“ Travel makes one modest. You see what a tiny place you occupy in the world.” - Gustav Flaubert
My intention when I booked this flight from Bali to Hawaii was to get the cheapest flight possible. I found a fantastic fare ($500 or so) but it was via Taiwan on China Airlines - with a 19 hour layover. I went to the net to find if this was doable and it turns out -- it's a thing.
It was the Ark Hotel Changan-Fuxing for $57, booked through Agoda. Nice, small, clean. Perfect for my needs.
I thought I would experience the night markets, which seemed to be an important aspect of the Taipei experience (re: Anthony Bourdain). But it did take a while to get from the airport to the hotel, more than an hour. It was very easy to catch the bus at the hotel, but I think I got off at the wrong stop so I had a bit of a walk. I don't remember how I found my hotel, but I think it had to do with logic, and numbered streets. Maybe just a miracle. So by the time I reached my hotel, it was 10 and I was tired and apprehensive, so I just stayed in.
Got up early the next day and just went walking. I looked up sites to see on Google and made my way to these various places.
This was only a taste of Taipei, but it made me want to come back with better plans, and for a longer time. At Festpac, the indigenous Taiwanese came and impressed us with their culture, but they are located far from Taipei. This is a very organized, clean city. I felt safe here and I liked the "feel" of it - serene, though urban.
I have traveled quite a bit, and am using this page to record some memories. Travel is a wonderful education, expanding your view of the world, of other cultures, of the beauty of diversity.