Planned our day to Jiu Fen on Day 3 and took a Train towards RuiFang after meeting up with Daddy and Didi at Taipei Station.
Taipei Station is something like our City Hall station where you have a HUGEASS train terminal which can confuse the crap out of you. The train which takes you to Jiu Fen is separate from their MRT and you can only access it through Taipei Station.
You have to exit the MRT, Exit M4 (if I’m not wrong) and then buy tickets at the ticketing counters. There are signboards on top, but I really just queued, asked the counter dude for a train ticket to JiuFen, and bought the earliest timing we could get.
You can also take a bus to JiuFen (please Google yourself) but I felt it a train ride would be more comfortable because you’re more likely to get a seat on the train. You must ask the counters if the trains have designated seats, I always try to buy those! Standing for an hour would be really uncomfortable.
Was quite confused where to go after getting our tickets, but we knew departures were at the basement and headed downstairs after buying bento boxes (to nomz on the train!!!). After that, it was “ASK THE LOCALS” time again!
We were told which entrance to enter, and to head towards Platform 4. Careful though, you need to know if you’re boarding on A or B! For us, it was Platform A and I would think that the directions are quite standard. Again…. If you’re not sure about anything…
There will also be a screen showing you the departure/arrival times of the trains and you can cross check that with your ticket. We had no problems once we were ushered to the platform.
Of course, I always like to make sure we are at least 15 minutes earlier before departure because ANYTHING can happen and it would suck to be late and miss the train. The trains are very very punctual and they WILL NOT WAIT for people who are late. You must be on time!
We were early and took some pictures while waiting for our train to arrive.
Evidently I am not a person who likes to wait.. LOL. Super chao bin here, didn’t even wear contacts that day….
But still!!! ALWAYS READY TO TAKE PICTURES!!! HAHAAHAHA……
Boarded the train in a very Singaporean, efficient manner and got to our seats in a zip-zap manner because we had “pre-booked” seats. Bought them at the counter and made sure we were assigned seats rather than have to stand and wait! We saw some people standing on the train and felt quite bad for them… Like it was going to be almost an hour’s worth of standing. Sian….
So remember, try to get assigned seats!!! Can eat your bento box and appreciate the scenery!!!!!
Bento boxes are very “cheap” and popular in Taiwan. We saw almost everyone having a box to themselves on the train. I prefer the taste of Japanese Bento Boxes more, but I am not complaining for the price we paid!
Reached RuiFang Station and got off to take a bus towards Jiu Fen!
Follow the signs to the Main Hall and exit from there. After that, it’s time to catch a bus!!! :>
Well, the buses which used to ferry people to Jiu Fen is NO LONGER located at the Wellcome store opposite the train station. You still have to cross the road though, but do not take the wrong bus!
So after crossing the road, you turn left and continue walking all the way straight before reaching the “new busstop” which will take you to Jiu Fen. Follow the pictures below and if you see the same road you should be on the right track…
You will pass by this police station before reaching the busstop less than 50m away. After that, every bus that comes… Just flag it and ask the bus driver if it goes to Jiu Fen! The Taiwanese are VERY VERY nice. Please do not feel paiseh to ask… It’s really helpful when you’re a total noob in Taiwan so don’t try and geh-kiang aka act smart!
We boarded the bus and it was still raining that day… Such a bummer, it was horrible because Jiu Fen is not the biggest place on the planet and it’s flooded with tourists on a weekend. Umbrellas were literally poking me in all directions, and there was umbrella-rain coming from EVERYWHERE… Annoying the shit out of me. I would say that if the weather forecast is bad, or if there’s even a slight drizzle, RESCHEDULE YOUR JIU FEN TRIP.
I chose to buy a cheap poncho to protect myself + my bag from all the stupid people and rain….. It was the smartest choice I made because I was kept quite dry due to the full coverage. Except I looked like an idiot la. Tell you rain don’t go Jiu Fen already…..
Jiu Fen Old Street literally looks like THIS. A hole in the wall street, there’s a lot of food and A LOT of people… Please be warned. I believe it’s not crowded only on weekends (may be worse) but also on weekdays. The place is also poorly sheltered (like seriously WHAT IS WITH THE POOR SHELTERS IN TAIPEI???!!!!!) and the no. of umbrellas will freak the shit out of you.
