Travel with me #100! : Shifen Old Street and the Steemit Sky Lantern Wish that came true!

in travel •  2 years ago 

Dear Steemit friends :

We made it to Travel with me #100!

A big thank you to Steemit, and all my unwavering supporters who have followed me every step of the way. Travelling has been my lifelong passion since I was a little girl, for me, there is nothing more valuable than opening my eyes to the vastness of the world, seeing and learning about new places, their history, cultures, traditions and allowing myself to grow as an individual as I experience the world.

The travel industry is quickly becoming a prime market in China. The rising wealth of the middle class has brought with it a new wave of travel hungry people waiting to see the world the way the rest of the world sees it. Companies such as Ctrip are making plans to facilitate this new domestic demand for travelling and have so far acquired the hugely popular flight booking company, Skyscanner and are looking to invest heavily in technology to better serve this growing market.

In the next year, it is expected that up to 700 Million people in China will be booking a holiday to go abroad. That is an astounding figure and shows just how large the Chinese appetite is for travel. It appears that I come from a country with an insatiable desire to explore, and I'm very thankful to be in a position to help guide all the potential travellers with my first hand experiences.

For my 100th Travel with me post, I will be taking us to a special place in the north coast of Taiwan. As you know from my previous posts about Taiwan, the nation has a complicated history involving the mainland Chinese, Japanese and even the US.

For 50 years, Taiwan was ceded to Japan becoming a Japanese colony. During the Japanese colonisation, Taiwan benefited from Japan rule, advancing industry and economy but this was at the cost of national identity. The rapid development of the mining industries for coal, gold and copper meant that Taiwan became an important supplier of metals for Japan during it's war efforts.

Today, the northern towns and villages are where you'll find some of the most preserved pieces of Japanese history. The rail line Pingxi was constructed along the northern coast of Taiwan and is today known as the Pingxi district. It was originally used as a rail line to transport coal from various mining towns but today, functions as novelty line showcasing Taiwan's coal-mining history.

Yin Yang Sea

Located on the Northern coastal road, Jin Gua Shi was a prosperous mining town for gold and copper during the Japanese occupation. It was believed that due to the smelting operations in the area, the water became polluted with particles of gold and copper giving it that two tone look.

In reality, the water colour is a result of an abundance of Pyrite which forms iron ion particles which do not dissolve in water. The result, is the partial yellow colouring of the blue sea resembling the Yin and Yang. It's quite a spectacle seeing the contrasting colours of blue, yellow and green along the coastline. It definitely gives this area so much uniqueness and character.

This is the view of the Jin Guo Shi town. It was once a very prosperous Gold, Silver and Copper mining town but in the 70's the output declined to a point where it was no longer profitable. The Taiwan Metal Mining Company which based it's operations in this town, filed for bankruptcy and ended it's mining operations for good. The town later on found salvation as a tourist center because of it's close proximity to places like Yehliu Geopark, Jiufen etc.

If you look carefully, you will see tunnels running along the mountain side. These were Japanese military tunnels for troops to move between different base camps and were also used as supply lines.

Many of the buildings in the area have been abandoned for many decades. This is one of many which has been sealed off. Though they serve no purpose today, they remind us of the area's mining history.

Golden Waterfall

Further up from the Yin-yang sea, there is a famous Golden Waterfall which gains it's gold colouration from the deposits of heavy metal elements abundant in the area.

Shifen Old Street

This bustling street is known as Shifen Old Street. It was also once a mining town and was one of the stops along the Pingxi railroad line used for transporting coal. Today, it is a hotspot for tourists with food stalls, restaurants and souvenirs galore.

The town is very small, and is essentially one street which is divided by rail tracks. The train service still functions today but carries passengers between the old mining towns instead of coal.

When the trains are not passing by, the street is packed with people browsing the shops and stalls as well as taking pictures of the Japanese style buildings.

Souvenir shops mainly sell miniature versions of the sky lanterns, but most also offer the real sky lanterns too.

The entire atmosphere reminds me a lot of the famous Maeklong Railway Market in Thailand. Stalls are laid out beside and on the rail tracks and when the train comes, they are removed to allow the train to pass.

