Taiwan High Speed Rail
Christine is sitting on the Taiwan High Speed Rail eagerly clutching her ticket, as we await departure from Taipei on the 11:00 express to Kaohsiung. It only stops a couple of times, and we arrive in Kaohsiung Zuoying Station on time in only 1 hour 36 minutes.
Inside the train the coaches are wide, fairly comfortable and quiet. We booked tickets so we pretty much had the carriage to ourselves for the largest part of the journey. The train is divided unofficially into three classes:
Business Class, Reserved Standard, and Unreserved Standard.
While the first distinction is obvious, the second is less so until you find out what it really means, courtesy of rather brusque treatment by the stewardess.
Lunch is served (at NT$120). Two traditional lunchboxes served with Pork or Chicken. A little lackluster in flavor or heat, but we were eager to eat them nevertheless. Who can resist the charm of having eaten the fastest lunchboxes in Taiwan.
Another surprise: Photography from the cabin was actually quite possible and resulted in a lot of images that showed the countryside. Things go so fast, so I had to cut down on the pointing and speed up the clicking.
And in the tunnels, it was quite eerie… like this picture taken in the window!
I’ve finally made a Youtube clip for the 60 seconds on the Taiwan High Speed Train. Just click play to enjoy!
Finally, I managed to photograph the speed we were traveling at: on occasion it reached 293km/h but most of the time hovered between 250-280km/h.
We finally arrived in Kaohsiung.
We thoroughly recommend the Taiwan High Speed Rail if you are heading out of Taipei, and in fact, with the few planes that now fly to other THSR connected cities in the center and south, it’s the only real and comfortable alternative to the car.