Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Xiao Wulai

This Sunday six of us went out to Xiao Wulai. Xiao Wulai is another well-known bit of Taiwan's natural beauty; in the vicinity of Daxi and Fuxing, it's a waterfall and forest park that gets a fair number of day-tripping hikers.

Rural Taiwan, near the falls.

The valleys near Fuxing village.

And this is the waterfall proper. You can't get to that pavilion on the right; the way's been blocked by park authorities. Same for a multi-story pavilion out of the camera frame that's presumably been deemed unsafe. But it's quite a nice view, don't you think?

My pictures are few in number and unprocessed. Jenna took many more pictures and did some processing to make them look nice, her pics and commentary can be found here.

Tainan Day

Two Sundays ago we went down to Tainan for the day. Jenna got had a seminar scheduled for Monday in Tainan, so work paid for her to go down. I had the day free, so we went down together and spent the day wandering around central Tainan before I took the high-speed train back in the evening.

I like Tainan. It's quite a sizable city and so it would probably be an interesting place to live long-term. (Pity the public transport isn't better.) And yet there's a huge amount of historic Tainan that's been preserved, although much of it can be hidden behind new development. This was my fourth trip to Tainan and there's always something new to discover.

The Confucius Temple. You don't have to pay unless you want to visit the inner part of the temple; roaming the grounds is free and makes for a fine public park for Tainan.

Phoenix and dragon, outside the Confucius Temple.

Nanmen, the old South Gate and one of the few remaining bits of the old city wall.

The city view from atop Nanmen.

The Wufei Temple, in commemoration of the five concubines of King Ning Jin, who killed themselves when their king was defeated and overthrown in 1683.

After a day of wandering around in the hot, humid September air and snacking when we felt like it, we ended up in the Chikan Towers neighborhood, where they were giving a benefit concert to help Typhoon Morakot victims. From there, we took a taxi to the high-speed rail station, located inconveniently far from the city center (we couldn't be bothered with the bus) and I headed back to Taipei. Jenna stayed in Tainan for another day, working for decent money.