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12

No. 43, 2011

Mountain Delight Hiking in Alishan’s Pristine Forests THE BEST ROUTES

Following Highway No. 9 through the East Rift Valley

HISTORY

The Dutch Legacy in Tainan

VIBRANT MUSIC

Ten Drum Art Percussion Group

The Official Bimonthly English Magazine of the Taiwan Tourism Bureau. Website: ht tp://taiwan.net.t w I S B N :1817 7 9 6 4

/


Welcome to Taiwan!

Dear Traveler, Though you may think you have just sat yourself down for a quiet read, it would be best to view the magazine you hold in your hands as a mode of rapid transportation, and you have just buckled yourself up for a whirlw ind tour of an island and people that of fer a world of travel options in a compact place where “everywhere” is easy, and inexpensive, to get to – as you’ll see. This year is the 100th anniversary of the founding of the ROC, and special events will be held throughout the year in celebration. Large-scale Lantern Festival celebrations are staged around the island during the Chinese New Year, and this year there will be two themes: bringing in the Year of the Rabbit and the ROC's 100th birthday. The “Alishan” in Alishan National Scenic Area means “Mt. Ali,” but all visitors will attest it can also be interpreted as “high-mountain joy.” Alishan possesses a kind of Shangri-la magic that the beautif ul photos only partially capture, a place of steep sculpted tea-plantation slopes, of tall evergreen forest unexpected in the subtropics, of numerous hiking trails marked in English, of great seas of clouds rolling up valleys below you like incoming tidal waves, and of the proud Tsou people, for whom Alishan means “home.” Taiwan’s east coast used to be largely cut off from the rest of the island by a long chain of rugged mountains, but travel to and f rom is now easy. The ma jestic East R if t Valley is a rice breadbasket, and any adventure with the goal of “tracing Taiwan’s favorite grain to its source” is bound to bring rich reward. A favorite way to do this is a road-trip along the valley’s ma jestic Highway No. 9, its bracketing beauty iconic on this island, featuring archeological f inds, moonscapes and badlands, a botanical garden, heritage sugar factory and, of course, great golden rice-paddy vistas. Elsewhere between the covers this issue is an introduction to f ive of the island’s best mountain hikes, a visit to the old city of Tainan, the capital in imperial days, in search of Dutch-colony ghosts and, in a complete change of pace, a night or two of clubbing at Taipei’s hottest nightspots. On beha l f of t he Tour ism Bureau, I w ish you a l i f et i me of r ich memor ies acq u i red during your Taiwan expedition.

Janice Seh-Jen Lai Director General Tourism Bureau, MOTC, R.O.C.


CONTENTS

Jan ~ Feb 2011

8

Photo/ Shu juan Lin

18 Publisher Janice Seh-Jen Lai Editing Consultants David W. J. Hsieh, Wayne Hsi-Lin Lin Publishing Organization Tourism Bureau, Ministry of Transportation and Communications Address 9F, 290 Zhongxiao E. Rd., Sec. 4, Taipei, 104, Taiwan Tel: 886-2-2717-3737 Fax: 886-2-2771-7036 E-mail: tbroc@tbroc.gov.tw Website: http://taiwan.net.tw

台 灣 觀 光 雙 月 刊 Travel in Taiwan Bimonthly January/ February Issue, 2011 www.tit.com.tw/vision/index.htm Copyright © 2011 Tourism Bureau. All rights reserved. Reproduction in any form without written permission is prohibited.

, Producer Vision Int l Publ. Co., Ltd. Address Rm. 5, 10F, 2 Fuxing N. Rd., Taipei, 104 Taiwan Tel: 886-2-2711-5403 Fax: 886-2-2721-2790 E-mail: vision@tit.com.tw Gener al Manager Wendy L. C. Yen Deputy Gener al Manager Frank K. Yen Editor in Chief Johannes Twellmann English Editors Rick Charette, Richard Saunders DIR. OF PLANNING & EDITING J oe Lee MANAGING EDITOR Sunny Su Editors Aysel Then, Percy Kung, Min-Jing Yin, Vivian Liu Contributors R ick Charette, Richard Saunders, Mark Caltonhill, Linda Chu, Kurt Weidner, Steven Crook PHOTOGRAPHERS Guo-Chen Jen, Xie-cheng Hou, Sunny Su, Maggie Song, Sting Chen, Shu juan Lin Administr ative Dept H ui-chun Tsai, Nai-jen Liu, Xiou Mieng Jiang ART DIRECTOR Sting Chen Designers T ing Ting Wang, Daemon Lee, Maggie Song, Rinka Lin Advertising Dept V incent Lin, Pamela Leu, Stacy Cai, Mamie Yang Advertising Hotline + 886-2-2721-5412

Where you can pick up a copy of Travel in Taiwan Abroad Offices of the Tourism Bureau in Tokyo, Osaka, Seoul, Hong Kong, Singapore, Kuala Lumpur, New York, San Francisco, Los Angeles, Frankfurt; Taiwan Representative Offices; Overseas Offices of the Ministry of Economy; Overseas Offices of the Central News Agency; onboard China Airlines, EVA Air and other selected international airways; selected travel agencies in Asia, North America, and Europe; and other organizations In Taiwan Tourism Bureau Visitor Center; Tourism Bureau; Taiwan Visitors Association; foreign representative offices in Taiwan, Tourism Bureau service counters at Taiwan Taoyuan Int’l Airport and Kaoshiung Int’l Airport, major tourist hotels; Taipei World Trade Center; VIP lounges of international airlines; major tourist spots in Taipei; visitor centers of cities and counties around Taiwan; offices of national scenic area administrations; public libraries

This year is the 100th anniversary of the founding of the ROC, and special events will be held throughout the year in celebration.


44 20 37 FEATURE 8

Let’s Eat

34 More than a Mere

Bowl of White Rice

Alishan — Hike — Eat — Stay — Buy

Happy Mountain Outings Mountain Air, Mountain Appetite Resting on Cloud-Bank Shorelines Mountain Delights

LET'S GO OUT TONIGHT

16 On Top of Taiwan

37 Let Your Hair Down!

— Five of the Island’s Best Mountain Hikes

1 Publisher�s Note 36 Peculiar Taiwan 4 Concerts, Exhibitions, and Happenings 42 Festivals and Events 6 News & Events around Taiwan

My Photo Tour 18

Taipei Int’l Flora Expo – — Flowers and More Seen Through a Fish-Eye Lens

Learning Experience 26 Beads on a String

— Learning How to Create Cute Little Cell Phone Hangers with Beads

The Best Routes Food Journey 20 Riding the Nine

30

— A Trip through the Southeast Following Highway No. 9

— Tracing Taiwan’s Favorite Grain to Its Source

Rice

Pilgrimage

— Indulging in the Charms of the Night at Some of Taipei’s Hottest Nightspots

FESTIVAL 40 Welcoming the Year of the Rabbit and the ROC’s 100th Year

— This Year’s Taiwan Lantern Festival Will Light Up the County of Miaoli

ON STAGE/OFF STAGE 44 “Taiwan Has a Unique Culture” — Visiting the Ten Drum Culture Village in Tainan

HISTORY 50 The Dutch in Tainan,

Then and Now — Exploring the Period of European

Influence in Taiwan’s Old Capital

3

Travel in Taiwan


CULTURE SCENE

Concerts, Exhibitions, and Happenings Taiwan has a diverse cultural scene with art venues ranging from international-caliber concert halls and theaters to makeshift stages on temple plazas. Among Taiwan’s museums is the world-famous National Palace Museum as well as many smaller museums dedicated to different art forms and aspects of Taiwanese culture. Here is a brief selection of upcoming happenings. For more information, please visit the websites of the listed venues.

10/22 ~ 3/31

National Museum of Prehistory

Sons of the Sun 太陽之子

The people of the Paiwan Tribe, most living in the southern reaches of the Central Mountain Range and the coastal plains of southeastern Taiwan, regard themselves as children born of the sun. This exhibition gives you insight into the fascinating mythological origins of this tribe, their age-old traditions and practices, and their arts and handicrafts.

2/10 ~ 3/27

1/20 ~ 3/6

TWTC Nangang Exhibition Hall

Cirque du Soleil – Varekai 太陽馬戲團Varekai魔幻森林

In this mesmerizing tale of a magical kingdom called Varekai, the worldfamous French-Canadian circus troupe Cirque du Soleil pays homage to the nomadic people of the circus. The story begins with a solitary young man being transported by flight to a mythical land, in a manner that only Cirque Du Soleil can accomplish, to be discovered by the extraordinary creatures of the forest there, who entertain the crowd with a blend of dance, acrobatics, and drama. The characters are brought to life with the incredible costumes and vibrant make-up the circus is famous for, which affirm the dreamlike authenticity of the characters. The accompanying music is a fusion of various contemporary genres with older ethnically influenced elements, offering unique interpretations of the visual movements with hints of Hawaiian ritual, gospel, traditional Armenian music, and 11th-century troubadour music from the south of France. Find more info at www. cirquedusoleil.com/en/shows/varekai/default.aspx

2/26 ~ 2/27

National Concert Hall

The Pearl on Strings – Midori   東方珍珠-宓多里

Midori Goto is one of the world’s most acclaimed and accomplished active violinists. Her immense talent became obvious soon after she started to play the violin at the tender age of three. After moving to the US with her mother, she studied at the Juilliard School’s Pre-College Division in New York, and gave her concert debut with the New York Philharmonic at age 11. Since then Midori has had a tremendously successful career, winning many prestigious awards, and she has been engaged in numerous projects helping young musicians.

National Theater/National Concert Hall

Taiwan International Festival of Arts 2011 台灣國際藝術節

First staged in 2009, the purpose behind the Taiwan International Festival of Arts is “crossing borders” and “crossing cultures” by featuring original productions of Taiwanese artists and works by internationally acclaimed art groups. The 2011 edition of the festival will include European avant-garde drama as well as Taiwanese traditional theater. The festival kicks off with a Taiwanese musical version of “La Dame aux Camélias” by director Tadashi Suzuki and Taiwanese artists, presenting a wonderful fusion of elements from the Oriental and Occidental cultures. Music performances by international artists will include the minimalistic music of Steve Reich, concerts by the Kronos Quartet and the Gewandhaus Orchester Leipzig, and a performance of “Pelléas and Mélisande” by the NSO and pianist Lilya Zilberstein. In addition, the NSO will also present “Elektra” by Richard Strauss in concert form and Tanztheater Wuppertal Pina Bausch will present “Água,” a piece by the late German dance legend Pina Bausch. Among the Taiwanese performing talent will be the Ming Hwa Yuan Arts and Cultural Group, displaying Taiwanese opera, and the Huang Chun-hsiung TV Puppet Theatre, presenting the hugely popular Taiwanese puppet shows. There will also be an outdoor performance featuring “an encounter” between Taiwan troupes Ten Drum and Hung-Sheng Lion Dance Theater along with La Compagnie des Quidams from France. For more information, visit http://tifa.ntch.edu.tw.


10/9 ~ 3/13

Kaohsiung Museum of Fine Arts

Infinity of Chi: Retrospective of Hsiao Chin 大炁之境

This retrospective exhibition of Hsiao Chin is organized by the Kaohsiung Museum of Fine Arts as part of its “Homage to the Master” series. Born in Shanghai, Hsiao grew up in Taiwan but has lived in Italy for over half a century. In the 1950s, he studied painting under the apprenticeship of Li Chun-shen, and was a member of the Ton-Fan Art Group. During his time with the group he explored abstract painting, and led the avant-garde wave of Taiwanese modern art. Amidst the ever-changing waves of Western modern art, Hsiao has never lost sight of his inner self. His artworks manifest both the distinctive style of modern art as well as the profound philosophical thinking of the East. More about the artist can be found at: www. hsiaochin.net

Venues

Taipei International Convention Center(台北國際會議中心)

Taipei

( 台北市信義 路五段一 號 )

Taipei Zhongshan Hall Plaza (台北中山堂廣場)

Add: 98, Yanping S. Rd., Taipei City ( 台北市延平南 路 9 8 號 )

Nearest MRT Station: Ximen

Taipei International Convention Center (台北國際會議中心)

Add: 1, Xinyi Rd., Sec.5, Taipei City ( 台北市信義 路五段 1 號 )

Tel: (02) 2725-5200, ext. 3517, 3518 www.ticc.com.tw/ Nearest MRT Station: Taipei City Hall

National Chiang Kai-shek Memorial Hall(國立中正紀念堂) Add: 21 Zhongshan S. Rd., Taipei City ( 台北市中山南 路 21 號 )   

Tel: (02) 2343-1100~3 www.cksmh.gov.tw Nearest MRT Station: CKS Memorial Hall

National Concert Hall(國家音樂聽) ; National Theater(國家戲劇院) Add: 21-1 Zhongshan S. Rd., Taipei City ( 台北市中山南 路 21-1 號 )

Tel: (02) 3393-9888 www.ntch.edu.tw Nearest MRT Station: CKS Memorial Hall

National Museum of History (國立歷史博物館)

Add: 49 Nanhai Rd., Taipei City ( 台北市 南 海路 4 9 號 )

Tel: (02) 2361-0270 www.nmh.gov.tw Nearest MRT Station: CKS Memorial Hall

National Palace Museum (國立故宮博物院)

Add: 221 Zhishan Rd., Sec. 2, Taipei City ( 台北市至 善路 2 段 2 21 號 )

Tel: (02) 2881-2021 www.npm.gov.tw Nearest MRT Station: Shilin

National Taiwan Museum (國立臺灣博物館)

Add: 2 Xiangyang Rd., Taipei City ( 台北市 襄 陽 路二號 )

Tel: (02) 2382-2566 www.ntm.gov.tw Nearest MRT Station: NTU Hospital

11/27 ~ 2/20

Taipei Fine Arts Museum

Elsewhere: Paul Gauguin 永遠的他鄉 —高更特展

“Elsewhere” is the first solo exhibition of Paul Gauguin's works ever held in Taiwan, and includes oil paintings, prints, works on paper, bronzes, and wood sculptures, with more than 50 works in total borrowed from more than 10 museums, foundations, and private collections in Europe, the United States, and Japan. By presenting the various turning points in Gauguin's style over the course of his dramatic life, the exhibition showcases the artist’s role in revitalizing Western artistic culture together with the Primitivist trends he inspired. Many believe that Gauguin's legacy was his liberation of form and color from the constraints of the past, and this exhibition emphasizes his influence in breaking the shackles of naturalism for following generations.

Add: 1 Xinyi Rd., Sec. 5, Taipei City Tel: (02) 2725-5200 ext. 3000. 3151~52 www.ticc.com.tw Nearest MRT Station: Taipei City Hall

Taipei Fine Arts Museum (台北市立美術館)

Add: 181 Zhongshan N. Rd., Sec. 3, Taipei City ( 台北市中山北 路 3 段 181 號 )

Tel: (02) 2595-7656 www.tfam.museum Nearest MRT Station: Yuanshan

Museum of Contemporary Art Taipei(台北當代藝術館) Add: 39 Chang-an W. Rd., Taipei City ( 台北市長 安 西 路 3 9 號 )

Tel: (02) 2552-3720 www.mocataipei.org.tw Nearest MRT Station: Zhongshan

Lin Liu-hsin Puppet Theatre Museum(林柳新紀念偶戲博物館) Add: 79 Xining N. Rd., Taipei City ( 台北市 西寧 北 路 7 9 號 )

Tel: (02) 2556-8909 www.taipeipuppet.com Nearest MRT Station: Shuanglian

Taichung Taichung Zhongshan Hall(台中中山堂) Add: 98 Xueshi Rd., Taichung City ( 台中市學士路 9 8 號 )

Tel: (04) 2230-3100 www.tccgc.gov.tw

National Taiwan Museum of Fine Arts(國立台灣美術館) Add: 2 Wuquan W. Rd., Sec. 1, Taichung City ( 台中市五權 西 路 一段 2 號 )

Tel: (04) 2372-3552 www.tmoa.gov.tw

Tainan Tainan City Cultural Center (台南市立文化中心)

Add: 332 Zhonghua E. Rd., Sec. 3, Tainan City ( 台南 市中華東 路 3 段 332 號 )

Tel: (06) 269-2864 www.tmcc.gov.tw

Kaohsiung

Novel Hall(新舞臺)

Kaohsiung City Chungcheng Cultural Center(高雄市立中正文化中心)

Add: 3 Songshou Rd., Taipei City

Add: 67 Wufu 1st Rd., Kaohsiung City

( 台北市松 壽路 3 號 )

( 高 雄 市五福 一路 67 號 )

Tel: (02) 2722-4302 www.novelhall.org.tw Nearest MRT Station: Taipei City Hall

Tel: (07) 222-5136 ext. 8908, 8909, 8910 www.khcc.gov.tw (Chinese only) Nearest KMRT Station: Cultural Center

National Dr. Sun Yat-sen Memorial Hall

Kaohsiung Museum of Fine Arts(高雄市立美術館)

(國立國父紀念館)

Add: 505 Ren-ai Rd., Sec. 4, Taipei City ( 台北市仁 愛 路 四 段 5 0 5 號 )

Tel: (02) 2758-8008 www.yatsen.gov.tw/english Nearest MRT Station: Sun Yat-sen Memorial Hall

Taipei Arena(台北小巨蛋) Add: 2 Nanjing E. Rd., Sec. 4, Taipei City ( 台北市 南 京 東 路 4 段 2 號 )

Tel: (02) 2577-3500 www.taipeiarena.com.tw Nearest MRT Station: Nanjing E. Rd.

