Page 1





Fishing Harbors and Beaches in


RAIL TRAVEL Jiji Line in Nantou


Kaohsiung’s Taroko Park


Sweet Treats in Taipei Android



River-Tracing in Jiaoxi

HIDDEN TREASURES Around Chiayi Station

Excellent-Quality Spring Water Straight from the Source

We believe that a positive attitude to life is the key to health and that the warmth of a hot-spring bath is the best way to relax. We believe that Art Spa Hotel and its partners operate a hot-spring hotel that makes people happy. We believe that love for the hot springs of Jiaoxi town can be the foundation for a successful business.


rt Spa Hotel is conveniently located next to Jiaoxi Railway Station, not far from Tangweigou Park. Based on the planning of the hotel’s CEO, the overall space is ingeniously designed. A life style based on Eastern health wisdom and a landscaped garden that is full of southeast Asian charm are combined to offer more than 50 spa facilities and water play pools that make full use of Jiaoxi’s renowned sodium bicarbonate spring water, which leaves your skin moist and smooth. With a total of 54 elegant Western- and Japanese-style rooms and an outdoor café the hotel offers diverse hotspring bathing fun. Art Spa Hotel offers unique two-spring (hot spring + cold spring) bath guestrooms, decorated using Guanyin stone to match the qualities of the spring water, where private bathing can be enjoyed. Guests can also have fun at “Milky Way Legend Hot Spring World” to enjoy cold-spring baths, essential oil hot-spring baths, stone slab hot-spring beds, a five-story high 360-degree spiral water slide, and a water fun area, experiencing different kinds of hot-spring fun. Guests can also enjoy various types of delicious cuisine prepared by our highly skilled head chef, and have a leisurely chat or just quietly relax while sipping a cup of good coffee at the outdoor café.

Western-style Two Hot-Spring Double Room The Two Hot-Spring (hot and cold spring) Double Room is a spring bathing room type unique to Art Spa Hotel. Based on the careful design by the hotel’s CEO comfortable and elegant Westernstyle hot spring rooms were created. As well as a private two-person hot-spring bath, the rooms also have a one-person cold-spring bath with a water temperature of only 8 degrees Celsius. Two people can bathe together in the hot-spring bath and take turns bathing in the cold-spring bath Getting there: Taking a bus from Taipei Bus Station or Taipei City Hall Bus Station to Jiaoxi Bus Station takes just about 40 minutes. Taking a train from Taipei to Jiaoxi takes about 80 minutes. From the railway station it’s 3~5 minutes by foot to the hotel. If self-driving, take Freeway 5 to Toucheng Exit, drive in the direction of Jiaoxi, then turn left onto Deyang Road to reach the hotel.



to Yilan


Wenquan Rd.

Art Spa Hotel ( 中冠礁溪大飯店 ) Add: 6, Deyang Rd., Jiaoxi Township, Yilan County ( 宜蘭縣礁溪鄉德陽路 6 號 ) Tel: +886-3-988-2011 Website: Check in: After 15:00, Check out: Before 11:00 The hotel provides a car park that can be used free of cost by guests.

Deyang Rd.

The hotel is located at the source of the spring so that there is no need to heat the pure spring water. Since the hotel is conveniently located, no matter if traveling by car, bus or train, it can be easily reached, allowing lovers of hot-spring bathing to enjoy a relaxing and invigorating soak without undergoing a tiring and stressful journey.

Recommended Room Type






Sec. 2, Zhongshan Rd.

Post Office



Sec. 6, Jiaoxi Rd.

7-11 Jiaoxi Railway Station

to Taipei

Welcome to

Taiwan! Dear Traveler, It’s May, the Taiwan sun is now delivering its warming strength in full force each day, and people can’t resist the urge to get out and play. While here with us, what are some of the best seasonal options for exploration, whether looking for education, entertainment, or the two in combination? Let’s find out. In our Feature you’re being transported to Yilan County in Taiwan’s northeast – more specifically, to the county’s southeast region, an alluring fishing-harbor region of “mountain, ocean, rugged harbor life, traditional folk arts, heart-tingling coastal cliff views, seaside mountain trails, mile-long beaches, hot springs, and cold springs.” We take a 3-day trip, and we give you ideas on where you might stay, what you might eat, and what you might buy (souvenirs) on your own multi-day journey. In our Adventure section we stay in the region, with a scenic river-tracing foray up the mountainbracketed Dezikou Stream in Yilan’s Jiaoxi Township. You’re provided with “how to” details on participating in your own firsthand experience, as well as an introduction to other tracing destinations. Now, over the island’s thick soaring-mountain center to the western side. The destination in A Day in the Big City is the central-region city of Taichung. Head out on a one-day iBike tour, finding out what’s best on the shopping, dining, and sightseeing fronts in Taiwan’s third-largest city. Explore Changhua and Nantou county regions just south of Taichung on the tourist-popular Jiji Line in Railway Travel, riding this branch line’s rails from the agriculturally fecund western plains deep into the central-mountain foothills. In Five Things to Do the destination is further south still, the old town of Xingang, where yesteryear lives on in people’s lives; sample tourist-favorite traditional snack foods, religious architecture, arts, crafts, and souvenir treats. Chiayi City is very close to Xingang. In Hidden Treasures, take a new guided walking tour of the area directly before Chiayi Railway Station, where home-grown cultural-creative entrepreneurs are breathing new life into one of this old city’s oldest neighborhoods. Fun of a very different kind awaits in the deep south, in Theme Park Joy, the city of Kaohsiung and its Taroko Park, a new hybrid shopping center/sports-theme amusement park. This is our seasonal tour-option harvest offering to you. But you’ll see, after reading, that all these options are ripe for the picking year-round in this subtropical land. Enjoy your time in Taiwan! Joe Y. Chou, Ph.D. Director General Tourism Bureau, MOTC, R.O.C.

