The Fairy Cave:
|The excitingly narrow passageway|
|From which era is this? Ching Dynasty? Japanese Occupation? Post 1949?|
|Beautiful shrine in the back cavern.|
|Story of the Fairy Cave|
To the right of the temple entrance are some steep stairs. Take the short walk to enjoy a small park and magnificent views of Keelung Harbor. It's easy enough for young children to walk if you hold their hands.
|Story of the Cave of Buddha's Hand|
|Can you see Buddha's hand? Water dripping over this area has made this image.|
Just to the right of the Fairy Cave is the Buddha's Hand Cave (佛手洞), . A short walk into the chamber leads you to a maze of tunnels, all made by seawater passing through underground in past times. As you make your way deeper into the cave, it gets warmer and more humid. It's very clean and fairly dry, just "scary" enough to be cool for kids, without any danger of animals or bugs jumping out at the parents. Children can also play "spot the handprint".
The final great thing about this little adventure is the coffee shop right by the entrance of the cave. Their coffee is fantastic. Children can get a stamp to say they have visited this area, which is great for school projects. And the staff at the coffeeshop are very friendly and welcoming. There are also clean public toilets and ample carparking.
This trip took up a couple of hours of our winter afternoon. You could choose to stay longer in the coffeeshop, or you could head up to the lookout further along the coast if you like a good hike. To get back to Taipei, follow the road up to Highway 3.
How to get there:
Public transport: Train to Keelung then public city bus 301 to "Fairy Cave" (仙洞)
Car: Take National Highway No. 3 to Keelung, turn to Gangxi outer road. Then take Zhongshan 4th Road to Xiandong. (中山四路). It's well sign-posted in English.