Category Archives: Car

Taiwan trip 22 Dec – 4 Jan 2014 (Day 5)

Day 5: Taichung – Miyahara – Gaomei Wetland – Fengjia Night Market

We woke up really early to make sure we able to reach Taipei Main Station by 9am.  Thanks to my brother-in-law for waking up early to send us to the Qilian Metro station at 7am. Pai seh pai seh…

We took TRA train and not THSR for money saving.  Well, not really a budget travelling trip but due to the 2 weeks long trip, money should be spend wisely.  This was what we usually eat in our breakfast from 7-Eleven ready made breakfast.  Just heat-up in the microwave.

Usual breakfast bought in 7-Eleven

Usual breakfast bought in 7-Eleven

Hours in the train was pretty bored…

Domo and Norman were bored too...

Domo and Norman were bored too…

In the train

In the train

 

Although it took about 2 hours 15 minutes to arrive Taichung Train Station. The price of the ticket is TWD$375 = S$15.60 (one way). To be safe, if your itinerary is taking train on the peak hour, it is best to purchase the tickets in advanced either through TRA website or to purchase at least the day before departure at the TRA ticket counter.  TRA ticket counters can be found in all the TRA stations.  As for us, we had purchased the tickets before we left Singapore. 😛

We saw MOS Burger Restaurant in the Taichung Train Station, so we gave it a try to check out if there were any differences with the MOS in Singapore.  Well, indeed there were differences.  They do have special festive burger for Christmas season such as Turkey Burger.  But we did not order that, we ordered the Bacon Beef Egg Burger and a cup of green tea with milk.  Both were fairly good… but i feel green tea with  milk was poured too much though. :S

Taiwan MOS Burger Menu
Taiwan MOS Burger Menu
Green Tea Milk -- milky

Green Tea Milk — milky

 

Bacon Beef Egg Burger - Good!
Bacon Beef Egg Burger – Good!

After our so called early lunch, we walked to our hotel.  It took about 7 minutes walk from the train station and we arrived CityInn Hotel.  The hotel was fairly new.  We met only one group of Singaporeans staying in this hotel..  Most of the customers were from Hong Kong.

Check-in City Inn Hotel

Check-in CityInn Hotel

City Inn Hotel Lobby Area

CityInn Hotel Lobby Area

Let’s check out the room…

City Inn Hotel Bed

CityInn Hotel Bed

City Inn Hotel Desk

CityInn Hotel Desk

Mirror & Basin

Mirror & Basin

Bathroom

Bathroom

What?  A condom is available for use?

What? A condom was provided?

The room is indeed small.  The bathroom is pretty large.  We were happy with the room, as we felt even though the room is small but we really satisfied with the cleanliness.  What added point most was the hotel is fairly new.   Moreover, it is a very considerate hotel… complete toiletries set were provided and an additional item also provided such as condom.

If you are planning to visit Taichung,  I strongly recommend you to stay in this hotel only if you do not mind small room.  Check out the hotel for more info by clicking here

As soon we left our luggage in the room, we commenced our Taichung exploration.  If you have the time, there are many things to see and walk in Taichung city.  But for us, our time was  limited.  Here a glance of how Taichung city like….

Taichung

Taichung oh Taichung…. you are too large for us to walk for just two days….

About 15 minutes of walking distance from the hotel, we arrived Miyahara.  A dessert, tea and ice-cream parlour in cool library setting.   We tried the milk tea and the ice-cream.  Milk tea was ok. But the ice-cream was  yummmm…. superb!

Miyahara. From Opthalmology to a cafe..

Miyahara. From Opthalmology to a cafe..

Miyahara

Ice cream, milk tea, pearl drinks … they have it. A hazel nut chocolate ice cream with cheese cake topping! Yum yum!…

If i am not wrong, Miyahara used to be an Ophthalmology (Eye care clinic) Clinic Centre.  It has now converted to a cafe.  For more details, you can click here to go to their website.

