Saturday, January 1, 2011

Day 2: 2010 Christmas in Taipei (23 -27 Dec 2010)

Day 2: Taipei Flora Expo -> Ximending

The next day, we went to Taipei International Flora Expo.
*The expo will be held from 6.11.2010 till 25.4.2011.

How to get here:
- Take the Red Line MRT to Yuanshan station →G1 gate.
For more information on Transportation To/From Flora Expo for Travelers from Taipei Area, please refer to the Flora Expo Website.
Opening Time: 9.00 - 22.00
Ticket price: NT$ 300
(NOTE: If you use EasyCard, the ticket price is only NT$ 260)
Outside of G1 gate of the Flora expo.
Our stamp for re-entry to the expo again
This huge flower expo encompass four large connecting park areas at the heart of Taipei city (Yuanshan Park, Taipei Fine Arts Park, Xinsheng Park, and Dajia Riverside Park) with 14 pavilions and exhibition halls.

The expo features a total of 14 different venues where you can enjoy a veritable world of foods and drinks.

We stopped by the "East side of EXPO Dome" and grabbed some dorayaki as snack to fill our hungry stomach since we couldn't be able to get any seats.

The cold chocolate dorayaki and hot yam dorayaki tasted good! yummm...

EXPO Dome - The Taipei Soccer Stadium will be the venue for the indoor floral design competition. The stadium bleachers will be decorated in a sea of rainbow-colored flowers.

Global Garden Area - Greece, United Kingdom, Netherlands, France, Italy, Hungary, and Thailand are only a few prestigious nations among the 22 countries with exhibits in the Global Garden Area. In total, 35 unique gardens representing different cities and countries are presented by 29 national organizations across Europe, Asia, the Americas, and Oceania. Europe’s gardens are uniquely romantic, while the Americas’ gardens are free and unconfined. Asia’s gardens are influenced by religion and spirituality, and renowned for their unique architectural style and culture. Here, tourists can spend a day visiting the gardens of the world in one stop.

Hong Kong:
Flower Landscape - The Flower Landscape is a vast, 9,323 m² sea of flowers planted on a gentle hill. Minimalist yet generous in style, the Flower Landscape boasts simple color combinations that are stunningly eye-catching. The 580,000 plants and flowers used in the Flower Landscape will change periodically over the course of the Expo and will total over 3.39 million plants and flowers . From blues and purples to reds and yellows to earth tones, the Flower Landscape will stay true to the simplicity and elegance of nature and visitors will be treated to a variety of landscapes throughout the Expo.
Celebrity's House - The exhibition has been divided into three rooms - The Language of Flowers Room, the Elegant Room, and the Star Garden.
(NOTE: There is a restriction on the number of people to visit this area. Once ticket is sold out, you will need to wait for late evening or next day for the entry to this area)

We did not manage to enter this area as the ticket has been sold out.

SHE's signatures in the celebrity's house.
EXPO Orchard - EXPO Orchard is a joint venture between the Taipei International Flora Exposition and the Council of Agriculture’s Agricultural Research Institute. Fruit trees and horticultural technologies representative of Taiwan’s agricultural industry, including top-grafted pears, grapes, papayas, dragon fruit, Indian jujubes, and wax apples, will be presented in the 2,799.3 m² orchard. Different phases of the fruit-growing process will explained in detail, as well as the horticultural grafting technique used to make one tree bear different species of fruit. Also discussed will be cultivation technology for melons. The public will be able to get a comprehensive look at the island’s diverse selection of fruits and educate themselves on the different horticultural technologies utilized in Taiwan.
Flower Wall

Since it's raining and hard for us to cover most of the places in Flora Expo, we decided to go back the hotel and take a rest recuperate more energy to walk in Ximending at night.


Ximending has been called the "Harajuku of Taipei" and the "Shibuya of Taipei". It is the source of Taiwan's fashion, subculture, and Japanese culture. This area is in the northeastern part of Wanhua District in Taipei and it is also the most important consumer district in the Western District of Taipei. The well-known Ximending Pedestrian Area was the first pedestrian area built in Taipei and is the largest in Taiwan.
The crowd in Ximending at night. As it gets late at night, more illegal stalls will be in the middle of the pedestrian road.
The 4D cinema in Ximending
We tried the Ah Chung Mee Suah in here. It is basically rice noodle with intestine. One unique custom of this stall is that people who dine in stand around the stall. No tables and chairs are provided. Each bowl of mee sua cost about NT$40.
Yummy mee suah...
Street performance in Ximending on Christmas eve night
Gingerbread house...
As we walked around Ximending, we came across Ximen Honglou, the Ximen Red House (aka Red Pavillion), a heritage 1909 public building with a boutique theatre upstairs, now the centre of a small arts precinct. It was once a market and now turned arts centre.
As the weather is very cold, we decided for a cup of coffee in Starbucks :)
The Starbucks cafe design in Taiwan looks different that the one in Malaysia. Looks nicer :)

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