淡水必吃 : What to eat in Tamsui?

Tamsui (淡水)is a sea-side district in New Taipei City. It is named after the Tamsui River which means “Fresh water” in mandarin. Tamsui has been a very popular tourist attraction in Taipei City.. especially the Tamsui Old Street(淡水老街), Fisherman’s Wharf(淡水渔人码头) and The lovers Bridge(情人桥). Three main attractions in Tamsui. So now, how to go to Tamsui from Taipei? As simple as ABC!

How to go to Tamsui : Use the Metro. Take the red line which is the Tamsui Line and go to the last station called Tamsui. When you arrived, follow the signboard to the direction of Tamsui Old Street. ETA around 5 minutes from the metro station. This is the easiest and the cost effective way to go Tamsui.

20150905_113108_001So this post covers Tamsui Old Street(淡水老街). Fisherman’s Wharf and Lover’s Bridge will be in the second post. So this is the Tamsui Old Street. I especially love old street because I love historical and cultural stuff. I love things or places that carries a lot of old stories and normally street like this.. they are at a slower pace, allow you to appreciate the places, clear your mind a bit and just enjoy the interactions between the locals there. Maybe I am a pisces, i like things to be more sentimental. :)

DSC00051 DSC00054 20150905_152512Tamsui old street (淡水老街)is a very beautiful place.. Just behind the old street, its like a park where there are vendors and cafes and place for people to  hang out. I can imagine how lovable this place will be when the weather turns a lil bit cooler. Dont get me wrong, I still love this place.. just that.. the weather is really killing me. 

20150905_125752_mr1441432636974 20150905_125727_001 20150905_130602_001_mr1441430957197 20150905_130835I think I really get tanned because of this day trip. I dint expect it to be so hot.. Imagine walking under the sun for hours.. Anyway, the scenery makes things better.

DSC00081 DSC00076 DSC00075 DSC00069Apart from the beautiful scenery, Tamsui Old Street is famous for their snacks. I’ll show some of the selection available. There are a lot of stalls selling almost the same thing, you just gotta select.. but I guess if you googled, you can easily find a good one. 

1. Tamsui “A-Gei” 淡水阿给

DSC00060“A-Gei” (阿给)this name originated from a Japanese word. It’s actually fried beancurd stuffed with glass noodles and then sealed it up with fish paste, soaked in marinade and then bring it to steam. Served with their special sweet sauce.

DSC00066For me, it doesn’t look appetizing when I did my research online. However, I kind of like it after I try it. The fried beancurd surprisingly is very flavourful. I like the combination of the glass noodle and the fish paste together with the soft beancurd and the sweet sauce. Incredible. A simple dish like this actually make my tummy very happy. 

Apart from the original “A-Gei”. The boss actually came out with few flavours. We had “Sha Cha” (沙茶)flavour.. So what is sha cha? Sha Cha is a type of sauce, main ingredient are garlics, onions, peanuts and dried shrimp. So now you can imagine how it taste like..

DSC00062The “Sha Cha” A-Gei is saltier, the punch of the taste is stronger as compared to the original A-Gei which is sweet and mild. I like the original one more. 

2. Foochow Fishball 福州鱼丸

DSC00064I hate fishballs but I love foochow fishballs. Foochow fishballs are fishballs stuffed with minced pork. 

DSC00067It is kinda light but when you chew on the fishball, the marinated minced pork just makes things a lot more better.. At least for me. I guess that’s y i always love foochow fishball. I love the explosive surprised the fillings delivered.

DSC00059You can always go with a bowl of braised minced pork rice! Noms!

3. Fish cake fritters 淡水鱼酥

DSC00063One of the Tamsui Signature snacks. It’s fish paste fried until it is dry and crunchy. Perfect to be served with thick soup.

All of the above 1. 2. and 3. can be found in the same shop. This one!

DSC00056 DSC00057 20150905_124326This is the first and most traditional shop selling the “A-Gei”. Make sure you go to the correct one.