CONTENTS May ~ June 2017

10 PUBLISHER Joe Y. Chou Editing Consultant 

Producer Vision Creative Marketing & Media Co. Address 1F, No. 5, Aly. 20, Ln. 265, Sec. 4, Xinyi Rd.,

Where you can pick up a copy of Travel in Taiwan

Wayne Hsi-Lin Liu

Taipei City 10681, Taiwan TEL: 886-2-2325-2323 Fax: 886-2-2701-5531 E-MAIL: General Manager Frank K. Yen Editor in Chief Johannes Twellmann English Editor Rick Charette DIRECTOR OF PLANNING & EDITING DEPT Joe Lee MANAGING EDITOR Krista Yang EDITORS Ming-Jing Yin, Chloe Chu, Nickey Liu CONTRIBUTORS Rick Charette, Nick Kembel, Dana Ter, Richard Saunders, Joe Henley, Asher Leiss PHOTOGRAPHERS Chen Cheng-kuo, Maggie Song DESIGNERS Andy Chang, Maggie Song, Carrie Chang, Erin Chen ui-chun Tsai, Nai-jen Liu, Administrative Dept H Xiou Mieng Jiang, Chen Wen-ling


Publishing Organization

Taiwan Tourism Bureau, Ministry of Transportation and Communications CONTACT

International Division, Taiwan Tourism Bureau Add: 9F, 290 Zhongxiao E. Rd., Sec. 4, Taipei City, 10694, Taiwan Tel: 886-2-2717-3737   Fax: 886-2-2771-7036 E-mail: Website:

台 灣 觀 光 雙 月 刊 Travel in Taiwan The Official Bimonthly English Magazine of the Taiwan Tourism Bureau (Advertisement) May/June, 2017 Tourism Bureau, MOTC First published Jan./Feb., 2004 ISSN: 18177964 GPN: 2009305475 Price: NT$200 中華郵政台北雜字第1286號執照登記為雜誌交寄

Copyright @ 2017 Tourism Bureau. All rights reserved. Reproduction in any form without written permission is prohibited.


1.Wu-Nan Culture Plaza, No. 6, Zhongshan Rd., Central Dist., Taichung City 40043 886-4-2226-0330 2. N ational Bookstore, 1F., No. 209, Songjiang Rd., Zhongshan Dist., Taipei City 10485 886-2-2518-0207 This magazine was printed with soy ink. Soy ink is said to be more environmentally friendly than petroleum-based ink and to make it easier to recycle paper.

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 Economic Affairs; 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.

Nanfang'ao Harbor (photo by Chen Cheng-kuo)

This magazine is printed on FSC TM COC certified paper. Any product with the FSC TM logo on it comes from a forest that has been responsibly maintained and harvested in a sustainable manner.

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 Kaohsiung 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

Read the online version of Travel in Taiwan or download the app for iOS (iPhone/iPad) and Android (smartphone/tablet) from http://tit. See more amazing images of Taiwan in our Travel in Taiwan app! Simply scan this QR code to reach the download page (iOS/Android).


10 Yilan County’s Southeast – Under Eagle-Soaring Mountains, by the Jade-Hued Sea


24 Slippery, Cold, and Wet… But So Much Fun! – An Unusually Scenic River Tracing Trip in Yilan County



30 Taipei 2017 29th Summer Universiade – All Systems Ready to Go for the Proud Host City

1 4 6

Publisher's Note Taiwan Tourism Events Convenient Travel

7 News 8 Culture Scene 23 My Travel Log



34 Taroko Park

– Kaohsiung’s New Shopping Center/SportsTheme Amusement Park Hybrid


ISLAND FEAST Sinful Treats – A Revival of Old-School Confections in Taipei


46 A Day in Chiayi City

– Exploring Cultural Creativity in Old Neighborhoods


A DAY IN THE BIG CITY One-Day iBike Tour of Taichung – Shopping, Dining, and Sightseeing in Taiwan’s Third Largest City


FIVE THINGS TO DO The Old Plains Town of Xingang – Where Yesteryear Remains at the Heart of Modern Daily Living


RAIL TRAVEL Riding the Jiji Line – Through the Peaceful and Scenic Central Taiwan Countryside



Taiwan Tourism Events Calendar website

Summer Fun At the Beach, in the Water, in the Air


Tern-Watching Tour, Matsu 生態賞鷗暨海上看馬祖

The many uninhabited smaller islands and surrounding waters of the Matsu island group provide perfect nesting and feeding grounds for a large variety of seabirds. For bird lovers, the best time to go and see these birds, including the Bridled Tern, Black-napped Tern, Roseate Tern, Crested Tern, Blacktailed Tern, Reef Egret, and Fork-tailed Swift, is June through September. Boat trips to the islands are available from Fu’ao Harbor on the island of Nan'gan. There are no landings, and boats will keep a distance from the birds, so bringing binoculars and a telephoto lens for your camera is advisable. Location: Zhong Islet, Beigan, Lienchiang County ( 連江縣北竿中島 ) Website:


Taiwan Balloon Festival



05/14 05/30

Location: Luye Highland, Luye Township, Taitung County ( 臺東縣鹿野鄉鹿野高台 ) Website:


Travel in Taiwan


This annual festival, staged in the old town of Lugang in central Taiwan, is much more than just a dragon-boat-race competition. It is an important cultural event introducing visitors to traditional customs and ceremonies, such as the Welcoming the Dragon King ceremony and worshipping of the Dragon King at Longshan Temple and the Water Immortal Deity at Tianhou Temple. Last year, dragon boats were also paraded through the streets of Lugang, with a stop at Tianhou Temple to receive blessings, and stunning martial-arts performances on the streets entertained large crowds of onlookers. The dragon-boat races took place for the first time on the Fulu River in the evening, with the boats sporting colorful lights, adding to the festive atmosphere of the event. This is a great time to visit Lugang for an exploration of this historic town. Locations: Lugang Township and Zhangbin Area, Changhua County ( 彰化縣鹿港鎮及彰濱地區 ) Website:

07/01 08/13

It seems that with each year the hot-air balloons flying over the hills in Taitung County during this annual festival become more colorful and more interestingly shaped (among last year’s balloons were one in the shape of a giant Orient Express locomotive, one like a giant squid, and one like Noah’s Ark). Throughout the time of the festival, which lasts more than a month, there will be attractive events to entertain the crowds. These range from the spectacular opening ceremony, with 31 balloons from 17 countries simultaneously taking to the air last year, to the International Balloon Challenge Cup, during which balloon pilots show off their skills, to a special evening concert with the balloons illuminated as if giant lanterns. Of course you will also have the chance to go (for a fee) up into the air yourself, either on tethered flights (the balloon being tied to the ground) or untethered ones, with spectacular views over Taitung guaranteed.

Lukang Dragon Boat Festival

Yilan International Children’s Folklore & Folkgame Festival 宜蘭國際童玩藝術節 C






One of the best summer events to let your kids have fun in the sun and cool off at the same time, the annual Yilan International Children’s Folklore and Folkgame Festival is a mega-fun affair. Apart from having a blast with water-cannon and water-slide revelry, kids also get plenty of edu-tainment opportunities, through watching foreign-culture performances, visiting exhibitions, and playing fun and educational games. A wide range of DIY handicraft courses is also available. Location: Dongshan River Water Park; No. 2, Sec. 2, Qinhe Rd., Wujie Township, Yilan County ( 冬山河親水公園 / 宜蘭縣五結鄉親河路二段 2 號 ) Website:



M A y ~ J U LY

05/06 07/09

Fulong International Sand Sculpture Art Festival 福隆國際沙雕藝術季

Each year Fulong Beach, one of the best and most popular beaches in northern Taiwan, is the venue for this truly amazing sand-sculpture festival. Getting there is easy by train, the beach being just 15 minutes by foot from Fulong Railway Station on the Taipei-Yilan line. The fine-sand beach, a sandbank peninsula at the mouth of the Shuangxi River, can be reached by crossing a footbridge (admission NT$100). During the festival the beach is decorated with a large number of astonishingly intricate sand sculptures of various sizes, the themes last year ranging from the Mongolian desert to fast animals to Taiwan’s night markets. It seems that no subject is too difficult to tackle for the local and international sand-sculpting masters invited to take part. Last year, 24 artists from 13 countries created 80 sculptures, the highest of which was a whopping 11 meters tall. Location: Fulong Beach, Gongliao District, New Taipei City ( 新北市貢寮區福隆海水浴場 ) Website:


Xiuguluan River Rafting Triathlon 秀姑巒溪國際泛舟鐵人三項競賽

Whitewater rafting on the Xiuguluan River in eastern Taiwan has been a popular recreational activity for decades, especially during the warmer summer months. It offers a perfect combination of white-knuckle rafting thrills (always safe) and relaxed enjoyment of enchanting riverside scenery. In 2010, to entice outdooractivity aficionados with a bigger appetite, the East Coast National Scenic Area administration for the first time organized a special triathlon, with rafting on the river one of the three legs. Over the years this has become an increasingly popular event. Last year close to 1,300 athletes took part in the race, which includes 11km of rafting (instead of the usual swimming in most triathlons), 12.6km of running, and 44km of bicycling. A biathlon (rafting and running) and a run for groups are also organized. For those who might want to take to the river in a more relaxed manner, note that rafting is available throughout the year (weather and water levels permitting). For more info, visit . Location: Xiuguluan River Rafting Service Center; No. 215, Sec. 3, Zhongshan Rd., Ruisui Township, Hualien County ( 秀姑巒溪泛舟中心 / 花蓮縣瑞穗鄉中山路三段 215 號 ) Website:

C onvenient O N V E N I E N T T ravel R AV E L

Taiwan Tourist Shuttle website


Take a Tourist Shuttle through the Chiayi Countryside

If you want to explore Taiwan by public transport, the island’s Southern Branch of the National Palace Museum two modern and convenient railway systems – the conventional railway (TRA) and Taiwan High Speed Rail (THSR) services – are formidable choices for getting to many of Taiwan’s best tourist attractions. And where the railway lines can’t take you, the Taiwan Tourist Shuttle network ( ) most likely can. This system, established in 2010 and still growing, with new routes and stops on existing routes continually being added, is a boon for tourists who don’t have their own means of transport but want to go on deeper explorations in this fascinating country. Chiayi County, in the southwest, is best known for the Alishan mountain region, with the Alishan National Forest Recreation Area being one of the top tourist draws in Taiwan. Not surprisingly, you can take a Taiwan Tourist Shuttle bus there from Chiayi’s two main railway stations (TRA and THSR), in and just outside Chiayi City. For a very different Chiayi experience than the high-mountain trip to Alishan, however, consider staying on the western plains and taking advantage of the Southern Branch of the NPM Route. This route connects Chiayi’s TRA and THSR stations, and buses also make a stop at the smaller Minxiong Railway Station. As the name indicates, the most important attraction along this route is the Southern Branch of the NPM ( ). Opened at the end of 2015, this branch of Taipei’s National Palace Museum boasts stunning architecture and a wide range of intriguing exhibitions primarily focused on Asian arts and culture. The Chiayi County plains are characterized by rural countryside, with farmland predominant. If you are interested in local agriculture and want to learn about the county’s fresh produce, consider making stops at Pineapple Hill ( ; Chinese) and Minxiong Kumquat Factory ( ; Chinese). Your bus will also pass through numerous small villages, each allowing you to gain a glimpse of what traditional life used to be like throughout Taiwan. Dingcaiyuan is a quirky park with many nostalgic elements, such as old buses, while at Jingpu village you can marvel at walls painted with images of cats. Also along the route Bantaoyao are the Bantaoyao Crafts Studio of Jiao-Zhi Pottery & ChienNien and Xingang Fengtian Temple (for more information on both, Bus route: see article on pages 54~57). TRA Chiayi Station ( 臺 鐵 嘉 義 站 ) => Hinoki Village ( 檜 意 森 活 村 ) => Minxiong Industrial Parks Service Center ( 民雄工業區服務中心 ) => Sontenkan Living Ideas Farm ( 松田崗休 閒農莊 ) => Pineapple Hill ( 旺萊山 ) => Minxiong Kumquat Factory ( 金桔農莊 ) => National Chung Cheng University ( 中 正 大 學 ) => TRA Minxiong Station ( 臺 鐵 民 雄 站 ) => The World for Cat Lovers, Jingpu ( 菁埔貓世界 ) => Xingang Fengtian Temple ( 新港奉天宮 ) => Dingcaiyuan ( 頂菜園 ) => Bantaoyao ( 板陶窯 ) => Suantou Sugar-Cane Factory ( 蒜頭蔗埕 文化園區 ) => Southern Branch of the NPM ( 故宮南院 ) => THSR Chiayi Station ( 高鐵嘉義站 ) (Note: Buses also ply the route in reverse order, starting out from THSR Chiayi Station ) Fare: NT$153 one way (cash, EasyCard. and iPASS card accepted)

