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Anping District & Tayouan x Alternate Reality Game

Lake Wu
2015-08-06

Travel in Tainan: Rediscover the PrefectureAnping District & Tayouan x Alternate Reality Game

 

Hsieh Ming-Yu, recognized as the Best Hokkien Male Singer of Golden Melody Award, composed the song called “Falling in Love with Tayouan.” It is no exaggeration to say that upon stepping onto the Old Street, you will unknowingly fall in love with it.

 

Anping is actually not a huge district.

 

It has merely a fishing harbor, an old street, a few historic sites, and the undeniably beautiful harbor sunset.

 

In fact, you don’t even need Jumping Feet blog to introduce the food and spots here.

On Yanping Old Street,

Have you ever tried the cod roe flavored U Cream around the corner?

Have you ever stood in front of the shrimp cracker machine and wondered how the crackers were produced in an instant?

Maybe you once grabbed packs of candied fruit and paid in a hurry.

Or perhaps you couldn’t help buying one stick of grilled sausage for its wafting scent, and asked for a bulb of garlic to go with the sausage, or you might have stopped to watch how Pong Candy (caramel candy) was made.

And, that’s the end,

 

the end of your Old Street tour.

 

However, even though you might have traveled in Tainan several times, perhaps there are a few spots and corners you have never visited.

 

See how we were having a blast in these spots!

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Our first stop on this i-tour itinerary was the Sword-Lion Square, where you can sit for a while and take a sip of weak tea.

Visit the Traditional Toy Museum, which is popular among children, and behold the elderly performing the song Romance of Anping.

 

You can feel the strong nostalgic ambience as soon as you walk in.

 

The fact that Anping was developed earlier than other places of Taiwan accounts for why there are Sword Lions here.

 

Anping was not considered blessed in Fengshui theory due to its three sides bordered by the sea and its narrow alleys. Therefore, in order to expel evil spirits, the buildings here were adorned with Sword Lions.

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On the left hand side stands the HorYuan Traditional Plum Shop

(https://www.facebook.com/heyuan.AnPing), which has a semi-open layout.

The mascot of i-tour, A-Mew, welcomes me wholeheartedly!

I must give it a hug!

 

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When you come to the Old Street, the candied fruit is a must-buy.

However, you may wonder why the candied fruit is sold at the fishing harbor.

 

Here’s the reason why:

 

The history of candied fruit in Anping can be traced back more than a hundred years.

 

Legend has it that there was a family which studied the methods of making candied fruit when they were not catching fish. Gradually, with a unique flavor and secret recipe, their candied fruit became a hit. Accordingly, they started making a living on candied fruit, instead of fish.

 

A-Hu researched the process of making plums for your reference.

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The process of making plums

Selection (select plums) > preservation (preserve plums in salt water for 3-6 months) > Sun-drying (sun dry the plums for 1-2 weeks, and then desalinate the plums) > Seasoning (adjust flavors) > Dehydration (constantly expose plums to the sun) > Packaging (open the urns, inspect the quality and then package the plums)

 

HorYuan Traditional Plum Shop allowed us to try plums and aged enzymes, such as plum enzyme, grape enzyme, blue berry enzyme, essence of herbs (Si Wu) enzyme, and so on.

 

I only remembered how “sour” it felt at the end, but I am particularly fond of the most special essence of herbs enzyme. 

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Essence of herbs enzyme: women’s secret weapon for staying healthy

 

Before I had the enzyme drink, the strong yet mild scent of herbs wafted in the air, making my mouth water.

The essence of herbs gradually combined with saliva in my mouth, releasing a sweet flavor.

 

I love its aroma lingering in my mouth after I swallowed it.

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If you think this i-tour itinerary only includes having plums and tasting enzyme products, then you don’t get it.

We were also going to have a hands-on experience of making “burdock enzyme”!

At first, my male friend didn’t feel interested in making enzyme.

 

However, upon knowing burdock is an aphrodisiac, he changed his mind and became fully engaged in making it. What could his reaction possibly mean? (I could not help wondering with my head tilted!)

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I was being naughty~ I didn’t slice the burdock; I shredded and diced it instead.

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Then add vinegar as well as sugar, and voilà! Let the enzyme rest for 3 months, and then you can dilute it with water before drinking.

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Well-known for making delicious bun cakes and steamed buns, the second chef of A Shuei Bo Traditional Handmade Steamed Bun served us bun cakes.

