Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Danshui Lover's Bridge and Fisherman's Wharf @ Taiwan

Danshui (淡水, or commonly known as "Danshuei"/"Tamshui") is a small fishing city located at the northern tip of Taiwan. Surrounded by peace and transquility, this beautiful paradise is often filled with foreign and local travellers, especially lovey-dovey couples who came to watch the romantic sunset and stroll along the prominent Lover's Bridge. Strongly recommended by my friends, I see no reasons not to visit this particular quainty side of Taipei.
 
Directions to Danshui Lover's Bridge and Fisherman's Wharf
 
1. Take the MRT to the terminal station - Danshui. It takes approximately 40 minutes to reach from Taipei Main Station. From Danshui MRT, take Bus Red 26 - a 15 minutes bus ride to terminal station, Fisherman's Wharf.
 
2. Take a ferry ride from Danshui Ferry Pier to Fisherman's Wharf. It will pass by the island of Bali as well.
 

Till now, Danshui still holds its functionality as a harbour for fishing boats, and of course, a popular tourist spot. The best time to visit Danshui is obviously in the evening, when the sun goes down and the stars unveil itself. Do also take note that the sun-set timings in winter (Nov-Feb) is earlier.


 
More often than not, there are stage performers who bring sparkles of life to Danshui. At the point of visit, there was a Chinese guy rendering some of the best mandarin covers I've ever heard. Pretty impresssive.


Why not sit on one of the many benches across the wooden walkway, enjoy the pretty sunset and take some silly photos?

 
Affectionally named by former president, Chen Shui Bian, the Lover's Bridge is approximately 196 metres and takes 2-3 minutes to walk from one point to the other. This "cable-stayed" bridge is probably the star attraction of the whole of Danshui, so do not ever say you have been here unless you've walked the bridge.

 
Pretty sleek design eh? But again, I didn't expect President Chen to be so filled with "sentimental romance."
 

And of course what every couple should do:

 
Besides feasting for the eyes, the restaurants along the harbour will satisfy your hunger as well. Here we had a Beef Hotpot (NT$360) at a what-seemed-to-be an atas restaurant called Water Bay. Nothing beats having a good bowl of broth filled with delicious slices of beef on a cold weather.

 
For us, we love to "fight cold with cold", hence we bought a impressive towering choco-vanilla ice-cream (NT$25). They actually do come in a longer version for about NT$10 more, but this is just the right amount for us.
 
 
If you managed to stay till late evening, when the night falls, you will witness a spectrum of colours that lit up the Lover's Bridge. The colours of the bridge change every minute or so, representing the different elements of love (I guess.)


The Tamsui Museum of Fishiegoodies 鱼藏文化馆 contains exhibitions on the culture of Danshui and offers tourists to bring back a piece of this fishing town for memories.

 
I strongly recommend you to include Danshui into your itinerary if you're planning a trip to Taiwan, especially with your significant other, but again, one can also enjoy the beautiful sceneries and architectures there as well.