Wednesday, 25 December 2013

2013 Wrap Up

Year 2013 has been kind to me and  I was able to visit 3 countries that have been in my travel plans for a while. In March, I paid a visit to "The Land of the Gods" -Bali, Indonesia. It really lived up to it's reputation as I lost count on the temples that I have visited and passed by. We were immersed in the cultural ambient of the Balinese and captivated by the beautiful scenery. The 5 days tour was short but a fruitful one.

At Uluwatu Temple, Bali Indonesia

In June, I finally got to visit Angkor Wat-The Temple of the God Kings. My company was different as I traveled there with only my cousin and friend (instead with my wife and daughter) for a short 4 days outing. I done my research before going to Siem Reap and realized that there were many other interesting temples beside Angkor Wat. Nevertheless, Angkor Wat is top of the lists at Siem Reap for good reasons. You have to visit there to experience it's greatness. The only thing I regretted was failing to witness the sunrise at Angkor Wat due to weather reasons.

At Bayon Temple, Siem Reap Cambodia

Finally, we visited Taiwan at end November this year. I brought along my parents with my family for this trip. It was a 10 days trip and all of us have enjoyed the stay there. The weather was cooling compared to the high humidity at Bali and intense heat at Siem Reap. Being not frequent travelers, my parents found the weather a bit cold for their liking. But it was a great trip having met the objective of family bonding and relaxing ourselves. This was my third trip to Taiwan and it has brought back some good memories. My last trip there before this one was almost 10 years ago.
At Sun Moon Lake, Taichung Taiwan
Year 2014 is arriving and I have already made some travel plans. At year end, it will be my usual yearly trip to my in law home at Hong Kong. We missed it for this year. Despite having visited there for more than 10 times already, I still like the feeling to go back there every time. Japan is also in my list for next year. Having visited there once before our marriage, my wife and I missed our time in Tokyo, Osaka and Kyoto especially. Despite hearing some grunts of protest, I also include in my plan a trip to Yogyakarta, Indonesia. I have always wanting to visit the cultural sites Borobudur and Prambanan and it will be a wish come true if I can visit them.

Wishing everyone a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year! Hope all your wishes come true for the coming year!

Thursday, 5 December 2013

Family Bonding Tour at Taiwan Formosa

Sun Moon Lake

Just back from a 10 days tour in Taiwan. We traveled in a group of five-My parents, wife, daughter and myself. Before the trip, I joked with my friends that I relished the challenge of planning the trip for the different age groups for the tour. My trip plan was mostly focused on the western bank of Taiwan with the exception of Jiufen which is located at the Northeastern end of the island. With the help of the various transport systems-the MRT (Mass Rapid Transport), HSR (High Speed Rail), trains, public bus services and taxis, we visited the various attractions at Taipei, Hsinchu, Taichung and Kaoshiung.

Yeliu Harbour
Yeliu Geo Park
The highlights of the trip must be having family tea (Yumchai) at a tea inn at the top of Jiufen, taking a tour round the renowned Fo Guang Shan Monastery, witnessed a religious ceremony at Lotus Lake, taking an early morning stroll at Sun Moon Lake and enjoying the sunset at Tamsui. I will share those experiences in  my later blogs. The most important thing about this tour is of course the family bonding we got to enjoy. My parents (especially my dad!) surprised me with their sporting attitude to try anything I recommended (and not recommended!). They tried almost all the challenging rides at the Eda Theme Park after the disappointment of not allowing to try them at Leofoo Village Theme Park due to age restriction. I gave them a big thumb up for these!
CSK Memorial Hall and Taipei 101 Tower
Leofoo Village Theme Park
Family Photo at Yeliu Geo Park

I hastily went through my photo stocks and handpicked some Taiwan photos that I like to share with all of you first. Hope you will enjoy them. More of Taiwan ventures in my later blogs. Cheers!

For those interested, the following were my itineraries for my 10 days trip at Taiwan:

Day 1: Arrived at Taipei
Day 2: Yehliu
Day 3: Leofoo Village Theme Park-Shilin Night Market
Day 4: Jiufen-Chiang Kai-shek Memorial Hall-Tapei 101
Day 5: Kaohsiung-Liuhe Night Market
Day 6: Fo Guang Shan-Dragon Tiger Pagoda
Day 7: Eda Theme Park
Day 8: Taichung-Sun Moon Lake
Day 9: Taipei-Tamshui
Day 10: Departed to Singapore

Related Posts: Early Morning Walk at Sun Moon Lake , Taiwan Travel Tips

Dragon and Tiger Pagoda
Formosa Boulevard MRT
Eda Theme Park

Fo Guang Shan Monastery 


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