Nowadays, the trains make a honking noise well in advance of their arrival. People have plenty of time to step onto the pavement and watch the train slowly pass by.

As I mentioned before, the trains originally used on this line were for transporting coal, but now they are part of the Pingxi Line which carries passengers between the old mining towns of the Pingxi district.

You might be wondering why this poster has cats releasing lanterns. That is because one of the towns called Houtong is also known as Cat Village. It is a small town that has an unusually large population of cats. In a later post we will have the opportunity to take a closer look.

This is the famous Jingan Suspension Bridge which is just behind the Shifen Station. It connects Shifen with Nanshan Villages and was also used for transporting coal. Today, it has been transformed into a pedestrian bridge!

Sky Lanterns

I'm sure by now, you must be wondering what the multicoloured flying lanterns are for. They are in-fact historically used as a signalling system for people working in the railroad industry. Today, they are an auspicious activity where visitors can write their wishes in calligraphy on the sides of the lantern and then release them into the sky.

Each side is an opportunity for you to write down things you wish for. Most people will wish for health and prosperity but there are lots of suggestions provided in the small booklet if you run out of ideas.

Of course I wished for a bright and prosperous future for Steemit. Little did I know that just a few months afterwards, Steemit and indeed the rest of crypto would grow so much. It seems as though my wish is beginning to come true!

Once you're done writing, the lantern is lit and then set free. Rising like a hot air balloon joining the many others drifting in the sky!

Make sure to check out the video!

The Pingxi District remains one of the most visited tourist attractions in Taipei because of it's well preserved Japanese history, but also because of it's beautiful natural landscapes. When there is so much Japanese colonial architecture, and local Taiwanese ambience, it is easy to neglect the beautiful mountains and landscapes which make for a beautiful and historical setting.

Each year, Shifen hosts one of the most amazing sky lantern shows for the Lantern Festival. On this day, thousands of lanterns will be released into the night sky almost illuminating the entire area with the thousands of burning flames in each lantern. It is such an amazing event that it has been recognised as one of the must attend festivals in a persons lifetime by multiple travel guides.

Experiencing it first hand made me wonder what the atmosphere would be like during the Lantern festival (which itself is an important festival to mark the last day of the beginning of the Chinese New Year). Perhaps I will make a return one day to attend this lantern festival and double up on my auspicious wishes for Steemit!

As always, I appreciate your upvote if you liked the post, do follow me for more travel adventures and leave a comment!

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays!





深呼吸,有些不敢想象,在写下标题里的数字之后,才发现这是Travel With Me系列旅游博客的第100篇文章。回头看看这一年多里的99篇美好回忆,感觉最要郑重说声感谢的,就是正在看文章的你们,感谢你们陪我走过了99篇游记,也感谢你们在读了99篇旅游记忆之后还没有厌倦我;感谢刚刚来到平台,充满好奇和激情写文章的你们,也感谢那些已经不太在平台上活跃的老前辈,也许我们今天才认识,也许我们已经是老朋友,我们以文会友,其乐无穷。在此真心的感谢你们对我的博客不遗余力的支持与帮助,感谢你们,一直都在。


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@sweetsssj Love reading your travel posts about beautiful journeys in Asia and everywhere else around the world! You truly have a talent for presenting your wonderful experiences to potentially millions of people.

Thank you for sharing your experience with us @sweetsssj! Best wishes in the New Year!

estream.studios, it's my pleasure, and with people being so supportive such as yourself, I'm constantly motivated to make better and better content, travelling to more interesting places and helping people see the world through my lens. Happy Holidays dear!

The post just super,you are very detail and beautiful talk about the journey.With pleasure read your post!


Follow Back yes
I've followed you

Follow Back yes
I've followed you... by @imranpase2000

Excellent. Please give me some motivation

Amazing pictures! Looks like you truly enjoy being behind and in front of the camera. Keep on travelling!

SUCH A GOOD LONG POST, well done sweety :)

an intriguing post, sssj, especially the quaint mining towns along the railway line in Taiwan's north coast. I was especially fascinated by the network of tunnels built into the hillside to facilitate Japanese troop movements and, of course, the sky lanterns.

