Arrival in Taipei
Airport Shuttle (5087) to Taoyuan HSR station to Tainan Station (1.5hr).
Walk to Shalun Station and take to Tainan Station (25min)
Shangrila Far Eastern Hotel
89 Section West, University Road
NB: Future just rest in Taipei as Taipei has a more vibrant night life.
Xiao Bei Night Market (Xiǎo Běi Yèshì 小北夜市)
Tuesdays and Fridays; Ximen Road, Section 4, at the intersection of He Wei Rd., North District. One of the oldest night markets in the city
Depart Tainan for Taitung
Our original intention was to leave about 5pm and enjoy the hotel, and more street food. However, our Minsu owner in Taitung advised us not to arrive Taitung too late. Glad we took her advice as the Tainan-Taitung train is so scenic.
We bought train tickets at 7am to catch the same day 1030am train (since our hotel is just across the train station) and had breakfast at the famous morning fish porridge shop.
One of the pleasant surprises as the ticketing person will not be able to tell you whether its the land route or the sea route. Subsequently, I realised that you can check the route on Google map (which got the infor from Taiwan Railway Association). Hurray for Wifi.
If you are a Mandarin speaker, Taiwan is quite an exciting place for the backpackers. A local explained to me that tourism is probably one of the best means to make a living for those living in the remote parts of Taiwan. In recent years, the government has put in a lot of effort to make connections convenient for the backpackers and local tourists. Many of the sights are connected by train and public shuttles (just like in Japan).
We bought some red beans bread and a pork chop rice to lunch on train. In Japan, railway lunch boxes are spectacular displays of different cuisine from each state. Sadly not the case in Tainan and Taichung. So don’t count on the train station. Get yours in the city before you arrive at the train station.
My photos don’t do justice to the scenic route from Tainan to Taitung. You see mountains, sea coastal view, gorges, padi fields are fruit farm. Pack a picnic lunch, armed with your Taiwan Wifi and you’re set. Toilet is very clean. Most travellers are asleep. 4 hrs pass very fast.