Add: 80 Meishuguan Rd., Kaohsiung City ( 高 雄 市美 術館 路 8 0 號 )

Tel: (07) 555-0331 www.kmfa.gov.tw Nearest KMRT Station: Aozihdi Station

Kaohsiung Museum of History (高雄市立歷史博物館)

Add: 272 Zhongzheng 4th Rd., Kaohsiung City ( 高 雄 市中正四 路 27 2 號 )

Tel: (07) 531-2560 http://w5.kcg.gov.tw/khm/index.asp Nearest KMRT Station: City Council

5

Travel in Taiwan


WHAT'S UP

Five Millionth Visitor of 2010 Arrives in Taiwan

News & Events around Taiwan

Tourism

Tourism in Taiwan continues to rise steadily. In November last year a new milestone was reached when Japanese traveler Mizuho Kimura arrived in Taiwan to become the 5 millionth visitor of 2010, helping to push the number of visitors per annum to a new high. As a welcome gift the lucky office worker was given a credit card with which she could purchase up to NT$500,000 (US$16,393) worth of goods in Taiwan, along with various Taiwanese agricultural specialties and delicacies.

Five Awesome Routes Bicycling in Taiwan has become Bicycling very popular – and ever more convenient – over the last few years, and there are many routes to choose from if you want to explore the beauty of the country on two wheels. Visit http://eng.taiwan.net.tw/ cycling/ to find out more about five especially attractive selections.

Hotels

Eight Hotels Officially Given 5-Star Status After a recent review of 24 major hotels in Taiwan the Taiwan Tourism Bureau has given each an official star-rating. The following eight received the coveted five-star rating: Sheraton Taipei, Evergreen Plaza Hotel Tainan, The Landis Taipei, Evergreen Laurel Hotel Taichung, Evergreen Laurel Hotel Taipei, Ambassador Kaohsiung, Caesar Park Hotel Kenting, and Far Eastern Plaza Hotel Taipei.

Travel Tip

No Tipping in Restaurants When paying for a meal at a restaurant in Taiwan you don’t need to worry about tipping the waiter/waitress. Tipping is not customary here, save for tipping a bellhop when checking into a hotel. A 10% service charge is normally added to your bill.

Hot Springs

Wintertime is Hot-Spring Season Experience the soothing effects of a hot-spring bath at one of the many hot-spring resorts around the island. During the annual Taiwan Hot Spring & Fine-Cuisine Carnival (until February 12, 2011), you can take advantage of a wide range of special offers at hot-spring resorts around the island. www.taiwanhotspring.net


L any

ang

Mus

eum

Soap in Sanxia

Museums

Tourism Since last November the ChaFactory Shan-Fang Soap Tourism Factory in Sanxia, southwest of Taipei City, has been welcoming tourists to visit its facilities and learn all about the making of its all-natural soap. www.teasoap.com.tw (Chinese).

Presidential Museum Ever wanted to see up close all those precious gifts the president of the Republic of China receives when a head of state from another country comes for a visit? Head to the Presidential and Vice-Presidential Artifacts Museum and you are in for a treat. Opened last October, the museum displays about 300 of the 5,000 gifts collected over the years, among them splendid art objects from all over the world. The museum also has exhibits on local presidential elections, former presidents of the ROC, old coins and banknotes, and much more. It is located just behind the Presidential Office Building at 2, Sec. 1, Changsha St., Taipei City. www.drnh.gov.tw (Chinese)

Lanyang Museum This brand-new museum (opened August 2010) is a must-visit for anyone traveling to Yilan County in northeastern Taiwan. Housed in a facility of stunning architectural style, it provides you with a wide range of information about Yilan. www.lym.gov.tw

Restaurant

South African Fish House

?

Taste traditional South African cuisine in the heart of Taipei! Heavily influenced by English, Dutch, German, and other influences, South African cuisine is truly a melting pot of many great culinary traditions. Among the specialties at this restaurant are potjiekos (a type of stew), fish and chips, and a yummy chutney made with twelve different fruits. Add: 5, Alley 2, Lane 66, Sec. 5, Nanjing E. Rd., Taipei City; Tel: (02) 2767-4522; www.south-africa.tw

Do You Know Taiwan?

If

you know the answers to the following

questions, you are most likely an experienced Taiwan traveler. If you don’t know the

answers, you can find them within the articles of this

Hotels

Kaohsiung’s Newest Hotel Surrounded by downtown Kaohsiung’s tourist attractions, Fullon Hotel Kaohsiung is the city’s latest 5-star tourist hotel, offering all the services and amenities you would expect from a modern upscale facility. www.fullon-hotels.com

issue of Travel in Taiwan.

1. The town of Fenqihu in Alishan National Scenic

Area is a great place for which outdoor activity:

swimming, paragliding, hiking?

(Find the answer on page 8)

2. The East Rift Valley is located between which two

Tell us what you think! We, the producers of Travel in Taiwan, wish to improve our magazine with each issue and give you the best possible help when planning – or carrying out – your next trip to Taiwan. Tell us what you think by filling out our short online questionnaire at www.tit.com.tw/survey/travelintaiwan. Senders of the first ten completed questionnaires each issue will receive three free issues of Travel in Taiwan. Thank you very much for your feedback.

cities: Kaohsiung and Taitung, Hualien and Taitung, Yilan and Hualien? (Find the answer on page 20)

3. In the old city of Tainan you can visit remnants

of old forts built by which foreign power: the Dutch, the Spanish, the Portuguese?

(Find the answer on page 50)

7

Travel in Taiwan Travel in Taiwan


FEATURE

HAPPY MOUNTAIN

OUTINGS


ALISHAN

Evergreen forest, cool mists – visiting Alishan, you’ll wonder on your climb up among the high peaks just where it was you left subtropical Taiwan behind Birdsong, sleepy villages, friendly and laid-back people, crisp mountain air, fresh mountain produce, big mountain appetite, meandering trails among silent tree giants, Tsou Tribe culture…here you have all the ingredients for a longcherished moment of your life.

Photo / Jen Guo Chen

By Rick Charette

9

Travel in Taiwan


FEATURE

Pristine cedar forest

10

Travel in Taiwan

FENQIHU

, a place of low wooden houses, is f itted snugly onto a high slope where two mountain bodies meet; as you approach, you clearly see the pass above it that leads into the next valley. As our bus pulled in on the main access road, at the top of the village, I was happy to see a clutch of rustic wood-built cafés on the uphill side and a large old railway storage and repair shed on the downhill side where tracks cross road. Running downhill past the shed was the narrow Old Street, bustling with tourists. Fenqihu has been “discovered” by f latlanders in recent years, and we’d deliberately come in on a Sunday, knowing the area would largely empty out around dinner-time. Old Street, lined tightly with heritage shops selling iconic Alishan foods and craf ts, becomes exceedingly narrow at its far (western) end, facing shops so close the sellers can almost reach out and shake hands across what is more corridor than street, eaves overlapping to create a tunnel effect where day feels much like night – a night at the fair. Of all of Alishan’s food offerings, I am especially fond of the local Japanese horseradish sold in powder form in small packages, great for spreading on rice and perking up other foods, even pizza. The Japanese themselves introduced the plant, used in paste form for their wasabi, but the Alishan folk have created this variant, sold by many in Fenqihu. You pop out at the far end of Old Street with the old Japanese-era railway station, now retired, in f ront of you. The new station, half-way along Old Street, is almost ready

Photos / Jen Guo Chen, Sunny Su

All

aboard! With that the doors closed, engine hissed, wheels started turning, and we were off on our great Alishan train trip. Well, though nobody on the platform in fact yelled out “All aboard!” in Chinese, I heard it in my head, since of course no proper train trip can launch without this iconic utterance. And, truth be told, this wasn’t exclusively a “train trip,” for the Alishan National Scenic Area is in Taiwan’s high central mountains, we were in Taipei in the far north, and we would be transferring to an Alishan-bound bus at the train station in the central-plains city of Chiayi for our run up the hills. Our destination was the area centered on Fenqihu and Shizhuo villages, as opposed to the main hotspot, Alishan National Forest Recreation Area, located f urther up the hills at the end of the iconic Alishan Forest Railway, which starts at Chiayi Railway Station. The narrow-gauge railway, today dedicated to tourism, was engineered by the industrious Japanese in the early 1900s when they controlled Taiwan (1895-1945). They wanted the thick stands of virgin timber here, mostly cypress and cedar. Fenqihu sits at about the half-way point of the line, and Shizhuo is about 5 km away on the main highway, blazed much later. The railway is currently closed down for line improvements, but the good news is that you can now walk the line, standing amidst tall branched giants leaning over to look at you, their murmurs sounding much like breezes swooshing through their leaves.


ALISHAN to go. Fenqihu has a duo of raisons d’etre: it was close to great timber stands, and a half way-point storage and repair depot was needed for the railway. The reason for us to be here was one: trails. The national scenic area administration has set up a splendid system that keeps expanding. Each trail is clearly signposted, with good and abundant English, and with trail-and-area maps plus distances. Our goal was to tackle as many trails as possible in the time we had, and f rom the old railway station we could see the entrance to our f irst, beside the tracks at the village’s far (west) end, the Cedar Trail. Below are my f iltered favorites.

THE TRAILS.

The unif ied trail system loops around the outside

of the village, in spots dipping into it. Meandering amongst tall stands of Taiwan f ir, the lower section under the railway

(Cedar Trail) is def ined by raised wooden walkways, the upper (Fenqi Trail) by railway-tie steps. Mists continually

rolled in and out as we walked, bringing a surreal Lord of the Rings ambiance. Perhaps my favorite spot, history buff I, was site of the ruins of the area’s Japanese Shinto shrine near trail-top, the line of tall f ir before said to have been planted by Chiang Kai-shek himself, pining for his mountainous home area in China. The Eryanping Trail, informally named Tea Fragrance Trail, starts beside Highway No. 18 at Xiding. “Xiding” means “top of the crevice,” indicating the pass/crevice used by early settlers when heading to Eryanping Mountain. Just 800 meters, with many wood steps and platforms and some short, steep grades, we found ourselves amidst bamboo stands and tea f ields and had grand views of the plains in the far distance. What I perhaps liked best were the many f riendly seniors we met, picnicking or happily moving along, walking sticks in hand. The Miyang Stream Trail, which you’ll also see named the Mihu Trail, runs 2.3 km along a sometimes babbling and sometimes gushing, rushing waterway strewn with massive boulders. There are thick bamboo stands, numerous pavilions, and a pretty suspension bridge right out of a painting. I found this trip’s highlight, however, to be a huge old tree up a short, staired side trail, in which you can see the series of nails that once held steps in place; the Tsou climb such trees to get at

A sample of the pretty trail-side flora

Majestic scenes await those who get up early

Pickers in colorful garb are often seen working the fields

Heading out along the Dadongshan Trail

11

Travel in Taiwan


FEATURE HOW TO GET THERE

ALISHAN

Tsou dancers performing for tourists at YuYuPas

cash-source wild jelly f igs used in delicious ai yu jelly. The Dadongshan Trail is very long; our goal here was simply to get to the massive, incredible Tree-Stone Alliance, which took 50 minutes over undemanding grades. “Dadongshan” means “Big Frozen Mountain,” reference to the very cool climes here. We accessed the trail behind the – in form and fact – sleepy little village of Dinghu, rousing several folk f rom siestas. Surrounded by tea plantations, we much enjoyed getting up

To Yunlin County

Alishan Region 3

Fenqihu Shizhuo

To Chiayi City Zhongpu Interchange

Chukou

18

Alishan National Scenic Area Administration

18

18

Leye

Xiding

3

To Tainan County

close to the shyly smiling, pastel-attired pickers. I still can’t get over the size of the boulder at the trail entrance, the biggest piece of ancientrockfall evidence I’ve ever seen, one side sliced off so clean it seemed an immortal jeweller was at work. I’m glad I wasn’t the guy standing here holding a spear, looking for supper, way back when this monster decided to come down. This trail was perhaps my favorite, with a feel like that in the Canadian Rockies, strong with evergreen scent and with small roots and stones uncleared. Once a lousy physics student, I still do not understand how the massive tree

12

Travel in Taiwan

in the Tree-Stone Alliance could develop such tremendous boulder-clinging roots without toppling this entire wondrous work of nature’s art down into the valley below; they must run very, very deep into the mountainside.

The Tsou.

YuYuPas, a young tourist village dedicated to the preservation and promotion of Tsou Tribe culture, is located on the slopes of Leye Village below Shizhuo. It seems to hover above magnif icent Rainbow Valley, sometimes decorated with multiple rainbows. We spent a half-day here (plus a meal the night previous). The village is def ined by two lines of large, thatchedroof buildings running down the slope, copies of traditional Tsou meeting halls, wood stilts replaced by sturdy steel girders, openair sides replaced by glass walls inviting in heart-quickening views. The song-and-dance show was very enjoyable (performances daily), especially the thumping Tsou music, both traditional and new-style, but what I liked most about this place was the enthusiasm and will of the staff; most staff are Tsou, many young ones have returned f rom the plains to take up the precious employment opportunities, and management’s mission is clearly their mission. A couple of special observations. In the 1600s the Tsou had extensive contact with the Dutch colonials, many of whom stayed on af ter the Dutch were driven away in 1662; a number of staff members clearly have Dutch blood in them. Also, ask to be shown the “heritage” boulder below the village where slope drops into valley, lined with scores of notches f rom centuries past showing warriors’ head-hunting takes.

Self-drive is your best option if you intend to access dif ferent trailheads, which are spread out. If you intend to stay in one spot, visit local sites, and access a couple of close-by trails, a train / bus combination is perhaps best; take a regular train to Chiayi, then take an Alishan bus from the small bus station just to the right as you exit the railway station, one direct on Highway No. 18 to the forest recreation area, the other detouring to Fenqihu and other spots before continuing on.

{ENGLisH & CHINESE}

aiyu 愛玉 Alishan Forest Railway 阿里山森林鐵路

Alishan 阿里山 National 國家森林遊樂區 Forest Recreation Area Alishan National Scenic Area 阿里山國家風景區 Cedar Trail 杉林棧道 Chiayi 嘉義 Dadongshan Trail 大凍山步道 Eryanping Mountain 二延平山 Eryanping Trail 二延平步道 Fenqihu 奮起湖 Fenqi Trail 奮起步道 Leye Village 樂野村 Mihu Trail 迷糊步道 Miyang Stream Trail 米洋溪步道 Old Street 老街 Rainbow Valley 彩虹谷 Shizhuo 石棹 Tea Fragrance Trail 茶香步道 Tree-Stone Alliance 樹石盟 Tsou Tribe 鄒族 Xiding 隙頂 YuYuPas 阿里山鄒族文化部落 ALISHAN NATIONAL SCENIC AREA ADMINSTRATION 阿里山國家風景區管理處

Add: No. 3 -16 , Chukou, Chukou Village., Fanlu Township, Chiayi County, Taiwan ( 嘉義縣番路鄉觸口村觸口 3 -16 號 ) Tel: 05 -259 -2341 Website: http://www.ali-nsa.net

YUYUPAS 阿里山鄒族文化部落 Add: No. 3 -16 , Chukou, Chukou Village., Fanlu Township, Chiayi County, Taiwan ( 嘉義縣阿里山鄉樂野村4 鄰 127-2 號 ) Tel: 05 -256 -2788  Website: www.yuyupas.com


EAT

Mountain Air, Mountain Appetite

YUYUPAS

阿里山鄒族文化部落

127-2, Neighborhood 4, Leye Village, Alishan

Add:

It’s hard to go wrong up on Alishan, with the local mountain ingredients so distinctive and so likely to have come fresh from fields within view of your dining location. By Rick Charette

Township, Chiayi County ( 嘉義縣阿里山鄉樂野村4 鄰 127-2 號 ) Tel : 0 5 - 2 5 6 - 2 7 8 8 Website: w w w .y u y u p a s . c o m

LAUYA 神禾 Add: 57-12, Leye Village, Alishan Township, Chiayi County ( 嘉義縣阿里山鄉樂野村 57-12 號 ) Tel : 0 5 - 2 5 6 - 2 3 41 Website: w w w . l a u y a . c o m

{ENGLisH & CHINESE}

Miyang Stream Trail railway biandang Tsou Tribe

米洋溪步道 鐵路便當 鄒族

Beancurd with Alishan wasabi sauce

Hotpot at Lauya restaurant

Photos / Jen Guo Chen, Sunny Su

BECAUSE OF

the famous narrow-gauge alpine railway, the equally renowned “railway biandang” must be tried. These lunchboxes were invented in the old days for quick sale to loggers and passengers passing through the railway villages, and feature a bed of rice, f ried pork cutlet or chicken leg, soy-sauce-marinated salted egg, and a selection of local vegetables presented these days in a faux wooden box made of cardboard. In the Fenqihu-Shizhuo area, Fenqihu’s Old Street is the best-known spot for these. A great higher-end option is the large glass-wall restaurant at YuYuPas (Tsou Tribe Culture Village), which has tremendous views of mountain-backed “Rainbow Valley” beyond and thatched Tsou buildings in f ront. My fellow travelers and I agree that one set-menu feast specially captures the Alishan character: Tsoustyle wood-grilled boar, Alishan tea-leaf soup, Dongpo pork with an Alishan coffee-based sauce,

river shrimp with baby tea leaf, beancurd with Alishan wasabi sauce, Oolong-sauce beef slices, and range chicken cooked in tea oil. Lauya is a spacious timber-theme restaurant (smoke-f ree, organic) with sun-inviting French windows on three sides and a large deck with big shade umbrellas that hangs over the long valley along which the Miyang Stream and Miyang Stream Trail traverse. In the Tsou language, “lalauya” means “beautif ul maple forest.” Having eaten there twice, the general agreement among my band of gourmands is that the hotpot with Alishan Oolong tea soup stock, which comes with a heaping plate of local ingredients to simmer (most notably thick meat cuts as opposed to the usual wafer-thin slices), is the best of the best. It won’t be easy to leave room for dessert, but you are advised for your own good to try; af ter a vote, the delicious banana pie and papaya pie tied for f irst place (the banana pie the reason I insisted we go back a second time).