4. Shrimp Rolls 阿香虾卷

DSC00071I guess we went to the wrong stall. I dont really like this snack. Its like stir fried dried shrimp paste wrapped in popiah skin and deep fried. Served with the sauce of your preference. 

DSC00070Err.. its a lil bit to hard for me to chew. I don’t like it.

5. Fried Octopus Leg & Fried Mushroom 花枝烧 炸杏鲍菇

20150905_131330OMG i love this one too. Fried Octopus Leg served with mayonnaise and plum powder!! Sweet and sour and creamy!! Forgot to take photo of the fried mushroom. They are awesome too!

6. Traditional Cheese Sponge Cake 古早味现烤蛋糕

DSC00087The queue caught my attention. If you have followed my blog long enough. You probably guessed. I like to queue for good food. And long queues always caught my attention. Hahahahaha! I have no idea how this thing look like until the last 5 minutes of queuing..

DSC00088So YES. I queued for nearly 1 hour for this traditional cheese sponge cake! The reason it took so long is because (1) Damn lot of people queuing (2) One cake only get 6 pieces of cheese flavoured and 6 pieces of original and everyone is waiting for the cheese one (3) It say baked on the spot.. so you need to wait like 10 minutes for every batch to bake (4) some people just literally bought 6 boxes of cheese sponge cake. MEANS YOU NEED TO WAIT FOR THE NEXT BATCH. So because of that, le family ditched me there to queue and they went for high tea. Hahahaa. But I am a happy queuer so no complain!

DSC00089So after the lady in front of me bought 6 loaves of it. I have to stand in front of the counter and wait for my batch! AND.. the cake is damn BIG!!! BIG and FLUFFY and.. the smell can just make you fly! Cant wait!

20150905_162807Look at the oozing cheese. Its delicious. Its like a light sponge cake with oozing cheese. Its nice.. but overwhelming but i think the 1 hour queue does make me think its nicer! Hahaha!

7. Grandma Steel Egg 淡水阿婆铁蛋

unnamed (1)The utmost popular must buy in Tamsui. I remember i did took a picture of it but I cant find it. Anyway.. here’s a picture of it. Sorry I finished half of it already. 

8. Sword fish egg sausages and Black Ink Sausages 飞鱼蛋香肠 墨鱼香肠 (No picture. Too hungry that time)

These are the food that at least you have to try when you are at Tamsui. Of coz if you have extra space in your tummy, please explore more!

Weather is so hot so we settled down in a sea-side bar until late afternoon to avoid and scary sun. 

What’s better than a Icy Cold Beer in this hot weather!! 

20150905_144126We had fried fish roe salad. Yums! Love it so much!

20150905_150607Presenting the new bear i bought. I always bought a bear when Im in Taiwan. His name is TaoHuey! 

20150905_142229So we waited until around 5pm before we depart to The fisherman’s wharf and lover’s bridge! Stay tune!



Ximending Must Eat : Yang’s Pork Rib Noodles 西门町必吃:杨记排骨酥面

I discovered this outlet by accident few years back. Ever since then, I will keep going back whenever I’m in Taipei. As simple as a bowl of pork rib noodles, it is located at some alley beside Ximending. Map will be provided at the end of the post. 

So it became one of my must-eat list in Taipei.. the first thing we touched down in Taipei after settling our accommodation, we speed all the way to Yang’s Pork Rib Noodles. 

DSC00014For those who don’t read chinese character, its the blue sign board there. Yang’s Pork Rib noodles had been there for almost a decade already but the quality is still the same regardless how many times I’ve been there. It opens from 11am to 11pm.

DSC00005 DSC00013A simple outlet that sell mainly pork ribs. 

DSC00002They do not have a long list of items in their menu but the signature pork ribs is more than enough to hold the business for years. 

DSC00004Side dishes are self service. We had 3 side dishes to go along with our food. Marinated sea weed with some tofu alike thing, pig ears and boneless chicken feet. Yums! Even the side dish is very up to standard.

DSC00006Braised minced pork rice for mama. You can get it everywhere in Taiwan. Its nice!

DSC00007The signature pork rib noodle soup. 