I find the whole idea of sky lantern to be mysterious and romantic, akin to an MS in a bottle, but in this case, written on a sky lantern and released to a celestial sea.

Your explanation for the rise of steem is as valid as any I've read and somehow seems a whole lot truer - at least for believers like you and me.

I wish you every blessing during this Christmas season,sssj, and especially the peace and joy that surpasses all understanding. Enjoy your travels, my friend

Oh. Cool. Thanks for your sharing.

you're welcome!

Very beautiful and informative story. It is always pleasant to learn everything new and interesting in this form. I dream of telling about my trip to the USA, California, I just need to find all my photos from that trip and of course carefully prepare the material)) Thank you for telling us!

Thank you so much for sharing this. I traveled to China years ago, and it was an amazing experience. I LOVE travelling, and i find it amazing that we can support your ability to see the world. You clearly put a lot of work into your blog, and you deserve every penny you get.

I hope to one day be able to travel again. I haven't been able to afford it for years, but hopefully things will get better soon. I know my upvote counts for nothing, it is only 7 cents or something like that, but i still upvoted you because your content seems amazing. Travelling makes life worth living, it makes us wiser, and it gives us the ability to understand other cultures. If every person traveled the world, i am sure we would have a lot less hate and racism :)
Travelling brings people together, so please keep sharing

I know that the Chinese new year falls around february (the 16. if i'm not wrong?), but since you're traveling a lot, i'd still like to wish you a happy new year :)

Awesome post, Have a nice day
Please don’t forget to follow and vote. Thanks

hello i want to make this trip. how much it cost you. also the train you used to drive for the trip. help me please

Hey @sweetsssj ! I hope you will be doing great.. I see that charm and spark for tourism and culture lover in you. Let me show you some pictures of Pakistan beautiful places.. I have an article on this Please have a look :

I Hope your next destination will be this through CPEC road.. china pakistan economic corridor.. #stay happy


thanks @aloh.. stay in touch.

@sohailahmad2525 Lovely place man! brilliant to see... How natural Pakistan is . Living in pakistan i didn't expect this in pakistan. I always dream for European country... I will make a visit there.. #my #wish list updated :)

Thanks @donaldmm .. I am so happy that you appreciate me for this.. hahahaha yp wish list updated.. Take care .

@sweetsssj You must visit this place.. This is your of your fascination spot..

Love to See your post in Trending. Check Out My Blog :)

Your sky lantern was super cool! Your video was really well done as well and I see you got a new footer! You are killing it here! It is great to see. I remember this time last year the moral was low but we have made it past that and the goal of living everyday with absolute crypto freedom is in sight!

You are sooooo Beautiful thank you for letting me see a little bit of what China is like. God Bless wish you all the best with your Steemit Endeavor!

Jakeduck, thank you for your wishes, I will do my best and hope to contribute to steemit always!

That's very beautiful lantern you have made. I hope your wish u hv written on the lantern could come true. Love your high quality photos. Feel your passion for travelling!

thank you dear, i hope it will come true this year!

very satisfying keep the spirit

Really you are doing impressive job.... can you give me a minute on my post if you can?

Lovely interesting story about an Shifen Old Street & Steemit flying lantern , wish that come true.
We also have Huge flying lantern festival in our Country during November.
Lots of Huge flying lanterns are flying up into the sky for ten days every year.
Some attached many small lanterns beside the big one to make beautiful patterns.
Some attached abundant fireworks under the huge lantern , colorful fireworks are showering down from the high sky so beautifully. .

Ого, 840$ за пост о путешествиях, тоже так хочу :)

  ·  2 years ago (edited)

@sweetsssj- Wow- What exotic places you travel to! This place has everything we need for excitement - An old mining town, tunnels, sky lanterns and a market on the rail tracks!!!

Congratulations on your 100th travel post. You are an accomplished traveler and we all get to enjoy the places because of your lovely blogs.

It is so great to see the yin-yang symbol in the sea because of the Pyrite. Nature creates so many wonders.

I was reminded of the Thailand rail markets too when I saw your pictures of the market in Cat town. It is quite comic when the train arrives and all the vendors hurry to take out their stalls and then as soon as the train passes, they are back on again!