Railway lunchboxes ready to go

Dongpu pork with Alishan cof fee topping

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Travel in Taiwan


STAY

Resting on

cloud-bank shorelines In the Fenqihu-Shizhuo area there are a few hotels, but the way to go is the hostel or the homestay, with choice aplenty.

CHANGQINGJU 長青居

16 Shizhuo, Zhonghe Village, Zhuqi Township, Chiayi County ( 嘉義縣竹崎鄉中和村石桌 16 號 ) Add:

Tel : 0 5 - 2 5 6 -1 6 0 3 / 0 9 3 2 7 11- 2 2 2 Website: h t t p : / / 0 5 2 5 6 1 6 0 3 . t w.tra n ew s .com / (Chin e s e)

By Rick Charette ARNOLD JANSSEN ACTIVITY CENTER 楊生愛諾德活動中心

Add: 26 Fenqihu, Zhonghe Village, Zhuqi Township, Chiayi County ( 嘉義縣竹崎鄉中和村奮起湖 26 號 ) Tel : 0 5 - 2 5 6 -11 3 4 Website: a j - c e n t e r s v d . m y w e b . hinet.net (Chines e)

{ENGLisH & CHINESE}

Ding Shizhuo Trail 頂石棹步道 Fenqihu 奮起湖 Shizhuo 石桌 Xu Yong-hong 許永鴻

Another glorious morning at Changqingju

A split-level f amily room at Changqingju

WHEN DECIDING

NT$250 per person. Rooms and other facilities, such as shared bathroom/shower, are spartan and spotless. There are no phones, bring your own where to stay (note there is no camping in Alishan), check the websites of the Tourism Bureau towel, and note food is available with advance notice. (www.taiwan.net.tw) and the Alishan National Changqingju (“Evergreen Home”) sits right Scenic Area (www.ali-nsa.gov.tw). This means a at the bottom of the Ding Shizhuo Trail just above place has been vetted and you can “rest” assured Shizhuo Village, off Provincial Highway No. 18. Run during your stay. by a great guy, Xu Yong-hong, this homestay is his Here are two getaways vetted by yours truly ancestral home, a traditional three-sided courtyard on my most recent Alishan excursion. residence he has decorated impeccably. The rooms In Fenqihu the Arnold Janssen Activity (for two people, four, families; NT$3,000~3,600) Center, run by the Divine Word Missionaries, has a hostel. The morning views are invigorating, with are modern, bright, and airy, all featuring much polished wood and etched-glass panels. Each has a mountain spurs running past along the two sides bathroom/shower and cable TV, but no phone. Xu of the hostel and Fenqihu, and cloud and mist running up the slope toward you from the valleys does not serve breakfast, but brews Alishan tea for you on the veranda, sourced from his family far below and beyond. The town criers – the local plantation, amidst which you are sitting as you roosters – provide your wake-up call. The lovely gaze out over the broad valley laid out before you. Sister Ulrich, from German-speaking Switzerland When prompted, the quiet Xu enjoys telling stories and in Taiwan thirty years, takes good care of you, among other things advising you the mission’s of his youth here, before the highway was pushed through. pudgy old beagle is a bit grumpy and ornery. There are rooms for one person, two, and groups of Note that most Alishan locations give steep various sizes. The singles are NT$700, the dorms discounts during the much quieter weekdays.

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Travel in Taiwan

The Arnold Janssen main building


BUY

Mountain Delights Delicious Baked Goods and Oolong Tea from Alishan

Alishan produces some of the best-quality highmountain tea in Taiwan, and a range of delicious gift-item food treats. By Rick Charette

DERMING 德銘餅店 Add: 146 , Fenqihu, Zhonghe Village, Zhuqi Township, Chiayi County ( 嘉義縣竹崎鄉中和村 146 號 ) Tel : 0 5 - 2 5 6 -114 3 Website: w w w . d e r m i n g . c o m . t w (Chines e)

TRAINPEI 天美珍餅舖

142, Fenqihu, Zhonghe Village, Zhuqi Township, Chiayi County ( 嘉義縣竹崎鄉中和村 142 號 ) Add:

Tel : 0 5 - 2 5 6 -10 0 8 Website: w w w . t r a i n p e i . c o m . t w (Chines e)

Friendly Old Street seller of fering samples

Sun cakes sold on Fenqihu’s Old Street

Photos / Jen Guo Chen, Sunny Su

TOURIST

-friendly sellers

steam locomotives of Alishan’s picturesque narrow-gauge railway, and Trainpei has gone package local produce a step f urther, designing a large gif tbox with using attractive Alishan-image designs, and the rope handles that is itself a steam locomotive, area is also known for high-quality woodcarving containing a selection of almost all its baked and for leather and fabric items. Here is an items. introduction to some tried-and-tested items, In this area it seems steep-slope tea meaning especially liked by those I have given plantations are always in view, them to (including myself). Vendors have come so a purchase of the much-valued In the Fenqihu area, browse up with beautiful Alishan semi-fermented Oolong Fenqihu’s Old Street, very much packaging that captures f rom the Fenqihu-Shizhuo aimed at the tourist. One very area is a must. As it happens, the Alishan character conspicuous shop has walls lined both DerMing and Trainpei have their own with colorf ul traditional Japanese wooden shoes, plantations, and their tea selections feature made on the spot. Choose your own fabrics or the bright Alishan sunrise over plantation and buy off the wall. These make exotic decorations pickers. for Asia-theme corners back home. A f inal recommendation: I was quite taken Two old and very pretty wood-décor Old with the international-quality leather goods Street shops, DerMing and Trainpei, sell at YuYuPas (see feature article), items such traditional baked items such as sun cakes, as purses, wallets, and handbags that feature mochi, and Taiwan-style cookies using f resh scenes f rom Tsou Tribe myths (with tagged local ingredients. Each has been in place for explanations) that are bright and colorf ul yet generations, the f riendly people selling you your elegant. Though hand-made by Tsou talent, they items made these treats themselves by hand and, start at just over NT$1,500. Two recipients, my perhaps most importantly, they’ve come up with wife and mother, are also enamored with them. beautif ul packaging that captures the Alishan/

Traditional Japanese wooden clogs

Alishan tea

Fenqihu character. DerMing’s boxes feature the

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Travel in Taiwan


FEATURE

Many

of Taiwan’s most beautif ul spots, such as Kending, Alishan, and the East Rif t Valley, can be enjoyed without ever straying far f rom your car, while it’s possible to marvel at the magnif icent scenery of both Taroko Gorge and Sun Moon Lake without even leaving the comfort of your vehicle. At the other extreme, wellprepared hikers with a f ree week or so and all the proper equipment will likewise f ind no shortage of seriously remote and challenging mountain routes here, such as the renowned Sacred Ridge traverse in Shei-Pa National Park or the Qilai Ridge. Mt. Qixing

Snow Mountain

Walking in Taiwan’s wild central mountains is an immensely rewarding way to experience the island

Mt. Dabajian

Walking in Taiwan’s wild central mountains, with their spectacular, pristine scenery and Yushan extremely diverse range of f lora and fauna, is an immensely rewarding way to experience the island any time of the year (although spring and fall are regarded as the best seasons), and happily not all its world-class mountain scenery requires a large commitment of time and energy. The most popular route to the main summit of Taiwan’s highest mountain, Yushan (Jade Mountain), for instance, requires only two days.

Hehuanshan

Getting Set Up To climb most of Taiwan’s 3,000-meter-plus summits (the Mt. Hehuan summit and Mt. Shimen are excepted) hikers need to apply for a permit, which is best obta ined through a hiking club or outdoor-excursion tour company. The Englishspeaking Barking Deer Adventures (htt p://barking-deer.com) can organize permits, transport, and guides for many highmountain routes around Taiwan.

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Travel in Taiwan

Yushan Jade Mountain (3,952 meters, the highest mountain in Northeast Asia) is understandably the most popular mountain in all Taiwan. It’s relatively easy to climb, can be scaled in just two or three days and, most importantly, the scenery is exceptional. Set in the heart of the eponymous national park, Yushan’s main peak is a shapely crest of rocky cliffs, which makes for an exciting scramble on the f inal approach. Equally memorable (if you still have any energy lef t!) is the three-hour detour along a ridge to Yushan North Peak, to marvel at the view of the main summit familiar f rom so many photographs. Mt. Dabajian Even more craggily commanding, Mt. Daba jian (3,505 meters) is perhaps Taiwan’s most remarkable mountain. Revered as sacred by the local indigenous population, the summit of the mountain is a huge upthrusting rock, presenting the prof ile of a sharp pyramid f rom some angles, a sheer-sided tower f rom others. It’s a three- or four-day round-trip to the base of the summit, and although the f inal climb to the top is now off-limits, goggling at the scenery f rom the bottom of the magnif icent crags is plenty for most hikers.


TOP FIVE MOUNTAINS

On Top of Taiwan Five of the Island’s Best Mountain Hikes By Richard Saunders

For more info on hiking in Taiwan, visit: www.mountainsof taiwan.org

Snow Mountain More smoothly contoured, yet offering some of the most purely beautif ul scenery of any mountain on Taiwan, Snow Mountain (3,884 meters, Taiwan’s second-highest mountain) has one of the most easily accessible of all Taiwan’s great summits; daily buses f rom Yilan City (an hour f rom Taipei) pass within an easy walk of the trailhead. The twoday return hike to the summit passes along wooded slopes studded with orchids and other rare plants, passes through an eerie “Black Forest” of conifers, and winds up passing erratic boulders deposited on the slopes of a huge glacier-cut corrie on the approach to the summit.

Photos / Tourism Bureau, Vision Int' l, Sunny Su

Mt. Hehuan Amazingly, not all Taiwan’s 3,000meter-plus summits require multi-day treks to conquer. Take the island’s highest road (Provincial Hw y No. 14A, which peaks at 3,275 meters) to the 33.5-km mark in the Mt. Hehuan (Hehuanshan) area, and f rom the trailhead just off the road it’s a 20-minute hike to the rocky summit of Mt. Shimen (3,237 meters). For something a little longer, try the nearby Mt. Hehuan East Peak (3,421 meters), reached by a two-hour puff up a grassy hillside dotted with azalea shrubs, which produce a magnif icent show when they f lower in April.

Mt. Qixing If you’re in Taipei and just do not have the time to travel south for a trip into Taiwan’s central mountain range, note that less than an hour by regular bus f rom the center of the city the extinct volcanoes of Yangmingshan National Park provide plenty of rugged mountain scenery. The ascent of the highest, Mt. Qixing (1,120 meters), passes f rom thick forest at the bottom, through an ocean of silvergrass that covers the middle slopes, to the high and windswept rocks of the summit, commanding an awesome 360° panorama over much of the island’s northern tip. With views like this, it’s hardly surprising that this is one of the most popular day-hikes in the Taipei area. {ENGLisH & CHINESE}

Alishan East Rift Valley Kending Mt. Dabajian Mt.Hehuan (East Peak) Mt. Qixing Mt. Shimen Qilai Ridge Sacred Ridge Shei-Pa National Park Snow Mountain Sun Moon Lake Taroko Gorge Yangmingshan National Park Yushan (North Peak)

阿里山 花東縱谷 墾丁 大霸尖山 合歡山 ( 東峰 ) 七星山 石門山 奇萊山稜線 聖稜線 雪霸國家公園 雪山 日月潭 太魯閣峽谷 陽明山國家公園 玉山 ( 北峰 )

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Travel in Taiwan


MY PHOTO TOUR

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Taipei Int’l Flora Expo Flowers and More Seen through a Fish-Eye Lens Photos/ Chi Jui Wu, Maggie Song


FLORA EXPO

Sea view

The expo offers up an impressive array of architectural novelty The Happy Travels of a Caterpillar parade, a kid’s favorite

A few members of the Flora Expo mascot team, the Flower Fairies The brightly lit night-time views are sparkling

19

Travel in Taiwan


THE BEST ROUTES

9

S

Riding the

A Trip through the Southeast Following Highway No. 9

From the mountains of Yangmingshan to the rocky cliffs along the north and northeastern coast, there

NINE

are many fine road trips within just an hour or two of downtown Taipei. But for those with a little more time to spare, a truly sublime journey is to travel along the 170-kilometer stretch of Provincial Highway No. 9 between Hualien and Taitung cities in eastern Taiwan. By Mark Caltonhill

ONE

of a pair of arteries connecting the two county capitals (the other, Hwy No. 11, follows the coast), No. 9’s tranquility and rural beauty derive from the relative economic underdevelopment of the long north-south rif t valley it traverses. This does not mean there are not plenty of things to see and do, however, and the following is merely a brief introduction to a few of them. As the region has been inhabited – perhaps continuously, perhaps on and off – since around 6,000 years ago, the logical place to start (or f inish for those traveling north to south) is the National Museum of Prehistory (www.nmp.gov.tw) in the southern suburbs of Taitung City. Location of this important and interesting institution so far from the nation’s capital stems from the discovery of ancient graves during construction of Taitung’s new railway station in the Beinan area, for which the culture was named. A ticket gives entry to both museum (which, with sections introducing all of Taiwan’s major archaeological sites, its current indigenous ethnicities, and its natural environment, deserves at least a day) and the burial site in the Beinan Cultural Park. If spending a night in Taitung City, one evening hotspot is the Tiehua Music Village (26, Lane 135, Xinsheng Rd., Taitung) near the now-disused railway station in the old city

20

Travel in Taiwan

center. Performances by local artists start at 8 pm Thursdays through Saturdays and 4 pm on Sundays, with an open-mike session starting at 8 pm on Wednesdays. Foreigners with their passports and students with IDs get a discount on their f irst drink. In good weather people stage picnics on the lawn, and local-produce and handicraf t stalls are set up around the edge.

HEADING

north from the city, and before formally starting your journey on

Hwy 9, those with a liking for weird geology can visit the Liji Moonscape World near Liji Village, of ten referred to in English

as the Liji Badlands, created by tectonic movements and erosion. (To reach Liji, follow Taitung County Road No. 45 north from Taitung). Those still not surfeited on matters pertaining to prehistory can stop at the Beinan Site near Taitung Railway Station to take a look at the crescent-shaped stone pillar that points – like the feet of the skeletons in the ancient graves – in the direction of the dominating 1,190-meter-high Dulan Mountain. As one enters the East Rif t Valley National Scenic Area on Hwy 9, local seasonal produce is sold at roadside: custard apples (“Buddha heads”) in autumn, for example, or pineapples


Photos / Hou Xie-Cheng

HUALIEN-TAITUNG


THE BEST ROUTES

in early summer. Visitors interested in botany and agriculture may stop off at the Yuan Sen Applied Botanical Garden (www. yuan-sen.com.tw) in Chulu Township (about 15 minutes north of Taitung City), where the price of entry includes hotpot f lavored with unusual herbs and vegetables. (To get there, follow Taitung County Road No. 37 from Chulu.) The small Shanli Railway Station is also worth continuing on the scenic county road to see (follow No. 38 from the Botanical Garden). In fact the old station is so photogenic that a viewing platform has been built beside it. The nearby Gospel Chapel of Shanli is also popular with visitors, but only opens for services on Sundays. Back on Hwy 9, one soon enters Luye Township, famed for its tea. Pickers can of ten be seen at work in the f ields, and the leaves may be followed back to the family-based drying and rolling houses, where the f inished product can be tasted and purchased. For those with a taste for adventure, Luye has a paragliding center operating in the summer. Although not especially high in tea-growing terms, the approximately 300-400m elevation of the rif t valley still provides suff icient day-night differences in temperature to grow quality tea. This is also said to account for the excellent quality of the rice produced in the next three townships heading north, Guanshan and Chishang in the county of Taitung and Fuli across the county boundary in Hualien. Others say the pure, mineral-rich waters descending from the Central Mountain Range are responsible. In any case, the golden harvest of this area commands some of Taiwan’s top rice prices (for more on rice, see “Rice Pilgrimage” on page 30). Dapo Lake, from which Chishang (literally “Above the Lake”) takes its name, is a pleasant oasis at which to cool off on a hot day. Pedal boats can be hired, and drinks and snacks bought.

