No shortage of pretty parks – this one in Tai’in.

We are part of a group of 40, and there are about five groups (ie bus loads) with the same company. Most of the time we are not really aware of the other groups, other than at the train stations, when we all pile into two carriages. Like most of the others in our group, we opted not to take the optional tours on offer at Tai’in, other than a night time show. The rest of the day we did our own thing. Mike chilled at the hotel while I joined 8 others making our own way via taxi, bus and google translate to a nearby chair lift. As it turned out the chair lift was closed, but it was a scenic bus ride to a freezing cold little tourist spot near the top of a mountain.

Wondering how to get to the chair lift. It turned out they were trying to explain that everyone needed to buy a bus ticket, but park entrance ( $26 ) was free for those aged 60 and over
Sign encountered while trying to get to the chairlift.

Cold and misty at the end of the bus ride
Yes that is a fur lined hood the shopkeeper on the left is wearing.

The night-time show was in an outdoor arena, temperature 4 degrees, and warm padded coats for hire for $4.00. Sorry the photos are side on – you’ll just have to turn your head, because all my attempts to rotate the image have failed.

A fellow traveller
Mike’s attempt at rugging up….he does have two jumpers on underneath

Our second bullet train was for four hours to Hangzhoudong. The train timetable was changed to an hour earlier, which meant our hotel departure had to be 6:30 am. Luckily the hotel buffet breakfast also opened earlier.. The logistics of getting everyone and their luggage on the train in the two minutes that the train stops at the station was a challenge, as passageways and doorways were blocked by people already aboard and trying to stow their luggage. The result was a mad dash further along the train to find any unobstructed doorway. Once on board the challenge was stowing the luggage. The carriages are not designed for stowing tourist quantities of luggage, but regulations require that corridors and doorways remain clear. Those corridors and doorways became filled with several train staff trying to find places for cases, and they ended resorting to keeping some in place with sticky tape. Things got a little heated for a while, as train staff wanted to separate people from their luggage, and not surprisingly, people wanted to know exactly where their luggage was so they could grab it quickly and get off when our stop came.

The day ended with twenty minutes at a very attractive lakeside park, and then a visit to a tea plantation. Lots of other tourists, but the parks and gardens are so good I don’t care. It would be like complaining about people going to south bank

We are now enjoying another comfortable room – this time with a small lounge. Two more hotels and the river cruise to go!

Roughing it in our hotel room
Part of the view from our hotel room


  1. Pete says:

    Great photos Mum! Looks like you’re getting tons of great scenery to enjoy. We were wondering how you both would be dealing with the local cuisine, looks like they’ve got you covered with buffet breakfasts. Tried any hundred year old eggs yet?

  2. Anonymous says:

    I’ve seen some aged eggs at a buffet breakfast where the whites of the eggs were green. Wasn’t curious enough to try given that I don’t like eggs.

  3. Jen says:

    Oh Mum, those gardens look amazing. I’m so happy for you. I can imagine the big smile on your face as you enthusiastically explore the scenery. Looks like the accommodation is fabulous too.

  4. John Wilkinson says:

    love it!

Leave a Reply