My sisters and I left very early the morning of January 18th to head for Hualien County on the Eastern coast of Taiwan, south of Taipei. My elder sister planned an overnight trip just for the 3 of us. I took a cab from my hotel and met my sisters at the train station. They were awake and perky. I still felt a little groggy, but my sisters bought me a coffee and offered it once I arrived. They’d also bought little snacks to take along the trip-always so organized and prepared for everything! Our train ride was about 3 hours long. Once we arrived, we had a driver, Mr. He, who took us everywhere and was very knowledgeable about the sights in Hualien.
Our first stop was at Taroko National Park. We stopped and ate lunch on the way. Taroko National Park is one of the 7 national parks in Taiwan. It was named after the Taroko Gorge, the landmark gorge of the park. The park spans Taichung City, Nantou County, and Hualien County.
Eternal Springs Shrine above is one of the many beautiful shrines/towers. It was built in memory of the hundreds of workers who died or were injured during the construction of the central highway that runs through the Eastern section of Taroko Gorge. I was amazed at the road system and tunnels that ran through the park obviously built through the mountain rock.
Taroko Gorge and the surrounding area is well known for its supply of marble. Throughout the park, you could see evidence of this in the architecture.
My elder sister told me that the drive to the park would be a bit windy, but it wasn’t bad at all and I was fine the whole trip. I have a terrible problem with motion sickness. My sisters said that our mother also struggled with the same thing.
The visit to the park was beautiful. At the end of the day we headed to an inn where my sister had made reservations. It was a distance away from the park, and by the time we made it there, it was dark out. Although I couldn’t see the ocean, I could hear it. The inn was very quaint, and it was so nice to hit the sack after a full day of sightseeing. I fell asleep to the sound of ocean waves and woke up the next morning to a breathtaking view of the ocean right outside my window!