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Old 27-12-2009, 11:49 PM   #14719
Junior Member
Join Date: May 2006
Posts: 89
Just back from Taiwan (Taipei-HuaLien-Taipei), modest contribution to this excellent thread for DIY travellers:

#arrived Taipei on Sun 20 Dec evening with a heavy heart after watching news of Sat's earthquake in HL. Thought holiday plans would be messed up. But, heck, everything is so normal, even in HL. Weather is cold though with occasional light drizzle;
#stayed in SeeYou Hotel, located near Exit Z10, Taipei Main Stn. Next to it is dessert shop; across the road, whole stretch of bookshops. Breakfast is via voucher, redeemable at nearby KFC. Two junctions further down from KFC, there's Shoe Street u will know from two big shoes cast at the entrance. Along this street, couple of side lanes with many shops. A block down from Shoe Street, is XiMenTing. Rooms in hotel are clean, well maintained, toilet facilities are in tiptop condition. Reception very helpful and courteous. Free net access;
#engaged services of Meeky Yang (1-day Yehliu, etc, NT$3,500 for 5pax) and 何先生 (2-days HL, incl. Tarako, NT$450 per pax per day for 10paxes). Yes, very good services they maximise your sighseeing time w/o being too regimental, recommend w/o being pushy. We'll call them when done with an attraction (if u don't wish to use your mobile, payphones r easily available, just drop a NT10 coin in and call);
#stayed in House of Stone for 2 nights, well taken care of by the effervescent Aunty Liu. Saw we have mobile and laptop, immediately gave us LAN cable and power adapters w/o our asking. Went out of her way to bring us to church for Christmas service. Get to set off fireworks, kids (old and young) love it. Delicious breakfast, slurp. Free net access;
#stayed in SKCF farm for a night. Place is really big, beautiful accommodation set in quaint and serene environs, rent an electric buggy to move around. Crappy expensive dinner but breakfast (incl in room price) was good. U don't get to milk cows but feed cows with bottles of milk @ NT$50 each. Free hotspring access. No net access;
#took train from HL to Taipei w/o reserved seats as they were fully booked - u have to hunt from cabin to cabin for vacant seats. Pray that next stop, passengers boarding do not have reservations, if yes, u will have to yield or if u have an elderly (like my mother-in-law), usually they wouldn't mind her continue taking the seat.
Wishing fellow DIY travelers an enjoyable time in Taiwan.
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