Thursday, December 24, 2009

23 Dec 2009 Day 12 Taipei National Palace Museum Martry's Shrine

( Martry's Shrine guards offers very impressive footdrills in the morning's fall in )

It's history day today, so we jostled with the morning crowd and took a train from Taipei Main station to Yuanshan MRT station. At the cul de sac at the end of the station, we hopped up bus red 3 heading east for Martyr's Shrine. All it took as 5 minutes to get there but it took
about the same amount of time to get across the road to the Shrine.

9am is a good time to watch the guards getting into action. The first batch of guards did a lot more fancy foot-works and drills before taking positions before the shrine, compared to the changing of the guards at 10am.

In between 9am to 10am, we learn the contributions of Taiwan's soldiers who had fallen in various wars, an interesting lesson for war fans.

We took a taxi near the shrine to National Palace Museum for 150NT and alighted at the foot of the NPM steps ( main entrance ) to take in the grandeur of the museum before heading to the 2nd hall for the exhibition " Legend of Italian violins". It was 1 1/2 hour differentiating between an Amati and Strad without much success but the free audiophones did a great job in expanding my musical horizon.

Lunch was an affordable set meal ( less than SGD10 ) at the restaurant behind the souvenir shop in hall 2.

Since we were given the free tickets ( by Taiwan tourism Singapore ) to hall 1's main exhibition, we thought a revisit would be a good idea. It was not. A thick treacle of tourists pushed us through the various halls and we did not see much. NPM must be one of Asia's most successful museum!

( Bus or taxi can be hailed from here )

3pm, back to the main entrance down NPM's steps, we took a bus from NPM to Shilin MRT then a train 1 stop down to Jiantan for snacks at Shilin food center, in 15 minutes . We attacked deep fried chicken, sausage wrapped with rice, mango ice etc we almost burst.

Then it was a long train ride to visit both book stores at Zhongxiao Dunhwa and City hall. There was no serious purchases but at least our mission to do some stationary shopping is accomplished for this trip.

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