 

As soon as he had poured sesame oil into the pan, the mouth-watering aroma greeted me at once. 

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The bun cake was properly pan-fried (dry and crispy).

The aroma of sesame oil just lasted in my mouth~

 

I got one bun cake that I can take home and cook~ hooray!

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i-tour did nothing but keep feeding us with no limits.

The iced “double cheese” of Afuque served as the filling in signature dessert “Cat paw bun” of A Shuei Bo Traditional Handmade Steamed Bun.

 

Despite my moon face, I still ate up the whole serving. lol. (It’s obvious that I tried laughing off the truth that I gained weight.) 

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(Afuque website: http://www.afuque.com/)

(A Shuei Bo Traditional Handmade Steamed Bun website: http://www.16888.idv.tw/brand.php)

 

We then moved on to Haishan Hall for the Alternate Reality Game.

I’ve never walked to the other side of the Old Street. I felt like I was in Alice’s Wonderland.

See the picture below, and you’ll get what I mean.

 

(Link of the game: http://mangogame.org/index2.html)

 

 

Although I was walking on the oldest street of Taiwan, the street is not the only spot where you can learn about Anping.

 

Only by walking further inward can you cross between the modern and the ancient and bathe in the smell of the harbor.

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This area’s culture and landscape were shaped by history.

 

Haishan Hall is a medium-size residence, with its one-of-a-kind wood carvings and window frames.

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After being divided into groups, we listened to the instructions of the game. We were so ready!

By judging the teams’ morale, we could be divided into two subgroups “Coming-to-win group” and “Coming-to-participate group.”

 

 I suddenly got cold feet at the thought of having to run in the game.

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The teammates of “Coming-to-win group” had girded their loins. Lose? For them, there’s nothing called “lose”! “Get your lazy feet up and run!” would be what they said to each other.

 

Seeing the activity staff’s dedication, though laughing my head off, I immediately put myself in the ready mode.

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Looking at the hints, we went from searching in the dark to figuring out some information.

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We brainstormed for the answer, and sprinted toward the destination while sweating like rain.

The game was designed with ingenuity by including the old alleys and lanes as part of the game zone.

I was running on the old street, passing each challenge, but at the same time enjoying this rare experience.

 

Frankly speaking, what can make you run on the old street, except for being robbed of your purse?

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We received one hint and searched for another.

Sometimes I was distracted and stopped to feel the bricks, observe the weathered walls and gaze at the aged eaves.

 

And then I shrugged off tiredness and wiped off the sweat on my forehead, continuing walking in the old street that I had once thought I was familiar with.

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We fretted about the game rules and agonized over the hints.

We stopped by three or four temples, and roamed about inside by stealing time.

 

How I wished I could grab you inside from the Old Street, and have you see this hidden yet amazing spot.

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We held our breath, solved the word puzzle, seized the key and dashed back to the starting point.

 

We were running on Old Street, running through the texture carved by history.

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The “Coming-to-win group” won the game at last.

The triumph created by teamwork is always the best!

 

Our MVP award, without doubt, went to Yo-Ma, who can be best entitled as the Word Puzzle Master, so much so that no other women can be her match.

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Reward:

Customized Guardian Lions and Chinese herbal medicine bag.

 

A-Hu was having a blast and a feast this time.

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Postscript by A-Hu

Taking off our regimentals meant the end of today’s tour.

I was at the rear of the procession, thinking of how others looked at us while we were running on Yanping Old Street.

Frowning in curiosity and eyes wide open, people were checking my ancient battle dress.

What a strange scene!

 

How strange it is for you people in modern clothes to walk on Old Street!

 

I’ve picked up a new attitude toward walking on Old Street in the tour.

 

Besides eating and drinking, you can imagine yourself going back five decades ago. You’ll have a brand new perspective. Enjoy yourself in this confusion between the modern and the ancient.

 

i tour

The itineraries in the i-tour are organized with the commission of the Ministry of Economic Affairs.

The objectives of i-tour are to allow tourists to know more about Tainan through more hands-on experience activities.

We invited bloggers to have a first-hand experience, and then share their experiences to you.

If you are interested, please visit the Jumping Feet blog or contact our i-tour staff.

i-tour official website: www.itour.org.tw

Contact person: Ms. Tsai, Horizon Multimedia Co., Ltd.  

Tel: +886-6-3124249

 

E-mail: tainanitour@gmail.com

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