When San Chai lost her wallet in Taiwan - Jingtong - A Meteor Garden filming location is finally revealed! | Travel the World

When San Chai lost her wallet in Taiwan - Jingtong - A Meteor Garden filming location is finally revealed!



Do you still remember when San Chai lost her wallet in Meteor Garden? What happened to her? Did she ever got her wallet back?  What's the significance of this event on our all-time favorite Taiwanese drama?  In another first by the one-man team luomujie blog, I went to a nostalgic town of Taiwan to search for in-depth answers.  

Time seemed to slip away on this corner of Pingxi District. Amidst the thousands of tourists that flock to Shifen to write their wishes on a sky lanterns and appreciate the beauty of the Shifen Waterfalls, the final stop of the Pingxi Branch Line is often forgotten.

Jigntong, the old coal mining town is another addition to the bucket list of loyal Meteor Garden fans.
When San Chai lost her wallet in Taiwan - Jingtong - A Meteor Garden filming location is finally revealed!

1. HOW TO GO TO JINGTONG

I know the entire fandom is excited to know how to go to Jingtong.  The simplest way is to ride a train of the TRA to Jingtong.

1.1 From Taipei Main Station

There is no direct train ride from Taipei Main Station to Jingtong Station.  You will have to go to Ruifang Station.  Just remember, that if you boarded any Puyuma or Taroko express train just to go Ruifang , you will have to pay an extra 1.5x of the original fare, unless you bought a ticket at the counter.    From Badu to Ruifang via Puyuma or Taroko express, the penalty is only NTD 35.  The train officers at the exit will adjust the balance on your EasyCard.

1.2 From TRA Ruifang Station

Since there are no trains that go directly to Jingtong from Taipei Main Station, you will have to transfer trains at Ruifang Station.   At Ruifang, go to Platform 3 and hop on the Pingxi train. The train ride will be almost 1 hour and Jingtong will be final stop, so you can sleep and relax during the trip.  

1.3 From Jiufen

If you are coming from Jiufen, just board any of the buses going to Ruifang Station. Then go to Platform 3 to transfer to the Pingxi Branch Line

1.4 From Yehliu

At Yehliu stop, board the bus that will take you to Keelung,  At TRA Keelung Station, board any local train going to Badu Station, then transfer to another local train going to Ruifang Station.  

1.5 From MRT Muzha Station (Taipei Zoo)

Board the Taiwan Tour Bus at MRT Muzha Station (Brown Line). Get off at Jingtong Station

2.  LET'S RECALL METEOR GARDEN SEASON 2

Let's recall Meteor Garden Season 2.  Dao Ming Su lost his memory and also his love for San Chai.   Yesha went into his life and it created more problems.

2.1 Before Sanchai lost here wallet

Up to now Filipino fans are not happy seeing San Chai cry because of Yesha [insert Yesha laugh].   At one point of the drama, San Chai witnessed her archrival kissed Dao Ming Su and confessed her feelings, with Asi too late to push Yesha away.  So what happened to San Chai? She became heart broken and decided to go away for a vacation.



Our female lead boarded a fictional train. I repeat,  a fictional train to get to her destination.  However, San Chai bumped into a guy and later discovered that her wallet was missing.  Being a quick thinker, she get off the train and followed the man up to the railroad tracks, asking the man to return her wallet.

2.2 The Ade and Amei subplot of Meteor Garden Season 2

Enter the Ade and Amei subplot.  Who loves lengthening the story your favorite telenovelas or drama series?  Subplots can be good or bad depending how it affects the overall flow of the story, especially if there are unexpected twists that will happen in the future that will surprise the viewers.




And Meteor Garden Season 2 has a lot of subplots.  Do you still remember the grandpa CEO that was friendly to San Chai? How about Měi Zuò and his girlfriend? Their lives are indirectly connected to Dao Ming Su and San Chai that at one point of the show, intelligent viewers will realize how important are these subplots.


For the case of the siblings, it was about moving on and living a new life.  San Chai, broken hearted, wants to move on from her ex, while Ade the brother of Amei wants to live a normal life as a good person.  There’s a bit of parallelism.  First, San Chai and Ade, these two want to start all over again and second, the siblings Ade and Amei versus Dao Ming Su and San Chai as lovers.  The siblings are always on a fight and so our lead couple.

3. JINGTONG IN THE METEOR GARDEN TAIWAN UNIVERSE

The loss of the San Chai wallet’s paved the way for her to enter the world of a quiet town in Taiwan.  In the real world, it’s the town of Jingtong in Pingxi District.  But in the drama, my interpretation of the train scene when San Chai was on board, that she was travelling along the west coast of Taiwan. 


It’s a wild guess and I might be wrong.  The executive producer of Meteor Garden was so smart to mix up every scenery in Taiwan creating a fictional world that we imagine to exist in real life. Like Ying De University, everyone knew that it was NCCU in Chiayi, but some scenes about “Ying De” were also taken at Tamkang University in Tamsui.


