Taiwan Story Land - Taiwan 1950's Style for Kids CLOSED PERMANENTLY

This photo review by a friend of mine really shows you what this museum/hands-on area is about.  Situated across from Taipei Main Station, next to the Mitsokushi building, and with an entrance fee of TWD200 per person, it is a nice place to take the kids for a morning or afternoon.  You can make snacks from the 1950's, play games from the era, and get a feel for Taiwan life that that time.

I have a feeling I have written about this place before, if you find another post please let me know and I will merge them!


Taipei Public Library - How to Find Books and Take Them Out

I love the library here! It's amazing what English books they have, and if they don't have it you can just ask them to get the book into the library.

There are many, many branches of the public library around Taipei City.

Here is a way to search for books and get them delivered to your local branch.

1. Use library book search engine.

You can either choose just your branch or leave it to search all branches.

2. You will get a list of results like this (for Three Cups of Tea)

There are about 30 Engliish copies, 55 recordings, 50 Chinese translations, and a few young reader versions.

3. You can either just print this page out and take to the library front desk, or reserve the book online and have it sent to your closest branch.

On a family card, you can get 20 books out. You can also have an individual card, which gives you 5 books. You can keep them for a month, and renew them if nobody has reserved the books.


World of Chocolate Exhibit at the Taipei Science Museum

This exhibit runs from July 3rd until September 26th.  Tickets are $200 per person, plus $100 per DIY make your own chocolate participant.

Until July 2nd, you can buy three tickets for $400 at 7-11, Family Mart and Hi-Life stores island-wide.  You want to buy the 巧克力奇幻世界票 3張400元 (chocolate exhibit 3 tickets for $400).

There are models made from chocolate, information on the history and science of chocolate, and a DIY activity.

Exhibit Information is currently only in Chinese.

Museum Information is in several languages.

**July 5th:  I took my two kids (ages 6 and 4) to this exhibit today.  Basically, it is like an art exhibit where you can see a lot of sculptures.  All information is in Chinese.  My kids probably got something out of it, but not 400NT worth.  I tried to make it worthwhile by teaching them how to read some Chinese characters, and to talk about the Great Wall of China, the Terrecota Warriors, and why truffles are so expensive.  I do not recommend the DIY activity.  For 100NT, kids get to pour melted chocolate into a round piece of plastic.  There was no explanation of what they were doing and they didn't get to do anything much at all.  And, be warned, the sales area at the end is like a giant chocolate and book market.

Hakka Museum (Sanxia) - DIY & Performances

The Hakka Museum in Sanxia runs ongoing activities for children.

Here a list of the latest activities and performances, in Chinese.

June 20 2:30pm-3.30pm: Dramatic performance in the theater
Until July 25th : Making scented satchets for the Dragon Boat Festival; making windmills; and decorating cookies

I apologise for the limited details but I just got back from NZ and am still trying to catch up on other work!

Read this for general English information.

Taichung Parents Google Group/Parenting Group

From the creator of this group in Taichung:

A new Google Group has been created called Taichung Parents.
Here is the description:

This group was created to provide expatriate and Taiwanese parents and families with opportunities to network and share information about living in Taichung with their children.

The further aim of this group is to provide a space where parents can discuss issues related to prenatal health, childbirth, child development and child-rearing, education and all things related to parents and kids in Taichung.

It is our hope that this group can become a center around which parents will organize real-time social activities for themselves and their children in Taichung.

We have 47 families signed up so far [at time of writing - May, 2010].

If you are interested, request an invitation.


2010 International Children's Folklore & Folkgame Festival, Ilan

The 2010 International Children's Folklore and Folkgame Festival should be one of the highlights of a child-oriented summer.

The event will run from July 3rd to August 15th at Dongshan River Forest Park.

From the TRA site (above):
In order to celebrate the arrival of 2010 International Children's Folklore & Folkgame Festival, Shangrila Boutique Hotel recently has introduced an exclusive “I Love Children’s Folklore and Folkgame” accommodation package promotion. This accommodation package starting from NT$1,900 per person includes one night at a delicate suite, breakfast, Lanyang-flavored dinner, Children's Folklore & Folkgame Festival entrance tickets, DIY Aiyu making activity, free bike rental service, hot spring SPA, home theatre and other recreational facilities. For further details, please welcome to contact Shangrila Boutique Hotel directly. (Photo provided by Shangrila Boutique Hotel)

Here is an interesting article about the festival and the organisers.

I am still trying to find the official website for the event lists etc.  Any readers who might have more information, please leave a link in a comment!

**We made to the event today (August 12th).  It is $250 per adult, preschoolers free, kids $150.  Car parking $50.  Storage of large items $100, lockers $50.
We spent NINE HOURS there, and even though we did a couple of extra things (boat ride $200 for three of us, DIY activity $50 each, bought food and drink), you really don't need to spend anything else if you take a picnic with you.  The water area is huge, and suitable for all ages.  There is a really cool indoor water area that my son described as a RAIN STORM, lots of water spraying and paddling and bouncing around, plus very loud music suitable for a party of this size.  There are shows going all day long.  We saw a wonderful Bolivian group, so good that I bought their CD, and we didn't even get to watch the shows on the big stage right at the end of the park, past the water area.  There is a magic hall, which we went into twice, hands-on toy area (indoor), a wonderful indoor playarea with climbing frame, ballpool etc, puzzle and game area, 22km of riverside track, bikes for hire, a suspension bridge, lots of grassy area, food and drink for sale, ferry to take, either a round trip or get off and visit the center for traditional toys and arts (need to buy entrance ticket for that)... it was really busy even on a Monday, so I imagine weekends are crazy. Get there early, enjoy the water and get out of the sun for the middle of the day.  We will definitely be back!

Dongshan River Park site (says it's open till 10pm in summer, which is perfect as it was lovely after 4pm)

Five Loaves Two Fish Bookstore, Kaohsiung

I read about this "comfortable reading space for children" in Air New Zealand's in-flight magazine.  On their homepage, they are advertising summer camp, from July 5th through to the end of August.  Website is all in Chinese.

No. 148-96, Guanghua First Road, Lingya District, Kaohsiung City
Tel: 07-2231999