This is the first time I saw sky lanterns being released. It is great that you wished for Steemit prosperity by writing on the lantern. It is such a simple hot air technology but looks so cool.

Thanks for your lovely blog. I can almost feel the hustle bustle of the small town with it's vibrant market and Japanese style buildings. Upvoted.

By the way - as usual, you look tunning in all the pictures. The one on the rail tracks with the lantern is especially lovely

When you have time, I request you to check my blog on Afraid to speak freely and let me know your comments. Since you like Cats, you may also like my blog about Eye of the Tiger. As usual, your visit to my blogs will make me feel proud. Thanks



vm2904, thank you, when I visit places like this, at first it seems like just a place with a lot of people. Then you start getting into the details and realise, it's actually very unique. It's amazing how little traditions such as the Sky Lanterns have such odd beginnings, almost completely different to the use they have today.

Thank you for sharing these two blogs of yours, I will keenly have a look!

wow @sweetsssj you are so beautiful and i like your visiting places and i would like you will be more creative about new visiting places and i'm looking forward to you will like my comment and upvote to me @waqarsabir786

great, should start doing same posts. Have just joined yesterday, wanted to upload some of my most popular youtube videos, but cannot use Dtube - can upload video, but the snap/thumbnail doesn't work on chrome/mozilla... what a shame...


I have upvote your post, please upvote my post

Please give me 1sbd. I,m soo needy
I will be your well wisher.


What a surprising life



Congratulations on your achievements, if I must confess am really moved by your travel experiences....Happy Hols

wuow.. very fun to read your article..
very informative from your traveling activities, as if I come directly enjoy that there ..
oiya, salam know, I am from Indonesia .. follow my account .. and check my blog, if you wish!




ponge ranga songi ponga

First of all, a belated Merry Christmas to you and a Happy New Year when it comes. I am not certain if you mind these well-wishes. If not, I mean it with the best of intentions. Taiwan seems to hold a special place in your heart. You have written about it quite a lot, at least since I started following you several months ago.

I have learnt so much about, not only Taiwan, but also so much about this side of the world. The history is as ancient as it is recent. Few places can claim to infuse the old and the new like those you have covered in your blog. These posts have truly been an eye opener.

We are at the entry point of a change that many of us are living through. And I am certain, that when our progeny sifts through the rubble of an era past, they will reference your work to find out what their ancestors were upto. Cheers, @sweetsssj.

nicholas83, thank you for keeping an eye out for my posts, especially the ones about Taiwan. You are right, Taiwan does hold a special place in my heart, probably because it is a side of Chinese culture that is starkly different from the one I am accustomed to. Only through the comparison of both can you truly appreciate why Taiwan is such a wonderful place. But I will do my utmost best to try explain and show it through my posts to come.

Thank you for being so vigilant with your comments nicholas, i appreciate them very much!


bakchodi ki had ho gayee.... ille ranga pnre thaka

such a really wonderful places

Awesome post, Have a nice day
Please don’t forget to follow and vote. Thanks

All images are very interesting and exciting at the same time. I'm really proud of you. :)

javybar, thank you, in that case, I will try to make you proud as much as possible :)

Wow, this is so amazing how you can travel the world and share it with here on Steemit. I am new to this platform and am happy to find creators like you and a community that is unbelievably supportive. I wish you the best in your travels, it's very inspiring

brendube, thank you for joining steemit, you made a very good choice to join the community! It's also my pleasure to make content for this community because it is the most supportive and positive one I have ever come across anywhere. Period. Hopefully you will come to love it like family as I have and share your passion with us all.

awwn u sound so sweet just like ur handle states sweetsssj,hope to travel to that continent in the near future .u should also add visiting africa to ur bucket list i'm sure u'd love the experience and most of all the welcoming people .

which countries do you think are worth visiting first? I'm really not well read when it comes to the African continent

Great Post always. Firstly thank you for your wonderful blogs. Its always a pleasure to see places in your posts. Congrats on 100th post(Travel with me series) Keep posting!! Keep steeming!! and of all Keep Smiling you look good :)


ah so kind of you vallurivikram, it's a pleasure to write and produce them for people such as yourself who enjoy them. Thank you !

