Today, Yuki and I got up pretty damn early...for hot springs day! We've been waiting for this day for quite some time. So we headed out straight for the Taipei main station (bus terminal). We grabbed a quick on-the-go 7-11 breakfast and jumped on the bus to Hsinchu. The buses are even cheaper than the train. We got a student fare of $105 NTD. And it takes just about the same time as the train (non HSR). Despite the signs, they let you eat and drink on the bus. Don't spill though, I'm pretty sure they'll get pissed. Leather seats and very cushy, but a little short on the leg room (I'm over 6' tall) compared to the train (non HSR). But you can't beat $105 NTD and 1.5 hours. After meeting up with Lucy and friends we took a taxi straight to the Hui-Lai hot springs (會來尖石). Although the location is a little further to get to, the place was great! The bathrooms are clean and the park was pretty large. They had several hot springs with varying temperatures, two children's play pools, two swimming pools, two water slides, sauna, massage house and doctor fish. Doctor fishes or nibble fish are those tiny fishes used in medical purposes that eat dead skin from your feet to expose the healthy skin underneath. It's good for people with psoriasis. Sounds nasty but it really tickles! Back to the hot springs, They also have scented springs too, like salt and lavender. The scenery is beautiful and the park wasn't that crowded, so it was peaceful and quiet. After 4 hours or so...you kind of lose track of time, we headed back down the mountain towards the city. We had an belated birthday dinner for Grace, Lucy's roommate at Kanpai Classic Hsingchu (乾杯日式燒肉). It's a much fancier and expensive version of the flagship store in Taipei. It's japanese Yakiniku. Highly expensive and exceptional meats. I'm glad I experienced it, but not again without a nice paying job. I chose to forget the price tag, but if i recall it was above $1300/person. Perhaps i'll try the Taipei location instead. Then we headed to a sports bar afterwards and drank beer from a beer tower. All Carlsberg. Beer Tower!!!
Kanpai Classic (http://www.kanpai.com.tw/)
Hui-Lai Hot Springs (http://www.hui-lai.com.tw)