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Taiwan Travel Diary #7: Chiang Kai Shek memorial and Ximending

Hey everyone~
Since I'm not really doing anything during the week, unfortunately I didn't have much to write about.
But~ last weekend I went to see the famous Chiang Kai-shek memorial here in Taipei. ^^ I went on my own and the weather was really bad, but I'm still gonna show you some photos.
But let's look at the important things first:

On the days on which I don't have any classes I like to sleep in and afterwards get one of those delicious waffles for brunch. They're huge, and you can get different fillings. I usually get cinnamon apple and it only costs 50NTD.

Bento box for 50NTD~ This store is super crowded during lunch hour. Basically you get to select three side dishes and then the piece of meat you want to have (mine is Chicken steak).

Here's something I got for dinner: Dakgalbi~
Yes i do eat quite a lot of Korean food here...not exactly what I intended to, but oh well. Since there's really nothing here on the mountain, we usually eat in the university canteen for dinner (which is directly next to our dorm). In the evenings and weekends, there are only two restaurants opened and both  mostly offer Korean food (one is more expensive and authentic, the other one is quite cheap but mostly has some kind of mix between Korean and Chinese food). Normally there's a big selection of food, as the canteen is basically a foodcourt. But since it's super crowded during lunch time, I mostly only eat there in the evening and thus...Korean food.

Back to the main topic~
This was at Chiang Kai-Shek memorial MRT station. They had lots of pretty painting hanging on the walls, almost all of them showing fruits.

I personally always feel happy when I see such public places being decorated, It makes walking through there a lot more enjoyable and it's a nice method of showing off some peoples art, because so many people get to see it.

Get out of exit 1(if i remember that properly) and turn right. The first place that you'll see is actually the national theater.

Something I really like about Taipei is the amount of people practicing dancing or other arts in public. No matter where you go, if there's any wall or door that reflects light a lot, there will be people dancing. In subway stations, in university buildings...or in front of the closed doors of the National theater.
Can you spot the cheerleaders?

Right next to the National theater is the memorial hall~

And normally there's this huge~ pretty entrance gate but on that day there were a lot of constructions going on.

Taipei Chiang Kai Shek memorial

Even though the weather was super windy that day and it looked like it would rain soon, there were quite a lot of people there.
Can you spot Tapei 101 behind those clouds?

There was even a marching band practicing and performing.

the wind was super strong so excuse my horrible hair

Inside of the memorial there's this big statue of Chiang Kai-Shek.

Afterwards I went to Ximen to walk around for a bit. I was originally planning to eat dinner there but it was kind of awkward to find a restaurant, as I was alone and I felt that eating alone could be quite awkward ^^'

Ximen Ximending Taipei Taiwan
Ximen Taipei Red House

There was some sort of flea market going on on the right side of Ximens famous Red house.

There were many interesting things, a lot seemed to be handmade. It wasn't inexpensive, so I didn't buy anything.

The left side of Ximens Red house also offers a lot of shopping opportunities...but very different ones.

Taiwan is seriously not conservative at all. The LGBT community is pretty much out in the open here, which is awesome. They're not hiding themselves, and if you follow all those rainbows you'll end up in (apparantly) one of the best places for partying too. 

Ximen Taipei Gay bars

There's also a small temple right in the middle of Ximen.

And an Ukulele store...

Street food vendors
Kim Woobin posters for Calvin Klein where everywhere~

Kuroko no Basket Taipei Ximen

This girl advertised something, and I'm not sure if it was because she was really pretty or if she was some kind of celebrity, but no matter which time I passed here, there was always a crowd of middle-aged men standing around her taking her was slightly creepy.

There are lots of clothing stores in Ximen too, but they tend to be slightly pricey.

Clothing stores Ximen Taipei

When I first left the metro station, I noticed those guys who build up this basketball..thingy.

Later on, there was already a crowd around them, but they weren't doing anything. Suddenly, a big van with tinted windows pulled over on the side of the road and this really, really tall guy stepped out. He seemed quite famous.
A few people from the crowd were invited to try and play against him, which was hilarious since all of them didn't even reach up to his shoulders. 

When a small kid wanted to play, he helped him make a goal.

After he left, the crowd quickly dispersed again.
I shortly went over to Nature Republic...because of reasons.

Somehow they still have Luhan here...I think probably because people here really, really like Luhan.

