Lil’ mankeys


DAY 11

(Reading time: 4 minutes)

Macaques, monkeys from the family of Old World monkeys, are a popular attraction wherever they have the opportunity for free movement, theft… and people like it. They want to photograph them, feed them, and touch them, even though they shouldn’t. Some popular places include the Gibraltar monkey gangs, snow monkeys in Japan, or Monkey Mountain in Kaohsiung, Taiwan.

I understand the skeptical attitude of some individuals who are hesitant to go out for animals and return saying they didn’t see any (whale or dolphin watchers could tell you, but even in zoos, you often doubt whether the advertised creatures are really kept there because even after repeated visits, you’ve never caught sight of them… true story). However, Monkey Mountain is swarming with monkeys, and people can be swarmed, as well, if they dare to pull out anything for food in their area.

Originally, I wasn’t sure how many we would be able to see, but even before crossing the boundaries of their official territory, we saw monkeys running on the road for cars.

We equipped ourselves cautiously with only the essentials because we know they are attracted to shiny and rustling objects and, of course, food. Especially food. They weren’t interested in drinks or mobile phones, at least we didn’t notice anything like that.

Right after entering the park, we witnessed an attack on a little boy carrying a bag of food.

The attack was carried out completely organized. The biggest macaque, the boss, menacingly circled the boy. Two smaller monkeys were ready for theft, the second one as backup in case the first one failed. The boy screamed, cried, and was eventually rescued by his parents – they found sticks and drove the monkeys away. However, it’s clear that primates are truly cunning.

For the locals, the monkeys are nothing special; they come to the park for regular health walks, jogging, or simply socializing in nature. The monkeys also mostly benignly ignore visitors; even mobile phones aimed at them cannot disrupt their composure.

I won’t deny we made two mistakes.

The first time, with naive faith that there were no monkeys in the immediate vicinity. Everything was calm, macaques out of sight, and after a light hike, we felt like having a snack. Just a small bag of salty crackers and suddenly there were about ten monkeys all around! The crackers went into pockets, and as more monkeys approached, we opted for a tactical retreat. Home team vs. guests, 0:1.

After some walking, we arrived at a rest area where other people were sitting. We were a little hungry. Mark, having learned from the past, quietly opened two packs of cookies inside the backpack, handed me one… and here it comes again… well – they came again! What to do? Where to put the cookie? They mustn’t take it! Stuff it in your mouth! The whole thing? Yes, the whole thing! They were reaching out… but… where’s the cookie? It was here a moment ago! They thought that if they waited, the biped would give up and give out the cookie. However, both cookies were successfully chewed and swallowed. Home team vs. guests, 0:2.

We didn’t tempt fate again, the result remained 0:2, congratulations (to us).

And how often do monkey attacks on humans occur? Apparently more often than you would expect. Monkeys tend to go after shorter people, especially children. It can also happen that out of curiosity, they jump on someone’s head (from a tree). Scratches from their claws are quite common in such cases. We also stumbled upon a monkey fight, which we quickly left and gave them space. We don’t have to be involved in everything.

In general, it can be said that as long as you respect them sensibly, avoid unnecessary risks, don’t tease or provoke, monkeys will leave you alone. And don’t worry, there are plenty of opportunities for a photo.

In the afternoon, we spent time at Pier 2, where we had enjoyed ourselves the day before.

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To conclude today’s day, a quick test – do you know what’s special about the photo below and where it comes from? (the answer can be found in the Donkey’s Special)



  • In the monkey park, we passed signs with advice on what to do when a monkey jumps on you, a short piece of advice: “do nothing, the monkey will climb down by itself sooner or later,” in the long advice, I would describe why it is not wise to forcibly remove it, first, it put four dexterous limbs on your head, secondly, it’s never alone, if you’re a threat to one, you’re a threat to all, “one for all, all for one!” and remember also the Planet of the Apes…
  • The elevator won’t take you to the fourth floor because it doesn’t exist on paper, number four sounds the same as the word “death” in Chinese when pronounced, it is considered unlucky here, and superstitious people avoid it as much as possible, some hotels solve this by skipping it in floor numbering, room numbers, tables, etc.



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