Wednesday, February 1, 2012

week 68_the Oklahomans in Taipei_DAYs 5,6,&7

Well, from the looks of it, you would think that I had abandoned the blog by now or just gone missing, but in fact I have simply been swamped with 'living it up in the big city'... well that and visits with family throughout the month of January!

Finally have some quiet time to myself this evening (and have forced myself to set down the page turner that I've been racing through all afternoon) to catch back up on the blog!

Reminiscing on my Mom & Sister's recent visit to Taipei, there is still more to share - so here goes!

For days 5, 6, and 7 of the girls' Taipei visit, we decided to get out of town and head to the country. Taiwan is such a beautiful island with countless national parks and scenic attractions. Although I had already been to Taroko Gorge, it seemed like the easiest side trip for the 3 of us - considering that I knew how to get there, knew that it was definitely worth our time, and knew that it would show them a great diversity to the busyness of Taipei.

We rented a car, and Mom, Sis, & I set out for the beautiful Taroko Gorge. We drove the shorter route which is only half scenic combined with some very long tunnels through the mountains... but even half scenic was plenty to fascinate my tourist companions :) This video was taken accidentally, but it gives you an idea of what our car looked like and the views we encountered, driving along the winding East coastal road.

Once we arrived at our hotel - Silks Place Taroko Gorge, it was posh and comfortable as expected. We had actually planned to stay only one night in the gorge but upon arrival, the  ladies realized that it might be worth an extra day of exploring!

Plenty of stairs - but the paths are so well maintained!

Lots of bridges too
It was raining or misting the whole time - but still beautiful even in the rain
Eternal Springs Shrine - at base of mountain
Changuang Temple (Zen monastery) halfway up mountain
View from the monastery to the Bell Tower atop the mountain
Mom & Me: At the top of the Bell Tower - Good hike, and Great views through the mist!
After hiking the 3 attractions there, from the Eternal Springs Shrine to the Bell Tower atop the mountain, we enjoyed some of the best views of the gorge! The trip was a great success and a great time for all 3 of us.
Chrissie & I enjoying the scenery on the drive back
Even though I am still anxious to visit some of the other national parks throughout Taiwan, this is still definitely the top attraction on the island for me so far! :) I know the girls were impressed too!

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