Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Let's go to Jiufen (九份)!

It was a great day one weekend and we decided to go on a road trip again! This time we went to Jiufen, a quaint little town just one and a half hours drive from Taipei city. Jiufen is a mountainous town with steep, curvy and narrow roads and as usual, I got car sick and threw up in the car once we arrived.

Jiu Fen means "nine portions" in Chinese and the town was named so because it used to house nine families and these nine households would order nine portions every time shipments arrived from town.

The view was fantastic, it looked almost surreal.

Jiufen used to be a prosperous gold mining town, but it quickly declined after the mining discontinued. Fortunately, the quaint streets, tea houses and stunning views of the Pacific Ocean saved it from becoming yet another anonymous mining ghost town. In 1989, Hou Hsiao-hsien's film, A City of Sadness set in Jiufen became a big hit. The nostalgic scenery of Jiufen in the film attracted many visitors and Jiufen became a tourist attraction. Jiufen again came into the limelight in 2001 when its downtown was used as a model in the anime movie, Spirited Away by Hayao Miyazaki.

I will never visit Jiufen on a weekend again, the streets were all sardine-packed with tourists, it was very difficult to walk comfortably and I got molested several times. :(

There are so many things to eat in Jiufen!

Delicious beef noodles in herbal soup.

Desserts with sweet potatop and taro balls.

Spicy fried anchovies.

Fruit flavored jellies.

Yam cake (芋粿) and cudweed cake (草仔粿).

Some interesting snacks.

Many interesting alleys to explore.

Golden retriever stone dogs for sale!

Someone wants to get in the picture too!

So many stairs to climb!

And old stone houses to see.

This restaurant called City Of Sadness Restaurant (悲情城市小上海茶樓), was featured in the film, A City Of Sadness, which won the Golden Lion at the 1989 Venice Film Festival.

The famous flight of stairs.

What is everyone looking at?

Ah! A movie poster! Many period films were set in Jiufen.

Posing on the stairs.

Posing with a tourist.

Time for a coffee break!

Nice view of the mountain from the cafe.

Me and the mountain.

One more shot on the chair.

Shots with my favorite humans.

That's a cute Winnie the Pooh!

The gold miner and the golden retriever!

Saying hello to a little friend.

I hope you enjoyed this little trip to Jiufen with me!

Thank you all for your kind words about my weight, but it has been confirmed that I am overweight. 40kg/88lbs! I have put on 6kg/13lbs in a year! Shocking! Life in Taipei must be good! I better shed some of that excess weight before summer comes. Time to work out again!


Par said...

Looks like a nice place to visit.
You must got a lot of attention walking around that place.

Anonymous said...

You look handsome as ever.

Allison Walton said...

Dino, you are beautiful!!

gus and Waldo

Paco,Milo, Maya and mommy Simona said...

HIIIIIIII Dinoooooooo!!!!!!
we're very very very happy that you're came back!!!!
we miss you a lot!!!!!!!
your pictures are wonderful and always!!!!!!!
you're sooooooooooooo handsome and we love you so much!!!
we think that your parents are more similar like ours....they take us with them wherever they go...and made live us the best life they can....don't you Dino????!!!!!
we are very very very lucky!!!!!
we love you so much and think of you often!!!
P.s.: Congrats for your nomination on DWB!!!!!!!!
We vote for you!!!!!..of course!!!
kisses and licks!!!

Pedro said...


Your new little friend looks to be just about the same size as me! Thanks for sharing those pictures, they were so interesting! You are very photogenic!!


Lorenza said...

Hi, Dino!
Thanks for sharing your trip to Jiufen! Looks like a pawesome place with very interesting things!
I have to get rid of one kg too!
Kisses and hugs

Ruby and Penny said...

Hi Dino
What a great little town. Very busy. I loved all the scenery, especially the shots featuring you.
Mom says she is going to check out that movie.
Thanks for taking me on a trip.
Love Ruby

Lacy said...

w00f's Dino, me loved all ur piksurs..hehee, dats cute dat little hooman snuck in on ur piksur..

b safe,

Angel Tucker, Daisy and Leo said...

Wow Dino

That looked like a fun trip. You posed so nicely in that chair. Remind your Mom that you got a lot of exercise walking up all those stairs, so she doesn't cut your food too much.

Daisy gets car-sick too, she feels bad for you.

Tucker and Daisy

Anonymous said...

Hi Dino! That looked like a fun trip! My favorite picture is the gold miner and the Golden Retriever. Congratulations on your nomination!

Your pal,

The Musketeers said...

Looks like you have fun D !
Great pictures there !!!

Chow Chow said...

Thanks for giving us a tour of Jiufen, it looks like heaven!

i said...

A lovely place with so many lovely shots! Thanks for the lovely tour! Dino, love your smiling happy face in the pictures!

Emma said...

Wow Dino, that is a breathtaking place! It looks surreal, you live in one of the most beautiful places in the world, with a perfect climate, too.

And you don't need to lose weight, I love the way you look.

Love, Emma

Opy - the Original GruffPuppy said...


you have been nominated for Awesome Blog Award over at the Bone Zone - head on over and cast your vote :)



☮momoKo said...

Hi Dino!
As for it which thought to see your a lot of images, you resemble Joey in appearance.

Peace and love

Anonymous said...

Hello from Belgium Louisette +2 golden retriever

Anonymous said...

Happy New Chinese Year to Dino~
九份 is a very nice place~
Your pictures are so coooooooool !

Golden Woofs! SUGAR said...

Woof! Dino Happy Chinese New Year ... Great photos.
Woof! Sugar

Homer said...

Hi Dino,

You don't look overweight to us at all! We think you look STUNNING!!!


Anonymous said...

What a fantastic tour, Dino!! My human, Hsin-Yi, read about Jiufen in a magazine and she so wanted to was great to see your beautiful pictures.

I am so sad that we never got to come and live in Taiwan and see all these great places...!!

Honey the Great Dane