Still, we decided to persevere on and fight the rain + stupid-humans-who-don’t-know-how-to-use-umbrellas…….
First thing we bought was this!!! A Peanut Ice-cream Popiah!!!!!!
It’s SUPER, DUPER, NICE.
I really recommend buying this if you’re in Jiu Fen. But without the parsley. I seriously hate parsley… It’s so disgusting. I asked for mine without and it still tasted damn good!! The peanut icecream + shavings + popiah skin was a complete W I N!!!!!!
Oh ya, forgot say, Dad bought a poncho too. HAHAHA, super cute please. Father-daughter moment.
We also tried these Fried Pastry Sticks which were EXTREMELY buttery and too fatty for my liking. The smell however, is a whole different story. It made me buy it, even though the guy selling this had a super chao bin. LOL. It smells like heaven!!! But smell like heaven only la. Doesn’t taste like it.
Ok and that was it. LOL.
We combed the whole of the street and emerged at the other end before giving up and deciding to eat at a cafe instead. Cleaner, less squeezy, and NO F**KING RAIN!!!!!!!
It was really a mood spoiler to walk around being squeezed and shoved while having the rain splashing all around your feet. I was so upset because my Timberlands got really dirty and stupid people were shooting their umbrellas out of no where. KNN. Damn rude!!!!!!! WORST PART IS having the rain fall on your FOOD?!?!??!! WTH!!!
No doubt there was a lot of nice looking/smelling food around…. But I really didn’t want to eat rain-drenched food.
I also decided not to name this cafe because their food sucks + expensive + I can’t find any reason to do so.
The interior was quite nice and cozy, and I expected so much more from their food/drinks. IT WAS REALLY MEH…..
My horrible tasting Milk Tea. Paid like 5x the price I paid at 50 Lan, but tasted 5x worse. Wth….
Heard a few other Singaporeans in the cafe as well. Confirm hiding from the rain. I bet on not-rainy days they would have hardly any business. The prices are rly super ex!! Damn not worth it + got min spending. NO GO LAH.
Their Waffles looks much better than they taste, very deceiving.
This Tandoori Chicken sandwich was epic….
Jiu Fen is also quite famous for their “scenic” view but we saw nothing but FOG from the top because it was raining like siao that day. Really super sian lor, plans all ruined cause of bad weather and crappy people………… Instead of heading to the train station, we took a direct bus back from Jiu Fen to Taipei. We were quite lucky cuz we saw the bus flashing “TO TAIPEI” and we just boarded it. It brought us straight back to ZhongXiaoFuXing Station and we took the metro back from there.
I know I sound super critical about Jiu Fen and how it’s really not worth going… But I honestly think so. All I experienced there was crappy food (ok most of it, but even the peanut popiah thing is available in XiMenDing), horrible tourists, and a very very commercialised environment. There was no “old street” charm at all. I guess the weather made it 10x worse… So yeah, don’t visit Jiu Fen unless the weather’s good.
Couldn’t let one lousy trip to Jiu Fen spoil the day so we all went back to our apartments to wash up + freshen up (needed to change so bad) before heading out to XiMenDing for dinner and to walk around! I’ve been to XiMenDing before and I remember liking the place quite a bit because they had A LOT of food and it was bustling with activity.
Jw took some more pics of me while waiting for the train and I really like these!! HHEHE.
HAHAHAHHAHAHA I TOOOK THAT.
And alas, this is Xi Men Ding! As you can see, nothing much has changed, the place is PACKED with youngsters!!! Wah, and I tell you, GAMING IS HUGE IN TAIWAN. They have these gaming posters EVERYWHERE lor… I swear Jw downloaded like at least 10 games while we were there thanks to the ads….
Ok la I’m exaggerating. Maybe 9.
We were quite hungry because we barely ate at Jiu Fen and walked towards food. Street food. Bought whatever we wanted and queued at stores with snaking queues. Very Singaporean, but a very reliable heuristic. LOL.
