Taipei Trip Mega Post – Day 4

For our last day in Taipei, Mon still had some last minute souvenir shopping to do. This is honestly my least favorite part. As Ximending Night Market is just a cartwheel away from the inn, Mon has already bookmarked the shops he wanted to visit.

Most of the stuff I will be giving to family and friends had been taken care of the night before. So for the morning’s adventure, I will just be tagging along. We also planned to visit a cat cafe somewhere in Taipei in the afternoon.

000 Last minute shopping at Ximending Night Market - Mulberry Piccadilly bag

Last minute shopping at Ximending Night Market

The prices of the boxes of mochi were nearly the same as Carrefour. Mon also meticulously looked for small non-food items for his family. Meanwhile, I just sat outside every bench or chair I could find. Before the end of his shopping, I also bought boxes of pastries to be given to my family and his. I also used my credit card for this one-time purchase (NTD 750).

Searching for the perfect pair of earrings

Searching for the perfect pair of earrings

Before going to the cat cafe, we ate lunch at McDonald’s in Ximending Night Market (the usual chicken + salad). This McDonald’s was a couple of blocks from the inn, which was very convenient because we had to drop off the stuff we had bought.

It also began raining while we were eating. We waited for the rain to subside before walking again. I am using a non-water protected Piccadilly bag for today. I cannot risk it.

I also forgot to bring a belt with me, which prevented me from using my already 2-size too big pair pants. I ended up using the yellow drawstring from the first pair of shorts I used on our first day because I’m too cheap to buy a belt I will use for only a day.

002 While the streets are almost empty - Mulberry Piccadilly bag

While the streets are almost empty

003 Over the manhole

Over the manhole

Before going to Lang Lang Don’t Cry, we stumbled upon Taipei Tianhou Temple on the walk to Ximen Station. It is almost across the Red House Theater, very hard to miss. We took a couple of photos before going along our way.

004 We dropped by quickly at Taipei Tianhou Temple

We dropped by quickly at Taipei Tianhou Temple

005 Blogger shot - Prada Vela Tobacco Messenger Bag

Blogger shot – Prada Vela Tobacco Messenger Bag

For Lang Lang Don’t Cry, I miscalculated the MRT station to drop off from. Instead of exiting at Taipei Main Station, we got off the Shandao Temple Station instead. We walked for 20 minutes before arriving at the cafe.

It became almost customary for Mon and I to visit a cat cafe whenever we visit a new place. For this cat + dog cafe, however, one must reserve seats in advance.

006 Lang Lang Don't Cry Animal Cafe and Animal Shelter

Lang Lang Don’t Cry Animal Cafe and Animal Shelter

007 Before entering Lang Lang Don't Cry Animal Cafe and Animal Shelter

Before entering Lang Lang Don’t Cry Animal Cafe and Animal Shelter

Fortunately, despite not reserving in advance, we were accommodated by the staff: two seats at the counter. This place is clearly an animal shelter, and not the same as the cat cafes in Myeongdong and Bangkok. If you are looking for somewhere fancy, then clearly this is not the place for it.

008 Coffee Menu -Lang Lang Don't Cry Animal Cafe and Animal Shelter

Coffee Menu

009 Totally not keto friendly, but, oh well

Totally not keto friendly, but, oh well

010 Polaroid shots

Polaroid shots

sFrankly speaking, the experience would have been better if we were seated with the cats on the 2nd floor (the dogs were on the 1st floor). There were not a lot of activities inside, and I was almost bored to my wits finishing my non-keto food. I had a nagging feeling that perhaps we could have gone somewhere.

Anyway, I just keep convincing myself that it was for a good cause. *shrugs* However, given another choice, I’d rather go somewhere else.

011 This dog was too shy

This dog was too shy

012 One of the few cats

One of the few cats

013 The cats would not budge a bit

The cats would not budge a bit

014 This tuxedo cat was trying his luck to escape to the first floor

This tuxedo cat was trying his luck to escape to the first floor

015 Rushing before it rained hard - Prada Vela Tobacco Messenger Bag

Rushing before it rained hard

For the rest of the afternoon, we rested before changing our clothes to prepare for the climb to Elephant Mountain. But, alas, the weather was not cooperative and it was raining cats and dogs. When we arrived at Xiangshan Station, we stayed for just a bit thinking that perhaps the rain will stop.

By 06:00 pm, we gave up and traveled back to Ximen. Let us just have a decent dinner on our last night, shall we? We went back to the food court of the department store where we had lunch before the Klook trip.

016 Ended up eating because we were not able to trek Elephant Mountain

Ended up eating because we were not able to trek Elephant Mountain

What I was particularly excited for was the shaved almond milk dessert after! For any keto travelers coming to Taipei, make sure to drop by Yu’s Almond Desserts. This is the closest thing to a keto-friendly place in Taipei you could visit.

You may remove the mung bean inside if you like a full-on keto dessert, but since if you will be walking a lot during your trip, just eat the extra carbs.

017 Shaved almond milk as dessert

Shaved almond milk as dessert

018 All wet Ximending Night Market

All wet Ximending Night Market

019 Hey Doraemon

Hey Doraemon

Our flight back to Manila was after midnight. We had plenty of time to sort our stuff, especially the dirty clothes we had amassed during our stay.

We booked the double room from  September 4 – September 9 at Royal Hours Deluxe Inn using Booking.com back in May. The total cost was Php 13,215.82. This is roughly Php 2,600/night. As mentioned, we did not want to go through the trouble of asking for consideration for early check-in, thus we paid the whole day instead.

We had a very good experience there, overall. Except for the let down of a breakfast (not even a coffee available?), it would have been perfect. However, we were thinking that maybe next time we go back to Taipei, we’d research more on look for a better place where coffee is at least readily available.

