Wednesday, April 30, 2014

gondolas and tea in maokong

The day started off with some green mango for breakfast. I've got my friends hooked on them now - too bad they are a hit or a miss item. Sometimes super delicious and other times super sour.

so addicting - sad that I haven't seen these anywhere else...
Then met up with my friends to grab lunch near Shirley's university where she is studying Chinese. When I was teaching English in Taiwan, Shirley was teaching in Japan. Funny to see how we have now flipped locations.

a famous Taiwanese dish: beef noodles - but this one was just meh
Lunch consisted of my friends and some of Shirley's classmates, one of them who was Japanese so there was English, Japanese and Chinese being spoken at our table. Very international. I'm pretty sure I just let everyone talk while I stuffed my face - no surprise there.

After lunch we all headed to Maokong, an area famous for its tea growing. The one and only time I had been here was when I had just moved to Taiwan a couple of years back. In order to reach the top of the mountain we took a gondola. More specifically my friends wanted to take the Crystal Cabin which are gondolas with a glass floor. There are only a limited number of them and I remember there were long lines for them but because it was the middle of the week, we didn't have long to wait.

floating over the trees
It started raining when we reached the top so we found shelter in this cute cafe that Shirley brought us to.

I think the name of this place is called Cafe Cat (symbol)

We sat here for hours chatting and eating, waiting for the rain to stop. Everyone was required to buy something at least over $100 TWD so I got some ice cream.

bouchong ice cream w/ strawberries, cheese? and tea jelly - $180 twd
The ice cream here is flavored with tea and I believe bouchong/baochong? is green tea. When I saw cheese on the menu I was kind of scared because what kind of parfait has cheese inside it but it was fine. Can't recall what it was actually now...

Pretty sure we ended the day with more potstickers. Of course we ordered the curry and kimchi potstickers but we expanded our menu and ordered some dumplings too.

curry and regular pork dumplings - potstickers are still my favorite!
For more information and my previous trip to Maokong click here.

The Details
Maokong Gondola
Access: Taipei Zoo Station -  Wenshan-Neihu Line (Brown MRT line)
Facing traffic walk left to reach Maokong Gondola (if you see the Taipei Zoo you are walking in the wrong direction)
Hours: Tuesday-Thursday 9:00am-9:00pm; Friday 9-10pm, Sat/Sunday 8:30-9/10pm respectively
Closed: Mondays
Fare: There are three stops on the gondola starting at $30, $40, and $50 TWD (the top is where all the tea houses and cafes are located) - one way journeys
This price is for either regular or crystal cabins. You just need to wait in line for a crystal cabin to pass by.


  1. wow, one year in Taiwan and I never had green mango..

    1. I can't believe it! It is pretty pricey. Guess you know what to get next time you're in Taiwan :P