AFTER

entering Hualien County and passing the town of Fuli, leave the highway (following Hualien County Road No. 80) to visit Luoshan Waterfall, which cascades down from the Coastal Mountain Range. Landslides have made the last section of trail leading to the waterfall impassable, but it can be seen from a distance and is worth the

22

Travel in Taiwan

Photos / Hou Xie-Cheng, Sunny Su

If self- drive is not an option, you can also take the railway f rom Hualien to Taitung, which follows the Eas t Rif t Valley


HUALIEN-TAITUNG Charming scenes charac terize Taiwan’s eas t

diversion. On the way there, one can also stop at the Mud Volcano, actually a mud-f illed pool where natural gas gurgles its way to the surface, and try one’s hand at tofu DIY in one of several farmhouse workshops, where staff say the pool’s mineral brine gives rise to the distinctive f lavor. Further north along Hwy 9, between the towns of Dongli, Antong, and Yuli, a section of disused railway line has been converted for cyclists’ use. Then at Wuhe, a town famous for its tea plantations, one crosses the Tropic of Cancer. This is marked with an unmissable monument, and a good deal of information about the planetary science underpinning the existence of the tropics, an introduction to traditional Chinese solar terms (an agricultural calendar that complemented the more famous lunar one), and much more. Ruisui, the next major town on Hwy 9, is best known for its cow’s milk, but also has tea plantations of interest and hot springs for those who like to relax in hot, mineral-rich waters. In Guangfu, a few miles further north, is the now disused Hualien Sugar Factory, a complex of many buildings dating from the Japanese era (1895-1945). Some are currently under renovation for use as homestays and backpacker dormitories, but the date of opening is still uncertain. Until then, visitors may enjoy some renowned Taiwan Sugar Corporation ice-cream and wander round the historic establishment. Another site dating from the period of Japanese rule is the Chinan National Forest Recreation Area in the hills above Carp Lake, not far from the city of Hualien. Films in English and Chinese introduce the history and ecology of the site, and examples of forestry machinery dot the short trails. One last diversion before heading down the hill into Hualien City is up Provincial Highway No. 14 toward Tongmen, a Bunun indigenous settlement known locally as Meqmegi. Alternatively, for those with limited time, this nature- and culture-rich valley is just right for a gentle and tranquil day-trip af ter a visit to the grandeur and bustle of Hualien County’s more famous Taroko Gorge.

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Travel in Taiwan


THE BEST ROUTES SOME ACCOMMODATION OPTIONS In accordance with the rule of thumb “more beautiful = more accommodation,” the East Rif t Valley has countless hotels and homestays (B&Bs that may not offer breakfast). Here are three interesting examples: a conveniently located boutique hotel, a homestay inside a disused “tunnel” kiln, and a high-quality hot-spring resort with budget option. Taitung Cultural Excursion Resort

New Life Spring Resort

The location of this hotel slap-bang next door to the National Museum of

This resor t was init ially owner Leo Chen’s weekend v illa. A Ta ipei-based

Prehistory is no coincidence: it was built as accommodation for visiting

businessman, his favorite pastime was visiting nearby spa hotels originally

dignitaries and overseas archaeology professors. Originally equipped with

built for use by colonial off icials in the Japanese era. He bought a piece of land

wooden f loors and Internet connections, the 39 rooms have been f urther

in 1988 and built himself a small villa, but af ter being advised his property

upgraded, with f ive categories ranging from “standard” doubles and twins

also had mineral waters 300 meters below ground, he decided to share his good

to a “VIP suite.” Still owned by the government-run museum, the hotel

fortune with others. Located roughly mid-way between Hualien and Taitung

is run by a f ive-person team that boasts of its 100 years of combined

cities, and between the central mountains and the ocean, the hotel is a good

experience, which shows in every detail, from the Aladdin’s-cave art-

base for exploring the area by car, bike, or on foot (the Walami Trail, which

festooned lobby to the 24-hour personal service. Of greatest interest to

crosses the island to Chiayi, begins nearby – perhaps “ends nearby” is better,

local people in a city of few high-end dining options is the Italian-themed

considering the pleasure of a hot-spring soak af ter several days of camping).

Graves Kitchen restaurant, with set dinners at NT$250-380 and an a la

Rooms with breakfast range from NT$2,500 to NT$5,000 on weekends, and there

carte menu. Rooms with breakfast range from NT$3,400 to NT$8,000 for the

are dormitor y beds w ith breakfast and use of the hot-spr ing facil ities for

suite, but hef ty discounts are of ten available, with the exception of the

NT$800 per person.

Chinese New Year period. Add: 1 Museum Rd, Taitung City (台東市博物館路1號) Tel: 089-384-777

Add: 41-5 Wenquan, Yuli Township (Antong), Hualien (花蓮縣玉里鎮(安通)溫泉41-5號) Tel: 03-888-7333 Website: www.twspa.com.tw (Chinese)

Photos / Hou Xie-Cheng

Website: www.tceresort.com.tw (Chinese)

Carp L ake

24

Travel in Taiwan


HUALIEN-TAITUNG {ENGLisH & CHINESE}

GETTING THERE AND AROUND

Antong

bagua kiln

Kiln Homestay This a family-run enterprise, with 18 rooms inside a converted brick kiln dating from Taiwan’s construction boom of the 1970s and ’80s, before the use of concrete made it obsolete in the ’90s. The rooms are modern and tastef ul, each with two double beds, one beside and one above the original kiln tunnel. The homestay ’s main attractions – in addition to the hospitality offered by Mr. Hsu Chen-long and his wife – are historical and environmental. Hsu is knowledgeable about all of Taiwan's f ive f ive generations of kiln, from Qing-dynasty mantou (spherical) kilns, for making traditional roof tiles, through the 1920s lowcapitalized “snake” potter y kilns and larger 1940s “bagyayo” Japanese kilns, to the oval bagua and long “tunnel” kilns built by his father in 1966 and 1971. The bagua kiln has also been

Trains run from Taipei and Kaohsiung to Hualien and Taitung, and also stop at various small stations along the East Rif t Valley. Cars may be rented in Hualien/ Taitung for around NT$1,600 per day, with some companies allowing different pick-up and return points with a 2-day minimum hire. Scooter-rental costs are around NT$300 per day, and bicycles around NT$100. There is a shuttle bus from Taitung Railway Station to the commercial/tourist center around the old station.

renovated, used as a conference hall, and the tunnel kiln has been lef t with its shape intact, serving as a home to several

Taroko Gorge

N

hundred Formosan leaf-nosed bats, which residents can watch f ly out to feed at sunset. Rooms with breakfast cost NT$2,500. Add: 20-2, Tai 3, Neighborhood 11, Funan Village, Fuli Township, Hualien (花蓮縣富里鄉富南村十一鄰20~2號 Tel: 03-883-2188 Website: www.tceresort.com.tw (Chinese)

Hualien Carp Lake Chinan National Forest Recreation Area

9 Guangfu

Wuhe

Ruisui

Pacific Ocean

Antong

Fuli Chishang

Luoshan Waterfall

Changbin

Mud Volcano

Luye

11

5。 23’

安通 八卦窯 卑南遺址 卑南月形石柱

Beinan Site Beinan Crescentshaped Stone Pillar 卑南文化公園 Beinan Cultural Park 鯉魚潭 Carp Lake 池南國家森林遊樂區 Chinan National Forest Recreation Area 池上 Chishang 初鹿 Chulu 大坡池 Dapo Lake 東里 Dongli 都蘭山 Dulan Mountain 花東縱谷國家風景區 East Rift Valley National Scenic Area 富里 Fuli 基督教山里教會 Gospel Chapel of Shanli 光復 Guangfu 關山 Guanshan 徐振龍 Hsu Chen-long 花蓮觀光糖廠 Hualien Sugar Factory 磚窯居 Kiln Homestay 程文鎰 Leo Chen 利吉月世界 Liji Moonscape World/Badlands 利吉村 Liji Village 羅山瀑布 Luoshan Waterfall 鹿野 Luye 饅頭窯 mantou kiln 泥火山 Mud Volcano 國立台灣史前文化博物館 National Museum of Prehistory 紐澳華溫泉 New Life Spring Resort 瑞穗 Ruisui 蛇窯 snake kiln 台東文旅 Taitung Cultural Excursion Resort 台灣糖業公司 Taiwan Sugar Corp. 太魯閣 Taroko Gorge 銅門 Tongmen Tiehua Music Village 鐵花村 隧道窯 tunnel kiln 瓦拉米步道 Walami Trail 舞鶴 Wuhe 原生應用植物園 Yuan Sen Applied Botanical Garden 玉里 Yuli

Chulu

Beinan

Taitung National Museum of Prehistory

25

Travel in Taiwan


LEARNING EXPERIENCE

Beads on a String Learning How to Create Cute Little Cell Phone Hangers with Beads

The area north of Taipei Railway Station is known by insiders as the city’s “DIY district,” with a large number of stores catering to those who love doing handicrafts. One of the biggest and most popular is “Little Bear Mama DIY,” which offers a wide variety of craft materials, including yarns and knitting needles, and is best known for its large assortment of beading kits. The store is also a great place to learn handicrafts, since it offers a large number of free DIY classes held right on the premises. Making cute decorative objects by stringing together beads of different colors is a fun experience; all you need is a bit of time and a lot of patience. If you are a beginner, pick one of the easier beading kits – on each kit you find a large-size Chinese character, indicating either beginner (初), intermediate (中), or advanced (高) level – and just follow the instructions given by the friendly teachers. On a recent visit we decided to try out our skills, and opted for two cute little thumb-sized figurines – a couple dressed in traditional Chinese wedding attire. Here is how we proceeded.

2

1

3 3

Ste p 1 ITE MS NE ED ED $220) we ope ned Aft er cho osin g a kit (NT ds (Sv aro vsk y bea the out g tyin it up, emp the figu rine s, a of ds hea tiny cry sta ls), the a she et of pap er and s, pin , a few oth er item (un for tun ately onl y in s tion ruc inst the h wit ren t string tha t hol ds Chines e). The tran spa par t of the kit, not is er eth the bea ds tog ara tely at the sto re and can be bou ght sep . Sci sso rs and plie rs (NT$50 /20 0 met ers) the string and ben dting cut for ded are nee the figu rine . of e cor the ing the pin at

2

26

Travel in Taiwan

Ste p 2 THE BASICS lain ed to us – two The tea che rs firs t exp ers – the basics. It is inn beg less utte rly clue the end s of the string d hol qui te sim ple. You add a num ber of and – one in eac h han d – h five bea ds) to the wit rted sta (we ds bea You the n thr ead the end in you r righ t han d. ugh the last add ed thro ng stri left end of the t, we com plet ed tigh s bea d. Pulling bot h end Thi s pro ces s of ds. bea of le circ t firs our is the n rep eat ed ma ny cre atin g sma ll circles ber s of bea ds. New num ng ngi tim es, wit h cha exis ting one s to h wit circles are con nec ted figu rine s. the of ies bod the form

St ep 3 S ADD MORE BEAD ction s, we ad de d mo re tru Follo win g the ins rig ht rta nt to ch oo se the be ad s. It’s im po rig ht colors for the d an s ad be nu mb ers of d of the thr ea d the lef t en ea ch ste p, an d to cle s cir ng sti exi of s ad string thr ou gh be ers eez Tw . cle cir a ne w aft er co mp let ing ng an objec t wi th ati cre en wh ul ca n be helpf ad -sized an d sm all er pin he a thinn er string . be ad s, like we did


BEADING About Little Bear Mama 小熊媽媽 Little Bear Mama, established in 2002, started with the import of material for accessories. Later the company conceived the idea of developing kits for the growing number of handicraf t DIY lovers in Taiwan. As a special service the store now organizes a large number of free DIY classes, which have become very popular. The f lagship store of Little Bear Mama is on Yanping N. Rd. in Taipei, and branch stores can be found in Taoyuan, Taichung, and Kaohsiung.

LITTLE BEAR MAMA

Add: 51, Sec. 1, Yanping N. Rd.,

Taipei City (台北市延平北路一段51號)

Tel: 02-2550-8899 Web: www.bearmama.com.tw (Chinese)

5 4 Ste p 5 Bod y Stren gthenin g the we the n thr ead r, rdie stu y bod the e mak To all the bea d circles ed the string thro ugh hav e eno ugh string to er ord onc e aga in. In k, rem emb er to tas left to com plet e this string in the beging lon y ver a h wit rt sta d how mu ch string nin g. You ’ll be am aze of eve n a sma ll n atio goe s into the cre figu rine .

Photos / Sunny Su

6 Step 4 ATTA CHIN G THE HEA D was time Once the body was comp leted , it had to to attac h the head . To do this, we all m botto the from pin long inser t the cut it the way throu gh the head and then s, creshort er and curl it up with the plier the cell ating a loop wher e the strap for phon e can be attac hed.

Ste p 6 p Attachin g the Stra p and voilá, the stra Fin ally, we atta che d the rea dy! The cute littl e gro om and brid e wer e tweight , and tho ugh figu res are tiny and ligh had n ’ t exp ecte d it we ple sim e quit they look hou rs (!) to put two n tha e mor would take us nk Tea che r Zho u tha to h wis them tog eth er. We Yan g Shu -fen r che Tea Su-zhe n ( 周素 貞 ) and inst ruc tion of two ient pat h suc for ) 芬 (楊俶 inne rs! Wit hou t their suc h hea vy-h and ed beg hav e spe nt the who le ld wou help, we pro bab ly gua ran tee of suc ces s.... day at it, with out any

27

Travel in Taiwan


FOOD JOURNEY

30

Travel in Taiwan


Rice

Rice Pilgrimage Tracing Taiwan’s Favorite Grain to Its Source

RICE

is everywhere in Taiwan, no doubt found in far

colonists resident here for sending to the imperial

more foods, on far more occasions, and in far

court (Japan ruled Taiwan 1895-1945). Today the

more places than you’d think. For breakfast, there are rice

area is in the foref ront of the trend toward organic

rolls, congee, or steamed rice, perhaps washed down with “rice

production.

milk.” Lunchboxes throughout the nation are based primarily on “white (steamed) rice,” which may reappear at dinner, or could be replaced by f ried rice or “grav y rice,” while

FULI

TOWNSHIP is a mecca for domestic and overseas tourists wishing

to see, taste, and buy high-quality rice at its

rice wine may be used for f lavoring dishes such as “three

site of production. They can do all three at the

cups chicken” or, in the form of Shaoxing wine or Japanese

Fuli Township Farmers’ Association Rice Mill –

sake, drunk directly. Rice f lour is used for thin vermicelli

conveniently located beside the scenic Provincial

and broad noodles, vegetable buns, and spring rolls, sold

Highway No. 9 and a short walk or taxi ride f rom

in night markets. Desserts include glutinous rice-f lour dumplings and puffed-rice

To understand the Taiwanese people and Taiwanese culture, it is best to understand rice

Fuli Railway Station – as it has both showroom and restaurant in addition

cookies. And this is just the beginning: there are rice dishes

to the mill. Those interested in understanding

for seasonal festivals and special life events, such as “oil

Taiwan’s rice culture should visit during one of

rice” at a child’s one-month-of-age celebration.

the harvest seasons to watch local farmers deliver

It is therefore not surprising to discover that rice is

their truckloads of produce. (Rice is harvested at

Taiwan’s top crop, with more than 1.2 million tons produced

different times around the country according to

each year f rom two main harvests on about 150,000 hectares

local climate. In the Fuli-Chishang area the year’s

of land.

f irst rice crop is planted af ter Chinese New Year and

To understand Taiwan and to understand the Taiwanese

harvested in early summer. A second crop is then

people and Taiwanese culture, it is best to understand rice.

planted, which is harvested in November. The f ields

And this means leaving Taipei and other urban centers and

are then used for growing vegetables and f lowers

heading for the central west-coast counties of Changhua,

until New Year comes around again.)

Yunlin, Chiayi, and Taichung to witness the mass cultivation,

The farmers wait anxiously as each delivery is

or better still, in the search for the best in quality, to the

weighed and a sample is then tested for moisture

golden f ields of Fuli in Hualien and the next-door township

content and weight per liter, as these three

of Chishang, across the county line in Taitung.

measures will determine the price they are paid.