Jw and I bought these BBQ-ed Mochi(s) on a stick!!
You can choose the condiments you want on your bbq-ed mochi sticks and I thought it was okay la… Not exactly AMAZING. But not bad. It’s not hard to find these streets though, just have to walk and let your nose guide you towards the food… Hahahahahhaa.
Someone looking happy because he’s hungry!!!!!
After that we made way to the next “famous” shop in XMD….
Ah Chung Mian Xian
No. 8-1, Éméi St
Wanhua District, Taipei City, Taiwan
(Nearest MRT: Xinmending)
(+886) 02 2388 8808
Mon – Fri: 10.30am – 10.30pm
Sat – Sun: 10.30am – 11pm
I am not a fan of “mee-sua” but WAH. THIS WAS DAMN NICE!!!!! I REALLY REALLY LIKED IT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Super flavourful and yummy I tell you. There was quite a lot of pork fat in the mee-sua and I couldn’t help to swallow it because it tasted so good…. The queue was SO DAMN LONG but it moves damn fast. Lol. Like really can have 50+ people waiting for this and you’ll be holding a bowl of it in 10minutes. DAMN WORTH THE WAIT!!!!!!!
They are quite rude and shit la but doesn’t matter, food is good.
Bought these red bean pancakes on the side of the road which tasted like crap. Not even hot!!! No!!!!!!
Ximending Store, No.7, Lane 50, Sining S. Rd., Wanhua District, Taipei City
Opening Hours: 11:30am – 10:00pm (Weekdays), 11:00am – 11:00pm (Holidays)
Yes. This is a toilet-themed restaurant. Damn weird right?!?! HAHAHA. My dad was very amused that they serve everything toilet style. We checked it out but the waiting time was 45minutes (WTF) and we didn’t have the patience to queue. What we did though… Was take pictures at the ground level with their amazing GOLD TOILET BOWLS…. Walked around some more and found this Modern Toilet restaurant…. LOL.
Dad didn’t want to join in… He say we childish. LOL.
Walked out and we stumbled across this “hole in a wall” establishment with a long queue right outside! They seemed to be really famous for their Pork Cutlet and were even featured in some Japanese restaurant as serving “Taiwan Tonkatsu”. We saw the queue and just joined lor. Decided to dapao because we thought it’d be really difficult to get a seat inside (we were wrong!!).
金滿園 (Jin Man Yuan)
108, Taiwan, Taipei City, Wanhua District, 武昌街二段82巷3弄1號
BE WARNED. THEIR PORTIONS ARE HUGE!!!!!!!!
And the pork chop was seriously damn good. It was very lucky us that we managed to stumble across this! We didn’t even know such good pork cutlet existed in XMD!!!!!!! It’s not breaded like the Japanese Tonkatsu but I liked that even more because they use a flour batter instead. I would definitely go back there with an empty stomach to devour the pork chop!!!
After that I found a candy shop…. And then the rest is history.
This is my “oh-shit kena caught” face…..
I LOVE GUMMIES TO THE MAXXX. It’s like my little drug. Bought about 100g to survive the rest of the trip!!!
SEE HOW HAPPY I AM!!!!!!!! :>
After walking around a bit more we past by this dog-friendly cafe with two Golden Retriever lying at the door!! They have two outlets in XMD but I was super full and not ready to eat anymore after the pork cutlet…. Went over to stroke the goldies (I MISS PRINCEYPOO T_T) and the staff were super nice!! They didn’t chase me away or whatever and just let me play w them!!
They are super lazy though. Either that or they must be super well trained. They just lied down and had not much of a reaction when I attempted to play with them. Very tame!!!!!!
No. 48之1號, Section 2, Wuchang Street, Wanhua District, Taipei City, Taiwan
This one was more responsive and maybe that’s why it was leashed. So sad!!!
Bought a kitty sling bag from a pushcart store to end off Day 3! I was sick of carrying my Birkin around because of the stupid rain… Spent more time shielding my bag rather than enjoy the trip. Pfft…. This is why I say NO BRANDED bags for trips like this!!!!!
Day 4 was a MUCH MUCH better day!
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