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Taiwan

Taipei - Jiufen - Sun Moon Lake - Tainan - Chihpen - Taroko

Taipei

The island of Taiwan, off China's eastern coast, deserves to be better known for its combination of modernity and tradition, beautiful mountain and coastal scenery, and historical remains. This tour provides a perfect introduction to this interesting island.

An escorted tour with your own English-speaking guides and car and driver, using mostly 4- and 5-star hotels.



Day 1  Day 1 Depart London Heathrow

Day 2  Arrive Taipei. Met on arrival and transfer to 5-star hotel.

Day 3   Taipei City Tour. After breakfast visit the Martyrs' Shrine, followed by the National Palace Museum where many of the exquisite treasures from Beijing's Forbidden City are housed. Lunch at local restaurant. In the afternoon, continue to Longshan Temple, built in the Qing Dynasty, which houses hundred of statues of Buddhist, Taoist, and Confucian deities. Then visit the Chiang Kai-shek Memorial Hall and then view Taipei 101, at one stage the tallest building in the world (B)

Day 4  Travel to Yehliu Geo Park on the northern coast, where rocks carved by wave-action and weathering over many years are formed into a myriad of different shapes. Then visit Jioufen Village, once the centre of gold mining, after gold was discovered near Jiufen in 1890, and which retains its old-time atmosphere. (B)

Day 5  Travel to Sun Moon Lake. Lying in Nantou county, ringed by mountains, this scenic lake is Taiwan's premier tourist attraction. Visit the Wen Wu Temple and the Tse-En Pagoda for spectacular views over the lake. (B)

Day 6  Travel by road to Tainan, the island's historic capital from 1661 until the late 19th century. Visit Anping Fort, called Fort Zeelandia by the Dutch and the centre of their rule of the island. Then visit the Confucius Temple, built in 1665. In the afternoon continue to Foguangshan - Light of Buddha Mountain - Taiwan's premier Buddhist site. By the entrance stands Taiwan's tallest image of the Buddha surrounded by a corps of 480 life-sized statues of disciples. (B)

Day 7  Travel to Taitung county in south-eastern Taiwan. Arrive at Chihpen and enjoy the natural hot springs for the remainder of the day. (B)

Day 8  Drive northward along the dramatic east coast facing the Pacific Ocean, stopping at two popular scenic spots: the Stone Umbrella (a rocky beach upon which sits an umbrella-shaped rock formation) and Sansiantai (Terrace of the Three Immortals). Stay overnight at Taroko. (B)

Day 9  After breakfast, commence the tour of the Taroko Gorge where the Liwu river has carved a deep gorge through the limestone and marble cliffs. Visit sights such as the Tunnel of Nine Turns, Swallow Grotto, Eternal Spring Shrine and the Taroko Gorge Gateway. Visit the Chingshui Cliffs along the Su-Hua highway and return to Taipei in the afternoon for transfer to your hotel. (B)

Day 10  Free day (B)

Day 11  Transfer to airport for flights back to London Heathrow, arriving later the same day or early the following morning. (B)