In the early 20th century, rice f rom the Fuli/Chishang Photo / Sunny Su

By Mark Caltonhill

Visitors may then watch on as the batch is sent

area of the East Rif t Valley, which has pure water coming

for drying to take the moisture down f rom around

down f rom the Central Mountain Range and, at an elevation

27 percent to 14 percent, husked to create white

of around 300 meters above sea level, has high day-night

rice, and air-cleaned before passing through a

temperature differences, was selected by the Japanese

computerized sorting machine to separate damaged

31

Travel in Taiwan


FOOD JOURNEY There are now many restaurants in and around the

A somewhat slower pace of life than Taipei’s

station selling the pork, egg, vegetable, and rice lunches (as well as f ish, vegetarian, and other options). Some double as mini-museums, with exhibits about Taiwanese life and rice production in years gone by. There are also a number of cultural centers offering DIY hands-on rice production experiences and tours of local farmland. One such is the Wanan Rice Village. But even those passengers on trains traveling between the cities of Hualien and Taitung without the time for a visit can taste the local produce, as vendors pass lunchboxes up f rom the platform during the couple of minutes they are or incomplete grains. The individual batches f rom separate

in the station.

f ields are then bagged. For organically grown rice a different

And for those who cannot even get out of Taipei, an

series of drying, husking, cleaning, and sorting machines is

exhibition titled The Fruitful History of Taiwan Rice is

used.

on at the National Taiwan Museum (www.ntm.gov.tw) in 228

Fuli Township currently has somewhat over 300 hectares of organic paddy, out of a total of around 3,500 hectares,

Memorial Peace Park until August. Essentially looking at how modern cultivars were developed, it takes visitors back 7,000

while Chishang to the south has 100 hectares but is aiming for 500. Progress is slow, as the farmers’ landholdings are not large, and they must be persuaded

Fuli is a mecca for tourists wishing to see, taste, and buy high-quality rice at its site of production

years to the oldest prehistoric evidence of Chinese rice at Hemudu on the lower Yangtze River. Genetic contributions f rom indigenous peoples and f rom the Ming, Dutch, Qing,

one by one to go organic. Moreover,

and Japanese eras are considered; Or yza sativa’s biology is

they must be persuaded in a specif ic order, starting with the

introduced; old equipment is displayed; and political and

farmer owning the highest f ield on a slope, then his neighbor

economic implications are discussed. Children can learn

downhill and so forth, since irrigation water descends

rice-related idioms, and play with models of winnowers,

through the system of f ields by force of gravity.

grinders, and mortars to understand the traditional processes

AFTER

VISITING the mill, shop, and restaurant,

by which the chaff, husk, and bran were removed to make

tourists may wander the nearby f ields

white (polished) rice, and they are taught the nutritional

where, in season, local schoolchildren learn their ancestors’

differences between brown and white rice.

traditional practices and, in election season, scarecrows are decorated with election campaign f lags. Leaders in both townships see the move to organic as

Visitors to the museum can learn most everything there is to know about rice, therefore – except what it tastes like in its myriad local culinary forms. For that there are

an essential requirement to maintaining their reputation

thousands of opportunities throughout Taipei City and every

for quality, and with this their price advantage. Chishang

other city in Taiwan.

growers have also initiated a certif ication process by batch number so that each bag sold in supermarkets and restaurants island-wide can be traced right back to the specif ic date of harvest f rom a specif ic f ield. This was deemed necessary af ter decades of self-declared

FULi TOWNsHiP FARMERs’AssOCiATiON RiCE MiLL 富里鄉農會碾米加工廠

Add: 6 , Neighborhood 9, Luoshan Village, Fuli Township, Hualien County ( 花蓮縣富里鄉羅山村 9 鄰 6 號 ; at 310 -km marker of Hwy 9) Tel:

03 - 882-1705

Website:

www.fulifa.org.tw (Chinese)

“Chishang rice lunchbox” restaurants appearing in cities and

WANAN COMMUNiTY RiCE COUNTRY HALL 萬安社區稻米原鄉館

towns throughout Taiwan, without any control over where

Add:

the rice they sold actually originated, though they all made use of the wooden boxes characteristic of the original meals sold at Chishang Railway Station.

32

Travel in Taiwan

1-12, Neighborhood 1, Wanan

Village, Chishang Township, Taitung County(台東縣池上鄉萬安村 1鄰 1-12 號 ) Tel:

089 - 863 - 689

www.wanan197.blogspot.com (Chinese)

Website:

{ENGLisH & CHINESE}

Chishang Chishang rice lunchbox East Rift Valley Fuli

池上 池上便當 花東縱谷 富里

Photos / Sunny Su, Vision Int'l

which all rice produced within the township is given a


RICE

33

Travel in Taiwan


LET'S EAT!

More than a Mere Bowl of White Rice Where You Can Eat Dishes with Rice as a Major Ingredient

Recommended Restaurants Starting as a single stall in Taipei’s Shuanglian Market, Formosa Chang has grown into a chain of over 30 outlets in Taiwan and Japan. The chain’s signboard image, of a smiling owner Chang sporting a rich beard, is known by all. Rice with pork gravy, pronounced luroufan in Mandarin Chinese, is the signature dish. Below we give the flagship outlet. FORMOsA CHANG 鬍鬚張 Add: 62, Ningxia Rd., Taipei City (台北市寧夏路 62號 ) Tel: 02-2558 - 9489 Website: www.fmsc.com.tw

Rice with Pork Gravy This is a simple dish beloved by many in Taiwan and a must-eat for any visitor who wants to get a taste of “nativesoil Taiwan.” It might be a simple dish, but according to legend it can be traced all the way back to a Chinese emperor of the Zhou Dynasty (1046–256 BC). The ground pork for the grav y is stewed with a variety of f lavorings, including herbal spices and soybean sauce, and the grav y is served on a bed of white rice and accompanied by an egg cooked in soy sauce and some cilantro. Portions tend to be rather small, so you might want to order two bowls if you have a big appetite. Also, since the grav y is on the salty side, most diners will also order a bowl of soup.

Recommended Restaurants New Taipei City's Shimen District on the north coast, less than an hour’s drive from downtown Taipei, is Taiwan’s most famous zongzi source. It is said that in the past local sailors and fishermen made them a standard offering in prayers to the gods when asking for protection. They are sold almost everywhere in Shimen, but for maximum local flavor buy yours at the shops along the coastal highway near Shimen Stone Arch. LiU FAMiLY ROUZONG 劉家肉粽 Add: 30, Zhongyang Rd., Shimen District, New Taipei City ( 新北市石門區中央路 30 號 ) Tel: 02-2638 -1088 Website: www.liujiarice.com.tw (Chinese)

Called rouzong in Mandarin, or zongzi, this popular snack is the signature food of the annual Dragon Boat Festival, but in recent times the Taiwanese have taken to eating them, and sellers to selling them, right round the calendar. The traditional version of this nutritious – though slightly oily – snack consists of glutinous rice, chunk of meat (likely with a bit of fat), an egg yolk, peanuts, mushrooms, of ten tiny shrimp, and other ingredients, wrapped in bamboo leaves and tied with a string. In recent years there has been inventiveness with the ingredients, but the exterior is kept the same.

34

Travel in Taiwan

Photos / Vision Int'l

Glutinous-Rice Tamales


RICE

The most common way rice is consumed in Taiwan is in steamed form, usually from a smaller bowl, taken with a variety of vegetables, meats, and fish on plates placed on a table that is often round and sometimes has a “lazy Susan” for convenience. White steamed rice is the most likely choice for use as the base in the millions of lunchboxes consumed by local folk each day. There are also, of course, many more ways of consuming dishes featuring rice. A selection of these choices follows. By Rick Charette

Recommended Restaurants If your stomach gets to grumbling in the wee hours, head to the well-known line-up of attractive eateries on Fuxing South Rd. in Taipei just south of Xinyi Rd., always busy with nighthawks and early-bird risers. Perennial side-dish treats such as fried driedradish omelet, meat floss, and spongy dried wheat gluten are of course available, but try such popular new-era sidekicks as chou doufu (stinky beancurd, affectionately called “Chinese cheese”), and soy sauce-stewed bok choy – all authentically Taiwanese. Once the sun approaches, all these restaurants instantly become breakfast joints. YONGHE RiCE CONGEE AND sOY BEAN MiLK KiNG 永和清粥豆漿大王

Add: 102, Fuxing S. Rd., Sec. 2, Taipei City (台北市復興南路102 號 ) Tel: 02-2702-1228

Rice Congee Congee, pronounced zhou, is about as simple a dish as you can get. Water is boiled for hours with rice, resulting in a gooey mass. It is an age-old staple, and many locals can’t shake the cobwebs until they’ve had this, the most traditional of breakfasts. Before Taiwan’s “economic miracle” af ter the 1950s, rice was in short supply. The government reserved most rice for export, and dirt-cheap sweet potato was added as f iller. Today, sweet-potato zhou brings a wave of nostalgia among many seniors. It is silky to the palate and has a hint of pleasant sweetness. An addictive bit of zest is brought to both versions with side dishes such as crispy, crunchy sundried daikon radish and aromatic soy-preserved baby cucumber. In the f inancially f lourishing 1980s congee with side dishes became a surprise hit as a late-night snack among local city folk.

Recommended Restaurants Ay-Chung Flour-Rice Noodle, whose flagship outlet is in Taipei’s popular Ximending shopping and entertainment district, has been in business since 1975. Its signature dish is vermicelli, stewed with large intestine and dried bonito and served with sliced bamboo shoot, a pinch of cilantro and basil, and the tangy house chili sauce to taste. Expect a line-up. AY-CHUNG FLOUR-RiCE NOODLE 阿宗麵線 Add: 8, Emei St., Taipei City (台北市峨眉街 8 號之 1) Tel: 022388 - 8808 Website: www.ay-chung.com

Rice Noodles

{ENGLisH & CHINESE}

bantiao chou doufu

板條 臭豆腐 肉粽

glutinous-rice tamales (rouzong ) Fuxing South Rd.

mifen rice congee rice noodles rice with pork gravy Shimen Stone Arch Shimen District Shuanglian Market Ximending Xinyi Rd.

zongzi zhou

復興南路 米粉 清粥小菜 麵線 魯肉飯 石門洞 石門區 雙連市場 西門町 信義路 粽子 粥

Rice ground into f lour is an age-old staple in Chinese cuisine. In Taiwan, rice f lour is most commonly used in noodles, ranging f rom thin versions such as rice vermicelli, called mifen, to the broad, plump, descriptively named “plank noodles,” or bantiao, original to the Hakka people but now eaten by all.

35

Travel in Taiwan


Peculiar Taiwan

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et t C har

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l . Tal them il n i e ta pl to re f peo he over lot o n a py t e u e occ hav s giv i e , u p l d y e e t g yo le v ot ic y r iad st let t in und ve n o m a r f h g , rs a so ay er, mo racte ould at ion tent ion, ou m a h z y h i s ay, c , n s o at ter ese one s er t orga r n n d i e e r u l r c h e o u a C h y o d t an g ot of nd sh es and o and, ed in s ur b ’ sal ned s sta ll ne t’ ss n g e a a a n l n , h i i e p T d s c n bu bu il ade. f spa ardy,”u and s f ac lot o it h h u ra l l g’ t eys, a n w l a i l t , n d a o e l ui you d“ s iz gn wn ters ei r b i ble or me py i n d do c s h f u s n a t t r c n o a r c a n p s ch st na ad no ps o ta r i a urba large a sig -seen jor ro t of grou vege t f r e a f e o o h o m v f t o m o n er of ts on . ,”a b space n – a for sal ’ ten i pr im outle ar ian ars below o w r it That a ing a t e . d s e e n e ’ n g b e i v e g r e f o o v n e p t b i y H p a h “ b d a . s s n ere r t of uage f f la hich rs te level ), pa re th lang lot o t,”w racte e 素 a n ey’ a h ( e h t h r n t c e u t s e to ng know r, and of cies; ng“ n, th udy i eani ar ma t it io re st ay. lo e e h m o w p h p c , ) n m f e e r o w lot o a bov you’ u (租 eat c it s o l in ine,” e, and; z es gr ws if c c u i e a f i d n f t e n m lo ood sign beau ing“ ing a ed. G each void mean d appear a , ) Since n 藥 n zat io ao ( p”a st y l i nsho ice: y d t w a c a e a r p r p toing“ r as mean ok fo , o ) l n (當 ca ang ies; d r e t a e

n a w i Ta

36

Travel in Taiwan


LET'S GO OUT TONIGHT!

LET YOUR HAIR DOWN! ght at i N e s of th tspots m r a h h C st Nig n the e i t t g o n i H Indulg of Taipei’s Some

The city of Taip ei didn’t invent the word “hip,” a contender fo but it ’s certainly r the patent. Th is city that never some of the mo sleeps boast s st cutting-edge nightspots on th Entertainment of all flavors – is side of the g from über-posh lob clubs to cool ja lo zz venues, retro unges and e xclu e. bars , and under sive can be found. S ground music st op ag charms of the Ta ut on your clubbin’ best and get ready to e xp es -ipei night! erience the

Photos / Daemon Lee, Maggie Song

a C hu B y Lind

37

Travel in Taiwan


LET'S GO OUT TONIGHT!

18Group - Where You Are Always 18 Whoever said Taipei nightlife is boring hasn’t been out recently to one of the 18Group bars and clubs, all located in the heart of modern Xinyi District. With something that caters to every

R oo

age, 18Group makes it their mission to make you feel right at home. Service is their creed and is the

m 18

common thread woven through the four sister businesses: Babe 18, Room 18, Barcode, and The Den. Located in the Neo19 building, Room 18 is one of Taipei’s hottest spots. With two rooms, one for electronic music and another for hip-hop, this is Taipei’s watering hole for the trendy and upwardly mobile. Upon descending a dimly lit stairway, reminiscent of a pathway meandering through a secret, forbidden garden, you enter a room with minimal yet chic decorations and a backdrop complete with plenty of inviting, plush sofas. A cover charge of NT$700 may be on the pricier end, but it includes two drinks, and with the large number of regulars, it’s easy to see what keeps them coming back. Room 18 is only open on Wednesdays, Fridays, and Saturdays, but once you’re in, the party doesn’t stop until 5 am. Then there’s the standout cocktail menu, designed by Pete Kendall, an award-winning, internationally known bartender. The fascinating list of fancy cocktails features hand-crushed fresh fruit instead of conventional syrup, bringing out the creativity behind the mix. There may not seem to be much difference between using a food blender as opposed to a mortar and pestle, but our bartender explained that there are significant reasons for using the oldfashioned method. A blender cannot produce the same results as a mortar and pestle, which helps to extract the juices and pulverizes the fibrous surfaces of the fruit, while a food blender only breaks the food up but does not actually blend the essences of the fruit. Add: 88 Songren Rd. (台北市松仁路 88 號 ) Tel: (02) 2345 -2778 Website: www.room18 .com.tw

Babe 18 is, more accurately, a “daughter” rather than a “sister” club of Room 18, specially fitted for younger club-goers. Set a couple hundred meters away from Room 18, it has garnered positive reviews since it first opened. With all-you-can-drink specials and cheap admission, Babe 18 draws the young college crowd. It not only imports the trendiest Japanese hip-hop talent but also often serves as a venue for huge parties. Add: B1, 18 Songshou Rd., Taipei City (台北市松壽路18 號 B1) Tel: 0930 -785 - 018

c od

e

Barcode, located on the 5th f loor of Neo 19, is considered one of the poshest clubs in Taipei. There’s a large indoor balcony as well as an interior area, both stylishly furnished with full bars and bartenders willing to make anything you ask for. With its intimate and laid-back aura and extensive beverage menu, your experience limited only by your imagination, Barcode is the nightspot of choice for many Taiwanese celebrities. Within Barcode, if you’re observant you may notice the discreet entrance leading into The Den, an exclusive VIP lounge where membership is by invitation only. The Den brings to fruition the avant-garde concept of a bar-within-a-bar. With its own chef and independent kitchen, The Den’s menu features food that comforts and surprises. Cozy ambience, top-notch service, good music, delicious cocktails, fine food and, of course, Taipei’s most upwardly mobile – what more can you ask for? Add: 5F, 22 Songshou Rd. (台北市松壽路22 號 5F) Tel: 0920 -168 -269

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Travel in Taiwan

Let's chill! Photos / Maggie Song, Sunny Su

B ar


Brown Sugar – Jazz Up Your Taipei Nights

NIGHTCLUBS

In Taipei, jazz is synonymous with Brown Sugar, but there’s more to this sweet spot than what meets the eye. With its reputation for some of the best live music, its delicious menu is often overlooked. Brown Sugar, located on Songren Road in the Xinyi District, certainly lives up to its self-description as a place where “music lovers can enjoy live

Riv

bands, food lovers can relish each mouthful and satisf y each craving, wine lovers will appreciate the extensive wine menu, and party-lovers can let their hair down.” All in all, Brown Sugar is the perfect combination of the laid-back, the trendy, and the fashionable. Add: 101 Songren Rd. (台北市松仁路101號 ) Tel: 0800 - 604 - 888 Website: www.brownsugarlive.com

Riverside Music Café – Music Is Your Soul Located next to the Taipower Building, Riverside Music Café has earned a reputation for being the spot for quality live music. Geddy Lin, the owner, is an experienced guitarist and passionate lover of music who opened Riverside envisioning a place where musicians can play their own thing. In this spirit every Monday is open-jam night, when anyone can get in line for his or her chance to stand in the spotlight. Musicians love the club’s laidback atmosphere and its state-of-the-art sound system, but the ultimate draw is the aura surrounding Riverside – there’s no pressure and no audience to please, only understanding fellow musical talent. Musicians love it, and the audience accepts all who brave the stage, because at Riverside music is being explored and created.

{ENGLisH & CHINESE}

Add: B1, 2, Lane 244, Roosevelt Rd., Sec. 3, Taipei City (台北市羅斯福路三段 244 巷 2 號 B1) Tel: (02) 2368 -7310 Website: www.riverside.com.tw

Geddy Lin Xinyi District

林正如 信義區

er s

id e


FESTIVAL

Welcoming the Year of the Rabbit and the ROC’s 100th Year This Year’s Taiwan Lantern Festival Will Light Up the County of Miaoli By Kurt Weidner

Each year, the official Taiwan Lantern Festival is staged by a chosen county or city government. This year the honors go, for the first time, to the county of Miaoli in northwestern Taiwan. year’s festival will be extra-special, as it will not only be a welcoming celebration for the Year of the Rabbit’s entry but will also be a centennial celebration for the Republic of China, founded after the Chinese Revolution that started near the end of 1911. As in previous editions of the festival, the giant main lantern and the smaller-sized side lanterns will be in the shape of the zodiac animal for the year. There will also be a large number of other rabbit-shaped lanterns, bringing the total number of rabbit lanterns to 100, the number of years the ROC has been in existence. Furthermore, centenarians and those born in any Year of the Rabbit will be invited to attend the lighting of the lanterns ceremony. Another highlight of the festival will be an attempt to break the Guinness world record for most traditional Chinese lanterns assembled in one place, which currently stands at 47,759 and was set during the Taiwan Lantern Festival in 2008 staged in Tainan County. The Miaoli organizers have also come up with a slew of great new ideas to make this festival even more attractive and memorable than its predecessors. There will be a “Bombing the Dragon” ritual, long a part of Miaoli’s annual Lantern Festival celebrations organized by the local Hakka communities. A rich entertainment program will include stage performances featuring theater, music, and dance, and there will be a street parade a la Disneyland with floats decorated with rabbit lanterns. During the 12 days of the festival there will be many options for visitors to tour the countryside and scenic areas of Miaoli, as there will be shuttle-bus connections to all 18 townships and a wide range of package tours for domestic and international travelers on offer.