We walked back to our hotel for a little break and saw taxis were waiting near to the exit entrance at the back door of Taichung Train Station.  As that time the day was getting late, we were 50%-50% indecisive whether to go to the place we planned to go which was Gaomei Wetland.  This place was recommended by my brother-in-law as it was a must go place.  According to him Gaomei Wetland is located at the seaside and large windmills are in sight as well.  It is a good day trip if kids are to bring along because little crabs were frequently appeared.  And always the sea tide is low all the time hence the water is always shallow.  People can walk really far out to the beach and catching crabs.

Yes, we finally made the decision to go, but the time was already 3:30pm. The back door of Taichung Train Station which was next to City Inn Hotel (taichung), taxis were often seen there waiting for passengers.  We were trying our luck to ask for flat rate price from the taxi driver.  Apologise that we have forgotten the price of the taxi fare paid.  If you are interested to go, you can ask two or three taxi rates.  The flat rate to Gaomei Wetland won’t cost you a bomb as the taxi rate where we found was quite reasonable.  As for two-way (return trip) price.   Of course, do not call taxi from the hotel, the price for taxi from the hotel are usually higher than you flag your own. Definitely.  In fact there are plenty of taxis in Taichung.

Ok, the journey from Taichung city to Gaomei Wetland was pretty far.  It took about 1.5-2 hours journey.  By the time we reached Gaomei Wetland, the sky was getting dark.. and we quickly jumped out from the taxi and walk out for taking photos.  The taxi driver were waited for us. Oh… make sure your price of the taxi is a return journey so that the taxi driver will wait for you to send you back to Taichung city.  This is because getting a taxi in Gaomei Wetland was hard.  Hardly seen any taxi pass-by though.

Gaomei Wetland should look better than my pictures taken below.  The reason because going to Gaomei in January was not a good month.  So it is best not to go during winter time unless you have no choice just like us.  Travel in January, the wind was so strong, we almost blown away… and no crabs seen.  The sea tide was closed to the bay….  Fortunately, although nothing really experience as what my brother-in-law mentioned, but we still enjoyed ourselves due to  the strong wind and the coldness! Hahaha!

Gaomei Wetland. Large windmills in Taichung

Gaomei Wetland. Large windmills in Taichung

Gaomei Wetland - Lighthouse

Gaomei Wetland – Lighthouse

Gaomei Wetland... well, this kind of weather, the crabs were hidden

Gaomei Wetland… well, this kind of weather, the crabs were hidden

Strong wind In January 2014 at Gaomei Wetland but loved it!

Strong wind In January 2014 at Gaomei Wetland but loved it!

We walked for an hour and went back to our taxi where the driver was waiting for us at a Chinese Temple.  Indeed an experience for us! Best!  If you would like to go to Gaomei Wetland, I would recommend you to go not on winter time at around 3pm.  If you are going during Winter time, please go early.  As you know, during winter time, the sun sets 2 hours early than usual!  You may go in the morning or early afternoon when the sky was bright but not sunny.  For more information about Gaomei Wetland click here 🙂  You may also google Gaomei Wetland images.  There are plenty of nice scenery pics.

Well, instead of dropping us back to City Inn hotel, we asked our taxi driver to drop us at Fengjia Night Market.  So that we can get our dinner and have a night market walk there.

Feng Jia Night Market

Feng Jia Night Market

Food bought in Feng Jia Night Market.  My favourites - Clams in Black Pepper, Variety of Fried Mushrooms, and Pepper large prawns... oh yeahhh...

Food bought in Feng Jia Night Market. My favourites – Clams in Black Pepper, Variety of Fried Mushrooms, and Pepper large prawns… oh yeahhh…

A crowded of patrons Tau Foo Fah specialty shop in Feng Jia Night Market

A crowded of patrons Tau Foo Fah specialty shop in Feng Jia Night Market

Woahhh... Sitting calmly large breed poodles.  Btw, are they twins? Dress-up doggies are norm in Taiwan.

Woahhh… Sitting calmly large breed poodles. Btw, are they twins? Dress-up doggies are norm in Taiwan.