DSC00009And we ordered another bowl of pork rib soup because one bowl is never enough.

DSC00012Whats so good about the pork rib? Marination is spot on, the coated batter is not soggy even though it went into the soup. And whats the main thing that you can guess? Even though the pork rib is pre-fried, its still very juicy and tender.. even the elderly can easily enjoy the dish, it will just melt off once you take a bite. No effort needed to chew the pork rib! So good! Not only that, the batter itself is very flavourful, so when you chew them together, the taste is very explosive! Noms! This is why they had been going strong for years!

20150903_154241_resized_1And what’s the better? I made my brother their fans as well! Hahahaha!

DSC00015So after a light meal in Yang’s pork rib noodle house, we loiter around Ximending.


DSC00017Just a simple day going relax. Another favourite snack of mine in Ximending.. The roasted mochi with toppings! 

unnamedWe had cheese toppings and condensed milk toppings. Still love the cheese one as always. 

20150903_171413_resized_1Mini sausage with Garlic.. I love meat + garlic!

20150903_213103_resized_1Onion pancake!

20150903_193238_resized_1Braised Duck Tongue..

20150903_163236_resized_1And my favourite milk after Meiji….! Make sure you try this. I never missed.

So here’s as promise the map of the pork rib noodle house! Hunt for it!


Wet Boracay Day 3 : ATV Ride, Mount Luho, D’Talipapa, Calamansi Muffin, White Beach

Good Morning Boracay!

unnamed (1) unnamed

20150808_112518_pWe woke up with a lil bit of drizzling.. Guess it rained quite heavily the night before though.

20150808_112703_mr1439051695169 20150808_112821_pToday is the last full day in Boracay! Make full used of today! Ariel’s Point! ATV rides! Zorb! We wanted to do everything today…! Took a tricycle to the ticket counter for Ariel’s Point at Station 1 and was told the whole Ariel’s Point was closed due to the weather. EMO! Means no cliff jumping… feel so incomplete because that’s one of the must do in Boracay. Hmmm! And that’s not the worse, the tricycle man try to sabo us for some other activities with sky high price.. and… he said the ride from our villa to station 1 cost around 300 peso!! SO WTF. Because we always use tricycle from our villa to Station 2 (which is further than Station 1) and it only cost us 100 to 150 peso. RAGE! We demand to change tricycle but he kinda refuse.. still keep trying to sell us some expensive package. Dude! You are the only one that pissed us off in Boracay. So far everyone in Boracay is awesome! In short, we still manage to got down from his tricycle and look for a better deal. We met this guy whom we met the day before at the convenient stall selling us travel packages.. From ATV rides to Mount Luho, D Talipapa and return transportation with tickets only charged us 1000 peso per person! Nice! 

DSC03454 DSC03455Its a lovely journey with the locals mingling with us. We arrived at the ATV ride thing. Not too bad but some part of the route is closed… so our route is shorter.. HAIH! Just don come during monsoon season. 

DSC03457_p DSC03461_pAnyway! Here we are! ATV ride is fun! The only thing is… it will be better if we can race and speed. Hahahahahhaha! 

DSC03463Next stop is Mount Luho! Its like a viewpoint over the whole Boracay Island. Beautiful and Breathtaking! 

DSC03465 DSC03469 DSC03471

20150808_131455_p 20150808_132058We were taking picture half way and it suddenly rained.. so heavily.. So we can only hide under some hut and wait until the rain stop.. with our wet ATV. 

We wanted to try Zorb which is located at the same place but it was closed as well. Hmmmm!! Haih.. that’s it.. Just go to D’Talipapa for lunch I guess..

DSC03482 DSC03483 DSC03484Because of the rain.. the road is flooded still.. the driver will tease us like.. :” ONLY IN BORACAY”.. It feels like we were doing some water taxi in the safari. But the journey is a good one. The guide is friendly and helpful.

DSC03486We reached D’Talipapa and he recommended us to try the Seafood.. one of the thing tourist will do when they are here!

