Karo and I finally took some time off out of the country and went to visit some friends and family in both Taiwan and Guam this February and March. We tried the make the most of out of two weeks but it is definitely not enough time to explore Taiwan and Guam… well Taiwan mostly. You can get through Guam in a day or two 😉
I was born in Guam and moved to Southern California till I was 17 so I was there for most of my life. Karo is born in Taiwan so we decided to visit each other’s birthplace.
On this trip, I left the iPad Air and MacBook Air 13-inch, and digital camera back home and decided to try out the Surface Pro 2 for my computing needs and the iPhone 5S to take pictures with and to keep myself entertained on flights. It turns out I didn’t even use the Surface Pro 2 that much as it was sort of cumbersome using it as either a tablet or a laptop. I relied heavily on the iPhone 5S for everything else.
Had a breakfast pizza at Wolfgang Pucks at LAX before taking off!
We were extremely disappointed that United Airlines had no personal entertainment system in economy class like the other international airlines do. It was one of the most uncomfortable flights even flying from SFO to to Narita but it was really cheap and I guess you get what you pay for.
Stay positive! It’s only a 13+ hour flight!
Airplane food… YUCK!
Right when we landed in Tokyo, we had to right away board our connecting flight on ANA airlines to TPE. United was just full of delays at the start of our trip!
Yay! This flight had a personal entertainment system!!!
We finally landed in Taipei airport and we were in desperate need of a nice clean shower!
We stayed in a really nice hostel which was close to a lot of shopping and was part of a mall for tech geeks. We arrived late at night so nothing was open but we just went to sleep because we were so exhausted.
Good morning Taipei!
Didn’t notice this the night before but during the day, we spotted suicide nets from where we were staying! Wow they think of everything!
Hopped on the train to go get some breakfast. We stayed really close to the Taipei Main Station so it was really convenient to get anyway. This train caught my attention because it was so… pink!
It’s pretty common to see the entire kitchen in these types of eateries. Sure it looks like a hole in the wall type place but they usually have the best food.
Oh yes, you know this is the real deal especially when you have to calculate your own toilet paper usage BEFORE you get in the restroom (WC)! Eggs, baskets and ingredients all over the place!
Oh hell yes, our food has arrived! Absolutely delicious!
After breakfast we went for a walk. We spotted a California Pizza Kitchen close to the Taipei 101!
Speaking of Taipei 101, here it is in all of its glory! We are going to head up to the observatory!
Spotted the real Din Tai Fung dumpling house close to the Taipei 101. We have one in the Los Angeles area in Arcadia but this was where it all started!
We got our tickets to head up all the way to the top of the Taipei 101 observatory which is on the 90th Floor!
At the top, there are really spectacular views of the city of Taipei!
Getting all the way to the top took about a minute. This exhibit explains that it is the world’s fastest elevator!
At the bottom of the 101, there is a lot of shopping you can do, which is what Asia is all about.
After Taipei 101, we hopped on the train to head to our next destination, Shifen. One thing I’ve noticed with the trains in Taipei are that they are really clean and well maintained!
I got really hungry so we got off the next stop where there was a a 7-11 close by. They have a really good selection of food and they cashier will heat it up for you. The noodles were delicious!
After a somewhat lengthy train ride, we arrive at Shifen Station! Luckily, there are signs written in English otherwise, I wouldn’t know if I came here by myself!
There is food everywhere! Even along the train station! That is one thing Taiwan is definitely not short of!
Along the tracks, you see vendors selling these hot air balloons made of paper where people write their wishes on each side and have them float up into the air. We will come back for this later. There was one particular couple that had theirs catch on fire in mid-air and landed on someone’s roof! Luckily it didn’t burn a house down!
And I thought the street signs in Los Angeles were confusing… feels just like home!
After a long hike from the train station, we made it to the waterfalls! It was an amazingly beautiful sight. You can’t tell because of my sunglasses, but I was totally exhausted because I barely just got off the plane the night before. This was just barely day one in Taiwan! I will have more pictures posted soon!