Our second day saw us head up to Maokong via the Hello Kitty themed gondolas; a highlight for Eden thats for sure! We boarded the glass bottom gondola at the first of 4 stations which is right next to Taipei Zoo.
The gondola ride is really reasonable, for starters children under 6 are free and adults are only 50NT (approx. $1.60 USD) and a bonus is that you can pay for it using the easy card (highly recommend getting one of these if you are visiting Taipei).
Another great thing about the gondola ride, unlike Hong Kong where you have to pay extra for the glass bottom cabin, this one is the same price as the regular cabins; although you may need to wait a little longer as I think they only have 1 glass bottom to every 4/5 regular ones.
Thankfully there was only one group in front of us for the glass bottom cabin so the wait didn’t take too long. The ride up is pretty lengthy so you definitely get your monies worth and of course the views are great.
Along the way there are 2 other stops; one for the south entrance of the zoo, another for Zhinan Temple and then finally the last stop is MaoKong; which was once the largest tea growing area of Taipei.
We wandered around for a bit, but the cold winds got the better of us and we sought shelter in one of the many restaurants for some tea and delicious food. I think it would be really neat to catch the gondola to the top of the mountain and then walk the way back down, stopping at the temples along the way. In fact Matt & I have already said if we return this is what we will do.
Instead, we made our way back to the gondola station to get a ride back down to the Taipei Zoo South Station because one 4 year old was VERY eager to see the animals.
The zoo, like the gondola, is really reasonably priced (preschool aged children are free and adults are $60NT approx. $1.90 USD) and can also be paid using the easycard!
As far as zoos goes, I was actually really impressed, I would say its the best zoo Eden has been too and compared to the zoo here in Okinawa it is amazing!
There were loads of different types of animals most of which had reasonable sized enclosures and something that I particularly liked about the zoo was all the artwork/murals.
Clio wanted to walk most the way, until her little legs got tired and insisted on being carried and not sit in her stroller; which is when she had a major meltdown. Thankfully Eden was really understanding and when I told her we needed to speed around the rest of the zoo so we could get Clio home in time for a much needed early night, she understood.
The girls each got a small panda bear soft toy from the gift shop and Clio hasn’t stopped saying “panda bear” since.
By the time we got back to our apartment it was nearing Clio’s (Okinawa) bedtime so we grabbed some pastries from the bakery next-door and headed upstairs to eat and then called it a night.