The quirky temples of Lotus Pond 蓮池潭

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A mysterious warrior on Lotus Pond in Kaohsiung.

Lotus Pond 蓮池潭 is a manmade lake in , , widely known for its quirky assortment of pagodas, pavilions, and temples. Earlier this year I made a short stop at Lotus Pond on the way to the old walled city of Zuoying a little further south. I like exploring temples in but was mildly concerned Lotus Pond would be a bit too touristy for my liking. Turns out I had nothing to worry about—and my brief tour of the southwest side of the lake was memorable and fun.

The Old Walled City of Zuoying

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Outside the north gate to the old walled city. This gate is formally known as Gongchen Gate 拱辰門.

A month ago I embarked upon a day trip to to check out the famous temples and pagodas of Lotus Pond 蓮池潭, one of the main tourist attractions of greater . Afterwards I wandered over to have a look at the old city of Zuoying 左營舊城, originally built in 1722 by the ruling Qing Dynasty in response to the many uprisings that regularly plagued Taiwan Prefecture.

Stop, Look, and Listen

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A public art installation at Xinzuoying Station.

Arrête, Regarde et Ecoute (Stop, Look and Listen) is an art installation located outside of Xinzuoying Station in , . Designed and conceived by French-born American artist Arman in 2004, it was installed posthumously in 2006 as his last work of public art. The original artist statement explains “this work uses the repetition of railway alarm signal poles to modify the space, giving new meanings to the signals though a joyful and strange accumulation”. More information about this work can be found on the official Arman web site here and here. You might also like to read a bit more about Arman himself over here.

Taiwan bicycle tour: Tainan to Kaohsiung

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Crossing the railway tracks that run through Tainan.

My ninth day on the road was short and sweet. is less than 50 kilometers from my destination, , Taiwan’s great southern metropolis. I knew it would be an easy ride so I woke up late, checked out of my hostel at the very last minute, and went wandering through the nearby laneways in search of breakfast and a decent place to get some work done.