Thanx for the information and the beautiful pictures. I didn't know that about Taiwan and appreciate you letting us know. Upvoted!

hey terry, thank you for showing the interest, it's always a pleasure :)

ille pora emtu neka

You visit some of the most beautiful places. Thanks for taking us along!

it's my pleasure sirstackalot, thanks for coming along !

And I thought I was making big bucks on Steemit. Good work!

Thanks josh, nice seeing you comment for the first time (i think) :)

Very beautiful pictures. Thank you.

my pleasure nikethemutt :)

Nicely done! You deserve more followers and more travel opportunities will sure come your way. Congratulations!

hiro, it's so lovely to see you regularly, I really appreciate your appearance :)

I'm certainly very grateful for the opportunities i've had this year, and i'm looking forward to a very bright 2018!

Happy Holidays Hiro!

The first photo is awesome!!! Such a big ads to Steemit.


哈哈,谢谢呀,希望Steemit越来越好: )

  ·  2 years ago (edited)


Hi sweetssj,yes your all pic very amazing
I always spot you

A good creativity, please help me a little for me ..

  ·  2 years ago (edited)

Your blog is immortal beauty)

Love the lighting of the lantern. Beautiful pictures and overall fantastic post. Thanks for putting in the time!

thanks natebelt83 so kind! :)

Congrats for reaching #100. Wishing you continued success and a sparkling 2018 👍

Your travel blogging serves as a great example and inspiration for others to follow

That is so great, you travel a lot!

  ·  2 years ago (edited)

The way @sweetsssj is posting is an indication of professionalism. No matter how rich the text is itself. The formats are just grate. You deserve the high rewards your posts are getting each time.
Good luck.

thank you anakur, hope you enjoyed it!

Wow! Your sky lantern was super cool! Your video was really well done as well and I see you got a new footer! You are killing it here! It is great to see. I remember this time last year the moral was low but we have made it past that and the goal of living everyday with absolute crypto freedom is in sight!

hey brian,how you been lately? We're so good to be some of the earliest people who are still around and doing well. I think the coming year is going to be great, I hope you'll be here doing your pool videos when summer comes back round !

I have been pretty good! We will see if I do any pool meetings again. LOL. I changed the format on my videos to just talking and showing stuff through a screen cast and actually those have done better over on YouTube but my channel hasn't been approved for monitization over there which is annoying. But I gained like 1500 subscribers in a month. I think if I was able to pump 2 videos a day for a prolonged amount of time I could get a pretty big following there but in the end it doesn't matter if I'm not able to really monetize it very easily.

The great thing is that right now I'm mainly doing the research for crypto trades and then documenting that and able to earn some here from it on top of the crypto profits.

that sounds like a sweet thing you got going! I will make sure to drop by and check out the new video format soon. I've been so busy this season so neglected spending more time consuming content, but I think a healthy balance is needed.

Nice trip sharing .... I like the steemit lantern very much :)

thank you dear, hope it is luck to us all!

nice photos. I wish i can travel..

thanks! Every great journey begins with a single step, time to start!

  ·  2 years ago (edited)

I loved reading this blog and I have seen a short video before of the people removing their merchandise when the trains arrive. Is it not dangerous? Thanks for making the wish to promote steemit and hope steem price comes to the top five. Happy new year and please can you write a post on the chinese new year and also on feng shui

let's hope we see some more magic this year moving forward. I will do my best to try promote as much as possible!

thanks for replying, very sweet of you. Happy new year

Wow amazing post...@sweetsssj loved reading it amazing photographs.....thanks for sharing.

You really know how to share shipment. I congratulate you and wish you continued success


without sounding like a dirty old man, you are a very pretty young lady and you look like your having the time of your life, I have tried to keep up with your posts as I find them very interesting. I hope you continue doing these travel with me's as I think they're great. keep steeming :)

It definitely is incredible to have you in the travel community here on Steemit. An inspiration and have had the pleasure of taking places for my own list of places to go to thanks to you

i really enjoy reading your post .i love them.

thanks safamarwa, very happy to hear that :)

Another awesome post That I have come to love from you @sweetsssj ! and a Big congratulations on #100 !So glad your wish came true ! Your travels bring much joy to all us steemians that have followed you from the begiining ! I love your lantern , Great job ! that must have been a lot of fun ! I hope you make it to the Lantern Festival next year ,I would love to see your post on that one ! Upped and resteemed , thanks so much for sharing with us !!🎀🎄😀🎀🎄😀🎀🎄😀😀🎀🎄😀

Karen! Thank you so much for the big boost, and also so much thanks for supporting me from the beginning. It's amazing how far we've come back it's great thinking about where we will be in the future!