Afterwards I went to Jiantan station, bought a few snacks at Shilin nightmarket and went back to university. On a corner, I met this guy.

His Transformers costume was awesome...the eyes were glowing, and he scared quite a few kids when he suddenly moved. He also managed to flirt with a lot of young girls.

Transformer Taipei

That's it for today.
I'll have another blog post about my adventures at Taipeis Zoo for you soon, so please look forward to that :D

Love, Lydia


Taiwan Travel Diary #6: More foodporn (Beitou, Danshui and a Pizza Buffet)

Hey everyone~ I'm really late with posting this, but I haven't done much the past week as I'm trying to save money right now (thanks, weak Euro..) so I didn't want to post everything right away.
Last sunday, I met up with two korean classmates to explore Beitou and Danshui. We didn't really plan that well, so we mostly just got out of the subway stations, walked around and tried all~the foods. Or, as much as possible at least.
Our first stop was Beitou, where we went for something sweet first~

Super sweet, yummy pancakes filled with either red bean paste or custard.

They were freshly made, right on the spot so when we got them, they were still really hot.
I ended up burning myself when I bit into it and some of the custard spilled onto my fingers. Ouch.

We also bought some fried chicken and sweet potato fries in Beitou, as well as really cheap watermelon juice (only 40NTD for 600ml!) but all of that was empty before I remembered to take a photo of it.
Our next stop was Danshui.

Danshui is really beautiful, and i will definitely quickly return there. We mostly walked around and looked at all the street food stalls.

There was also some sort of museum for weird things that looked quite interesting, but it was a sunday and thus super crowded. Next time I'll probably go and take a look at it.

There were also quite a few shops selling phone cases, socks or various other accessories. 

The first thing we bought in Danshui was bought at this small grill stall.
We always only bought one of each, and then shared it so that we could try many different things.
This stall also sold the famous Small Sausage wrapped in big sausage (sausage in a rice bun) but we didn't manage to try that in the end.

We got spring onions, wrapped in bacon, then grilled, with a peanut based sauce and sesame seeds on top of it.

I didn't like it that much. The outer part was delicious, but the inside was only spring onions and chewing on a bunch of spring onions was a bit weird.

We bought dessert right afterwards:

I heard about this one a lot before, and it sounded amazing~
A thin Crêpe, with shaved peanut candy and ice in it.
And oh my god was it delicious! Can't wait to eat that more often, it's really good!

Those tiger heads are actually backpacks

The next photos are just random meals I had, as I didn't really do much the past week.

On wednesday i spontaneously went to a Pizza buffet with a korean classmate of mine and her taiwanese friends. Yes you read that right. Pizza. Buffet. All you can eat pizza.
It costs almost 400 NTD per person, which is quite expensive, but you get more than just pizza there.
Like salads. And softdrinks that are all you can drink as well.

And fries. And fried chicken.

And Pasta. 

What I really liked about this place is that instead of makind all the pizza beforehand and then having it on a buffet, where it's already lukewarm or cold when you get it, they made a new pizza every few minutes and then a waiter walked around with it, asking each table how many slices they wanted. Same for the fried chicken and fries. Everything we got was still warm and sooo tasty~

Also they had weird pizza. Like Takoyaki pizza. And Cappuccino pizza.
Which tasted like warm cake with cappuccino cream on top. Sounds weird but really yummy~

Since I'm trying to budget as much as I can, I mostly eat at the school canteen.
On Thursday i found out about a buffet style place in the canteen that i hadn't seen before. All the vegetables and meat is paid for by weight, and then afterwards you can add as much rice to it as you want. You also get free soup too.

Ramen for dinner~

Something I was really happy about: Manjoo~
Those are sweet and filled with custard, and are made fresh so that they're still warm when you eat them. I didn't expect to find them here, as I ate them almost every day when i was in Korea :D

I'm used to eating something sweet for breakfast (I always ate bread slices or toast with Nutella in Germany) so i usually get those pancakes here.
They're filled with strawberry and white chocolate cream~

Bibimbab for dinner~
(Bibimbab here is not spicy at all. And includes corn for some reason)

My newest addiction:
Sweet potato fries

And sometimes I just gotta treat myself to fruits, since they're so fresh and delicious here.

I hope you didn't read this with an empty tummy :P
How did you like my photospam? too many food photos?
Please tell me your thoughts in the comments below ^-^
If you know any of the Chinese names for any of the things shown here, please tell me so :D