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Travel in Taiwan

How to Get There Railway: Take a conventional train to Zhunan Railway Station (about 1.5 hrs from Taipei, 3.5 hrs from Kaohsiung). During the event there will be shuttle buses running between

Photos / Vision Int'l

THIS

the station and the festival grounds.

By Car Take National Freeway No. 1 (Sun Yat-sen Freeway) to the Toufen Exit; follow Prov. Hwy No. 1 south; turn right onto Yongzhen Rd., Sec. 2 and follow the signs to the festival grounds .

Taiwan Lantern Festival in Miaoli Date: Feb.

Miaoli County

17 ~ 28 , 2011

Venue: Zhunan Sports Park,

Zhunan Township, Miaoli County ( 苗栗縣竹南鎮竹南運動公園 ) Organizer: Miaoli County Taichung City

Government Website:www.miaoli.gov.tw

Yanshui

Kaohsiung City


LANTERN FESTIVAL

Other Lantern Festival Activities around Taiwan TAIPEI LANTERN FESTIVAL 臺北燈節 Staged for the first time in 1990, the annual Taipei Lantern Festival is mother of the many major Lantern Festival celebrations now staged in many cities around Taiwan each year. Due to the event’s huge popularity, the festival has been expanded with each edition; it features a huge theme lantern in the shape of the zodiac animal of the year and many lantern-exhibition areas with lanterns in all shapes, sizes, and colors. Date: Feb.

11 ~ 20 , 2011

Venue: Area around Taipei City Hall and grounds of Sun Yat-sen Memorial Hall

( 台北市政府周邊, 國父紀念館 ) Organizer: Taipei City Government ( 台北市政府 ) Website: english.taipei.gov.tw

TAIPEI COUNTY PINGXI INTERNATIONAL SKY LANTERN FESTIVAL 平溪國際天燈節

The old mining town of Pingxi in Taipei County is an excellent destination for daytrips from the capital offering beautiful landscapes, historic sights, and a fun train ride on a branch railway line. Usually a quiet town, once a year huge crowds gather here for an unforgettable sight, the releasing of thousands of paper lanterns into the night sky. Definitely a festival not to be missed! Date: Feb.

06 , Feb. 12 , Feb. 17 , 2011

Venue: Pingxi Township, Taipei County ( 平溪鄉台北縣 ) Organizer: Taipei County Government ( 新北市 ) 未知英文名 Website: www.tpc.gov.tw

KAOHSIUNG LANTERN FESTIVAL 高雄燈會藝術節 In response to the great success of the Taipei Lantern Festival, the city of Kaohsiung first staged its own large-scale version in 2001 when it was chosen to organize the Taiwan Lantern Festival. From that year on the banks of Love River, and more recently the area around Glory Pier as well, have been the venues for memorable lantern displays. Incorporating the city’s river and harbor waters, the festival attracts visitors with mesmerizing shows of lights and reflections. Date: Feb.

12 ~ 28 , 2011

Venue: Area around Glory Pier and Love River, Kaohsiung

( 高雄市光榮碼頭及愛河週邊 ) Website: www.kcg.gov.tw

Taipei City

Pingxi

TAICHUNG LANTERN FESTIVAL 中台灣元宵燈會 Since 2006, Taiwan’s third-largest city has delighted lantern-lovers (especially the little ones) with its own version of the Lantern Festival celebrations. Using famous cartoon characters such as Snoopy (2006), Piglet (2007), Mickey Mouse & Minnie Mouse (2008), Baseball Bulls (2009), and Tigger (2010) for the theme lantern designs, the organizers have added a playful note to the festival. Will it be Bugs Bunny in 2011, the Year of the Rabbit? Date: February

10 ~ 20 , 2011

Venue: Wenxin Forest Park, Taichung City ( 台中市文心森林公園 ) Organizer: Taichung City Government ( 台中市政府 ) Website: english.tccg.gov.tw/

TAINAN YANSHUI BEEHIVE ROCKETS FESTIVAL 台南鹽水蜂炮 Visiting the small town of Yanshui in Tainan County and taking part in the annual Beehive Rockets Festival is probably the most adrenalin-inducing experience you will ever have on this island, and likely anywhere else. Multiple mobile launch platforms will fire hundreds of thousands of tiny rockets into the sky – and into the crowds of revelers. Proper protection (full-face motorcycle helmet, thick scarf, and thick winter coat) is essential if you want to leave the festival exactly as you arrived. Date: Feb.

17 , 2011

Venue: Wu Temple, Yanshui Junior High School and other locations in Yanshui Township

( 鹽水鎮、 武廟、 鹽水國中等地 ) Website: www.tainan.gov.tw

web 2 .tainan.gov.tw/Yanshuei

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Travel in Taiwan


UPCOMING Festivals and Events from January to March 2011 APRIL 25~MAY

Now~MAR 6

MAR 4~7

Taichung County Mazu International Festival

Maolin Butterfly Valley 2-Year Butterfly-Viewing Activity 20102011 茂林紫蝶幽谷雙年賞蝶活動

Asian Dragon Dance Open Championship

Location: Maolin National Scenic Area Tel: 0800-600766 (Maolin National Scenic Area Administration) Organizer: Qingjing Farm Website: www.maolin-nsa.gov.tw/active/ butterfly2010/en/

Location: Miaoli Arena, Miaoli City Tel: (02) 2720-8889 ext. 6478 Organizer: Taichung County Government Website: www.universe.com.tw/miaoli2010/ (2010)

大甲媽祖國際觀光文化節 Location: Da Jia Jenn Lann Temple, Taichung Tel: (04)2220-3585 (Taichung City Government) Website: www.tccg.gov.tw/

亞洲舞龍公開賽

MAR 19~31

APR 1

Bagua Eagle Watching and Hiking Activities

Bitou Longdong Spring Light Hiking Activities

鷹揚八卦全民賞鷹健行活動

鼻頭龍洞春光健行活動

Location: Bagua Mountain Tourist Center Tel: (04) 2331-2678 (Tri-Mountain National Scenic Area Administration) Website: www.trimt-nsa.gov.tw

Location: Bitou Cape Trail, Longdong Bay Park, Longdong Four Seasons Park, Aodi Seafood Street, Fulong Tel: (02) 2499-1115 (Northeast and Yilan Coast National Scenic Area Administration) Website: www.necoast-nsa.gov.tw

MAR 19-20

MAR-APR

Tour de Taiwan – Taipei Stage

Zhuzihu Calla Lily Season

國際自由車環台公路大賽 臺北市站 Location: Around Taipei City Hall Tel: (07) 355-6978, (02) 2570-2330 ext. 606 (Chinese Taipei Cycling Association, Taipei City Government) Website: www.cycling.org.tw

竹子湖海芋季 Location: Zhuzihu, Beitou District, Taipei City Organizer: Department of Economic Development, Taipei City Government Tel: 1999, (02) 2720-8889 ext. 6586 Website: www.doed.taipei.gov.tw

For more information on upcoming festivals and events visit the website of the Tourism Bureau at http://eng.taiwan.net.tw and click on “ Festivals, ” or call the 24-hour toll-free Travel Information Hotline at 0800-011765.

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Travel in Taiwan


ON STAGE STAGE/OFF / OFFSTAGE STAGE

“Taiwan Has a Unique Culture” Visiting the Ten Drum Culture Village in Tainan Grammy Award-nominated Ten Drum Art Percussion Group has created a fascinating culture park centered on traditional drumming on the site of a disused sugar refinery in Tainan County. By Steven Crook

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Travel in Taiwan


Photo / Ten Drum

TEN DRUM

45

Travel in Taiwan


ON STAGE / OFF STAGE

Taiwan toured what's now called Ten Drum Culture Village, met with the group's founder and “regimental commander,” Hsieh Shih, and took in a thrilling performance. “If visitors to this village and the audience at our shows go home with just one idea in their heads, I hope it's this: Taiwan has a unique culture,” Hsieh informed us. “We hope they can better understand Taiwan's original and authentic folk culture.” Some people in Taiwan today consider folk arts such as drumming to be somewhat low-class, and zhentou (the gaudily

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Travel in Taiwan

made-up and ornately attired squads that perform during religious celebrations) to be synonymous with gang culture and delinquency. However, Hsieh doesn't try to obscure the links between drumming and the raucous festivities that mark deities' birthdays and other events of spiritual importance – rather, he builds on them. One piece the ensemble regularly performs features eight men and women dressed as, and moving about in the manner of, the mythical Eight Generals (ba jia jiang). Another, inspired by the well-known Song jiang Battle Array tradition, includes martial-arts moves. Hsieh, who has composed the vast ma jority of the 60-plus works in Ten Drum's repertoire, has also drawn on episodes in Taiwan's history. One of the f ive pieces on Island of Drums, a

Ten Drum performers must be capable of striking 150 to 180 beats per minute for several minutes at a time 2009 Ten Drum album that scored a Grammy nomination in the Best Traditional World Music Album category, depicts in sound the coming to Taiwan of Koxinga, the Ming Dynasty loyalist who in 1662 evicted the Dutch f rom their colonial base in what's now Tainan (and f rom the rest of Taiwan). Born in 1972, Hsieh Shih has of ten spoken of his desire to modernize and popularize Taiwanese drumming and to win a place for it in global culture. His father managed a Daoist temple, so it's hardly surprising that drumming is in his blood. He's been beating drums since he was three years old, and he founded Ten Drum in 2000. The “Ten” in the troupe's English name is a direct translation of his given name, “Shih.” Around 6,000 students at over 100 elementary and high schools throughout Taiwan have attended Ten Drum percussion classes. Individuals who learn drumming don't just acquire musical skills – they also strengthen their muscles, improve their posture and physical coordination, and release stress. “Most ever yone can learn to drum, if they've a passion to learn,” said Chiu Ya-hui, chief of performance at the village. “Mastering the basic steps is the most dif f icult, and not ever yone has the necessar y patience to learn them. Of course, dif ferent people learn at dif ferent speeds.”

Photos / Ten Drum

TRADITIONAL

Taiwan moves to the beat of a drum. During temple rites, massive mechanized thuds alternate with the tolling of a bell. When chanting litany, Daoist priests keep up a constant tick-tocking on small, f ish-shaped solid-wood drums. During the solemn rites every September 28 at Taiwan's Conf ucian temples, drums of f ive different sizes are played. Even in the 21st century, drums, bells, gongs, f ireworks, and f irecrackers form the soundtrack for religious parades and temple celebrations, and thanks to the efforts of Ten Drum Art Percussion Group, a performance and educational troupe, drumming – inspired by, yet not beholden to, tradition – is becoming a part of Taiwan's modern urban culture too. The group has performed at the Summer Olympics in Sydney in 2000, at the 2002 World Cup in South Korea, and more recently in the Czech Republic. Since 2007, Ten Drum's base has been a disused sugar ref inery in the south Taiwan city of Tainan. On one of those beautif ully sunny and supremely comfortable days that make winter travel in southwest Taiwan so pleasurable, Travel in


TEN DRUM

The troupe has performed overseas at the Olympics, the World Cup, and in the Czech Republic

The group’s vigorous routines require drummers to be in top physical shape

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Travel in Taiwan


ON STAGE / OFF STAGE

TEN

Drum Culture Village has three aims, said This isn't the only outdoor exercise that troupe Wu Tsuei-min, the village's manager. “Firstly, professionals are expected to do. Each day begins with a we want to present Ten Drum Art Percussion Group and f ive-kilometer jog. The importance of rigorous physical its music. Secondly, we want to preserve the history of preparation became clear when rehearsals began. Ten Drum Taiwan's sugar industry. Thirdly, we want this place to be an performers must be capable of striking 150 to 180 beats per ecological attraction.” minute for several minutes at a time, while at the same time To underscore Ten Drum's commitment to the second maintaining postures that would challenge a gymnast. and third goals, Wu showed us two very different parts of According to Wu, the drummers of ten suffer backache the f ive-hectare site. The f irst was the smokestack that and shoulder strain. Wrist injuries can also be a problem. visitors see long before they enter the “Most everyone can learn to drum, Surprisingly – given how loud village, and which now bears the words unamplif ied drums can be – if they’ve a passion to learn” “Ten Drum” in English and Chinese. The hearing loss isn't a threat. interior has been cleaned and f itted with lights; visitors can Just as the performers need considerable strength and step in, touch the old bricks, and gaze up at a tiny circle of stamina, the equipment that's on the receiving end requires blue sky, 67 meters above. maintaining and, f rom time to time, replacing. During the She then led us to an area where staff cultivates plants warm-up for the morning show we enjoyed, a drumstick attracting butterf lies. Looking closely at the leaves, we shattered. The nonchalant way in which the young man spotted scores of crimson caterpillars. Nearby, we met an stepped back f rom his drum, picked up a replacement, and eight-strong group of f ull-time drummers tending small then seamlessly rejoined the performance made me think vegetable plots. Here they grow tomatoes, chilies, pumpkins, this was nothing out of the ordinary. strawberries, and herbs; neither pesticides nor chemical When I asked him about this later, Yang Yu-wen, “vice fertilizers are used. regimental commander” at the village, told me that on average sticks break “one or two times during each f ulllength show.”

FOR

Chang is one of a dying breed. Nowadays, no more than six or seven traditional drum makers are still active in Taiwan. The woodwork is outsourced so Chang can concentrate on preparing the leather (usually f rom water buffalo). He stretches hides over drum cases, then tightens and adjusts them until the membrane is taut and the sound is just right. Working with f resh hides can be very unpleasant on account of the smell, and Chang says this is one reason why so few young people are interested in following in his footsteps. According to Chang, the drums used by the troupe typically last three to f ive years. So what is a Ten Drum show like? There are lighting effects and dry-ice blows across the

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Travel in Taiwan

Photos / Ten Drum, Sting Chen

HARDWARE AFICIONADOS, the Ching Ci Lin Drum Factory is perhaps the most fascinating place in the village. The word “factory” implies a production line, but this is really an artisan's workshop where Chang Chi-hsiang, an outgoing man in his f if ties, answers questions about the drum-making process while working on instruments of all shapes and sizes.


TEN DRUM Ten Drum Art Percussion Group 十鼓擊樂團

326, Wenhua Rd., Sec. 2, Rende District, Tainan City

HOW TO GET THERE

Add:

台南市仁德鄉文華路二段 326 號

Tel :

0 6 - 26 6 - 2225

{ENGLisH & CHINESE}

bajiajiang

Master craftsman Chang Chi-hsiang practices a now rare art

stage, and it goes without saying that some sections are very loud. However, it's not a rock concert – some passages are slow and subtle, while others showcase breathtaking speed and dazzling dexterity. The drums’ skins are sometimes hammered, sometimes tapped with f ingertips. The rims and sides are smacked to produce clattering rhythms.

Other types of instrument – Western as well as Eastern – make guest appearances, and at times just one of the people on the stage beats a drum while the others strike kung f u poses or perform dance moves. Ten Drum performances are always more than simple aural stimulation – and never less than stirring.

Baoan Railway Station Chang Chi-hsiang Ching Ci Lin Drum Factory Chiu Ya-hui Hsieh Shih Koxinga Rende Songjiang Battle Array Ten Drum Culture Village Wu Tsuei-min Yang Yu-wen

zhentou

八家將 保安車站 張吉祥 清溪林 製鼓廠 邱雅慧 謝十 鄭成功 仁德 宋江陣 十鼓文化村 吳翠敏 楊有文 陣頭

TEN DRUM The village, which is open from 9 am to 5 pm seven days a week, is located in Rende, just south of Tainan City, within walking distance of Baoan Railway Station. Reservations are required for weekdays but on weekends they’re not necessary. Tickets cost NT$300 for adults and NT$280 for students of all ages. Tours led by an English-speaking guide can be arranged if you contact the village – tel: 06-2662225 / 0988-750-572 – a few days in advance; the charge is NT$2,000 and the tour lasts two-and-a-half hours.


HISTORY

THE DUTCH IN TAINAN, THEN AND NOW

The Dutch surrender

Exploring the Period of European Influence in Taiwan’s Old Capital Even after the recent merger of Tainan City and Tainan County, Tainan is still only Taiwan’s fifth-largest metropolis. Yet as the island’s former capital, and the place where Han Chinese culture gained its foothold on the island, any attempt to understand Taiwan’s history must address this bastion of culture and tradition.

TAINAN’S

current population of 1.9 million is overwhelmingly of Han Chinese descent. But if you could travel back in time to the second quarter of the 17th century, you would f ind a multicultural, multilingual settlement. In addition to Chinese migrants speaking minnanhua (a language now known as Taiwanese), members of the aboriginal Tsou and Siraya tribes, and Japanese pirates and traders, you’d see a surprising number of Europeans. That’s because, between 1624 and 1662, parts of what is now Tainan were controlled by the Dutch East India Company (also known by its initials in Dutch, VOC). The VOC was a privately-owned enterprise that by force of arms opened up many areas of Asia to European exploitation. The VOC’s Tainan colony – like its outposts in Indonesia and Japan – was a commercial venture. Sugar, rice, deerskins, and venison were major exports. Signif icant quantities of spices, ceramics, and silver passed through Tainan – then called Tayuan – en route to and from Japan and China. Even though the Dutch occupation of Taiwan was brief and ended a long time ago, this period is crucial to the island’s history. According to Lien Heng in his General Histor y of Taiwan, widely considered the f irst comprehensive history of the island, “As very early Taiwanese history has no written sources, the history of Taiwan was started by the Dutch.” Before the arrival of the Europeans, neither the Tsou nor the Siraya had any tradition of writing. Dutch missionaries working among the latter created a written version of Sirayan, which was used long af ter the pastors had gone – but that’s another story.