Chiayi Pineapple Farm


Travel in Taiwan

Departures: Weekdays : Four departures a day from TRA Chiayi Station, at 8am, 10am, 1pm, and 3pm; four from THSR Chiayi Station, at 10am, 12noon, 3pm, and 5pm. Weekends and Holidays : Eight departures a day from TRA Chiayi Station, at 7am, 8am, 9am, 10am, 12noon, 1pm, 2pm, and 3pm; eight from THSR Chiayi Station, at 9am, 10am, 11am, 12noon, 2pm, 3pm, 4pm, and 5pm. For more info about the Taiwan Tourist Shuttle service, visit .


NEWS & Events around Taiwan

Yuli-Fuli Bike Route

Xiuguluan Bridge

There are now countless dedicated bikeways around Taiwan, and the network of cycle routes is ever expanding thanks to the efforts of central and local governments. One route that is especially worth mentioning is the one connecting the towns of Yuli and Fuli in eastern Taiwan’s Hualien County. The route is located in the East Rift Valley, known and beloved for enchanting rural scenery, with rice paddies, rape-flower fields, and the mountains of the Coastal Mountain Range on one side and those of the Central Mountain Range on the other. The bike route, for the most part following the east bank of the Xiuguluan River, was built on the foundation of a former railway line. It has a total length of 10km, is mostly flat, and can be done at a leisurely pace in about one hour. Since there is not much tree shade along the way, sun protection is essential if you plan to cycle during the midday hours, especially in the summer. Just to the south of central Yuli you’ll cross the river on Xiuguluan Bridge, and at the bridge’s mid-point you’ll find some interesting information about the region’s geology. At this spot you are, in fact, standing right on the fault line between the Eurasian Plate and the Philippine Sea Plate, to which the two aforementioned mountain ranges respectively belong. In a way, the plates are the reason why the bikeway exists today. In 1989, the Taiwan Railways Administration decided to re-route this section of a railway line, having it cross the river further to the south, after damage to the Xiuguluan Bridge caused by tectonic movements proved too severe to fix. The disused railway section was thereafter turned into a dedicated bikeway. And rest assured – the bridge remains in pristine shape and is safe for bicycle travel! For information about other great bike routes in Taiwan, download the booklet Cycling in Taiwan , produced by the Taiwan Tourism Bureau: .

Turtle Island Trips

Grocery Store/Tourist Info Station Turtle Island

Paghanhan You can see this island from most spots along the Yilan coast in northeastern Taiwan, and it’s not hard to tell why its name is Turtle Island; the head and back of the “turtle” are clearly recognizable. The island is no longer inhabited, but there is a small harbor, and tourists can visit by taking tourist-boat visits through most of the year (except for three months during the winter, when northeasterly winds make the trip too dangerous). Each year about 100,000 visitors make the short trip to the island from Wushi Harbor in Yilan County’s north. You need to register for these island visits; online applications can be found on the Northeast and Yilan Coast National Scenic Area website ( order.aspx ; Chinese). Highlights of the island trip: hiking up the “turtle’s back” (separate permit required), getting close (by boat) to underwater hot springs at the “turtle’s head,” and watching dolphins/whales on the way to/from the island.

If you travel on Provincial Highway 11 along the beautiful east coast of Taiwan, note that about 5km south of the town of Changbin in Taitung County is a rather unusual grocery store. Look for a bright-white two-story building in the tiny village of Nanzhuhu, right beside the highway, with the name “Paghanhan” prominently displayed out front, which in the language of the Amis tribe means“to rest.” This is exactly what the shop offers, a place to rest – and also to buy some snacks for the next leg of your trip and get some info about the area. As part of an initiative by the East Coast National Scenic Area Administration, Paghanhan has become the first shop to be transformed into a grocery store/tourist info station, offering tourists a place to stop and learn about local attractions, try local produce, and meet friendly local people. Find more info about the East Coast at .

Travel in Taiwan



CULTURE Concerts, Exhibitions, and Happenings

Until 07/24

National Palace Museum

National Museum of Natural Science

Musée d’Orsay 30th Anniversary Exhibition

Dunhuang – Stories of the Caves

奧塞美術館 30 週年大展




Opened in 1986 in a former Paris railway station, the Musée d'Orsay is internationally renowned for its rich collection of Impressionist art. As part of its 30th anniversary celebrations, the museum has lent 69 art treasures to Taipei’s National Palace Museum, including paintings by masters such as Van Gogh, Renoir, Monet, and Cezanne.

