Taipei Must Visit : JiuFen and Golden Waterfall

It has been a month since i left Taipei. gosh.. how time flies.. i felt like it was only yesterday that my friends picked me up at my Taipei’s apartment and sent me to the airport. And here i am now, in Singapore, looking for inspiration on what to do next with this game called life. haha. Ohh, btw, ill be going back to Jakarta by mid July. Guess ill try to make a living over there. haha.. Do contact me Jakarta peeps! Would love to talk to you and expand my horizons about life in Jakarta.. =)

and talking about Taipei.. was scrolling my phone earlier today, and just realized that i have not posted about my trip to JiuFen! ~~

JiuFen is a beautiful old town just 1-1.5 hrs away from Taipei City. Previously it was a gold mine that was founded and built by the Japanese back in 1893 during Japanese colonial. Until today, they still preserved some of the architecture from that era.

and if you watched Spirited Away, a Japan anime movie by Hayao Miyazaki, the town and the bath house inside that movie is inspired by the tea-house in this beautiful old town.

When me and my friends drove there, we passed by a quite pretty waterfall named..

Golden Waterfall (黃金瀑布)

They called it Golden Waterfall because of the contrast colour between the gold coloured soil (that makes the waterfall) and the greeneries beside it. Research said that the soil turned gold because of the regular rainfall in this area and the large amount of heavy metal elements that has been deposited in the riverbed. Fascinating, isnt it? and luckily my friend was driving that day. If not, i think we would not know that there’s such a waterfall around that area. haha.


Yes, it was so cloudy and misty that day. And it was raining quite heavily when we reached JiuFen itself. Actually i was quite confused on when to go out in Taipei, because sometimes the weather there is worse than a woman who’s having a PMS. haha. seriously.. it would just rain and turns hot unpredictably.

So, when we reached the Old Street, all that we did was just eating and eating.. and most of the snacks there are so good! I am so sorry there are no decent pictures for the snacks, since it was raining and packed with hundreds of people. =(

After snacking, we directly headed our way to the tea-house named A Mei Tea House. We were seated at the balcony outside and so blessed by the view when the rain started to stop. It was just so breathtakingly beautiful!


Other than mesmerising view,  actually the tea-house just offered an over-priced tea set. haha.. sorry to say that.. Well, i cant remember how much we had to pay for the below set. But what i remember is, we only ordered some normal tea (around NTD 300/person for either Oolong or Pu-Er), because the other special tea can cost us more than NTD 600 /person. Quite a ripped off for me who dont really understand good teas. haha.


And above is the night view of the Tea House from the outside. Love the pretty lanterns there.. ❤

Still would love to come back to JiuFen old street, since the last one wasnt so spectacular. Hopefully there’ll be next trip when i can buy JiuFen’s Ocarina (an ancient wind musical instrument) haha.. #sokberjiwamusikal. hahaha.

From MRT Zhongxiao Fuxing, go to Exit 1 and take bus 1062 (Keelung Bus) to Jin gua shi, alight at Jiufen. The ride is about 1 hour and the fare is NT$90.


10 Must Visit Cafe/Restaurant in Taipei

Besides all the local delights, Taipei has a lot of cafes as well. From small to big, cheap to expensive, chain-cafe to hipster. Name it, they have it. I have stayed for 4 months now in Taipei and tried many cafes/restaurants. And i am gonna share with you my top 10 Must Visit in Taipei.

1.The Good Design Institute

1F No. 22 Lane 48 Wenzhou St.

The interior of this cafe is so gorgeous. It makes you wants to take pictures in all its corners. Somehow it has a little bit of the rustic feeling yet modern.  Aside from the interior, they also acts as a pop-up store for some local designers. My friend said that their coffee is good (i dont drink coffee), and i love their chocolate drink which they put in a glass beaker. They do sell simple food like quiche and desserts too.


2. A Mini Bistro

No. 2, Lane 101, Section 4, Xinhai Rd, Wenshan District, Taipei City, 116

A small pizza restaurant located in one secluded corner of Xinhai Road. This is truly hidden gem for me. Love the warmth feeling that they offer, and I love their buffalo wings and their pizzas. Normally we need to call and book the place first due to the small place.


3.Coffee Alley

This chain cafe/restaurant is so famous amongst taiwanese and foreigners. This cafe is always full be it on weekdays or on weekend. Love the chicken toasted pizza and the Strawberry Mile-Feuille. They are famous with their waffles too. Did a longer review on this place before. Do check it out here. 


4. Dazzling Cafe

No. 11, Alley 7, Lane 205, Section 4, Zhongxiao E Rd, Da’an District, Taipei City, 106

This is one of my favorite dessert place. Their dessert reminds me a lot of the honey toast back in En Dining, Jakarta, Indonesia. and guest what, i love their honey toast too! They have top 1-10 desserts that the people normally order, it should make you easier on what to choose from, but apparently it doesnt help me, cause all of their desserts looks so tempting. This place is good for afternoon tea, and they do have good spaghetti and truffle fries too. Heard that they gonna open in Singapore as well. Lets see..