Awe thanks @sweetsssj for your kind reply back , your very welcome ! Your so right , we have come a long way ! And im so looking forward to the future of steemit ! Its going to be amazing my friend !Get ready to blast off , I will see you on the Moon !! Thanks so much for supporting my @popcontest ! 🚀🚀🚀🚀🚀🎉

wow great girl

Very cool travel! :)

thanks! (you look like sam smith!)

i love this place

Great pics as always!

thanks cryptobref!

Japan is a great country great people great work culture mind blowing people and friendly attitude to tourist long live japan

This isn't japan.. it's taiwan!

As ever i think you are the best steemians as tourism and photography, you are the alternative one as steem thinking, go ahead for your future @sweetsssj

thank you ekhlas01, hope to have you support me on my journey :)

Congrats My Beautiful Friend on Hitting a Ton of your Travel with me Edition , what a great journey this had been so Far, some larger than life experiences , thank you so much for working so hard on each of your post. This is very amazing , you are looking so sweet , love you , have fun buddy ,😊💐

vikbuddy, thank you so much for being around for most of my travel series, it really wouldn't be the same without your audience!

Here in Brazil those sky lanterns are prohibit, I always wanted to see those in real life!

ah.. it is understandable.. still in all these years, there has never been a problem in Shifen.

Another great post as always! We @travelingstories are great fans! Keep on steeming all of those amazing places you already visited, such an inspiration :)

Como organizas los temas que vas a publicar. Van pasando por tu mente o tienes una guía?

  ·  2 years ago (edited)

Wow congratulations for #100 travel experience. .steemit is a part of your life.we thank you for sharing the world with us..and we love you,for that^-^ ,thank you also for sharing the world of travel on steemit world, the history, the culture and all the great so happy for you.. once again congratulations. ..take care always @sweetsssj

thank you mrblu, I would dare to say that you have made a comment on nearly all of those 100 travel with me posts. I'm very lucky to have such a devoted supporter such as yourself. Thank you for being you!

^^ its a heart warming comment.. i cant help myself to cry with tears of joy and happiness, ..thank you also, for your passion that you shared to us, you always inspired people to travel around the globe...we always be on your side.,because we love you...i will support you all the way...i am your devoted supporter...and i'm so proud of that...^^

So nice to read. Thank you for the inspiration!

my pleasure my friend. THanks!

It seems as if this is definitely worth a trip. Thank you for the inside!

you're welcome!

Wow @sweetsssj 100 trips that is AWESOME! What a great example of sharing your passion with the world. I am proud to be part of a community that can share there love and passions. You make me realize how much amazing places are around me that I can share with the world. I live in the American Southwest in New Mexico, there is a very rich history here with the Wild West and Billy the Kid. I think I will start to do some posts on the history and culture of the world I live in. I think it is very interesting and perhaps others will too. I love that you were promoting Steemit on your shirt and also with your lantern. Would be cool if someone ends up finding that and joins steem because your wishes for prosperity landed in their yard. Best wishes on the next 100 travels I look forward to coming along for the Journey. @unityeagle check out this cool place.

Hello dear, thank you for the positive comment, i'm quite interested in New Mexico actually, it is somewhere I don't know very much about at all. I encourage you to blog about it and of course let me know when you post it.

Wow ! This one is 100th !! Congratulation my dear friend for this milestone . This thing looks like hot air balloon is awesome !! The place around the falls is heavenly , I wish I could be there with you ! Again wish you Happy New Year !!

So awesome @sweetssj . I caught onto your posts 2 weeks ago and absolutely loved them. Its so nice to have real content on here to consume. You've even inspired me to invest $1000 in steem and start my journey. All because of you. Before I just gazed at content but now I really want to participate. Safe travels!