Don’t be surprised if you checked the map and you found out that Jingtong is far away from the sea.  In the drama, the town of Ade and Amei was located near the beach. Wa Tze Lei and Amei even had scenes along the shore.  You will easily believe that Jingtong is a seaside town with its own train station. But it in reality, Jingtong town is in the middle of the mountains!  Remember, you are watching a TV drama.

4. METEOR GARDEN FILMING LOCATIONS IN JINGTONG

Luckily, a lot of scenes in Meteor Garden for the Ade and Amei subplot were filmed near Jingtong Station.  F4 fans will be glad to know that the town is so small and it’s easy to roam around.   Here are the spots where you can rekindle the memories of your favorite Asian drama.

4.1 Jingtong Station

A wooden train station built in 1930s during the Japanese colonial period of Taiwan.  Renovations had been made on its wooden structure, but it still retains its classic feel.  Painted in white with its wooden fence door, matching the same colors, the same as on the scene where San Chai was chasing the Ade for her wallet.









4.2 Jingtong Station railroad tracks

This where Amei first appeared in the drama  and had an argument with San Chai, thinking that our female lead was another person.

 You can walk along the railroad tracks of Jingtong just like what your idol did.  It’s easy to notice the curve tracks but you won’t see this track anymore, because it has been replaced by a straight one.






There is also another angle with San Chai and Amei in one frame, with a water tank clearly visible in the background.  To imitate the image, you have to walk for a few meters from the far-end of the tracks to reach the spot near the water tank.

4.3 Jingtong coal train bunker

Wa Tze Lei and Amei had a scene here after Ade was taken by the police. Amei cried and Lei comforted her.


Jingtong was a former coal mining town along with Pingxi and Shifen.  The columns of the old buildings stretching to the railroad tracks  adds to  nostalgic charm of the place.

4.4 Jingtong Old Street

Shippers of Wa Tze Lei and San Chai will enjoy walking along Jingtong Street. Remember the scene where Lei bought flowers for San Chai.  The NTD 100 he used to buy the flowers came from his hard work by helping a grandma sell vegetables.  How sweet!










The yellow engine is visibly seen at the background with the yellow metal fence on the left side of your TV screen.  I went to Jingtong five years ago, and the fence was filled with wishes on a bamboo, written by visitors.  I was so lucky to see that it was free of wish sticks, that it look the same with the scene in the drama.






San Chai also walked around the small town.  Reading something and looking for something special until Amei found her and they had a girl talk.   It’s so easy to identify the street view with the coal bunker in the background.

4.5 Jingtong house

I just call this as the Jingtong house.  This is the home of Ade and Amei.  In the drama, Amei runs a Taiwanese shaved ice dessert shop.  The Filipino dubbed version of Meteor Garden just described the desserts as “snowballs”. 




San Chai was offered to stay here as long as she wants until someone fetched her to take here back to Taipei.    One day Lei appeared at the dessert shop and Amei developed a crush on him. Haha!

Our female lead stayed on the third floor and she can be seen on one night.  The camera shot was taken from the roof of Jingtong Station giving the feel of being far-away from Taipei.  The old  town vibe was perfectly used in that shot.




I was able to verify that this was really the house that was the set of Meteor Garden.  Contrary to what I was expecting, that they were selling shaved ice dessert just like in the drama.  However, it was not! Instead the family were selling candies and other sweet stuff with an old man serving as the head of household.





The old man was kind enough to talk to me and speak in English even though he was having difficulty.  He told me that what I saw in TV was just a set and the store doesn’t really exist.   Five or three years ago they were selling shaved ice dessert but there were less customers so they have to close shop.  The old man gave me his permission to take his photo to help him promote his products.  Maybe someday when there are enough people visiting the store, the family’s shave ice dessert shop will open again and we can eat what delicious snowball Lei ate at that house.

4.6 Zhongpu Bride aka Lover’s Bridge

Perhaps among the places to see in Jingtong, the Lover's Bridge is the most underrated.  Painted in green color, two decades ago, but now shining in its red hue.  This is where San Chai and Amei had a girl talk revealing to viewers that she don't usually cry.








Near the Lover's Bridge (using the banana trees as the markers), is the spot where Wa Tze Lei confessed his feelings to San Chai.  Too bad for Dao Ming Su who had already regained his memory, he went to town to see the love of his life, just to find out that Lei and San Chai were together. 





Notice the banana tree that Asi is looking at. It is still surviving after two decades. Haha!


The banana trees on the left side no longer exist.  Only those beside the bridge is existing.


The ring! Oh the ring! San Chai threw it off in the river below the Lover's Bridge. Guess who stole it? It was Ade, the one she suspected of stealing her wallet. What a twist!

METEOR GARDEN (流星花園) TAIWAN FILMING LOCATIONS



Sakura Series - Taiwan

Sakura Series - Taiwan


Sakura Series - Japan


Maple Series


Yehliu to Jiufen? Yehliu to Shifen? Cheaper than yellow taxis

The "Taipei kong mahal" (My beloved Taipei)


Other attractions in Taipei


New Taipei


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