We made some major mistakes at this Park! First of all there was very little written in English on the Internet, and Google maps just seemed to show a big green blank.
Everything that we could read said that it was good place to visit and a Russian lady at our hostel went yesterday and showed us some lovely photos from her hike.
We got there easily on the bus and most people ran straight to catch another bus into the Park, but we didn't because we couldn't read any of the writing and didn't know thenname of where we wanted to go.
Instead we followed signs straight up hill for nearly a kilometre to the Visitor Centre. Once up there the helper spent ages with the people in front of us so instead of waiting we decided to head towards the Menghuan Pond. We had acquired a little bit of knowledge from the Internet and thought that we needed to get to a pond to see thousands of calla lilies, and that was the only pond that we could see, therefore it must be the right one.
We set off again, straight up hundreds if not thousands of steps.
By the time we reached the pond we were extremely tired and extremely disappointed to see that it was just a boring old bit of water.
We had a look around and decided that the only option was to go back down to the Visitor Centre, and this time four helpers were free at once. We found out that we had gone completely the wrong way and that we needed to go to the Bamboo Pond. It was only a couple of kilometres away and although uphill, the gradient was much less. Quite fed up, but putting pretend cheerful faces on, we set off again.
We found the calla lilies, but instead of my mental image of huge drifts of them disappearing off into the distance, they were instead all contained in paddy fields.
Lots of people were having a lovely time picking their own blooms. The prices were very reasonable, and callas are one of my favourite flowers, but we are leaving the country soon so couldn't take any with us.
There was little paths and streams around that reminded me a bit of Madeira and the levadas.
We looked around for a while and then stomped back down the hill and caught the bus back to Taipei! What a day, not likely to be repeated.