March 5, 2017 (Day 2) – Although we had fun at Sun Moon Lake, it was also tiring since we went straight from our red-eye flight to the quaint lake. We hit the sack early the night before. Zonk out for hours and woke up a little late than usual. We went straight to the breakfast area and enjoyed simple yet filling breaky.


map-point 12 PM THSR

We check out around 11 am and travel to Taichung High-Speed Rail Station via the local train. City Inn Hotel is a stone-throw away from Taichung Train Station, so we just walk and hop on a train to Xinwuri Station. Ticket cost to Xinwuri is NTD15 per person. From Xinwuri, you need to walk for few minutes to reach the main HSR station. Along the way, you can stop and take a peek at a mini Train Museum as well as Carton King.

Carton King

Inside Carton King

Inside THSR Train

map-point 1 PM Off to Taipei

Before we board the 1 PM Train 636 to Taipei, I claim first the bag my husband lost in a THSR train a month ago. The black Roxy Backpack is waiting for me at the lost and found counter. After signing the claim form, we hurriedly exchange our Klook Mobile voucher to a printed ticket pass. We both purchase a one-way Taichung to Taipei HSR pass at Klook at a discounted price.

map-point 2 PM Taipei Main Station

We arrived at exactly 1 PM at Taipei Main Station. Since we wanted to save our energy and save time as well, we decided to take Taxi to Uinn Hostel. But before getting a ride, we stop at a Bento Shop. It’s really hard to take a pick from the wide array of packed Bento’s display. There are plenty of combinations/options to choose from. Sushi and Maki Bento prices run from NTD55 to NTD120.

map-point 2:30 PM Check-Inn @ Uinn Hostel

The Uinn Hostel staff greeted us warmly. The Filipino-Taiwanese staff allowed us to check-in earlier than the usual check-in time. We settled our stuff in our room and then eat at the common lounge first before we head out to our first Taipei Landmark.


After the quick chow time, we decided to walk to Chiang Kai Shek since it’s a few minutes away from UINN Hostel. We find ourselves taking a few snaps first before heading out since the hostel setup is Instagram worthy.

 map-point 3-9 PM Taipei Landmarks

It’s impossible to talk about Taipei without bringing up the following landmarks; Chiang Kai Shek Memorial Hall, National Theater, National Museum, Elephant Mountain and Taipei 1O1. It’s my second time visiting these landmarks so going to these places is a breeze. As a Do-It-Yourself traveler, I always consider local transportation as a means of travel. Making use of the public transport system gives me that local feel and vibes. What great about Taiwan public transportation system is that they have a variety of options for all kinds of travelers hence it provides you convenience and easy access. On top of that, it’s user-friendly and affordable.

Chiang Kai Shek

Chiang Kai Shek Memorial Hall

This is considered as a national monument and the Memorial Hall was built to commemorate Chiang Kai Shek who also known as Jiang Zhongzheng. He was a Chinese political and military leader who served as the leader of the Republic of China between 1928 and 1975. Along with the CKS Memorial Hall, you can also find Natural Theater and Concert Hall here. If you have more time to spare, you can watch the changing of guards and roam the garden and see Cherry Blossom if you happen to visit on spring time.

Entrance to CKS Memorial Hall

National Theater

Concert Hall

Best time to Hike

Elephant Mountain

For the best view of Taipei, you must visit Xiangshan or Elephant Mountain. This mountain is located in Xinyi District in Taipei, Taiwan. It is accessible through the Taipei Metro Xiangshan Station with a height of 183 meters. It’s quite a walk but really worth it, on clear days you get an unprecedented view of Taipei and it’s absolutely free. Click this link for more details on how to get here.

Happy Me

Happy Me   

Finally, I get the chance to sit on top of a big boulder and have a photo with Taipei Skyline at my back. My Boo and I didn’t have the chance when we hiked this trail a month ago. Because it’s raining hard that time and we can’t afford to risk our lives. And here’s my chance and yes I did it considering that it’s nerve-wracking. Actually, it’s super hard to take a photo especially if you don’t have someone to assist you. So I have these shots although not the best still I love these shots considering the efforts I’ve exerted just to take these snaps.


 Enjoy The Photos!

Taipei 1O1

Our last stop for the day Taipei 1O1, Taipei 101 used to be the tallest building in the world as announced last 2004 and remained such until the Burj Khalifa completed its construction by the year 2009. Why 101? because it has 101 floors above ground and this doesn’t include basement floors. This building used to be called Taipei World financial center and it became a skyscraper landmark in Xinyi District. Before Shanghai Tower was built, Taipei 101 used to have the fastest elevator in the world which travels at 60.6 km/h and transporting passengers from the 5th to 89th floor in 37 seconds.

Since we enjoyed an unprecedented view of Taipei at Elephant Mountain, we didn’t bother to go up to Taipei 1O1 observatory deck and check out the view for a fee instead we headed straight to the mall’s food court to eat.

SMILE Budget & How To?


 How To Get Here?


ship-carBy Taipei Metro (Tamsui-Xinyi Line) Alight at CKS Memorial Hall Station

Elephant Mountain

ship-carBy Taipei Metro (Tamsui-Xinyi Line) Alight at Xiangshan Station

Full Details: Click this link for more details on how to get here.

Taipei 1O1

It’s located at No.45, Shifu Rd., Xinyi Dist.Taipei, Taiwan. You can reach this by bus, taxi or the metros. If you’re in Elephant Mountain you just need to walk your way to Taipei 1O1 for few minutes.

ship-carBy Taipei Metro (Tamsui-Xinyi Line) Alight at Taipei 101/World Center.


 Taipei Metro

ship-car NTD16 to NTD 45 per way depending on cluster and station.


Attraction Fees?

It’s all free unless you’ll try Taipei’s 1O1 Observation deck for around NTD500.


Tips to Remember

 For Your Taipei Journey, Buy Easy Card for easy traveling on the Metro

 For Xiangshan Trail, Wear comfy shoes, bring a bottle of water and hike up around the Golden hours for you to see Taipei Skyline in both daytime and night time.

 You can also sample authentic Xiao Long Bao at Din Tai Fung located at Taipei 1O1 ground floor.

 For CKS Memorial Hall: Open daily from 09:00 to 18:00, except for Chinese New Year Eve and Chinese New Year while CKS Memorial Park: Open daily from 05:00 to 24:00

Thanks again for dropping by, Watch out for more #Taiwan entries and I will be posting Taiwan Free and Easy guide after my travelogues. Feel free to use the comment area below for questions and or share your experience with me by sharing it here. Also, I’m prepping my Youtube Channel so please do show me some love by subscribing at RunawayMariaTV Don’t forget to follow my journey through my INSTAGRAM @runawaymaria and Facebook by tapping LIKE! See you in my next post.