Indeed after all the makan “eating” of food food food in Fengjia Night Market, well it’s time to head back to the hotel.  Feng Jia Night Market to City Inn it’s not convenient though, the taxi fare roughly around S$8-10.

It was indeed an exciting day out on our first day in Taichung…. We stayed for 3 days 2 nights in Taichung, so what’s next for tomorrow in Taichung…?

To be continued….. 

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Ipoh, Malaysia trip ~ (25/3-27/3)

Supposed to travel to Ipoh 1 day later, but has changed to 1 day earlier.

I did enjoy the short trip in Ipoh, at least from the work break, stress break and the crave for Msian food… hehehe.. Spending money from Singapore Dollar to Malaysia Ringgit really saves me lots. Nice budget spending though 🙂

Have you been to Ipoh? I never been to Ipoh many times… I would say less than 5 times. Ipoh is a nice place to travel only when you enjoyed eating! Hahaha… If you don’t fancy eating, Ipoh is not your place.

Ipoh is very far from Singapore. If only you travelled by land transport. 😦 We took Michelle Yeoh father’s owned coach, Sri Maju from Singapore to Ipoh for S$32 one-way. The coach departed at 12noon and arrived in Ipoh……. guess???? 9:40pm!!! Almost 10 hours and for this 10 hours i already arrived in Athens, Greece! Or another 2 hours I already arrived in London. Our buttocks were sored for sitting for so many hours when arrived….. OK, not to scare you so much, if you have a car, you could arrive in Ipoh for 7-8 hours drive.

Sad to say, Ipoh airport has closed down due short airport runway. And fyi, the transportation for night train from Singapore to/fro Ipoh will not  be operated effective 1st April 2009.  For info for  night train (Senandung Malam) to Ipoh by click here.

About the Hotel we stayed:

Ipoh City Hotel.  Not a fantastic hotel, but I like it, current promotion price only RM93 per night (just room).  Promotion last till don’t know when as the reception do not want to tell.

Anyway, what I like about the hotel is the bathroom (no bath tub/shower type), large space, quite new, comfortable, no smell/old carpet, < RM100 price and good service.  There wasn’t any non-working appliance.  Unfortunately the hotel lost some marks on the cleanliness category…. 3 tiny harmless cockroaches seen, still!  I killed and flushed them into the toilet!  Well, if you are not a choosy and selective type of person….. Ipoh City Hotel is a not bad budget hotel.

Ipoh City Hotel - Not bad budget hotel

Ipoh City Hotel - Not bad budget hotel

Hotel Ipoh City – 18, Jalan Dass, 30300 Ipoh, Perak – Tel: 05-241 8282

If you got the $$$ person, you can go for Tower Regency Hotel from RM150 and above.  Hotel just launched in February 2009.

Day 1 – Sored Buttocks, Tired and Hungry

Arrived late in Ipoh and was very hungry, directed to Lou Wong Bean Sprout Chicken (in cantonese Lou Wong Nga Choi Kai)…I am sure you heard before???   What i really like is the hor fun soup they served, pork balls and the juicy bean sprout.  To me, the chicken is just ordinary (i prefered Hainanese Chicken). I wondered how they make the bean sprouts so fat and juicy?  The hor fun soup is sweet, i emptied the bowl of hor fun and soup.  Some people likes to eat Onn Kei Chicken, located just opposite Lou Wong,.. I wanted to try Onn Kei but the shop wasn’t opened that day.   Too bad….

Lou Wong Bean Sprout & Pork Balls - GOOD!  I like both!

Lou Wong Bean Sprout & Pork Balls - GOOD! I like both!

Lou Wong Chicken

Lou Wong Chicken - to me, the chicken is just ordinary

Hor fun soup... simply the best!

Hor fun soup... even though its plain, this bowl is simply the best!

What I have learned about Malaysia food business, as long the food is good, customers do not bother about the environment. Many of the good food in Ipoh, the shops are coffee shop style.  They do not need to spend a cent on renovation but still people queue and wait and wait for the food……Even cleanliness, people do not bother! Check this out.

