A&E on the World Heritage Train East 2009 travel blog

Yehliu Geopark

Hardy Taiwanese tourists brave the rain at Yehliu

"The Mushroom", Yehliu (an Asian mushroom)

"Candle" rocks, Yehliu

"The Queen's Head", Yehliu

Temple, Yehliu

Temple ceiling detail, Yehliu

Matsue temple, Yehliu

As I can't stay at the Y for the weekend, the first thing I did today was book myself into somewhere else nearby and cheap. I am now in a hostel on the 22nd floor of this very tall building, not my favourite place to be in an earthquake-ridden country, especially after watching 2012 last night. My first room in the Y was on the 10th floor with my bed right against the outside wall in a room with a low windowsill, and I really didn't like that at all.

It was a bit of a palaver getting to the seaside today, mostly as all the buses and bus stops involved were only in Chinese, and it wasn't even as if I was going to the terminus. Anyway, with yet more help from the lovely Taiwanese people (I can still only remember two phrases) I got to Yuhlei, on the coast north of Taipei, where I teamed up for the morning with an even more bemused Korean who also neither spoke nor read Chinese, but could speak some English. Sadly, by then it was pouring with rain and quite gusty too, so much so that my brolly is now almost a right-off. It was suprising how many other people were there despite the foul weather, almost all tour groups, like us come to see the weirdly shaped rock formations there. All good stuff, as hopefully the pics show, although I imagine it would have been fantastic on a sunny day!

Later back in Taipei, I searched in vain for the Museum of Miniatures, which was neither at it's address or where it was indicated on the guidebook map (not the same place either). In the end I saw somewhere nice to eat, refreshed myself and walked all the way back home, which was quite enjoyable. I like Taipei and wandering around it, and am conscious that all too soon I will be back amongst the familiar and normal, so want to see what I can while I can.


Today was a bit of a mixed day. I have moved to my new hostel, which in practice is a studio flat all to myself on the 20th floor, fine really, and ideal for the party I won't be having. I spent most of the day in Yangmingshan National Park, contradicting Seoul's claim to be the only Capital City with a National Park in the suburbs. It was probably very nice, but it was hard to tell through the driving rain and fog! I gave up the original plan to climb Mt. Qixing at about 1,000 metres when it just got too exposed and I realised it wasn't much fun, and walked at lower elevations instead.

It was nice enough at times, there certainly weren't many other people hiking, and I did walk there for about four hours, including a very impressive and quite painful tumble down a slippery flight of wet wooden stairs. Ouch! This completely finished off my long-suffering brolly, made me even wetter than I already was, and I nearly lost the ring Erica gave me in the process too. Back home, and warm, dry and recovered, I finished the day off with one of those weird Japanese style curries for old time's sake.

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