020 Double Room of Royal Hours Deluxe Inn

Double Room of Royal Hours Deluxe Inn

020 The mirror gave an illusion of a bigger size -Mulberry Piccadilly Bag, vintage Mulberry turnlock messenger bag

The mirror gave an illusion of a bigger size

021 The toilet and bath

The toilet and bath

022 The mess before departure - Mulberry Piccadilly Bag, Louis Vuitton Monstouris GM Backpack Bag, Alexander Wang Donna Hobo Bag, Gucci Monogram Supreme Messenger Bag

The mess before departure

023 The view from the room

The view from the room

024 Self-portrait

Self-portrait

For the iVideo pocket WiFi, we have booked online through their website back in August 21. The rent at the time was US$ 10.9, with US$ 2 shipping fee. I also got a US$ discount reducing the total cost to US$ 11.9, paid via credit card.

025 Before I returned the iVIdeo pocket wifi

Before I returned the iVideo pocket wifi

Ximen Station is a considerable walk from the inn. With the rain and heavy luggage, we opted for an Uber ride instead. We paid NTD 120.

026 Our Uber ride to Taipei Main Station

Our Uber ride to Taipei Main Station

We left Royal Hours at 11:00 pm. We thought that the last airport MRT train would leave at 12:00 am, but we were wrong. People were already rushing to get inside the stationed wagon, and we had to carry our bags over a long flight of stairs. I felt like I strained my arms doing that.

Normally, one buys a blue token (NTD 160) from the counter, but a lady just issued as tickets, which we will have to pay later on when we arrived at Taoyuan airport.

027 Rushing to Taoyuan Airport MRT

Rushing to Taoyuan Airport MRT

028 We got in on the last train to Taoyuan Airport MRT

We got in on the last train to Taoyuan Airport MRT

029 You pap me, I pap you - Mulberry Piccadilly Bag, Louis Vuitton Monstouris GM Backpack Bag

You pap me, I pap you

Before going inside the immigration area, we had to return the iVideo WiFi at the HiLife store. Using the return packet which came with the kit when we first got it, I just sealed everything in. No questions asked from the HiLife staff.

It was also the perfect time to grab a quick bite at the store, because there’s nothing to eat at the boarding gate. Mon, however, managed to find coffee. It was enough to keep me awake for an hour and a half before the red-eye flight. We also slept considerably in one of the benches, before the Cebu Pacific staff announced boarding at 3:00 am.

030 The convenience store referred to here is the HiLife grocery

The convenience store referred to here is the HiLife grocery

031 Return the iVideo pocket wifi at HiLife grocery

Return the iVideo pocket wifi at HiLife grocery

So for our Taipei trip, this is our expenses good for two:

Pre-arrival NTD PHP
Cebu Pacific 11816.44 Pre-arrival 27,664.26
Royal Hours Deluxe Inn 13215.82 Total daily 10,654.02
iVideo WiFi 620.00 TOTAL 38318.28
Klook Shien/Jiufen Tour 2012.00
Day 1 NTD PHP Day 2 NTD PHP
Kuo Kuang 1819 Bus 280 487.20 Breakfast 145 252.30
Cab from TMS to Royal Hours 120 208.80 Top-up 200 348.00
Breakfast 140 243.60 Ximen to Longshan 32 55.68
Easy Card 200 348.00 Longshan to TMS 32 55.68
Top-up 200 348.00 Coffee 35 60.90
Ximen to CKS 32 55.68 TMS to Zhongxiao Xinsheng 32 55.68
CKS to Taipei 101 32 55.68 Zhongxiao Xinsheng to Tamsui 40 69.60
Water 32 55.68 Coffee 85 147.90
Lunch at Taipei 101 295 513.30 Bus – Tamsui to Fisherman’s Wharf 30 52.20
Taipei 101 to Sun Yat-Sen 32 55.68 Bus – Fisherman’s Wharf to Tamsui 30 52.20
Coffee 180 313.20 Top-up 200 348.00
Sun Yat-Sen to Ximen 40 69.60 Tamsui to Jiantian 48 83.52
Water 49 85.26 Dinner 380 661.20
Dinner 140 243.60 Jiantian to Ximen 40 69.60
Total 1322 2387.28 Coffee 120 208.80
Waffle 80 139.20
Total 1529 2660.46
Day 3 NTD PHP Day 4 NTD PHP
Breakfast 180 313.20 Breakfast 150 261.00
Ximen to Jiantian 40 69.60 Lunch 282 490.68
Jiantian to Yuanshan 40 69.60 Top-up 200 348.00
Yuanshan to Ximen 32 55.68 Ximen to Shandao 32 55.68
Ximen to Ximen 32 55.68 Coffee 200 348.00
Lunch 282 490.68 Cake 160 278.40
Almond Milk Tea 180 313.20 TMS to Ximen 32 55.68
Sausage 100 174.00 Ximen to Xiangshan 40 69.60
Coffee 160 278.40 Xiangshan to Ximen 40 69.60
Dinner 320 556.80 Dinner 320 556.80
Mushroom 150 261.00 Almond dessert 130 226.20
Total 1516 2637.84 Uber 120 208.80
Total 1706 2968.44

Obviously, the biggest bulk of our trip was both the airfare and accommodation. If you get a better airline and hotel deals, then you can drive the cost even lower. Also, the Ximen to Ximen on Day 3 was when Mon and I were not talking, and I did not notice that he exited the wrong way so I had to go back inside just to look for him.

If ever we were to go back to Taiwan soon, we hope to visit the other southern cities in a different (i.e. cooler) month. But for now, thank you, Taipei! Until next time!

bryologue

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