Around Taiwan – Hualien and sightseeing

On our 3rd day in Hualien we went on a mini mountain adventure (we got a bit lost), cooled down in a river stream, and paddled around the lake where the Dragon Boat Festival was held.

We ate breakfast at a small shop that Zoe used to frequent when she was younger and lived in Hualien. I had a pastry filled with peanut butter and delicious ice cold soy milk. hualien_day3_37
We drove toward the mountains behind Hualien to check out the view and in the process we got a bit lost around the narrow winding roads. This lead us to a few interesting stops, including accidentally stopping at a cemetery.hualien_day3_1_medhualien_day3_2_medhualien_day3_3_med hualien_day3_4_med hualien_day3_5_med hualien_day3_7_medhualien_day3_6_med
We drove around the lake where the Dragon Boat Festival was being held and figured we had enough time before the races to cool down in a stream near by. We splashed around and had some zongzi (pyramid-shaped glutinous rice wrapped in reed or bamboo leaves); ours was filled with pork. 

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Click to enlarge the panorama:hualien_day3_43hualien_day3_10_med hualien_day3_11_med hualien_day3_12_med

Afterward, we continued our drive around the area and went to the Hualien Sugar Factory in Guanfu. They have over 30 different natural ice cream flavors; I had the peanut and taro. The area was full of people enjoying the great weather, their ice cream, and the large pond full of carp. There was also a small section near the back full of honey bees and a lady talking about them and how great they are (I highly agree). I miss honey. Nicole! Can you send me some?  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Guangfu,_Hualien

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The ox was NOT enjoying this selfie.hualien_day3_17_med

Wood oven baked pizza!hualien_day3_18_medhualien_day3_19_med

After the sugar factory, we drove around a small town fully decorated with these murals depicting their history.hualien_day3_38 hualien_day3_39 hualien_day3_40

We finished off the day by driving back to the lake and catching the end of the Dragon Boat race and renting a paddle boat to relax in. I love paddle boats. I really really really do. It’s one of those strange things I always want to do if I find a city or place has them. hualien_day3_21_med hualien_day3_22_med

Since it was a festival, there were lots of booths and shows to enjoy. This kid and his parents were definitely enjoying this dance show.hualien_day3_24_med

As were these people…hualien_day3_25_med

And my favorite old man as well.hualien_day3_26_med hualien_day3_27_med hualien_day3_28_med hualien_day3_29_med hualien_day3_30_med hualien_day3_31_med hualien_day3_32_med hualien_day3_33_med hualien_day3_34_med

Before leaving back to Taipei, we had dinner with Zoe’s mom. She was so awesome the entire time I was there, I hope I get to meet her again soon.

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And just for fun:
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