DSC03488 DSC03489So this is how it works.. This is a wet market in the middle of D’Talipapa. And around this wet market there is rows and rows of restaurants. HOWEVER, the restaurants do not have any seafood.. you have to buy from the wet market and bring them to the restaurant for them to cook. YES. ALL of the restaurants there operate like this…

AND the seafood is freaking expensive.. we tried to bargain but its still too expensive. End up we choose to abandon this place and go hunting for food else where. Sad to say most restaurants are just some cooking station so we have to walk further up to some lousy restaurant for lunch. 

DSC03491Not impressive at all. Just one picture to show you the Grilled chicken. That’s the most edible one. Others were like shit. Hahaha!

DSC03497Buko means coconut.. should be.

DSC03487So we continue to explore D’Talipapa for some souvenirs. Souvenirs are so much cheaper here as compared to D’Mall.

DSC03499Came across this very small convenient stall that sell a lot of local products.. we bought quite a lot of local products here to bring back home..

DSC03498And they sell cakes and bread too. 5 peso only! Its like less than RM 0.50 for a piece of cake. We had banana cake and pineapple cake..! Yums!!

DSC03502Liquor… less than RM 10. Hahaha!

DSC03506After souvenirs hunting, we went to white beach area and hunt for some cheap massage. They say massage is a must try.

DSC03509_pWe found a massage package.. full body  massage for RM30 only. Its quite a good deal.. not too impressive because I dont really fancy massage but I think its better than our local one. 

So Mandy, Azraai and I finished our massage first.. we went to explore the beach since it was just opposite it… 

DSC03512 DSC03513Hello White Beach! you are beautiful too at night!

20150808_183104_mr1439139266439 20150808_183355_pI think if i were to visit Boracay again, I will definately stay at Station 2 along the beach

Sky is turning dark so we went back to the street.. some random locals tell us we should try this famous cafe just beside the massage parlour.. They said its reviewed in the travel guide and a lot of celebrities came. So… here we were..

DSC03516Its called REAL coffee. Its located exactly beside the massage parlour of ours..

DSC03520 DSC03517 DSC03538 DSC03519Look at the interior, simple, classic, and with lots of autographs.

DSC03531_pWe had the signature real coffee and the best seller coffee..DSC03532Together with this — THE CALAMANSI MUFFIN

DSC03534_pSurprisingly, it taste really good. Not too calamansi like how you imagine. Instead, its buttery with a light aroma of the calamansi. Yums!

We were enjoying ourselves until we forgotten the others.. by the time we are done with our coffee and muffin, they left already.. So we walked along the street and out of sudden… someone running out from a bistro and tell us our friends were inside. Take a look properly its our tour guide for the ATV ride this morning! He saw our friends inside the bistro and he saw us passing by so he immediately ran out to inform us. SO sweet of him! 


20150808_201616 20150808_204555_mr1439038071087

unnamed (2)So we ended up chilling at this bistro, chit chat until late.. 

DSC03543 DSC03548Explore D’Mall for one final time before we call it the day. 

So the next morning… we gathered at 9am to do the 3 hours journey again to Kalibo airport.. Byebye Boracay! We should have come during the right time. You are just so beautiful!

20150809_100630_mh1439206123978 DSC03555

Tips to Kalibo Airport : Please go extra early.. the airport is so small and so crowded and they are kinda lack of system. Even during Monsoon Season where crowd is lesser.. we are really having a hard time squeezing through the crowd and queue for freaking damn long for everything. I thought cambodia airport is scary.. this one is like 10 times scarier. Hahaha!

DSC03562Anyway… dogs are really cute in Boracay!

20150809_214226_mr1439206074679We laughed throughout the whole 4 hours flight home! Time pass very fast when you laughed. Until jaws also painful d.20150809_145402-tileTil then Boracay!


Read More :

Day 1 : Things you need to know about Boracay

Day 2 : Wet Boracay







Wet Boracay Day 2 : Diniwid Beach, D’Mall, Diniview Villa

As mentioned and promised in my previous post, I’ll show you the magnificent view from our villa.