Located in the northwest of China’s Gansu Province, Dunhuang was a major stop on the ancient Silk Road. The city is best known for the nearby Mogao Caves, also known as the Thousand Buddha Grottoes, which contain some of the finest examples of Buddhist art, spanning a period of 1,000 years. This exhibition features many artifacts excavated at the caves, as well as replicas of murals and cave structures.

Until 11/26

Juming Museum

迸發─朱銘國際版圖的擴張 Website:

One of the most accomplished Taiwanese artists, Ju Ming, born in 1938, learned the art of sculpting when apprenticed to a local woodcarver at age 15. From these humble beginnings, how did he manage to become a world-renowned sculptor with countless international awards and honors? This exhibition, being held at the Juming Museum, takes visitors on the artist’s amazing journey, explaining the reasons for his astonishing success. Travel in Taiwan



Going Global: The Growing International Recognition of Ju Ming


Until 10/01


Taipei Arena


Cirque du Soleil: Toruk – The First Flight 太陽馬戲 : 阿凡達前傳 Website:

Inspired by James Cameron’s epic sciencefiction movie Avatar , the highest-grossing film in history, Cirque du Soleil transports you to the world of Pandora, a visually stunning live setting where you will experience a storytelling odyssey through a new world of imagination, discovery, and possibility. As with all Cirque du Soleil productions, the incredible performances by the highly talented performers will keep your eyes wide open throughout this visual extravaganza.

Until 06/18

Taipei Fine Arts Museum

Faint Light, Dark Shadows 微光闇影 Website:

This photography exhibition, featuring works by local photographers, is a dialectic between Taiwanese documentary photography in the late 20 th century and the immediacy of photography in the digital age. According to the curator, while in the past documentary photography was “striving to clearly and precisely convey reality to the viewer through a series of images,” today’s ubiquitous, instantly published news photography is given a “dominating character and a monopoly on evidence.”

05/26 05/28

National Theater

Toneelgroep Amsterdam: The Fountainhead 阿姆斯特丹劇團 : 源泉

Website: theatre/the-fountainhead

Founded in 1987, Toneelgroep Amsterdam is the largest theater company in the Netherlands, headed by acclaimed Belgian theater director and Tony Award winner Ivo van Hove. Based on the 1943 novel The Fountainhead by RussianAmerican novelist Ayn Rand, this fascinating play portrays four architects who decide on different paths when having to choose between individualism and collectivism.


06/15 06/18

07/07 National Theater


Until 12/31

Songshan Cultural and Creative Park

Taipei Artist Village – Treasure Hill

Saint Petersburg Ballet Theatre: Swan Lake

Taipei International Tattoo & Music Festival

Times of Unauthorized Occupancy – A Restated History of Treasure Hill




Founded by Konstantin Tachkin in 1994, the Saint Petersburg Ballet Theatre is one of the world’s leading classical ballet companies. In its repertoire are such masterpieces of world-renowned choreography as Romeo and Juliet by Sergei Prokofiev, Giselle by Adolphe Adam, and, of course, Swan Lake by Peter Tchaikovsky. Prima ballerina Irina Kolesnikova stars in the role of Odette/Odile.

For the first time in Asia, this festival will combine the art of tattoo with musical performances. It will shine a bright spotlight on local tattoo artists, a number of whom have been recognized internationally for their outstanding creations. More than 100 tattoo artists and 15 bands and individual performers from Taiwan and abroad have been invited to participate in this 3-day event.

Treasure Hill is a heritage settlement on a slope looking down on the Xindian River in Taipei. It is now the home of both original residents and artists-in-residence. The artists’ studios and other theme attractions have made this a popular attraction. This exhibition explores the village’s history and its now-changing role, with residents, artists, tourists, and the government all taking part in shaping its present and future.

聖彼得堡芭蕾舞團 : 天鵝湖


Li Bing-hui


Foot Massage Health Center

Many locals, travelers, and business people come to this well-known health center Foot massage (40 min.) + essential oil foot spa (10 min.) = 50 min.

Price NT$500 Whole-body massage (60 min.) or foot massage (60 min.) (choose one of two) + essential oil foot spa (10 min.) = 70 min.

Special Price NT$799 Whole-body massage (60 min.) + foot massage (30 min.) + essential oil foot spa (10 min.) = 100 min.

Special Price NT$1,200 10% discount for services costing more than NT$1,000 (at Ximen and Guanqian branches), except for special prices 20% discount for services costing more than NT$1,000 (at Jilin and Jilin II branches), except for special prices Guanqian Branch

Hankou St.

Chengdu Rd.

Minquan E. Rd.

Jilin Branch

Minsheng E. Rd.

Jilin Rd.

Ximen Branch

Hanzhong St.

Kaifeng St.

Huaining St.


Ximen Station, Exit 1

Zhonghua Rd.

Guanqian Branch

Guanqian Rd.

Taiwan-style body meridian massage helps to stimulate blood circulation and metabolism and to strengthen the immune system. It also helps to relieve fatigue and pain.

Jilin Branch

Ximen Branch Add: 196, Jilin Rd., Taipei City Add: 156, Hanzhong St., Taipei City (台北市吉林路196號) (台北市漢中街156號) Reservation Hotline: (02) 2521-0060 (24h) (Exit 1 of MRT Ximen Station) Jilin Branch II Reservation Hotline: (02) 2389-0828 (24h) Add: 155, Jilin Rd., Taipei City (台北市吉林路155號) Reservation Hotline: (02) 2521-1677 (24h) MRT Xining S. Rd.

The most popular services of the health center are foot massage and whole-body massage.

