan.  The families had the habit of buying nine pieces of the same object at any one time and that's name of the place came about.

From the bus you get a good view of the village.  The weather was cold and misty.

A stretch of shops selling food and souvenirs

There are cosy tea and coffee houses where you can rest your feet after all the walking

Quaint little shops along the street

Traditional art house

Traditional lodging overlooking the sea

We should have stayed a night in Jiufen instead.  It was hell taking a bus back to Taipei city as the queue waiting for buses was long and the buses came every 20 mins or later.  We stood in the freezing wind for nearly 2 hours before our turn to board the bus.

20 January 2013


After a long walk, we were famished.  There are food stalls along the street and we went for the fried smelly tofu.  The smell was intoxicating!

The tofu was eaten with pickles and sauces

The real fun began  -  we bought a red sky lantern and wrote our wishes on it to set free up the sky so that God will make our wishes come true.  The train passes through the town very often and once a while we had to move back to let the train passed.

Apartments on one side of the rail road


We continued our tour to Little Niagara Fall

Scenic lake along the way

Sign to Waterfall

Steps leading down to waterfall

Camellia in bloom all over the place

13 January 2013


After 2 days stay in Taipei we proceeded to Shifen Old Street, located in Pingxi District of New Taipei City.  We had substantial breakfast from Four Seven Eleven at the Taipei Rail Station.  Their diverse selections are unmatched with many options at your convenience.

Big bowl of pick and choose oden

TRA 45-min train to Rueifang station and transferred to the branch line to reach Sifen

Pingxi branch line, a scenic and nostalgic ride running through wild woods and gorges

Food stalls along the street, spicy stuffed chicken wings

Only elementary school in Shifen

Relaxing ambience  -  residents chatting and socializing in front of their houses

The street is filled mainly with souvenir shops, grocery stores and restaurants

Scenic view

Cool weather

Farmland along the scenic route