After nearly a year of traveling, we were down to our last day. Rather than do something big, we wanted to do the things that made us happy. So we opted for three tried-and-true activities we had done before: we went to a cat cafe, a puzzle cafe, and a brewery. Then we retreated to our capsules to sleep.
The Original Cat Cafe
After three cat cafes in other countries, we were finally in the land of the original cat cafe. This is a somewhat odd claim, since I’m sure there are various cafes around the world where one or more cats hang out, but it appears this was the first place to officially make it a business. And they also have a couple of cat-friendly dogs. It is called, appropriately, Cafe Dog & Cats.
The tea was ok and the cats were friendly. There were over a dozen cats, so plenty of lazy fluff-balls to pet. The dogs were nice too, even if they did seem confused why cats get more attention. We showed up just after noon (opening hour) and the place was empty at first. Eventually more humans visited.
This cat with the tiny bent ears was very friendly.
Taiwan spent about 50 years as a Japanese colony. This allegedly is the origin of developed hot springs and professional baseball in Taiwan. Taiwan also loves its cats. While Japan often gets credit for its cat culture, the original “cat cafe” (a cafe with beverages and cats) is in Taipei. And Taiwan even has a “cat village” — rather than euthanizing strays, they neutered them and release them in a carless hillside town that is now a tourist attraction. Of course, we had to see hot springs, baseball, and cats!
Our first (and successful) trip to hot springs was at Guanzihling, a motorbike ride from Chiayi City. The area is known for its mud hot springs and is a popular tourist destination (luckily we visited on a weekday morning). There are no photos allowed inside so we just have a photo of the front of the King’s Garden Villa. You’ll have to trust us that it was awesome. You do not need to be a hotel guest to go to the resort’s hot springs, you can just pay a reasonable day-use fee — which worked well with our plans.
They didn’t say that we couldn’t take a picture of the brochure though. And yes, we tried out “exercise” machines similar to those pictured (but without the straps).