The collected writings of a Renegade Tourist

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The Trail Under The Highway

I’ve previously written about two parks that are underneath major roads in Taiwan; the semi-abandoned Wuri Tank Park and the strange art exhibition/miniature world under the Dali Creek Bridge. Last weekend my wife found another similar place called Shalu Leisure Landscape Trail (沙鹿休閒景觀步道 in Chinese). For some reason, this one also happens to be in Taizhong city; perhaps the citizens of Taizhong really like to utilize the available space.

Like the name suggests, this is a hiking trail, or rather a strolling trail, because to be honest it’s far too flat for any actual hiking. It’s roughly two … Read the rest

City Center Tunnels

In Hsinchu City, not far from the very center, is a hill somewhat ambitiously called 18 Peaks Mountain. As you might guess, it’s not much of a mountain but local people like to go there for “hiking“ and jogging. The main entrance is big with several parking lots nearby but there is also a second entrance on the backside. Actually there are two entrances on the backside, the nice new one and the dilapidated old one. Last weekend I took my son out for some toddler friendly hiking and figured it could be fun to try the backside entrance. … Read the rest

Art Under The Bridge

A couple of months ago I wrote about something I call neglected spaces. This weekend we found a place that isn’t actually neglected but has a lot of the same vibes. It’s a place called 大里溪橋下小人國 which roughly translates to Little People Country Under Dali Creek Bridge. It’s hidden away underneath country route 63, just at the end of the Dali river bridge. Most people will never even know it’s there, passing over it on their way somewhere else, and if they pass by on one of the small roads on the side of the bridge, it’s still unlikely they … Read the rest

Urban Exploration in Hsinchu City

Finding and exploring abandoned buildings is generally referred to as Urban Exploration (or Urbex for short). The ironic thing is, most of the urban exploration I’ve been doing has been out in the countryside; abandoned amusement parks or hotels up in the mountains, or old bunkers out by the coastline. Perhaps in my case calling it “exploring modern ruins” would be more accurate, but that doesn’t have quite the same ring to it as Urbex. Recently however, I’ve been doing some actual urban exploration.

Whenever I’m out and about, could be the morning commute, could be running some errands after … Read the rest

Mountain Climbing With a Toddler

In my last post I talked about hiking Wuliaojian. I liked it a lot because most of it is proper climbing and not just walking along a smooth trail. However, it’s rather physically demanding which means it’s not suitable for everyone. The same weekend as I went to Wuliajian, me and my wife also decided to bring our son out for a short hike somewhere. My wife found a trail called Xianshan Trail that seemed suitable for us so we went there. It turned out to be an easier, less demanding alternative to Wuliaojian.

The trail head is at … Read the rest

Climbing Wuliaojian

I can’t remember who gave me the tip but ever since I first heard about it I’ve wanted to climb mount Wuliaojian (五寮尖山). Due to circumstances I haven’t been able to until now. I have to say right from the start that I’m really happy I finally went, because it’s a really good climb. The mountain isn’t particularly high, only 639 meters, but there are several near vertical sections that require some proper climbing and you more or less need to use the fixed ropes to get up or down. This makes it a lot more exciting than your … Read the rest

The Sunken Road

First I want to thank my wife for finding out about this place and sharing the information with me so we could arrange a trip. Now on to the post

Down in Jiayi (Sometimes also spelled Chiayi) in South Taiwan there’s a region with a lot of fish farms and oyster farms. In fact it’s so many that the GPS makes it look like the expressway is running on a bunch of islands and sandbanks out in the ocean, even though it’s actually on land. Over time the usage of these seafood farms has changed and some of the old … Read the rest

Neglected Spaces

There’s a certain type of spaces that I feel strangely drawn to. The kind of spaces at the edges of the urban landscape, half forgotten spaces hidden behind and below the infrastructure that keeps our cities running. I don’t really have a good name for them, liminal spaces isn’t quite correct, backstreets indicates something that is more populated, they’re definitely not slums and you can’t call it wasteland; forgotten spaces is wrong, people still remember them, and they’re not abandoned or deserted. Perhaps the best term would be neglected spaces, they’re a bit dirty, they don’t get taken care of … Read the rest

The Plastic Problem

I guess that we are all aware that our oceans are full of plastic. For me at least, this awareness was what I like to call an intellectual awareness that let me keep a kind of detected attitude to the problem – I knew it existed but it didn’t really affect my day to day life. Last weekend however, that changed. Me and my family went out to the beach and to my great surprise there was a wide belt of plastic trash topping the dunes, stretching the entire length of the beach. It had not been there the last … Read the rest

Mapping the Tunnels part 2

Shortly after I made my last post about the old military tunnels at Fengqi Sunset Trail, my friend Johan, who is a Youtuber, contacted me saying he wanted to make a video about the tunnels. My other friend David, who was the one to introduce me to the tunnels in the first place, said he would also like to join (you can find David's post here). Said and done, the three of us met up at the trail head and with Johan filming we made another foray into the tunnels. Continue reading about our underground adventure.

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