5.Drip Cafe

No. 10, Alley 6, Lane 170, Section 4, Zhongxiao E Rd, Da’an District, Taipei City, 106

Another popular chain-cafe in Taiwan. Rain or shine, this cafe will always be full. Booking is encouraged, but you can always come and try to Q up. Best if you come around 11.30am just when they open. Cronut is their best selling dessert here. Normally its already finished by 3/4pm. =(. So you can try to ask them first if they still have their cronut, rather being disappointed. Their Kimchi spaghetti and the cheese steak sandwich is not bad too.


6. Melange Cafe

104, Taipei City, Zhongshan District, Lane 16, Section 2, Zhongshan N Rd, 23號號

This place is nice for their waffles too. Actually it looks like Coffee Alley’s sister cafe, they have similar menu and ambiance. But nevertheless, it is still a good place to just chill and chat with your loved ones.


7. The Sandrich House

No. 366, Section 2, Fuxing S Rd, Da’an District, Taipei City, 106

Actually this is a sandwich place, not really a cafe nor restaurant. But the offer a very good crunch pork belly sandwich served with ciabatta. They have coffee and tea to go along with too. But if you just want to have a coffee/tea, guess it should not be a problem.


8. Second Floor Cafe

Tried this chain-cafe in Gongguan area. Another American style cafe/restaurant. They served a lot of things here, from all day brunch, burger, and pasta. Tried their spicy thai chicken rice, it’s not that bad. But what my friend was having is quite good, and i guess you can try their pasta, cause a lot of people were ordering it when i was there. Ohh, you can bring your pets in too! Recommending this cause they have all range of food that you can choose from.


9. Picnic Cafe

No. 75, Wenzhou St, Da’an District, Taipei City, 106.

Nice quite place nearby Gongguan area as well. They served nice scones for afternoon tea. They have nice ambiance for you to study/work. Many foreigners go here too for their coffee. This place is rather small too, so i guess it’s best not to have the whole group to visit this place.


10. Mia Cucina 

No. 11, Lane 107, Section 1, Fuxing S Rd, Da’an District, Taipei City, 106

This is a food haven if you are vegetarian. Why? Even me who is not a vegetarian loves all the food that they serve. The portion here is rather big, so make sure you bring along your friend/partner to share with. Love their thin mushroom pizzas and mushroom carbonara pasta.


This is the best 10 that i have gone so far, the list may changed later in the future. haha. Do prepare NTD200-400/person for each cafe above, because some of the cafe requires you to order at least one drink for each.

Taipei Must Visit : Hiking Xiang Shan

Who’s up for Hiking? Say Meeee! *Meeee..!*

Well.. Actually hiking is not my thing, really. haha. I prefer zumba or yoga for my workout regime, hunt for some food, catch movies, or just sit for hours and chit-chatting with friends for leisure. But in order to get greater things, sometimes you need to things that you dont really like. Hiking for examples.

Many people said that i need to hike Xiang Shan (Elephant Mountain) when im in Taipei. A place whereby you can do some exercise to burn those night-market snacks’s calories, breath some fresh air that the nature offers and see the beauty of Taipei’s from above.  Since the sun was shining so brightly and the weather was not that cold anymore now. I quickly asked some friends to accompany me to go up there.

Xiang Shan has one of the easiest hiking trail in Taipei compared to other mountains.  They built stairs for us to climb up. Which makes it more tiring in my opinion. haha. But rest assured, cause they have some pit stop for us to rest.

Me and my friends went up by 11am, and stopped 4-5 times to catch our breath. Well, my breath to be exact. My two friends apparently are so fit, they did not seem they need some rest. haha..

After about 45 minutes of hiking (including rest time),  finally we got to the top!


In order to take pictures in this spot, you have to Q up. and apparently it’s not that easy to take this pictures. Cause firstly, we need to climb up one huge stone, and one of my friend need to climb up the other stone to take this pictures. haha.

All in all, it was a great experience, and i lovee the sceneries up there, especially when i was standing on the stone (eventho it’s a bit scary up there, and was so afraid that i might fall down. haha). It is indeed a must visit place if you have more time in Taipei. I would love to come back here during night time, the city lights surely will it picturesque.

Actually This Elephant Mountain trail doesnt stop here, you can continue all the way to Nangang, the eastern part of Taipei for 3 more hours.

How to reach Xiang Shan Hiking Trail :

Take MRT to Xiang Shan Station (Red Line), take EXIT 2, follow the road – walk alongside till the end of the park, take left, and follow the road until you saw the entrance of the Xiang Shang Hiking Trail.