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Authentic Taiwanese Cuisine : Sky Turns Red Restaurant, Taipei, Taiwan.

Taipei Taiwan

My friend Alice recommended this authentic Taiwanese restaurant which has no English name, so I am just going to translate it as “Sky Turns Red Restaurant” ( 紅翻天).  Alice insisted that the dishes are small, so she went on an order frenzy and ordered 14 dishes for the 4 of us!!!  Being gluttons like my friends and I, we managed to eat almost everything without too much left over.  We were totally stuffed.  But honestly, for 4 people, I think 8 dishes should be more than enough.

When we were at the restaurant, it was about 90% filled with people.  Yet the dishes came out as if the chef was only cooking for 2 tables of people.   Most of the dishes were between NTD 100 to NTD 150.  The steam boat dishes which we did not  order were NTD 400.  With the speedy service and unbeatable price, I  would highly recommend this restaurant to anyone who wants to get an authentic taste of Taiwanese cuisine.  (Take note that restaurant does not accept credit card, so bring enough cash along).

Here is what we ate:

Grilled Fish.  The fish was grilled until crisp on the outside yet juicy on the inside.  The fish had minimal seasoning of salt, with white pepper and lime on the side, but that was all the fish really needed.  A little more seasoning than that would hide the true freshness of the fish.

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Taking the Bus From Taoyuen International Airport to Taipei City

Taipei Taiwan

We arrived at Taoyuen International Airport at around 3.30pm.  You can either get to Taipei by cab (I think it’s around NTD 900 or so) or take a bus to Taipei, a popular one to take would be the “Free -Go” bus, also known as “飞狗巴士” in Taiwan.

When you exit from the arrival gate, you will see sign boards that will lead you to the bus station.

Then, keep going straight, Continue reading

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Food! Yongfu Fuzhou Style Fish Ball Restaurant, Taipei, Taiwan.

Taipei Taiwan

Gary got pretty hungary after arriving at the hotel as he didn’t eat much on the plane.  The hotel that we stayed in, Neijiang Hotel, was super convenient as it had a lot of typical, local food around (also known as 小吃).  This restaurant, Yongfu Fuzhou Style Fish Ball Restaurant, was a just a few doors away from us.  One thing I find about food in Taiwan, is that it’s always good ! Whether it is night-market street food, simple local food, casual dining or fine dining! Yongfu Restaurant of course did not contradict my finding:)

Pork Nugget Soup

The restaurant’s name Continue reading

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Hotel Review: Neijiang Hotel, Taipei, Taiwan.

We stayed in Neijiang Hotel, Taipei, Taiwan in April 2012 from 8th to 11th, and one more night on the 14th, for total of 5 nights .  The hotel is strategically located at the Ximending shopping district, just 3 minutes walk from the Ximen MRT station (exit 1), 3 minutes walk to 4 convenience stores near by.  (Yes, it is a phenomenon in Taiwan where convenience stores are everywhere !) The hotel is also surrounded with restaurants, Continue reading

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Langkawi Itinerary – 4 Days 3 Nights

Langkawi Malaysia

Our Langkawi itinerary was quite relaxed, not so much of rushing around to go to the next destination or the next city.  We took our sweet time going from place to place, and spent some time by the pool and the beach.  But if you are tight for time, I think you can still use my itinerary for a 3 days 2 nights stay.  Here is our actual itinerary:

Day 1 – Arrival at Langkawi  Continue reading

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Langkawi – Kilim Karst Geoforest Park, Day 4

Langkawi Malaysia

The Kilim Geoforest Park received its Unesco World Heritage status in 2007. When you are in Langkawi, the only way reach the park would be taking the boat tour (if yo have a helicopter, that would be different story…)

We took the 2 hour boat tour which included visits to: Bat Cave, Fish Farm, Eagle Feeding, Mangrove Sightseeing, Crocodile Cave, Open Sea (Andaman Sea) and Kilim Geoforest Park.  The package was by the boat, 2 hours for RM180 so if you are backpacking, this tour can be pricey.

First Stop : Bat Cave

We walked through the limestone cave that had bats hanging off the ceiling.  It’s actually not as scary as I thought it would be.  The bats were pretty docile and just stayed where they were although there were a lot of tourists walking beneath them.  Would be a good idea to rent torches at the entrance of the cave for you to see better in the cave.

Second Stop: Fish Farm with Mangrove sightseeing along the way.

Reaching the fish farm:

The fish farm tour is perhaps the most educational part of my Langkawi trip and my favourite part in the Kilim Geoforest Package.

Did you know that the blood of horse shoe crab is being researched as anti-cancer drug? And it costs RM 10,000 per crab!The fish farm dude as a way to illustrate to us that the crab is totally harmless, put the crab on his head and told us that the crab is a good head massager! Lol!

Did you know that the spitting fish can aim precisely and spit few meters high, with the force strong enough to shoot down insects from the tress? You can view the spitting fish video here.  The fish farm dude also asked us to place one finger at the edge of the floor plank, the fish actually aimed at our fingers and spat on our fingers!

 Another fun bit in the fish farm would be  stingray feeding (with the poisonous barb removed of course…).  They can actually turn over on their backs so you can rub their white bellies, kinda similar to rubbing a dog’s belly.   The fish farm dude told us that the sting ray had no teeth and can’t bite, so we could put our hands into the stingrays’ mouth to feed it (which gave me a funny tingling sensation).

Next Stop: Eagle Feeding

To say eagle feeding, would be  a marketing gimmick used by the tour company because really there was no feeding but just watching the eagles fly.  But honestly, it would be pretty scary to have wild eagles charging at you trying to eat food off your hand….  nonetheless, we enjoyed our close encounters with the eagles ! We sighted up to 4 eagles at one time flying around.

Next Stop: Crocodile Cave

Crocodile cave really meant cave that used to have crocodiles.  The boatman took us in and out of the cave.

Next Stop: Kilim Geopark and Andaman Sea.

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The boat took us around the geopark, where we could see beautiful limestone landscape and geological formation on Andaman Sea.  If you are from Malaysia and have travelled the North-South highway between Kuala Kangsar and Kuala Lumpur, the landscape on the highway is quite similar to the limestone landscape in the geopark, except one is on land, and one is on sea.

The Geoforest Park tour marked the end of our journey in Langkawi. The tour was seemingly short but it was surprisingly eventful.

We went back to the hotel, picked up our over-weight luggage (yep, too much duty-free shopping) and  adios, till next time !

Websites which you may find useful:

Langkawi Kilim Geopark http://www.langkawi-geopark.com/

Mangrove Tour and Geopark Package http://www.langkawimangrovetours.com/

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