Add: 12, Sec. 1, Hankou St., Taipei City (台北市漢口街一段12號) Reservation Hotline: (02) 2370-2323 (24h)

Jilin Branch II


Under Eagle-Soaring Mountains, by the Jade-Hued Sea


Travel in Taiwan


Text: Rick Charette Photos: Chen Cheng-kuo

Mountain, ocean, rugged harbor life, traditional folk arts, heart-tingling coastal cliff views, seaside mountain trails, milelong beaches, hot springs and cold springs – slow your pace with a few days in Yilan’s south-side fishing-harbor region.

Dong'ao Beach, seen from Su-Hua Highway

Travel in Taiwan



Dressed up in old-time style Cultural performance

Tip: Many of the attractions introduced in this article lie within the Northeast and Yilan Coast National Scenic Area, run by the Taiwan Tourism Bureau. Find hotspot introductions and plentiful other information at


short flight from Taipei as the crested serpent eagle flies – more on this noble avian later – Yilan County was long isolated from the Taipei Basin and other neighboring northern regions by the thick, high mountain ranges that bracket it. Look down on this northeast county from a Google Map satellite-view perch and you see the triangle-shaped Yilan Plain (also known as Lanyang Plain), framed by mountain ranges racing to the sea on its northern and southern sides, Pacific Ocean on its arc-shaped east. The county is known for the purity of its air, earth, and water. Tourism has shot to the forefront of its economic drivers since the opening of National Freeway 5 in 2006. The drive from Taipei to Yilan now takes just 25 minutes, on a road that brooks no mountain obstacles, piercing right through their bodies, including the 12.9kmlong Xueshan Tunnel, Taiwan’s longest and the world’s ninthlongest road tunnel. Reaching the Yilan end, you shoot out above the plain on its northern side, almost the whole of Yilan laid out before you, the sparkling jade-hue Pacific in glorious view off in the distance. Stay on the raised freeway and it delivers you to the plain’s southeastern region in another 20 minutes. This is where you’ll be spending this article – where verdant plain meets the south-edge mountains, and south of this where said mountains drop into the sea, forming deep natural harbors in places that are today the building blocks of some of Taiwan’s oldest ports.


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Historical Yilan – National Center for Traditional Arts It was only in 1796 that Han Chinese settlers began streaming into the Yilan Plain, coming over the mountains in force from the Taipei Basin. Yet the unique characteristics of this region gave rise to a unique Yilan culture. Travel back deep into Yilan time with a stroll through the National Center for Traditional Arts (NCTA; NT$150 entry;, beside Provincial Highway 2, not far north of the town of Su’ao, spending a day exploring Yilan traditional-style architecture, history, crafts, and performing arts. This attraction, spread over 24 hectares, is focused on the culture of the common folk rather than the fine arts. It wears many hats: living museum, outdoor theater, demo and DIY workshop, food market. The center of activity is the Old Street, a long, curving reproduction of an old-time Yilan commercial high street, lined with elegant-façade shop buildings constructed in the distinctive Yilan redbrick and white-stucco style. Scores of old-time businesses have set up branches on this and the adjoining alleys, the majority from Yilan. Watch master artisans create glass-art pieces, sculpt dough figurines, and spin “dragon beard” candy. Dress up in old-time


The Old Street At Han Tê shop

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to Yilan City


Yilan County

National Center for Traditional Arts r



ha ngs


to Su’ao

Giant red-lantern fish


Cultural performance "Fog Forest"

Indigo dyeing

costumes and have your photo taken with a backdrop transporting you into times gone by. At the richly aromatic Han Tê shop, use old-time measuring instruments and packaging methods to create your own 7-item fragrance pouch (rose, mint, cogongrass, etc.), which can also be used for a soothing foot soak. At Zhuo Ye Indigo Dyeing House, don your artist hat to dye your own shop-crafted handkerchief, towel, pouch, or more expensive item. Zhuo Ye selects only traditional natural dyes, using indigo for blues, onion skin for oranges, etc., growing everything in its own fields. And your own precious-memory DIY silver ring awaits your arrival at the metalwork-jewelry studio Xiangcheng Jingong.

at the exquisitely aesthetic stage before the elaborately appointed Wenchang Temple; students pray to deity Wenchang Dijun for success in examinations. Enjoy ritual sword play, martial arts, dragon and lion dancing, glove puppetry, and many other old-style entertainment forms.

It hardly needs saying that this will surely be your best place for gift and souvenir buying on this trip.

Among the other stimulations that make an NCFTA visit a full-day experience are boat rides on the waterway that winds through the grounds and on the Dongshan River running past outside, a visit to Scholar Huang’s Residence, which is a traditional three-sided courtyard-style residence saved from demolition and meticulously reconstructed here, a colossal landscape-art fish made of red lanterns that casts a reflection of ethereal beauty on the inner lake at night, and the “Fog Forest,” a mist-created enchanted forest of fogginess so thick that the people around you begin to disappear.

The center is also a learning institute for young people pursuing careers in traditional Chinese theater and music, and there is a regular schedule of live performances provided for visitors, with students-in-training the stars. Check with the visitor center upon arrival. Perhaps the most satisfying and colorful shows are put on

National Center for Traditional Arts ( 國立傳統藝術中心 ) Add: No. 201, Sec. 2, Wubin Rd., Jixin Village, Wujie Township, Yilan County ( 宜蘭縣五結鄉季新村五濱路二段 201 號 ) Tel: 0800-020-011 Website:


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The Place Yilan

The Place Yilan What better way to end a day at the National Center for Traditional Arts than to spend a night at the NCTFA? The Place Yilan is a resort-style complex, managed by Taiwan’s Hotel Royal Group, right inside the NCTFA grounds. On the walls inside the entrance-building lobby are two magnificent large-scale koji pottery artworks depicting figures from Chinese mythology; koji pottery, also called cochin pottery, is a unique art form closely identified with Taiwan temple decoration. Just beyond the lobby is a bright, friendly, spacious café/bistro/reading room featuring minimalist modern décor, which overlooks manicured lawns. At one end of the quiet lawn space is The Place Yilan’s cluster of two-floor guestroom buildings. These are done in the same heritagedesign red-brick/white-stucco style seen in the center’s Old Street area. The new management has introduced an “East meets West” fusion to the rooms, with light-color Western-style wood paneling and furnishings complementing the legacy-look architectural foundation.

