Thursday, 12 September 2013
Day 37 - Nanputuo Temple and Ferry to Taiwan
After sorting out some laundry and my hotel in Taipei, I had enough time to spare before my ferry left so I decided to do a bit of sightseeing. Nanputuo Temple is recommended for a visit so this was the destination I was headed.
The first thing I realised more today than yesterday is that Xiamen feels quite different than the other cities in China I have visited. Somehow it feels a bit more like Hong Kong and it being a Special Economic Zone might play a part in it or maybe it's just because it's a different city and ever city has it's own character in a way.
Nanputo Temple is a very nice temple near the Xiamen University and one of the must see sights in Xiamen. It is also well worth seeing as the temple itself is nice but you can do a bit of hiking to explore some caves full of different deity statues and also get some great views over Xiamen.
It was quite a hot and stuffy day so it did not help that I had to rush going back down the mountain to make it back to the hotel and pick up my luggage before heading to the ferry port. The views and temple were worth it though so I was glad to have done it despite the bit of rush.
After getting to the port and checking in, I realised they did give me a 6 berth cabin all for myself as they have done to the other two westerners. Not sure if they do this to foreigners or just split the cabins based on the group you're travelling with but since I was happy to have my ticket and did not mind at all the extra space, I did not enquire their reasoning further.
There are also some deluxe cabins and some couple and lover's cabins but I think the standard ones do the job just fine. The ferry was not very full with only a few smaller tour groups so there should not be any problem to get a ticket and cabin for yourself if you're travelling alone.
After seeing a nice sunset from the boat, clouds gathered over Xiamen and a storm was brewing with lightning visible in the sky. I did set myself the challenge to try and capture the lightning and after a fee attempts I managed to get 5 pretty decent pictures.
Tomorrow morning, I will arrive in Keelung and will head straight for Taipei to meet a friend in the afternoon.
The weekend is still open so I will see what I feel like doing and where I will end up.