Friends & Neverland · Travel & Staycation

[Travel] Day 1 @ Taiwan (15-24Jun15) – 前往阿里山,嘉义 (Part 2)

Had breakfast and my antibiotic medicine. Refilled my bottle water from the water cooler in the airport. I think it’s really a cool idea to provide not only cold but hot and warm drinking water in the airport cooler water dispenser! Really thoughtful idea! Taiwanese 就是有人情味!
Went to check the Ubus timing for shuttle from Taoyuan Airport to Taoyuan HSR station. Saw this very familiar looking Hi-Life cafe 🙂 Suddenly missed Yvonne because it was where we had our first breakfast in Taiwan last February after we starved for the whole night on the plane 😛
That’s me and Hi-Life cafe last year!
Noticed that there is Ubus shuttle every 10-20minutes to Taoyuan HSR station so walked back to look for the telecommunication booth first.
Ubus Shuttle – Turn left when come out of custom and go down the escalator on your right. You will see Hi-Life Cafe which is something like a 7-11. You can have your breakfast here. Then walk straight and turn right. You will see a row of Ticketing counters.
Telecommunication counters – turn right after you come out from customs. There are 3 teleco for you to choose from. Friend advised me to take 台湾大哥大, which is a good teleco like our Singtel. Opposite the teleco counters you can find the tourist info counter too where you can grab your maps. But sad to say they no longer have English and Chinese maps on display so you need to ensure the staff is there to enquire for the English and Chinese maps. 
The teleco counters opened at approximately 8am. But you can start queuing at 7.30am if you come at a peak hour. But since it was still early, there seemed to be no crowd (yet).
Bought my telco data plan at NT800 for 10days unlimited 4G LTE + 400NT talk time.
Filled up my water bottle with liang teh using the airport water dispenser and bought the Ubus ticket. Off we go to Taoyuan HSR station.
I managed to board the southward HSR from Taoyuan to Chia Yi earlier than I expected. Qiuling had replied me to say she would reach Chia Yi TRA at about 11am but our train would be at 1.30pm. I estimated I should reach Chia Yi TRA at about 10.30am, if not latest by 11am. Took the 8.57am HSR from Taoyuan and it would take slightly more than 1hr to reach Chia Yi HSR station. Bought the 对号座 (fixed seat) ticket for NT1005. A slightly more expensive buy would guarantee me a seat lor. One hour ride, I rather I have a fixed seat. Haha 😛
On my way to Chia Yi HSR station now and charging my phone. I brought three mini portable chargers which will allow me to charge a maximum of 4 times. Oops.. But I got a mega portable charger too in my luggage. If all my mini portable chargers ran out before the end of the day, I will lug the mega portable charger out with me later 😛 Coz my phone is for entertainment, communication and photo taking.. :/ I cannot do without my phone de 😛
Will take a wink now… 🙂
Alighted at Chia Yi HSR. Missed the free shuttle bus to Chia Yi TRA station (show your HSR ticket to get free bus ride). So waited close to 20min for the next bus.
Meantime, I grabbed a 肉松饭团 from the family Mart (something like cheers or 7-11) and ate as I queued for my bus. The sun was getting hot and I felt cooked. Wonder if I brought too many warm wear lolz
Noticed people in Chia Yi have a stronger 乡音 than those from Taipei. I wonder why?
Bus came and I boarded the bus with a stuffed mouth! Haha no image Liao! Hahaha…
Met qiuling at 11am and we took an offer by a private bus to drive us up to Alishan, all the way to our hotel at NT500 (2pax). On top of that, we need to pay another NT300 (2 pax) for entrance to Alishan.
Poor Qiuling was down with fever since day one of her solo portion and had to stay at the air bnb in Taoyuan to recuperate before she met up with me today. So happy we finally met up! we have each other now!
Finally we met! 
Temperature going down as the private bus climbed higher… still driving on to Alishan…
The wind that blew on my face was so cool.. 22degrees!!! And still going down further… Lucky me that I came well prepared! We stopped a 7-11 for a ten minute toilet cum quick bite break before we continued our journey.
Saw the 关东煮 and was very hungry! So we decided to grab a quick bite before we continued our journey.
Reached Da Feng Hotel and climbed up 5 storey to our twin room (NT4600 for 2 nights). Signed up for Fireflies guided tour for tonight at NT300 per pax.
Set out to have lunch and explored the area. Bought returned sunrise train ticket (祝山线) for NT150 per pax. Saw something that I like and started my shopping spree! Tummy suddenly felt unwell so we had 黑糖姜母茶 for NT30 per cup. Tummy was warmed up instantly. No sunset today coz of heavy fog 😦 Hopefully we have better luck tomorrow.
As we were walking around the 森林小火车站, I saw this store selling very interesting food called 茶焗蛋. It looked different from 茶叶蛋and I was keen to try out new food that look “safe”. Haha! Yummy! The egg white had the 茶香味! I like! ^^
We explored the 7-11 to decide on what we could have for dinner tonight and went back to the room to rest, before our fireflies guided tour at 7pm. After all, we are two sicky pies… and are still recuperating our illnesses. So we decided not to push ourselves too hard on the first day.
We came back from our fireflies guided tour. It was a pity we didn’t have good cameras but it was a memorable experience watching fireflies flying around the trees and blinking as they flew. Blink Blink Blink. Local guide told us actually the best season to watch fireflies should be May to early June! Had 关东煮 plus 拉面 for dinner tonight! Only cost us NT144 for two bowls! Bought instant milo to drink before sleep to warm up my poor tummy.
Bathed and getting ready to sleep. Tomorrow we need to be up by 3.30am to catch sunrise! Qiuling is already fast asleep but I am not used to sleeping so early.. I will coax myself to sleep soon…
It has been a tiring day for both of us… Glad things turned out well and we managed to meet each other. Looking forward to a even better tomorrow! Good Nitez everyone!

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