Guests enjoy free access to the full NCFTA complex. Evenings are breezily pleasant, with lamplights kept on along the center’s pathways, making for relaxing strolls under starry skies. Rooms range from small quarters for budget travelers (one shared room accommodates four people, with one bedroom and two bunkbeds, lockers, shared living room and washroom; NT$1,200 per person, no breakfast) to regular rooms for two people and more (starting at NT$9,000). Those in regular rooms enjoy a free Chinese-style buffet breakfast and one or two free DIY-experience tickets, depending on room type; the possibility of adding a free dinner is under discussion. The Place Yilan ( 國立傳統藝術中心 ) Add: No. 201, Sec. 2, Wubin Rd., Jixin Village, Wujie Township, Yilan County ( 宜蘭縣五結鄉季新村五濱路二段 201 號 ) Tel: (03) 950-9188 Website:

The Place lobby

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At raucous Nanfang’ao fish market, boats constantly pull up to unload catch for sale


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Nanfang'ao, seen from Su-Hua Highway

Zhu Dayu Culture Museum


Photo Tip: This region’s most popular phototaking spot is almost surely the Nanfang’ao Observation Deck, perched cliffside at the 108km mark of Su-Hua Highway. Directly above the Nanfang’ao harbors, your sunrise shots are guaranteed terrific, as are your evening shots, when the harbor-area lights come on and dynamic-design Nanfang’ao Bridge is bathed in changing pastels.

Harbor Life – Su’ao and Nanfang’ao The ocean-port town of Su’ao is a short drive south from the NCFTA along Provincial Highway 2, the coastal highway. On the way you reach the mountains that come down to the sea and you’ll pass through a highway tunnel that pierces a spur just before entering the town. The spur juts right out into the Pacific. A bit further south is another arm extending off the coast; its tip, long ago a hilly island, is now connected to the mainland by a low-hill gravel-and-sand isthmus created by the strong coastal currents. Between these arms are deep waters, and three ports: Beigang’ao (“North Side Port”), Su’ao, and Nanfang’ao (“South Side Port”).

Note: Readers will notice that many of this article’s place names end in “ao/ 澳 .” This character means “deep waters – a place where seagoing vessels can moor,” and is used for locations with natural deep-water harbors where ports have been developed. The Qixingling Trail takes you up on top of the northern spur. Find the trailhead right beside the south entrance to Su’ao Cold Spring Park, a key local attraction. “Qixingling” means “Seven Stars Peak”; the trail is 4,750 meters long, with a maximum elevation of 270 meters. The highest and most photo-worthy harbor/ocean/mountain panorama awaits at lookout No. 6, reached

from the trailhead in a steep, steady 25 minutes, beauteous butterflies entertaining you all the way. If time allows, continue at least ten minutes further and you are reward with eagle-vantage photo ops north over the Yilan Plain, central mountains, and iconic Guishan (“Turtle”) Island in the far distance. Nanfang’ao has three side-by-side narrow harbors, all dedicated to fishing craft. At the foot of the middle harbor is exuberantly ornate Nantian Temple, dedicated to Mazu, Goddess of the Sea. Construction was started in 1946 after, locals believed, the goddess saved them from disaster. On the south side of this harbor’s mouth is the raucous Nanfang’ao fish market, where boats constantly pull up to unload catch for sale at a dense array of stands, creating more vivid photo opps. Halfway down the harbor’s north side (No. 81, Yugang Rd.) is the Sangang Iron Factory Museum. The factory, set up here in 1962 and closed in 2004, was dedicated to fishing-boat repair and maintenance. The museum, stuffed to the gunwales with nowantique machinery, period photos, and other fishing industry-theme treasure, is run by the son of the key factory founder. Other Nanfang’ao spots of interest include Neipi Beach, the pleasant long and arcing sand/gravel beach on the outside of the Travel in Taiwan



Outdoor pool at Lakeshore Hotel Su-ao

Hot-spring bath

Lakeshore Hotel Su-ao The young, striking-facade Lakeshore Hotel Suao stands tall and very much stands out amidst the older neighborhood architecture just a few streets back from large and busy Su’ao port, navy ships directly in front, loading freighters on the right. Directly behind is the low mountain conquered via the Qixingling Trail. The Su’ao mineral springs are inland just around the mountain corner, and both hot and cold mineral waters are piped into guestrooms and general-use facilities. There is a mirror-like 132 sq.m. outdoor pool on one of the uppermost floors, with comfy patio lounge chairs. The unobstructed ocean and mountain panorama makes this a guestpopular area day and night, including at sunrise, when the glowing orb rises directly out beyond the harbor, seemingly so close you can reach out and touch it. The hotel provides a complimentary glass of wine to each guest, soothing the ambience even more. Other facilities include a sunny reading room on the same floor as the pool, with a grand view of mountain and harbor through floor-to-ceiling windows, and a well-appointed basement-level gym. The hotel décor is stylishly


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modern, with liberal use of stone slabs and wood paneling. Each guestroom has an outdoor balcony and washroom/soaking room with two tubs, for hot and cold spring waters. Ask for a room on the fifth floor or above, to ensure unfettered outlooks. Rooms start at NT$10,800. A buffet breakfast is included, served in the hotel’s sundrenched ground-floor restaurant, with scores of Chinese/Western choices. Also specially recommended is the delicious set-meal lunch served here, specially designed by the head chef, which proudly promotes healthy Yilan produce. Each course symbolizes an iconic element of Yilan life: fishermen headed to sea before sunrise, the brilliant sunrise over the eastern sea, and so on.

