Kyoko and I decided to visit Taiwan during Silver Week. My guidebook described Taiwan as "perhaps the most underrated Asian nation", and I agree. Often, people think only of Taipei or other big cities when thinking of Taiwan, and then believe it is not a very nice place. The truth is that it is beautiful.

The east coast has many clean and quiet beaches, just perfect for swimming, snorkeling, or surfing.  The middle part of the island (or interior) is mostly mountains and even some gorges that look like Hokkaido's Sounkyo Gorge.

I compared Taiwan many times to Hokkaido while we were there.  It has a lot of similar things, but with much warmer weather.  That reminds me that I live in a great place.

It was fun for Kyoko to travel there because people often thought she was fromTaiwan.  When we met people, they spoke to me in English and to her in Chinese.  People often greeted her by saying, "Nee-how", which made us laugh.

In Taiwan, we enjoyed many hot springs.  I was surprised to learn that there are over 150 hot springs on the island.  We wanted to visit many of them, but only had time for four.  My favorite was a mud hot spring.  My skin felt nice after I soaked.

I would very much like to return toTaiwan.  I think that, like Hokkaido, it is a place for people who like nature.