TO LEARN

more about Tainan’s Dutch period, Travel in Taiwan traveled to the southern city. At Chikan Tower we meet up with our

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Travel in Taiwan

guide for the day, Tsai Yi-ming of the Development Association of Tainan Cultural and Heritage Interpretation. The full Chinese name of the tower is “Chikan Lou,” meaning “red-roofed tower,” but this is in fact derived from a Sirayan place name. It stands atop the ruins of a fortress built by the Dutch. The VOC called this stronghold Fort Provintia, and what survives from that era will give you an idea of just how robust it was. According to Tsai, the main Dutch building survived until late in the 19th century, when it was demolished on the orders of Liu Ming-chuan. Liu, Taiwan’s governor at the time, feared the French – then embroiled in a war with China – would seize it and use it as a military base. At f irst glance, there’s nothing remotely Dutch about Chikan Tower. One of the two pagoda-like buildings standing on the raised foundation now serves as a temple. Inside you’ll likely see high-school students beseeching Wenchang Dijun, the God of Literature/Academia, for success in important examinations. The surroundings have been turned into a Chinese garden, complete with carp-f illed ponds and manicured trees. Tsai explains that when Fort Provintia was built in 1653, the seashore was less than 20 meters away. He points to the west, and the downward slope of the street is obvious. The original entrance to the fort has long been sealed, and few visitors pay attention to it. But those hoping to know more about what the fort looked like in the 17th century can glean a lot from this spot if they have a guide as knowledgeable as ours. Tsai tells us that the long-gone doors opened outwards, making them less easy to break through with a battering ram. The imprint of the stairs can still be seen. As in many European bastions they spiral up rightwards, giving swordwielding defenders an advantage. The bricks on the f loor are

Map / National Taiwan Museum; Photo / Sting Chen

By Steven Crook


TAINAN

Period map showing Dutch for tifications in today ’ s Tainan

arranged in chevrons so the surface would be less slippery when wet – an important consideration when most arrivals came by boat.

corroded of all – is more than 300 years old. According to Tsai, it could f ire a small cannonball two kilometers.

FORT

Zeelandia is also where VOC rule came to an end. Because he evicted the Europeans, Zheng Chengneighborhood of Anping gong (better known to Western historians as Koxinga) is hailed is our next destination. throughout the Chinese world as a great patriot. Were it not Even now, the ruins of Fort Zeelandia, the VOC headquarters for him, it’s conceivable the Dutch would have retained Taiwan in Taiwan, are Anping’s most important and most impressive until World War II. landmark. The site is today off icially called Anping Fort. Koxinga's father was Chinese, his mother Japanese. He was Earthquakes, typhoons, and the pilfering of bricks have fervent in his support for China’s Ming Dynasty as it was being reduced the original structure, completed in 1634, to a ruin. overthrown by Manchu invaders from the north. The Manchus But this place is no less interesting for it. founded the Qing Dynasty in 1644, but The fort had a much larger footprint than The Dutch occupation of Ming loyalists kept up the f ight in the current site implies. In recent years, the Taiwan was brief but crucial China's south. authorities have been labeling remnants to the island’s history By the 1650s, Koxinga was known that until recently were hidden on adjacent to the Dutch; he traded with them to privately-owned plots of land and opening these to the public. fund his struggle. Soon he was being pushed out of the Chinese The largest surviving section is a massive brick-and-coral mainland, so decided to establish a new base on Taiwan. On wall. It is heavily weathered and battered, yet looks ready to April 2, 1661, Koxinga’s forces landed and surrounded Fort survive a few more centuries. From the watchtower (a 1970s Zeelandia and Fort Provintia. The garrison of the latter addition) decent views of the city and coast can be had, but surrendered two days later. your time is better spent inside the two on-site museums. Victory didn't come so easily at Fort Zeelandia. VOC soldiers In one there's a model of the complex as it looked in the fought off Chinese efforts to storm the fortress. The assault 1650s. A Protestant chapel stood at the center, Tsai explains, turned into a siege. while just outside there was an execution ground. Several By the end of the year the situation inside Fort Zeelandia cannons are on display, but only one – oddly, it's the least

THE SEASIDE

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Travel in Taiwan


HISTORY

Resting place for Dutch soldiers ’bones

Holland Days classic food treats

For t Zeelandia ruins

Tait & Co Merchant House

Chikan Tower

Museum at the For t Zeelandia site

The ruins of Fort Zeelandia are Anping’s most important and most impressive landmark

AFTER

a quick lunch of shrimp rolls (one of Anping's signature snack foods) on Yanping Old Street, we explore the streets near the fort, and pause outside a small temple called the Zhoulong Hall. The narrow lane beside it, says Tsai, was originally a boundary. The land between it and Fort Zeelandia was reserved for VOC employees; Chinese, including aborigines, resided east of the line. Near Fort Zeelandia, the Tait & Co Merchant House – built in the 1870s for British businessmen who dealt in tea – now houses an excellent museum devoted to the Dutch period. While here, spare some time for the old warehouse behind it. It's known as Anping Tree House on account of the huge

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banyans that have grown through the roof. Koxinga enjoyed the element of surprise because he was able to land north of Fort Zeelandia at Luermen, out of the range of Dutch guns. This enabled his army to swif tly cut communications between it and Fort Provintia. A battle was fought near Luermen, and for 300 years the bones of VOC soldiers laid in the soil near Sicao Dazhong Temple. At f irst glance, this folk shrine seems little different from other places of worship. However, immediately behind it there is a locked concrete bunker containing Dutch bones gathered from the surrounding area in the late 1960s. The ossuary isn't usually open to the public, but Travel in Taiwan is invited to ask the presiding deity for permission to view the Dutch remains. We pray, present sacrif icial incense, and then cast divining blocks (of ten called “moon boards” or, in Taiwanese, poe) to learn if the god thinks our request is worthy.

Photos / Sting Chen, Vision Int'l

was desperate: There was little food lef t, and almost half of the 2,300 Europeans had died. The survivors surrendered on February 1, 1662. They were allowed to leave with their personal possessions, archives, and suff icient provisions to reach Batavia, but Koxinga got to keep the VOC's cash, merchandise, and weaponry.


TAINAN met with Mr. Goedhart. He wanted to The answer is yes, and a temple promote Holland Days, while I wanted volunteer holds a bowl of smoldering to do something to make Tainan better incense to cleanse and protect while we known internationally. I wanted to draw peek inside. I count 49 earthenware jars on Tainan’s history and culture, and see f illed with skulls, femurs, and red-cloth if we could link it to the present day,” bags that contain small bone fragments. says Cheng. It's a sober yet engrossing few minutes. “We decided October would be a good Rupert Brooke's poem T he Soldier comes to month. The weather then is usually very mind: “...some corner of a foreign f ield.” nice,” he says. “I told him that I hoped -themed visit to to cooperate by doing a food promotion, Tainan needn't so in 2008 I asked the NTIO to teach dwell on battles and bones, however, us how to prepare some Dutch dishes.” especially if it's timed to coincide Cheng recalls that the lady who showed with the annual Holland Days (www. his staff how to prepare oliebollen – a tainanhollanddays.com). This fun-f illed kind of donut f illed with dried sultanas celebration of the city's historic links and other fruit – was none other than with the Netherlands is usually held in Goedhart’s wife. Throughout the months October. of October and Menno Holland Days is a fun-filled Goedhart, the celebration of the city’s historic November, the hotel offers man behind links with the Netherlands several Dutch Holland Days, for eight years headed the Netherlands Trade dishes as part of its “Tasting the World” buffet on the second f loor. and Investment Off ice (NTIO) in Taipei. Tainan folk are said to be diff icult to Off icially retired yet still very active, he win over when it comes to foreign food, continues to develop relations between but erwtensoep, a pea-and-pork soup so the two countries. Another person who’s thick it’s almost a stew, has turned out helped Holland Days become a success is to be a culinary hit, as have bite-sized Marco Cheng, general manager of Tainan’s beef snacks called bitterballen. Evergreen Plaza Hotel (www.evergreenAnyone wishing to further explore hotels.com/branch/Tainan), a 197-room Dutch history in Taiwan is urged to pick f ive-star establishment beside the city’s up a copy of the book Goedhart co-wrote cultural center. with Cheryl Robbins (a frequent Travel in “Af ter I was assigned to Tainan, I

A Dutch

Taiwan contributor). It’s called The Real Taiwan and the Dutch: Traveling Notes f rom the Netherlands Representative (Taiwan Interminds Publishing Inc., 2010; ISBN 978-986-6789-77-9). EVERGREEN PLAZA HOTEL (TAiNAN) 台糖長榮酒店 (台南 ) Add: No.1, Ln. 336 , Sec. 3, Zhonghua E. Rd., East Dist., Tainan City 台南市東區中華東路三段 336 巷 1號

Tel : 0 6 - 2 8 9 - 9 9 8 8 Website: w w w . t s c l e i s u r e . c o m . t w / h o t e l {ENGLisH & CHINESE}

Anping Anping Fort Anping Tree House Chikan Tower divining blocks

General History of Taiwan Koxinga Lien Heng Liu Ming-chuan Luermen Marco Cheng

minnanhua Minquan Road Sicao Dazhong Temple Siraya Tribe Development Association of Tainan Cultural and Heritage Interpretation Tait & Co Merchant House Tayuan Tsai Yi-ming Tsou Tribe Wenchang Dijun Yanping Old Street Zheng Cheng-gong Zhoulong Hall

安平 安平古堡 安平樹屋 赤崁樓 筊 臺灣通史 國姓爺 連橫 劉銘傳 鹿耳門 鄭東波 閩南話 民權路 四草大眾廟 西拉雅族 台南市文化 古蹟導覽解說 發展協會 德記洋行 大員 蔡義明 鄒族 文昌帝君 延平老街 鄭成功 周龍殿

53

Travel in Taiwan


Advertisement HOTEL INFORMATION

Hotels of Taiwan

V

THE GRAND HOTEL 圓山大飯店

Taipei 台北

isitors to Taiwan have a wide range of choice when it comes to accommodation. From five-star luxur y hotels that meet the

highest international standards, to affordable business hotels, to hot-

spring and beach resort hotels, to privately-run homestays located in the countr yside there is a place to stay that satisfies ever y traveler’s

NO. OF ROOMS: 487 (Suites: 57) ROOM RATES: Single/DBL NT$ 5,700 – 11,000 Suite NT$ 15,000 – 28,000 DESK PERSONNEL SPEAK: English, French, Spanish, and Japanese

needs. What all hotels of Taiwan — small and big, expensive and affordable — have in common is that ser ve and hospitality are always of the highest standards. The room rates in the following list have been checked for each hotel, but are subject to change without notice.

RESTAURANTS: Western, Cantonese, Northern China Style Dumplings, tea house, coffee shop SPECIAL FEATURES: Grand Ballroom, conference rooms for 399 people, 10 breakout rooms, business center, fitness center, sauna, Olympic-size swimming pool, tennis courts, billiards

Room rates at the hotels apply.

1 Chung shan N. Rd., Sec. 4, Taipei City, 10461 R.O.C 10 4 61台北市中山北 路 四段1號

Tel: 886.2.2886.8888 Fax: 886.2.2885.2885

www.grand-hotel.org

GRAND FORMOSA REGENT TAIPEI Taipei 台 北

台北晶華酒店

PACIFIC BUSINESS CENTER

太平洋商務中心

Taipei 台北

MIR AMAR G ARDEN TA IPEI 美麗信花園酒店

Taipei 台 北

NO. OF ROOMS: 93 rooms, 28 offices, 4 meeting rooms ROOM RATES: Superior Room NT$ 5,600+10% Executive Room NT$ 6,000+10% Junior Room NT$ 6,800+10% Excellency Room NT$ 7,800+10% Premium Suite NT$ 8,800+10%

NO. OF ROOMS: 203 ROOM RATES: Deluxe Room Business Room Executive Deluxe Room Boss Suite Premier Suite

English, Japanese, Chinese

GENERAL MANAGER: Te Yao

RESTAURANTS:

DESK PERSONNEL SPEAK: Chinese, English

DESK PERSONNEL SPEAK: English, Japanese, Mandarin, Taiwanese, Cantonese

NO. OF ROOMS: 538 ROOM RATES:

Superior Room Deluxe Room Junior Suite Corner Suite Residence Elite Suite

NT$ NT$ NT$ NT$ NT$ NT$

DESK PERSONNEL SPEAK:

12,000 13,000 20,500 30,500 17,000 24,500

Szechuan & Cantonese Cuisine, Japanese Cuisine, Steak House & Teppanyaki, Lounge Bar, Buffet, Café

SPECIAL FEATURES: Executive business center, fitness center, sauna, rooftop swimming pool, SPA, ballroom and convention facilities, parking, laundry service, 24-hour room service, wireless Internet, airport transportation service

54

SPECIAL FEATURES: Free wireless acess, VIP lounge, private meeting rooms and secretarial services, private office rental services, high-speed ADSL broadband Internet, non-smoking floors, safety deposit box, laundry service, limousine service, airport transportation, basement parking, gym

TAIPEI GARDEN HOTEL 台北花園大酒店

NO. OF ROOMS: 241 ROOM RATES: NT$ 7,000 NT$ 8,000 NT$ 9,000 NT$ 13,000 NT$ 18,000

GENERAL MANAGER: Linda Chu

RESTAURANTS: Rain Forest Café, Garden Terrace, Lounge 81

Superior Room Premier Room Deluxe Room Junior Suite Garden Suite

Taipei 台 北

NT$ 7,000 NT$ 8,000 NT$ 9,000 NT$ 10,000 NT$ 16,000

(All rates are subject to 10% service charge)

DESK PERSONNEL SPEAK:

Japanese, English, Chinese

RESTAURANTS: La Fusion Restaurant,

La Fusion Bakery, Hanazono Japanese Restaurant, La Fusion Bar, La Fusion Deli

SPECIAL FEATURES:

SPECIAL FEATURES:Business center, Pyramid Club - luxury executive floor, multifunctional room, Internet service, 32-inch LCD TV, garden terrace, bar, fitness club, outdoor pool, sauna, spa, aromatherapy, car park

Fitness Center, Business Center, Conference & Dining Facilities; (Rooms Facilities) 32” LCD TV/Pay Broadband Internet Access/ Multi Channel Satellite TV with Domestic and Foreign Programming/En-suite Shower and Bath/TOTO Washlet

83 Civic Boulevard, Sec. 3, Taipei City, 104 104台北市市民大道三段8 3號

1, Zhonghua Rd. Sec. 2, Zhongzheng District, Taipei City 10065

41 Chung Shan (Zhongshan) N. Rd., Sec. 2, Taipei City, 104

11F, 495 Guangfu S. Rd., Xinyi District, Taipei City 110

104台北市中山北路二段41號

110 台北市 信義 區 光復 南 路 49 5 號 11樓

Tel: 02.2523.8000 Fax: 02.2523.2828

Tel: 02.8780.8000 Fax: 02.8780.5000 E-mail: pbc.taipei@msa.hinet.net

Tel: 02.8772.8800 Fax: 02.8772.1010 E-mail: info@miramargarden.com.tw

Tel: 886.2.2314.6611 Fa x: 886.2.2314.5511 E-mail: fo@taipeigarden.com.tw

www.grandformosa.com.tw

www.businesscenter.com.tw

www.miramargarden.com.tw

www.taipeigarden.com.tw

Travel in Taiwan

10 0 6 5台北市中正 區中 華路二 段 1號


Advertisement HOTEL INFORMATION

GLORIA PRINCE HOTEL TAIPEI 華 泰 王 子大 飯 店

Taipei 台北

NO. OF ROOMS: 220 ROOM RATES: Deluxe / Single / Twin & Double NT$ 7,800~8,500 Suite NT$ 9,500~20,000 DESK PERSONNEL SPEAK: Chinese, English, Japanese

COSMOS HOTEL 天成大飯店

NO. OF ROOMS: 226 ROOM RATES: Superior Single Deluxe Single Superior Twin Deluxe Triple Deluxe Twin Deluxe Suite Family Triple Room

ROYA L BI Z TA IPEI Taipei 台 北

NT$ 3,200 ~ 3,500 NT$ 4,000 ~ 5,000 NT$ 4,000 NT$ 4,500 NT$ 4,800 ~ 5,000 NT$ 7,000 ~ 10,000 NT$ 4,300

RESTAURANTS: La Fontaine (Western), Chiou Hwa (Chinese)

DESK PERSONNEL SPEAK: Chinese, Japanese, English, Cantonese

SPECIAL FEATURES: Coffee Shop, Fitness Center, Business Center, laundry service, meeting and banquet facilities, non-smoking floor, parking lot, airport transfer service

Cantonese, Taiwanese snacks, Jiangzhe cuisine, Gelato Café, coffee shop

RESTAURANTS: Shanghainese,

SPECIAL FEATURES: Conference rooms,

flower shop, barber shop, souvenir shop, parking area

金來商旅

Taipei 台 北

NO. OF ROOMS: 48 ROOM RATES: Standard Room NT$ 6,000+10% Deluxe Room NT$ 6,500+10% Superior Suite NT$ 7,500+10% DESK PERSONNEL SPEAK: English, Chinese, Japanese, RESTAURANTS: Lobby Lounge (Western and Chinese buffet breakfast) SPECIAL FEATURES: Full-amenity meeting rooms, gym, business services, airport limousine service, laundry service, free mechanized parking lot, tour arrangements, currency exchange, close to the MRT system and major commercial and tourist sites.

