I had a fun weekend with friends in the little mountain community of Gu Guan. It was refreshing to get out of the city and actually see some green!

Peggy, Natalie, Fiona and I spent time hiking through the forest, soaking in the hot springs, and hanging out in 7-Eleven. Yes, even in Gu Guan!

“Recrotion” area?! Well, whatever it was, it was a great place to hike. We enjoyed the Bamboo Forest, the Cherry (or “Cheery”!) Forest, river, and waterfalls.

I found these ripe cherry tomatoes growing wild by the side of the road as we hiked. They made an unexpected, tasty snack!

Another unexpected treat was the sight of several monkeys up in the trees. It was my first time to see the elusive Formosan macaque (or indeed, any real wildlife in Taiwan (rodents and giant spiders don’t count))!

As is often the case in Taiwan, there were some truly funny signs in the river area.

This beautiful mosaic of semi-precious stones (with the symbol for the hot springs) was inlaid in the floor of our hotel.