Mar 1, 2017

Taiwan Travelogue: Rock-Seeing in Yehliu Geopark (10 Nov 2015)

Teochew porridge with pickles and peanuts, fried noodles, etc - such was the simple breakfast provided by Keelung Imperial Hotel 華國商務飯店. My mom was pleased with her hotel breakfast. Though I was not a big fan of hotel breakfast, it did certainly meet my basic requirements.

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View from Keelung Harbour
Our itinerary of the day was mainly to visit Yehliu Geopark 野柳自然中心, which is about 17km away from Keelung.

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View of Keelung from Starbucks
To go to Yehliu Geopark 野柳自然中心, you could take bus 790 that ran directly to Yehliu Geopark 野柳自然中心 entrance for TWD30 per pax. The pick up point was Keelung City Visitor's Center 基隆市旅遊服務中心.

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Taima Star Docking @ Keelung Harbour

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553 Docking @ Keelung Harbour
Bus 790 ran on a consistent schedule, so we had half an hour or so to wander around Keelung Harbour before queuing another 15 minutes or so (past its schedule) for it to arrive.

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Failed Selfie @ Yehliu Geopark 野柳自然中心
The journey from Keelung Harbour to Yehliu Geopark 野柳自然中心 took close to 2 hours but our bus ride was spacious and comfortable. The entrance fee to Yehliu Geopark 野柳自然中心 was TWD80 per pax.

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Entering Yehliu Geopark 野柳自然中心
Yehliu Geopark 野柳自然中心 is famous for its beautiful natural landscape sculpted by centuries of sea erosion. From the entrance of Yehliu Geopark 野柳自然中心 to the end of the cape, the distance is about 1.7km.

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Carp Rock, Candle Rock, and Ginger Rock (furthest to nearest)
Sharp-eyed visitors would definitely enjoy Yehliu Geopark 野柳自然中心. Did you spot the cute carp rock, candle rocks and ginger rocks in this picture?

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Mushroom Rocks @ Yehliu Geopark 野柳自然中心
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Elephant Rocks @ Yehliu Geopark 野柳自然中心
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Bear Paw Sea-Eroded Pot Hole @ Yehliu Geopark 野柳自然中心

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Fairy's Shoe @ Yehliu Geopark 野柳自然中心
The most distinct structure in Yehliu Geopark 野柳自然中心 was no doubt this fairy's shoe. It just seemed too good to be real.

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Marine Bird Rock @ Yehliu Geopark 野柳自然中心

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Honeycomb Weathering @ Yehliu Geopark 野柳自然中心

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Turtle-looking Rock @ Yehliu Geopark 野柳自然中心

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Statue of Lin Tianzhen @ Yehliu Geopark 野柳自然中心
Further into Yehliu Geopark 野柳自然中心, you would come across this statue of Lin Tianzhen, in memory of this local fisherman whom lost his life in his attempt to rescue a student in 1964 in Yehliu Geopark 野柳自然中心.

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Seal Couple  @ Yehliu Geopark 野柳自然中心

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Leopark-like @ Yehliu Geopark 野柳自然中心

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Queen's Head II @ Yehliu Geopark 野柳自然中心
The much revered structure in Yehliu Geopark 野柳自然中心 was none other than the Queen's Head. This Queen's Head II was an exact replica of the original Queen's Head. Better still, it had less crowd.

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Big Footprint @ Yehliu Geopark 野柳自然中心@
Before I left, I managed to leave my giant footprint behind.

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Random Noodle Shop @ Keelung
Our journey back to Keelung took us another 2 hours in the same bus we came here with. By the time we reached Keelung, we were famished. So we ended up in this random noodle shop.

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Loh Mian @ Random Noodle Shop
Being Malaysian, my mom ordered Loh Mian when she saw it on the signboard. Little do we know this was the unusual variant that we were not familiar with. That aside, my mom, whom is a cincai person when it comes to food, sang her complaint over her bowl of noodles.

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Pork Chop Noodle @ Random Noodle Shop
I, on the other hand, ordered a bowl of noodles, topped with pork chop. Though it was not horrible, it was not out of the world either.

Total damage for 2 pax = TWD115

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Shi Hua Dong Stall @ Miaokou Night Market 基隆廟口夜市
After 5 hours of nap and TV time post lunch, it was time again to explore the remainder of Miaokou Night Market. Our first stop was this unusual dessert stall selling Shi Hua Dong.

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Shi Hua Dong @ Miaokou Night Market 基隆廟口夜市
Firmer, denser and blander than jelly, it was tasteless in the absence of the powdery coat of shaven peanuts and sugar. It did not strike my fancy.