DSC03450Good Morning Boracay! Beautiful sea, blue sky and picturesque scenery! It seems like a prefect day for some exploration and some rough activities!  We woke up at around 10am.. cooked breakfast and prepare ourselves for the day.. 

The fast one to get ready can have a lot of selfies while waiting for others. hehe. 

20150807_123010_mr1438922034282 20150807_124742Trying to do the wide angle selfie with the villa but.. half head gone. Tough one. hmpf.20150807_125003-vertAnyway.. it was like 12pm when everyone is ready. Nice hair.. nice outfit..

DSC03381_p DSC03382_p DSC03385_p DSC03391_pDo lotsa selfie at the villa to start the day! We thought we are just going to have a very fun and exciting day with lotsa pictures at the beach…

DSC03403And just 2 minutes later while we were walking towards the beach (Diniwid Beach is just below our villa)… suddenly.. it rained… It freaking rained.. not only that.. it was down pouring.. T.T ALL THE NICE HAIR IS GONE.

DSC03401_pOh.. luckily we still have the 2 minutes of happiness! 

It doesnt matter if you run or you walk.. you will literally get all wet. Hahahahaha! And somemore thats our first day to explore… we walked from Diniwid Beach to White Beach.. the tides were so strong that when it hit the rocks.. all of us get wet as well. Hahahaha! No joke. like.. seriously!

20150807_132937 20150807_133007 20150807_133022White Beach is just like maybe less than 5 minutes walk from Diniwid Beach… It rained so heavily until we cant really see the sky anymore.

DSC03409_pWe rest in a hut while trying to find a way to go down to D’Mall.. 

DSC03407And i spot this cute and chubby dog. Hello cutie! 

Long story cut short, we got lost and we were circling the area… in the rain.. asked for directions… and walked for another 1.5 hours before we saw tricycle! Yes… just like.. loitering under the down pouring rain… anyhow.. we were all drained already!

DSC03410_pHello tricycle! You saved us! 

We reached D’Mall (the famous street mall in Boracay at Station 2) and were shocked. Its flooded! hahahaha! So drama! But the good thing is.. the rain get better, its just drizzling.. And surprisingly to still see crowd at D’Mall. I guess Boracay is always full of tourists throughout the year huh! 

DSC03419 DSC03420 DSC03421 DSC03422 DSC03423So.. yes. Everyone is still doing the shopping at D’Mall walking through the flood. Its like.. you dont know what are you step on it. You cant see your feet as well. Oh well, just follow the crowd. 

DSC03418_pBecause of the rain, there’s not much photos taken as well. Azraai was craving for pizza so we just settled down with four cheese pizza and chill at the bistro for like 2 or 3 hours.. exhausted to the max.

20150807_151525_mr1438931790672Because of the rain, we were so tired and lazy as well. Oh.. spotted this cute sign! Anyone wanna left the husband here? hahahaha! 

Inititally plan : We shopped for some groceries and ingredients for tomorrow’s breakfast, go back villa wash up and change and come down again for dinner and some drinking session at night.

And that means, we went back to villa… Since we were already drained, we had a pool session at the villa. Good thing about the villa, the pool is also outside our villa. hahaha!

DSC03429 DSC03430 DSC03432_pWe were playing in the pool half way and the rain stopped. FML.

20150807_182959 DSC03442Well, at least we had fun.

So.. after everyone showered and rest… as predicted, everyone is tired already. I guess the age is catching up, or.. the villla is too comfortable already.

NEW PLAN : Just enjoy the villa. hahahahahahahahahahahahhaa!!  

And again, we spend our second night in the villa again.. cards games and alcohol! So my parents asked me what did we do in Boracay. “Drinking and playing cards game in the Villa”

20150808_000816Mark is so tired he fallen asleep after the first round of cards game. Hmmm.. and another two went to toilet half way and ended up sleeping in their bed at around 11pm. 

20150808_002610So… the last four standing! Thats our predictable and unpredictable day 2!

Read more : Things we need to know about Boracay  & Day 3 how we spend our last day~




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