Budget Travel: Taiwan Day 4 and 5

Since we have a lot of days during our stay, our schedule was not really that hectic, giving us the opportunity to take some rest every other day. After a long day at the Maokong Area yesterday, we have a free day on our fourth day. (Supposedly, we have the Yehliu-Shifen-Juifen agenda but it was drizzling rain when we woke up.) 

For our fourth day, we spent it mostly in Ximending. Wherein we tried out the most suggested buffet/hotpot place, Mala Hotpot — dang! IT WAS SO SO GOOD! 🙂 All you can eat meat, veggies, fruits, desserts, and drinks. You are only given two hours to spend in the place to give way to other customers coming in.

After our delicious and hefty meal, we opted to roam around Ximending and explore the night scene, which is very alive. There are street dancers and a lot of claw machines in the area. We also tried in Hot Star Chicken, which happens to be quite the big deal in Taipei — we understood why.

Having rested for a while, we were on a mission, after all, to try out ad visit as much night market as we could, so we headed next to Raohe night market. it is located in Songshan district, and quite at the end of the station line.

See my Photo Diary to see what Raohe has to offer: Raohe Night Market

After reaching the end of the night market, we chose to get back to our hotel area have dinner at Yoshinoya then to rest and prepare for tomorrow. Before heading to sleep, we searched for ways to commute to Yehliu for the next day, since we were not able to avail the service for this trip that Klook offers because of the limit.  target time: 10am.

Day 4 Places Visited:

  • Ximending
  • Raohe Night Market

Budget Spending:

Mala Hotpot – 450 NTD (per head) [ 15 USD | 885 PHP]

Hotstar – 60 NTD [2 USD | 106 PHP]

Yoshinoya – 150 NTD (per meal) [5 USD | 266 PHP]

Total spending: 660 NTD [23 USD | 1,170 PHP]

*we did not really eat or bought anything in Raohe night market since we already ate.

Day 5: Yehliu-Shifen-Juifen

Aside from Pandas, one thing I really wanted to do for the longest time was to write wishes in a lantern and let it fly. So, what is a Taiwan trip without a visit to Shifen old street and the other stations near it?

Tip 1: If you are doing a DIY Yehliu-Shifen-Juifen trip, make sure to leave first thing in the morning! 

We stayed near New Taipei Main Station and walked a bit to the bus station. There is a bus terminal that will bring you to Yehliu from Taipei. (It was a 2-hour bus ride)

Our itinerary was Yehliu-Juifen-Rufiang-Shifen, but we left the city around lunch time so we had to narrow things down. We arrived in Yehliu at around 12:30 p.m. and had a quick lunch then entered the Geopark.

What to expect: Yehliu Geopark is found at the coastline of Taipei. The weather when we visited was perfect: Mister Sun was present and the coldness brought by the wind from the sea met. 

In here, you will find rock formations, unlike here in the Philippines, the color of the formations are in yellow-brown. The most symbolic formation in the park was the one that resembles Queen Elizabeth’s head. 

We left the Geopark at around 3p.m., having no idea how we can get to Shifen-Juifen quicker, we haggled with a cab driver to take us there instead of riding the bus for hours again because it has many stops. We got it around 700NTD for the four of us, plus there were two more riders.

After our two-hour ride, we arrived at Shifen almost 6pm. We were told that establishments in the area close at around 8 p.m. so we had a very quick dinner, and bought some nougat, then proceeded to choose where to avail the lanterns. (establishments have the same pricing, although some have more meanings and colors)



The experience was quick but worth it. We were able to speak with one Filipina who has been working there for almost three years, and she shared with us how hard it was to be away from home and take care of another family’s child instead of hers. Gladly, she plans to leave Taiwan as soon as her contract ends and come home to her kid. 🙂

She taught us how to commute from Shiden back to Taipei since cab rides are pretty steep compared to how much it will cost riding the train. Since the Shifen is along the Shifen railway, we just walked to the station took a ride heading to Ruifang Train station where we rode another train heading to Taipei Main.

We were not quite sure on our ride so we had our maps app all online just to navigate; luckily we arrived at our destination and dropped off at Taipei Main Station. There, we realized we could have had just ridden that going there! haha 🙂

After a long day, all we wanted to do was eat and rest at our hotel, so we did just that! My comfort food during our stay was Taipei’s Sweet Potato balls, luckily there was a night market near our place! 🙂 It sells for 50NTD for the small one, and 70 NTD for the large one. You’ll love it too! 🙂

Day 5 Places Visited:

Total Budget Spending: 

  1. Bus ride: Taipei to Yehliu – 95 NTD (per head) [2.25 USD | 168 PHP]
  2. Food budget(Yehliu and Shifen): 400 NTD [13 USD | 709 PHP]
  3. Yehliu Geopark entrance – 80 NTD [2.74 USD | 142 PHP]
  4. cab ride: Yehliu to Shifen – 187.5 NTD (per head) [6 USD | 333 PHP]
  5. Lantern: 4 colors – 200 NTD [7 USD | 355 PHP]

Total spending: 962.5 NTD [33 USD | 1,707 PHP]

You can also watch my friend’s vlog to see the places we went, and food we ate!! Taiwan Day 4 and 5 vlog  🙂




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