17 Sep - 23 Sep 2012 Kinmen

East Asia
Taiwan aka Republic of China 
Kinmen Island aka Quemoy
Kincheng Township
Mínquán Road 67
Hai-Jing Hotel +88682324126
Clean and spacious double room with unrestricted wifi and private bathroom for TWD 900.- or US$ 30.70 per night. Indifferent staff. 10% discount for members of the Konni & Matt Travel Blog.
Beer600-ml bottles of ice-cold Taiwan Beer Classic +886800231422 (4.5 % alc./vol.) for TWD 49.- or US$ 1.70 per large bottle from the reliable 7-Eleven convenience store right next to our hotel.

Click below for an interactive road map of the Hai-Jing Hotel in Kincheng and for directions:


Exploring the island’s peaceful main settlement Kincheng, meaning Golden City, a pleasant and well-organised one-horse town with friendly and civilised locals whose manners are worlds apart from those of their communist/fascist neighbours on the so-called "mainland" (Kinmen: no spitting, no hawking, no shouting, no burping, no farting, no swindling, no begging), quite visibly a strong, intelligent and democratic community, and marvelling at the architectural harmony of the clean, well maintained and regularly frequented temples all over the township (our favourite: the superb and atmospheric City God Temple aka Cheng-huang Miao).

Wining and dining in Kinmen’s cheap but excellent down-to-earth eateries: (i) wolfing down steaming bowls of Cantonese-style fish/seafood rice porridge aka congee for breakfast, (ii) slurping pots of delicious oyster noodles with ginger for lunch and, last but not least, (iii) checking regularly the western horizon for incoming Dong Feng missiles through raised glasses of fierce kaoliang, the very potent Taiwanese 58-proof rocket fuel made from fermented choice sorghum - ganbei!

Foraging for the history of the Cold War which turned tiny and vulnerable Kinmen into a frontline battlefield between the Chinese communists and Chinese nationalists, touring the military-historical sites of the island by means of Kinmen Tour Bus +88682332814 (half-day trip for TWD 160.- or US$ 5.50 per person) and learning about the ferocious and decisive 1949 CE Battle of Guningtou where the commies were defeated and which laid down a stable foundation for the very successful social and economic development of democratic Taiwan aka Republic of China (R.O.C.).
"Nobody's got the gun
Nobody's trying to get the drop on anyone
Nobody's standing out on main street
With the sun blazing down
Saying 'There's only room for one of us
In this here town'
Nobody's got to be the number one
Nobody's got the gun..."

Village-hopping the 20-km long and roughly bow-tie shaped island of Kinmen by means of convenient public bus and trekking our way through huge irrigated sorghum fields and well-laid-out little parks, spotting en-route many of Kinmen’s unique Wind Lions aka fongshihye, totems said to have the power to control the winds and keep the land fertile, and visiting ancient dwellings with lovingly restored Fujian-style houses which retain all of their original feng-shui-beholden layout and traditional clan structure (our favourites: the beautiful villages of Shanshou, Shuitou and Beishan).

Crossing the Taiwan Strait aka Formosa Strait, formerly known as the Black Ditch, with Mandarin Airlines in a modern Embraer ERJ-190AR from Kinmen’s spic-and-span Shang Yi Airport +88682322381 to Taipei’s Song Shan Airport +886287703460 for a stiff US$ 84.- per person, all inclusive, reading in midair that the bullying Goliath China had just practised/simulated another missile attack against the independent David Taiwan (Taipei Times of 23 Sep 2012: “The tests included multiple firings of short and medium-range ballistic missiles as well as land-attack cruise missiles.”) and keeping a sharp lookout…

Click below for more blog posts about interesting islands
04 Jun - 07 Jun 2013 Jeju (South Korea)
05 May - 10 May 2013 Phuket (Thailand
22 Feb - 10 Mar 2013 Tioman (Malaysia)
20 Mar - 07 Apr 2012 Sabang (Indonesia)
04 Mar - 23 Mar 2011 Havelock (Andamans)

Click below for a summary of this year's travels
2012 Map Konni & Matt

Visit the Konni & Matt Online Albums and order high-res travel photos
Konni & Matt Travel Photos

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