43, Chunghsiao (Zhongxiao) W. Rd., Sec. 1, Taipei City, 100

369 Lin-sen (Linsen) N. Rd., Taipei City, 104 104台北市林森北路3 69號

(MRT Taipei Main Station, Exit 3) 100台北市忠孝西路一段4 3號 (台北捷運總 站3號出口)

Fax: 02.2581.5811, 2568-2924

Tel: 02.2361.7856 Fa x: 02.2311.8921 Reser vation Hotline: 02.2311.8901 Reser vation Fa x: 02.2311.8902 E-mail: cosmos@cosmos-hotel.com.tw

www.gloriahotel.com

www.cosmos-hotel.com.tw

Tel: 02.2581.8111

HOTEL SENSE

PALAIS DE CHINE HOTEL

伸適商旅

Taipei 台北

Taipei 台 北

NO. OF ROOMS: 286 ROOM RATES:

NO. OF ROOMS: 79 ROOM RATES: Superior Room Business Room Deluxe Room Executive Deluxe Room Executive Suite Sense Suite

君品酒店

NT$ 7,500 NT$ 8,500 NT$ 9,500 NT$ 9,000 NT$ 10,000 NT$ 15,000

DESK PERSONNEL SPEAK: English, Chinese, Japanese RESTAURANTS: Sen Salon Restaurant

Superior Room Deluxe Room Family Twin Room E xecutive Superior Room Executive Deluxe Room Junior Suite Executive Suite La Rose Suite Charles V Suite

NT$ 11,000 NT$ 12,500 NT$ 14,500 NT$ 15,000 NT$ 16,500 NT$ 18,000 NT$ 21,000 NT$ 100,000 NT$ 150,000

(All rates are subject to 10% service charge)

71, Sec. 1, Jinshan S. Rd., Zhongzheng District, Taipei City 100 10 0 台北市中正 區 金 山南 路 一段71號

H OT E L ÉC L AT 怡亨酒店

Taipei 台 北

NO. OF ROOMS: 60 ROOM RATES:

Deluxe Room Grand Deluxe Room Premier Room Premier 9 Éclat Suite

NT$ NT$ NT$ NT$ NT$

12,000 12,500 13,000 15,000 35,000

(All rates are inclusive of 5% VAT and subject to 10% service charge)

DESK PERSONNEL SPEAK:

English, Taiwanese, Chinese, Japanese, Cantonese,

RESTAURANTS: Ming Yuen, Éclat Lounge, George Bar

SPECIAL FEATURES: Member of Small Luxury Hotels of the World; strategically located in the most fashionable and prestigious district of Taipei; offers guests great convenience for business and entertainment; Wi-Fi connectivity and in-room business facilities; variety of meeting rooms providing the ideal venue for professional meetings, corporate functions, and social gatherings. 370, Sec. 1, Dunhua S. Rd., Da-an District, Taipei City 106 106 台北市敦化南路一段370號

Tel: 02.2397.9399 Fa x: 02.2397.1399 Res. Hotline: 02.2396.9321

Tel: 02.2784.8888 Fax: 02.2784.7888 Res. Hotline: 02.2784.8118

www.sunworlddynasty.com

www.eclathotels.com

FLEUR DE CHINE HOTEL 雲品酒店

Sun Moon Lake 日 月 潭

CHATEAU DE CHINE HOTEL 花蓮翰品酒店

NO. OF ROOMS: 211 ROOM RATES:

NO. OF ROOMS: 211 ROOM RATES:

Mountain View King Room NT$ 13,000~14,000 Mountain View Two Queen Room NT$ 13,000~14,000 Zen Mountain View Room NT$ 13,000~14,000 Lakeview King Room NT$ 15,000~16,000 Lakeview Two Queen Room NT$ 15,000~16,000 Washiki Lakeview Room NT$ 15,000~16,000 Governor Lakeview Suite NT$ 20,000~21,000 Royal Lakeview Suite NT$ 25,000 Summit Lakeview Suite NT$ 120,000 Penthouse Suite NT$ 150,000 (All rates are subject to 10% service charge)

SPECIAL FEATURES: Business center, fitness center, meeting rooms, Club House with luxury furniture and advanced media facilities for private meetings and gatherings, wood-floored open-air Sky Garden, parking tower, close to the MRT system near Zhongshan Elemen tary school MRT station and key commercial and entertainment districts.

DESK PERSONNEL SPEAK: English,Chinese, Japanese RESTAURANTS: La Rotisserie, Le Palais, Le Thé, Le Bar SPECIAL FEATURES:Gym, business center, ballroom and function rooms, VIP salon, wireless internet, gift shop, 24-hour room service, E-butler service, airport transportation service, located in an area of the city with heritage sites and tourist attractions.

and beverage facilities, teppanyaki, light foods, meeting and banquet facilities, spa area, aqua therapy area, children’s water-play area, swimming pool, sunbathing platform, Mountain Mist hot-spring bathing areas, private hot-spring bathing rooms, live evening entertainment in circular outdoor concourse, exercise-walking paths, beauty salon, pet space, shuttle service to Taichung High Speed Rail station, etc.

477, Linsen N. Rd., Zhongshan District, Taipei City 104 104台北市中山區林森北路477號

No.3, Sec. 1, Chengde Rd., Taipei City 10351

No.23, Zhongzheng Rd., Sun Moon Lake, Yuchi Township, Nantou County 55546

10 3 51台北市承德 路 一段 三號

Tel: 02.7743.1000 Fax: 02.7743.1100

5 5 5 4 6 南 投 縣 魚 池 鄉日月潭中正 路2 3 號

Tel: 02.2181.9999 Fax: 02.2181.9988

www.hotelsense.com.tw

www.palaisdechinehotel.com

Tel: 049.285.6788 Fax: 049.285.6600

DESK PERSONNEL SPEAK: Chinese, English, Japanese SPECIAL FEATURES:Chinese and Western food

www.fleurdechinehotel.com

Superior Single Room Superior Twin Room Superior Triple Room Superior Family Room Deluxe Family Room Deluxe Suite Room Executive Suite Room

Hualien 花 蓮

NT$ 4,800 NT$ 5,400 NT$ 6,000 NT$ 6,600 NT$ 7,800 NT$ 8,800 NT$ 16,800

(All rates are subject to 10% service charge)

DESK PERSONNEL SPEAK: English, Taiwanese, Chinese, Japanese

RESTAURANTS: Western buffet-style, Chinese SPECIAL FEATURES: Multifunctional banquet and meeting facilities, business center, male and female saunas, rental facilities for cars and bicycles, lounge bar, children’s games room, fitness center, chess room, outdoor swimming pool, green eco-pond, free transport to railway station and airport.

No.2, Yongxing Rd., Hualien City, Hualien County 97060 97060花蓮市永興路2號

Tel: 03.823.5388 Fax: 03.822.1185

hualien.chateaudechine.com

55

Travel in Taiwan


Advertisement HOTEL INFORMATION SUNWORLD DYNASTY HOTEL TAIPEI Taipei 台 北

王朝大酒店

NO. OF ROOMS: 738 ROOM RATES: Deluxe Room NT$ 7,700

Premier Room Junior Suite Deluxe Suite Executive Suite

NT$ 8,200 NT$ 9,200 NT$ 11,500 NT$ 17,500

EXECUTIVE CLUB FLOOR

Deluxe Room Premier Room Deluxe Suite Executive Suite

NT$ 9,000 NT$ 9,500 NT$ 15,000 NT$ 21,000

TA I P E I G A L A H O T E L

Taipei 台 北

慶 泰大 飯 店

NO. OF ROOMS: 160 ROOM RATES:

Single Room NT$ Deluxe Single Room NT$ Deluxe Twin Room NT$ Suite Room NT$

3,800 4,000 4,200 5,600

SAN WANT HOTEL TAIPEI 台北神旺大飯店

Taipei 台 北

阿里山賓館

NO. OF ROOMS: 268 ROOM RATES:

NO. OF ROOMS: 35

Single NT$ 6,000~ 8,800 Twin NT$ 6,800~ 9,600 Suite NT$ 8,000~ 36,800 D ESK PERSONNEL SPEAK:

English, Japanese, Chinese

DESK PERSONNEL SPEAK:

ALISHAN HOUSE

Chiayi 嘉 義

ROOM RATES:

Scenery Suite NT$ 6,600 Honey Suite NT$ 6,600 Fragrant Suite NT$ 8,600 Superior Suite NT$ 9,500 VIP Suite NT$ 12,000

(Prices above not including 10% Service Charge)

RESTAURANTS: Golden Ear Restaurant

DESK PERSONNEL SPEAK:

(Western semi buffet); Golden Pot (Chinese Cuisine)

RESTAURANTS: French All Day Dining (French), Chao Ping Ji (Cantonese & Dim-Sum), Sumie Nouvelle Japonaise Cuisine (Japanese), Pozzo Bakery, Zorro Bar

RESTAURANTS: Le Parc Café, Magnolia Court,

SPECIAL FEATURES: Business Center,

SPECIAL FEATURES:

RESTAURANTS: Chinese, Café, Courtyard

meeting rooms, airport transfer service, parking lot, laundry service, free Internet access, LCD TV, DVD player, personal safety box, mini bar, private bathroom with separate shower & bath tub, hair dryer

Two minutes walk from MRT ZhongXiao Dunhua Station. Business Center, Fitness Center, Conference Room, Banquet Room for 500 people, Free Parking for Room Guests, Free Broadband Internet Access in Guestrooms, In-Room Safe, Express/Dry Cleaning Service, Fine East and West Art Collections on Display

SPECIAL FEATURES:

Chinese, Japanese, English Canton Palace

SPECIAL FEATURES: 738 large-size guest

rooms with high ceilings, incl. 42 suites. Grand lobby entrance with magnificent atrium. Outdoor swimming pool heated during winter. Fully equipped gym, fitness center, sauna, and aerobics room. Fully equipped business center. Hi-speed broadband Internet access. Safety deposit box. Express laundry service. Limousine service, airport pick-up. State-ofthe-art audiovisual equipment.

English, Japanese, Chinese

GENERAL MANAGER: Mr. Jen-Shing Chen DESK PERSONNEL SPEAK:

Chinese, English, Japanese

Broadband Internet access in guestrooms, business center, Souvenir Shop, Gazebo, 1950’s dance hall, foot massage

16 Chunlin Village, Alishan Township, Chiayi County, 605

186 Songjiang Rd., Taipei City,104 100 Dun Hua North Road, Taipei Taiwan R.O.C. Tel: 02.2719.7199 Fa x: 02.2545.9288 E-mail: bc@sunworlddynasty.com.tw

www.sunworlddynasty.com

www.galahotel.com.tw

台北市敦化北路100號

ZENDA SUITES 成大會館

NO. OF ROOMS: 90 ROOM RATES: Business Single Room Deluxe Single Room Deluxe Twin Room Business Suite Deluxe Suite

Tainan 台南

NT$ NT$ NT$ NT$ NT$

3,900 4,100 4,500 5,600 6,800

(All rates are subject to 10% service charge)

DESK PERSONNEL SPEAK: English, Chinese, Japanese RESTAURANT: Breakfast Lounge

KING’S TOWN HOTEL 京城大飯店

172 ZhongXiao East Rd., Sec. 4, Taipei City, 106 106台北市忠孝東路四段172號

Tel: 02.2772.2121 Fax: 02.2721.0302 E-mail: reservation@sanwant.com

花蓮 經 典假日飯 店

NO. OF ROOMS: 150

NO. OF ROOMS: 79

ROOM RATES:

ROOM RATES:

Business Single Room NT$ Deluxe Single Room NT$ Business Twin Room NT$ Family Twin Room NT$

2,640 3,080 3,080 4,400

( Prices above including 10% Service Charge )

DESK PERSONNEL SPEAK: Chinese, English, Japanese

RESTAURANTS:Chinese and Western style

E-mail: office@alishanhouse.com.tw

www.alishanhouse.com.tw

www.sanwant.com

HUALIEN CITY CLASSIC RESORT HOTEL

Kaohsiung 高雄

605嘉義縣阿里山鄉香林村16號 ALISHAN Tel: 05.267.9811 Fax: 05.267.9596 TAIPEI Tel: 02.2563.5259 Fax: 02.2536.5563

Hualien 花 蓮

Standard Room Superior Twin Superior Triple Superior Double Twin Superior Suite Classic Suite

AZURE HOTEL 花蓮藍天麗池飯店

Hualien 花 蓮

NO. OF ROOMS: 153 ROOM RATES: NT$ 4,000 NT$ 4,200 NT$ 4,800 NT$ 5,600 NT$ 6,000 NT$ 10,000

DESK PERSONNEL SPEAK: Chinese, English, Japanese

RESTAURANTS:Chinese, Western, and Inter-

Superior Room Classic Room Deluxe Room Theme Room Azure Suite

NT$ 3,600 NT$ 4,200 NT$ 6,200 NT$ 6,200 NT$ 12,000

DESK PERSONNEL SPEAK: Chinese, English, Japanese

RESTAURANTS:Taiwanese/Hakka cuisine, brunch, Western cuisine

food, delicious buffet, cold dishes, fruit, and salad bar

national cuisine, afternoon tea

SPECIAL FEATURES:Business center, non-

unlimited Internet access, broadband Internet access in guestrooms, notebooks available at meeting room, free self-help coffee and tea, free parking, central location (5-min. walk to railway station), pick-up service, projector and screen available at conference room, newspapers and magazines, LCD screen TV-sets

Tel: 06.275.8999 Fax: 06.209.3567

362 Jiuru (Chiu Ju) 2nd Rd., Sanmin District, Kaohsiung City, 80745 8 0 74 5 高 雄 市 三 民 區 九 如 二 路 3 6 2 號 Tel: 07.311.9906 Fax: 07.311.9591 E-mail: ksthotel@ms33.hinet.net

139 Guolian 5th Rd., Hualien City, 970 970 花蓮市國聯五路139號 Tel: 03.835.9966 Fax: 03.835.9977 Reservation: 03.833.6066 E-mail: service@classichotel.com.tw

www.zendasuites.com.tw

590 Zhongzheng Rd., Hualien City, 970 970 花蓮市中正路590號 Tel: 03.833.6686 Fax: 03.3.832.3569

www.kingstown-hotel.com.tw

www.classichotel.com.tw

www.azurehotel.com.tw

SPECIAL FEATURES: Located in the center of the city, spacious rooms with wide views, 24H self-service business center, free Internet access, gym, multifunctional meeting and banquet rooms, coin laundry, free indoor parking, Tainan Railway Station and shuttle-bus stop for High Speed Rail close by, beside major university campus with century-old trees and jogging opportunity.

2, Daxue Rd., Tainan City 701 台南市大學路2號

56

104台北市松江路18 6號

Tel: 02.2541.5511 Fax: 02.2531.3831 Reservation Hotline: 02.2541.6888 E-mail: galahtl@ms18.hinet.net

Travel in Taiwan

smoking floors, wireless Internet access, 32” LCD TVs, newspaper, free parking, tourist map, currency exchange

SPECIAL FEATURES:1/2F public area with

SPECIAL FEATURES:Guestrooms with floor-

to-ceiling windows, views of Pacific Ocean or Central Mountain Range, multifunctional public space, Azure Club, gym, pet hotel, KTV, board game and computer game room, located in Hualien City center, close to snack food and shopping streets


Bridge to the

World!

Providence University (PU) in Taiwan is a Catholic co-educational institution that was founded by the American congregation of the Sisters of St. Mary-of-the-Woods, Indiana, USA. The university’s roots can be traced back to 1920 in Mainland China. It is currently sponsored by the Catholic Diocese of Taichung. Throughout its history of rapid growth, it has relied on God’s Providence, valued other cultures, and welcomed students and professors from all over the world, while preserving its own Taiwanese heritage. Academic Information: Five Colleges: 1. Foreign Languages and Literature 2. Humanities and Social Sciences 3. Sciences 4. Management 5. Computing and Informatics More than 11,000 students and 630 full-time faculty members More than 550 international students

Special Features: • Full tuition scholarships for international students • MBA & MS programs fully taught in English (www.gip.pu.edu.tw) • Complimentary Chinese language courses • An extremely popular Chinese Language Education Center • A variety of extra-curricula activities • Exciting and new academic programs designed to meet the needs of a diverse student body • Recognized publicly for outstanding library resources, Taiwanese Literature Department, Teacher Education Center, Service Learning Program and cross-strait relations • Abundant industry-academy cooperation and employment resources to help students develop multidimensional career capabilities and pursue a new future for life. For more information about tuition scholarships and FREE Chinese language courses, please log on to www.gip.pu.edu.tw. The application deadline is April 30 annually. Contact Information Office of International Affairs E-mail: pu11600@pu.edu.tw Tel: (04) 2632-8001 ext.11820~11829 Fax: (04) 2652-6602 Address: 200 Chung Chi Rd., Shalu, Taichung 43301, Taiwan


ISSN:18177964

GPN:2009305475

200 NTD


Travel in Taiwan (No.43, 2011 1/2)