Lou Wong chicken team

Lou Wong chicken team

The shop.....

The shop.....

If I can give rating for Lou Wong cleanliness, I will give E for ‘very dirty’.  But due to the food is good, many people exempted the shop’s hygiene.

OK.  The bill for the food shown above: RM16.00

Day 2: Rainy afternoon…but was energetic to walk and explore Ipoh

Woke up at 9am for breakfast….. where?  Recommended by a resident in Ipoh (friend’s friend).. Foh San Restaurant.

Foh San Restaurant - Yummy dim sum restaurant in Ipoh

Foh San Restaurant - Yummy dim sum restaurant in Ipoh

The place is a wonder…  My first impression was… as if I have gone back to the future.  Inside of the restaurant is very antique.  Like the time i was born… 1970s or maybe even 1960s!  I actually enjoy the atmosphere there, as if i have gone back to the century when i was baby.

Antique restaurant and Thursday crowd

Antique restaurant and Thursday crowd

Two uncles enjoying the dim sum... Yum yum... Left uncle: "Yum yum, this is delicious".

Two uncles enjoying the dim sum... Yum yum... Left uncle: "Yum yum, this is delicious".

The dim sum is yummy… I like the spare ribs, the spare ribs is welly done than Dragon Gate in Singapore.   The varieties of the dim sum are very classic.  Not like dim sum in Kuala Lumpur… all sorts of dim sum creations found.  To me, i like classic because they are pureeeeeee…. Original..

Even we went on weekdays.  Getting an empty table needed a couple of seconds to find.  According to my friend, weekends cannot find empty tables.  People packed around the restaurant for empty tables.  I felt i was so lucky.. able to try out the dim sum on weekday.

Chee Cheong Fun (Prawn)

Chee Cheong Fun (Prawn)

Yong Tau Fu

Yong Tau Fu

Dumpling Prawn - I like it!

Dumpling Prawn - I like it!

3 Prawns inside.. waaa..... YUM!

3 Prawns inside.. waaa..... YUM!

Spare ribs

Spare ribs

Siew Mai

Siew Mai

Special Pau looked like bee nest!

Special Pau looked like bee nest!

What's inside? Mushroom, glutinous rice, salty egg, chicken meat and vegie - like it!

What's inside? Mushroom, glutinous rice, salty egg, chicken meat and vegie - like it!

Next, the bill…..

7 plates + bowl of tea = RM29.00 ~ price is usual.

7 plates + pot of tea = RM29.00 ~ price is above average.

Interestingly found that although the restaurant is in 1970s/1960s interior designed, surprisingly there do have a very nice website that you can check.

Lunch time, which i was still full after the dim sum breakfast, not to waste time…. we eat more and put on more weight at Thean Chun coffee shop….

Thean Chun coffee shop

Thean Chun coffee shop

Thean Chun environment

Thean Chun environment

Thean Chun Inside... typical coffeeshop

Thean Chun Inside... typical coffeeshop

There are a few stalls inside, famous in Kai Si Hor Fun Soup (Chicken Hor Fun Soup), Popiah, Custard and Chee Cheong Fun.

Kai Si Hor Fun Soup... I love it! I love it!

Kai Si Hor Fun Soup... I love it! I love it!

Eeeekk!! The popiah got blood on it!! Actually a kind of sauce... Good

Eeeekk!! The popiah got blood on it!! (Actually a kind of sauce... Good!)

Chee Cheong Fun with Mushroom Sauce - to me, i find average.

Chee Cheong Fun with Mushroom Sauce - to me, i find this CCF is just average.

Well, I couldn’t eat anymore at night… so just had light dinner.

Besides eating and eating on the 2nd day in Ipoh, I went to Kinta City, which i find more stuff to see and branded items available there than Ipoh Parade.  However, Kinta City is located outside the city whereas, the Ipoh Parade is inside the city. But it is worth to check out the Kinta City…… I found that, the Kinta City is similar with 1 Utama shopping mall (the old wing)…. the interior, exterior designs are the same.. even the floor tiles the same!