Total damage = TWD30

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Zheng Ji Sweet Potato Biscuit Stall @ Miaokou Night Market 基隆廟口夜市
Our second stop was this Zheng Ji Sweet Potato Biscuit Stall, which seems to share the roof of other stall's.

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Zheng Ji Sweet Potato Biscuit @ Miaokou Night Market 基隆廟口夜市
Look at the glorious sweet potato cakes sizzling away on the hotplate. Crispy, smooth and not coying sweet, it was a good bet.

Total damage = TWD25

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One Bite Hotdog Stall @ Miaokou Night Market 基隆廟口夜市
Our third stop was One Bite Hotdog stall. The size did make it easier to share and as all Taiwanese sausages go, it was packed with flavours in one bite.

Total damage = TWD21

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Stall 45 Keelung Miaokou Ai Yu Jelly @ Miaokou Night Market 基隆廟口夜市
Our fourth stop was Stall 45 Keelung Miaokou Ai Yu Jelly Stall for Ai Yu Jelly. Smooth and slurpy, it was also balanced in sweet and sour profile.

Total damage = TWD30

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Chicken Roll Stall @ Miaokou Night Market 基隆廟口夜市
Our final stop was for something savory from this Chicken Roll Stall, namely loh bak and braised pork rice.

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Loh Bak @ Chicken Roll Stall 
Personally I am not a big fan of loh bak but by Malaysian standard, this loh bak was not bad at all. The only complaint I had was this had way too much fat to my liking.

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Braised Pork Rice @ Chicken Roll Stall 
Their braised pork rice, on the other hand, had a better fat vs meat ratio. Perhaps the best meal my mom had for the day.

Total damage = TWD65


IN SUMMARY,

My personal dining ranking (5 being the full score) based on following criteria are:
  • Ambiance
    • Keelung Imperial Hotel 華國商務飯店 - 3/5
    • Random Noodle Shop in Keelung - 2/5
    • Shi Hua Dong Stall - 2/5
    • Zheng Ji Sweet Potato Biscuit Stall - 2/5
    • One Bite Hotdog Stall - 2/5
    • Stall 45 Keelung Miaokou Ai Yu Jelly Stall - 2/5
    • Chicken Roll Stall - 2/5
  • Price
    • Keelung Imperial Hotel 華國商務飯店 - 4/5
    • Random Noodle Shop in Keelung - 2/5
    • Shi Hua Dong Stall - 2/5
    • Zheng Ji Sweet Potato Biscuit Stall - 4/5
    • One Bite Hotdog Stall - 4/5
    • Stall 45 Keelung Miaokou Ai Yu Jelly Stall - 3/5
    • Chicken Roll Stall - 5/5
  • Food
    • Keelung Imperial Hotel 華國商務飯店 - 4/5
    • Random Noodle Shop in Keelung - 1/5
    • Shi Hua Dong Stall - 1/5
    • Zheng Ji Sweet Potato Biscuit Stall - 5/5
    • One Bite Hotdog Stall - 5/5
    • Stall 45 Keelung Miaokou Ai Yu Jelly Stall - 4/5
    • Chicken Roll Stall - 5/5
  • Verdict
    • Keelung Imperial Hotel 華國商務飯店 - Decent basic Taiwanese breakfast for guests
    • Random Noodle Shop in Keelung - Won't bother trying again
    • Shi Hua Dong Stall - Done and dusted, won't order another
    • Zheng Ji Sweet Potato Biscuit Stall - Oily but so good! Grab one if you see it
    • One Bite Hotdog Stall - Can't say no to Taiwanese sausages
    • Stall 45 Keelung Miaokou Ai Yu Jelly Stall - Refreshing dessert 
    • Chicken Roll Stall - Bang for buck!

My personal hotel/attractions verdicts for:
  • Keelung Imperial Hotel 華國商務飯店 - The hotel was definitely beyond its 3-star rating
  • Keelung Harbour - Good for leisure walk when weather is good
  • Yehliu Geopark 野柳自然中心 - Beautiful rock formation that one must at least visit once
  • Miaokou Night Market 基隆廟口夜市 - Full galore of food and drinks that a tummy can barely stomach all

DINING INFO:

Miaokou Night Market 基隆廟口夜市
Rensan Rd, Ren’ai District, Keelung City, Taiwan 200
Operation Hours: 24 hours
Tel: +886 2 2428 7664
Credit Card: N/A (We paid cash)

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