Out of all the minsu, our best stay was at Hao Wang Jiao Minsu (好望角民宿). We chose to stay here because we didn't feel like staying at Flying Cow Ranch itself and this minsu was situated close to the ranch.
It is owned by a very warm, helpful and friendly couple. The wife is called Mary (瑪莉) and we liaised with her throughout the whole room reservation process. She was very helpful in answering our queries and giving us advice on transportation and attractions. Before our trip, we had difficulty finding accommodation in other parts of Taiwan, and she volunteered to help us ask around for information and recommendations. She was so approachable that whenever we needed help or had questions, she would try her best to assist us.
Having felt Mary’s friendliness and helpfulness over the many emails, it was not a surprise when we met her in person during our stay and experienced her warm hospitality and sincere welcome. Both she and her husband were very nice people, and it was easy to befriend them. We arrived at around 11am in the morning and the couple immediately set about to make us feel at home and comfortable. The husband helped us carry our heavy luggage up a flight of stairs to the 2nd floor.
When we entered the room, we were at a loss for words at how beautiful and cozy the room was. It was actually a room for 4 pax (all the rooms at the minsu are designed for 4 pax and above), but they still accept 2-pax accommodation and the price will be lower. We stayed at 挑高木屋 (room type) and weekday price was NT$1800 (breakfast inclusive). You may find more info on their website at http://www.5657.com.tw/hwj/. I especially loved the interesting triangular-shaped high ceiling, and it felt like living in a cozy wooden hut in the woods. The owners really took time and effort to design and decorate their rooms, to make guests feel cozy and welcomed. The room was well furnished with soap, shampoo, hair conditioner, toothpaste, hairdryer, slippers, TV, aircon, fan and many cute and huggable teddy bears! Haha.. It was really an interesting experience, at least for us! Do remember to bring your own toothbrush and bathing towel!
After exploring the room, we went back downstairs and there was already a cup of hot drink waiting for us. We then chit-chatted with Mary and her husband for about an hour, sharing our own experiences and also consulting them for advice on our travel itinerary (it was only Day 2!). They had a lovable dog named Ke Le (可乐) who would nuzzle up to us when we chatted, seeking attention from strangers! We felt totally safe and at ease there.
After the chat, Mary’s husband (she actually told us his name but I couldn’t seem to remember now) drove us to Flying Cow Ranch and we spent the whole afternoon there, playing with sheep, lambs, cows, rabbits, ducks, eating yummy steamboat, drinking fresh milk and walking trails. We managed to finish touring almost the whole of Flying Cow Ranch in about 6 hours, including walking a long trail up to Butterfly Garden and having both lunch and dinner there. The trail was quite interesting and a little scary as it was drizzling and misty, and we were the only ones walking the trial on a weekday. But I shall leave that sharing to another post another day.
When we were ready to leave the ranch, we called Mary and her husband arrived in 20mins to fetch us. On the way back, he told us to alight with him and knowing that we had not seen firefly before, he actually went around in the dark to find some to show us, even though it was not the firefly season yet. It was our first time seeing fireflies and even though we only spotted around 5 or 6 that night, it was really an amazing experience. We also learnt a lot about fireflies that night, how to identify their larvae and pupa, their natural habitat and behaviour. What a lesson!
We had a comfortable and good night sleep and woke up early next morning to a sumptuous breakfast prepared by Mary herself. Even though the food was simple and home-cooked style, it was really delicious especially Mary’s specialty – Vegetable Pancake. There was quite a lot of food for the 2 of us and we enjoyed every dish, tasting the very heart of Taiwan local delicacies. We also appreciated Mary waking up so early in the morning to prepare breakfast for us, just so that we could catch the 8am train at Sanyi TRA station. Furthermore, she was not feeling well that day. Really appreciated her kindness, and her husband also drove us to Sanyi TRA station and guided us on how to purchase the train tickets.
That day when we left, Taiwan was hit by the 2nd largest earthquake since the 921 earthquake, and Mary immediately smsed us to make sure that we were safe and sound. Really thankful to the nice couple.
Overall, we enjoyed our stay and would definitely return again for a longer stay, especially during the firefly season.
- Also Known As:
- Haowangjiao Taiwan/Miaoli County