Day 3 – The Final Round

Final round…. before leaving back to Kuala Lumpur.  Went for Ipoh White Coffee.  People said that the famous white coffee in Ipoh is not the Old Town Coffee but Sin Yoon Loong Coffee.  It is located directly opposite the Old Town Coffee.  I am not sure if this is true.. I just drink lahh!!  hahahaha…

Sin Yoon Loong Coffee Shop - Best White Coffee in Ipoh

Sin Yoon Loong Coffee Shop - Best White Coffee in Ipoh

Sim Yoon Loong (inside coffeeshop)

Sin Yoon Loong (inside coffeeshop)

Lets check the prices -- can see?

Lets check the prices -- can see?

Sin Yoon Loong White Coffee (Hot & Cold) - Ngam Ngam Hou..

Sin Yoon Loong White Coffee (Hot & Cold) - Ngam Ngam Hou..(just perfect!)

Bread Toast as well.....Yum yum - Good

Bread Toast as well.....Yum yum - Good

Ta Daaa.... The bread gone! The coffee emptied! Waa...magic!

Ta Daaa.... The bread gone! The coffee emptied! Waa...magic!

For comparison, actually the bread toast compare with Ya Kun Bread Toast (Singapore),… the Ya Kun bread are in brown colour and crunchy. While the Ipoh bread toast is thin bread and light crunchy. You try you will know the difference lahh… hard to explain in words… 😛

Another recommendation is Chau Kueh Teow (Fried Kueh Teow) in Ipoh.  I am a Fried Kueh Teow person… I can have Fried Kueh Teow everyday for lunch.  Unfortunately, there was not a single  good taste Fried Kueh Teow in Singapore.  If you try deeply, the Fried Kueh Teow in Singapore taste sweet… and the sweetness is sugarly sweet.   I tried many Kueh Teow stalls in Singapore, but never taste…. non sweetness Kueh Teow before… Sad case. Total opposite with Fried Kueh Teow in Malaysia.

Ok.. let’s look at the best kueh teow in Ipoh.  This Kueh Teow was actually ordered from a stall located at the opposite (Old Town Coffee Shop).. You can request to send over the plate…

Fried Kueh Teow... BEST!!!  I counted there are 5 big prawns in this plate of Kueh Teow.... OH WOW!

Fried Kueh Teow... BEST!!! I counted there are 5 big prawns in this plate of Kueh Teow.... OH WOW! - Price: RM3.50 ..... NOW YOU SEE!

1 second, ....Now you don't!!!

1 second, ....Now its gone! Thats quick!

Old Town Coffee...

Ipoh Old Town Coffee...(the original shop)

Old Town White Coffee Shop.. (the original shop)

Old Town White Coffee Shop..Kedai Makanan Nam Heong (the original shop)

Then…… its Tau Fu Fah time!!!

So many orders, so famous,... need my help or not?

So many orders, so famous,... need my help or not?

Waaa.. so famous.. so many news about this Tau Fu Fah stall.

Waaa.. so famous.. so many news about this Tau Fu Fah stall.

open at 10:30AM until finish!

open at 10:30AM until finish!

So soft & soft! Best.......

So soft & soft! Best.......RM0.80 cents for a bowl.

The famous tau fu fah stall (Funny Mountain) in ipoh...

The famous tau fu fah stall (Funny Mountain) in ipoh...

You know, now i only came to know this Tau Fu Fah shop is called FUNNY MOUNTAIN.  The logo is a rat pushing the trolley  filled with soya beans……..

And last,…. before I leave back to Kuala Lumpur.. I went to buy Salted Chicken which produced and famous in Ipoh (Aun Kheng Lim) for my mum..RM16.00 for 1 whole piece adult chick…hahaha…The chicken is salty and is steamed chicken with light chinese herbal flavour.

Aun Kheng Lim Salted Chicken.. Yummy too!

Aun Kheng Lim Salted Chicken.. Yummy too!

Aun Kheng Lim Salted Chicken Shop

Aun Kheng Lim Salted Chicken Shop

Map for all the places i went…