Friday, January 13, 2012

Taipei City Tour - Part 1

Our travel agency suggested we take a half-day tour of Taipei, the capital of Taiwan. We could have easily visited these attractions on our own using public transportation if we had more time.
Our first stop was the Chiang Kai-shek Memorial Hall, a tribute to the country's former President and General which opened in 1980.
The structure is 249 ft. tall and made of concrete & marble. According to Wikipedia, there are 89 steps that lead to the top representing the age of his death in 1975.
I wished I had known this beforehand so I could have counted them although our tour guide opted for us to use the elevators instead.

What is inside this structure on the first floor? It is a big hall.

Unfortunately being in a tour group, I did not have time to get a thorough look around the big hall which houses a museum and library. If you are wondering what everyone is looking at in the previous photo, there was a model of the memorial hall and its surrounding area.

After getting out of the elevator, visitors encounter a huge statue of Chiang Kai-shek.
From my understanding he is not buried here, but at a military cemetery in the northern part of the country.

Seen here is one of two soldiers who stand guard by the statue.
They kind of remind me of the Buckingham Palace Guards where tourists try to distract them to no avail.

This is the other side of the memorial with the beautifully manicured garden.

The last 3 photos are of Martyrs' Shrine, a place to honor those soldiers who sacrificed their lives defending Taiwan. Twice a year, officials hold public services on the grounds to pay their respects.

- Karen


Yogi♪♪♪ said...

That's interesting. Tours are nice and sometimes necessary. I like to wander on my own.

lina said...

The Martyrs' Shrine is really interesting. Such an apt memorial in respect of the fallen soldiers.

The place is lovely.

LifeRamblings said...

what a great tour. I prefer to travel on my own. It's nice to be able to do what you want and on your own schedule.

Filip said...

This is a very interesting article, the first picture is the best for me. I hope we see a lot more of Taiwan.


betchai said...

wow, very beautiful and interesting scenery and structures.

Miggy said...

nice post! I plan to visit Taipei soon and this will surely help me a lot.

AVCr8teur said...

Yogi: I agree and there are advantages and disadvantages with taking a guided tour.

Lina: Aside from respect, it was a quite a colorful and peaceful place.

Life Ramblings: Traveling on our own definitely was preferable, but this last minute trip didn't leave me much room to plan.

Filip: Thank you and you will. I hope readers won't get tired of it.

Betchai: Yes, very unique structures that I haven't seen elsewhere.

Miggy: Thank you for commenting & visiting! I hope to read about your trip as well.

Emm said...

Hmmm, I can see I am definitely going to enjoy your photos from Taiwan! Tours are often difficult to judge - often, I regret not paying for an audio-tour or brochure or arriving in time for a guided tour or splashing out on a half-day tour because I don't realise what I am seeing until I get home and research it! On the other hand, there is such a thing as just experiencing it in your own time and tours often mean you don't get to see the best stuff. Hard to judge really...