The first thing i realised when i got off the train at 高雄 is that its fucking hot. Not as hot as Singapore, but compared to Taipei, its relatively hot like hell.
高雄 train station (aka左營) .
We managed to deposit our luggage at the 左營 station. They have this counter inside the station for locals and tourists alike to temporary deposit bags for less than one day. And the good thing is, this service is free.
After the loads were lighten, we went to the 蓮潭池 where there are quite a few attractions along the small lake. To go there, we took a mini bus 紅51. Thankfully for the helpful driver and fellow passengers, we were told of where to alight and walk to our destinations.
Our first stop was the 龍虎塔.
The entrance is at the dragon’s mouth, exit at tiger’s mouth.
The central staircase leading up the pagoda.
View from the top of the dragon pagoda. From here, one can see the other attractions along the lake.
As we continued along the lake, we could see many temples across the road.
A pair of Mandarine ducks we saw.
What you see above is an afresco karaoke. I realised that in 高雄, the locals really like to have karaoke in the public, even though they maybe under the sun.
Before we left the place, we had something at the mobile deserts stall.
On the right is peanut beancurd, right is green bean soup. They were the best thing for a warm sunny afternoon.
Our last stop along the lake is the 孔廟.
The entrance of 孔廟.
Now at this point of time, i was having really a very bad tummyache. Along the lake, i couldn’t see any buildings that may come with a decent toilet. I entered the 孔廟 half-heartedly.
It was really quiet and ulu inside. Very few people were actually visiting this place as all the rooms (including this big main hall) were closed. Very luckily for me, the toilet wasn’t.
We left the disappointing 孔廟 to look for lunch, a rather late lunch as it was already 3+ then.
From the guidebook we had, we planned to go to this restaurant nearby to try the curry rice which was supposedly very nice. The shop is called佛倫斯咖啡館 and its a short walk from 孔廟.
Address is at 高雄市左營區實踐路1號 (靠左營大路)
Walking to the shop.
My gf was hungry from all that walking so we were really expecting to get a good satisfying meal. So we were terribly disappointed and disgusted when the boss told us they were not ready for business yet. ARGH!!! The boss was very apologetic though.
Feeling hungry and tired, we had no choice but to take the same bus back to 左營 station to claim our bags and go to the hotel to check in.
The hotel we had booked online earlier was the 拉斯维嘉Life旅馆 situated at 高雄市三民區南華路237-1號 (國光號車站前7-11巷內). Its a boutique hotel so we were really looking forward to it.
They gave us a good first impression. The simple check in was done with us sitting at the sofa around a coffee table. Hot towels were served up almost straightaway.
The very polite receptionist then brought us to our room while offering to give us directions for wherever we plan to go.
We were impressed the second time by the room. It was spacious, clean, neat and the bathroom was big. There was no bathtub but we were not complaining; there was a rain-type shower head and also massage water jets.
Even the toiletries provided were beautifully laid out in this wooden box. So nice until i couldn’t bear to use them.
Despite the comfy of our room, we still felt the hunger so we left for this buffet restaurant on our plans.
迦南園精緻日式火鍋 situated at 高雄市左營區富民路432號.
Basically, its a steamboat buffet where you can choose from three types of soup base. The menu has a good spread of meat (more then 2 types of pork and beef), seafood (salmon, cod, tuna etc), veges and many others. And they are not stingy with the serving portions. The fish came in big chunks.
At NT$724 (tax included) for two person, i won’t say its expensive either. I think this is in fact better than some buffets in Singapore, for this shop has a good mix of different meat cut, deserts and the service is also very warm and friendly.
After dinner, we decided to go to the famous 愛河.
We bought tickets for a 30min boat ride up and down the river. NT$80 per person, quite worth it lah. Can listen to the guide tell us stories somemore.
One of the many bridges across 愛河. This bridge is called 中正橋 or 大橋 for the fact that in old times, only 大官 (high ranking officials) can use this bridge. Commoners like me are banned.
Tired from the day’s travelling, we went back to the hotel to turn in for the nite. 高雄 has turned out to be rather different from taipei. I started to feel that maybe three days here won’t be enough.