magicaltaiwan

Exploring the Miracles of Neiwan

Posts Tagged ‘hilltop cafe

Hilltop café – Xin guang liu yi (shooting stars)

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“Xin guang liu yi” which means “shooting stars” in English is a hilltop café opened by town chief whom the locals call “li shi zhang”. It is named shooting stars because you can see beautiful stars twinkling in the sky on a clear night from here. Another reason is because just behind this café is a hiking trail where thousands of fireflies in the bushes appear like blankets of shimmering stars at your feet.

This is the garden just outside the café and its designed and managed by “li shi zhang” himself.  He really has green fingers.  Look at the overhanging orchids and flowers from the wooden plant rack above. The trees and potted plants are also very well trimmed.

This is the beautiful scenery from the garden. You can see a traditional Taiwanese temple and a tunnel through which a train chuckles through every hour. I like to sit in the garden and have coffee because the air is really cooling and fresh out here.

This is interior of the café. It has a very homely ambience and there is a corner filled with magazines and comic books for you to browse while you enjoy your meal. This is also the place where regular community meetings are held. I love to snuggle up in a comfy chair with a magazine to read while I’m there.

Li shi zhang has also built his own homestay (min shu) for visitors. The rooms are simple and spacious and with two, three and four-room types available. You can consider staying here over the weekend while you explore Neiwan and its wonders.

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Written by clarine chai

June 7, 2011 at 12:08 pm

Posted in Neiwan

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Where dreams come true – Jian Shi’s Lavender cottage

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We spotted a sign to lavender cottage on a lampost near our homestay but we were unsure of how to get there. It is a distance away from Neiwan and we couldn’t drive. My friend asked a taxi driver how much it would cost to go there and he quoted 300$NT- this is really expensive, so we dropped the idea of going there.

One day we were having lunch at the Milk dessert shop in Neiwan and the waitress recommended us to visit that place. The cottage provides a 2-way bus service for only 100$NT. Entrance ticket $200NT with $100NT voucher for any item you purchase inside.

Lavender cottage is set up by 2 girls who are deeply in love with coffee and purple lavenders. There are other branches throughout Taiwan such as in Miaoli and Hsinchu. This charming cottage ignites the child-like fantasy of cute teddy bears and colourful doll houses we dream of as little girls. It is a great to relax and have tea with friends and family, take photos and explore your artistic side by handmaking simple handicraft.

Besides lavenders, this cottage has cute potted flowers of various kinds such as daisies, lilies & orchids

I was so delighted that I managed to snap a photo of a yellow butterfly fluttering its wing on this pink flower. This is cinderella’s dreamland!!

DIY workshop for you to make little handicrafts of miniature gardens and cottages or photo frames to give loved ones and friends as birthday gifts.

Wishing tree – strings and leaf-shaped paper for you to write your wishes on provided. I was instantly mesmerized by this beautiful sight. If you like, you can have a self portrait drawn by an artist here.

Hilltop café with awesome view of the entire cottage. Service staff is friendly and attentive. They gave us mint flavored water and recommended items in the menu without having to ask. They even provided plastic gloves for dishes like grilled chicken leg which may require the use of our hands

I love their purple outfit. Most of everything has a touch of purple. Oh there is also a condiments table where you can help yourself with sauces to go with your dishes such as tomato, vinegar, mint leaves, and other herb and spices.

Really good Sesame and butter bread to go with your soup. I wished it was served warm though.
Most pumpkin soups I have tried are much creamier and have seafood such as prawn and lobsters in them. This is plain pumpkin soup but surprisingly quite good. Simple and healthy.

We ordered the grilled chicken leg. this is only a cut-up portion of the actual dish. Simple good western food with lots of herbs and spices flavoring it. Meat is tender and moist.

Take out counter for those who prefer to eat on the go. Treat yourself to lavender ice cream at the palour to cool yourself down on a sunny day!

Little trails in the hills of trees of different shapes and sizes

DIY stamping hut- creative little hut with at least 10 different stamps for you to choose from to create cute designs on little cards

Written by clarine chai

June 7, 2011 at 5:06 am

She’ll Be Coming ‘Round Neiwan when she comes – Jian Shi cafe

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The good thing about Neiwan is that it is located within close proximity to some of the best and most beautiful cafes and hot spring resorts in Taiwan. There is a public hot spring centre in Neiwan itself, well equipped with various kinds of Jacuzzis and sauna rooms. But I strongly urge you to venture beyond and check out the other interesting resorts around the area…

jian shi cafe

Upon entering the café, I was greeted by a spectacular view of lush green mountains and meandering rivers and I wondered if I’m actually looking at a painting. It was a breezy day and the sunlight was streaming in from the French rooftop windows. I made a beeline for the swing chairs to relax in while I sipped on my glass of orange juice…

Taking in the beautiful sight of orchids and bougainvilleas

With Soothing music in the background and a handsome waiter at your service. What more can you ask for?

Written by clarine chai

June 6, 2011 at 12:11 pm