Lakeshore Hotel Su-ao Add: No. 38, Zhongzheng Rd., Su’ao Township, Yilan County ( 宜蘭縣蘇澳鎮中正路 38 號 ) Tel: (03) 996-6600 Website:

Dong'ao coast

to Luodong Qixingling Trail

Su’ao Cold Spring Park Lakeshore Hotel Su-ao


Pacific Sangang Iron Factory Museum Nantian Temple

Doufu Cape Nanfang’ao fish market Good Place Restaurant

Nanfang’ao Nanfang’ao Observation Deck

to Hualien

Neipi Beach

Su-Hua Highway

Taiwan Pebble beach at Fenniaolin

earlier-described isthmus (dotted with attractive cafés and eateries), Doufu Cape, a spot popular with snorkelers on the outside of the “former island” at the end of the isthmus, so named because its rock resembles soybean curd, and Zhu Dayu Culture Museum, established by the local fishermen’s association to showcase Nanfang’ao seafood products (located by Nanfang’ao Bridge beside the northernmost harbor). Nanfang’ao has many quality harborside restaurants specializing in seafood. If needing a change of pace, however, the Good Place restaurant is a great place. It’s in a 1960s-built two-floor former family home in terrific shape; Taiwan coastal homes generally start showing wear and tear after just a few decades. The proprietor says this is because his clan worked in the large boat-building enterprise next door, and had access to premium materials. The restaurant is a nostalgia treasure-house, filled with antique family furnishings, old Taiwan record albums and photos, etc. On the extensive menu are set meals, hotpot options, and noodle dishes; especially good setmeal choices are the Kung Pao chicken, deep-fried spicy chicken, and braised niunan (beef brisket). Good Place ( 好地方食棧 ) Tel: (03) 995-4808 Add: No. 61, Zaochuan Rd., Su’ao Township, Yilan County ( 宜蘭縣蘇澳鎮造船路 61 號 ) Website:

Coastal Scenery – Dong’ao and Nan’ao The inexpressibly impressive Su-Hua Highway twists and turns, often high above the sea and etched into the cliffs, 118km between Su’ao and the coastal city of Hualien. On this trip we venture south to the town of Nan’ao. The highway, a delivery vehicle to magisterial scenery in places, began as a mere footpath hacked from the coastal mountainsides by China’s Qing Dynasty government between 1874 and 1876. From Nanfang’ao to Nan’ao, the terrain is defined by steep cliffs footed by wave-pounded rocky shores, indented periodically by bays, small fishing ports, and narrow arable alluvial flatlands. The Dong’ao port, small and tranquil Fenniaolin Fishing Harbor, is reached from the coastal highway via a long cliff-base road beside a broad turquoise-hue bay and gravel beach decorated with a fantastic kaleidoscope of stones each an artwork in itself, each a painter’s canvas of marvel-inducing color variation in miniature. The coastal highway here, seen above, snakes along so high up that crested serpent eagles drift below rather than above it. The harbor is on the north-side foot of nose-shaped Wushibi, the most prominent headland along the Su-Hua Highway, which projects far out into the sea. Clamber over the dike-wall on the harbor’s ocean-facing side to enjoy the thrilling seascape of wave-washed

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The Chaoyang Trail delivers hikers to a hilltop lookout with a commanding overview of Chaoyang Harbor, the ocean, and Wushibi on the north


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Flower field in Nan'ao

The Crested Serpent Eagle Sightings of birds of prey cruising the coastal mountainsides are frequent – notably of the crested serpent eagle, a large, dark bird with broad, rounded wings and short tail. Look for the distinctive single broad, white band on the tail and each wing. Healthful meal at Good Eats Café

reefs and water-surrounded rock formations at the hidden-away “Secret Rocky Shore.” In Nan’ao, the Chaoyang Trail starts by the roadside just before Chaoyang Fishing Harbor. Stretching 2.2km, it runs up and over 181m-high Guishan (“Turtle Mountain”). The steep first section is conquered in 10~15 minutes, delivering hikers to a hilltop lookout with a commanding overview of harbor, sea, Wushibi on the north, and a narrow arm of the fertile, farm-dotted Nan’ao alluvial plain. Keep an eye out for tree frogs trailside, and eagles overhead. If you happen to understand Chinese, and happen to search online for good places for a Nan’ao meal, you’re sure to come across the effusive recommendations given the country-warmth Good Eats Café. On the main floor of a two-floor residence just off the coastal highway on the Chaoyang Harbor road, it’s run by a Taipei refugee whose plan to move here to run a small organic farm morphed into

running the café to showcase healthy local produce. Meals, based on what she has just harvested and purchased at Chaoyang Harbor, include such Taiwanese rural-style treats as chicken soup with mustard greens and yam, Hakka-style “tofu” made with peanut and rice powder (no soybean), and pumpkin cake. Finish your southeastern Yilan expedition with a windy walk along long, long Mystery Beach, just south of the Chaoyang harbor/trail area. Nature’s power is on glorious display here. Artists delight at the prodigious pile-up of driftwood specimens driven high up the beach by Taiwan’s typhoons, and the mighty coastal currents create tremendous roiling waters that bash the shore with thundering audio accompaniment. Good Eats Café ( 好糧食堂 ) Tel: 0919-117-273 Add: No. 13-1, Nan’ao Rd., Su’ao Township, Yilan County ( 宜蘭縣蘇澳鎮南澳路 13-1 號 ) Website:

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Google map with info

Chaoyang Fishing Harbor Auctions

Getting There & Around There are regular buses and trains from Taipei to various locations in Yilan, including Su’ao. Because a more direct route is taken, via Freeway 5, bus service is markedly quicker. For more details, visit the Northeast and Yilan Coast National Scenic Area website.

to Su ao

Unloading Fish at Chaoyang Fishing Harbor

Yilan County

Fenniaolin Fishing Harbor


Nan’ao Good Eats Cafe Chaoyang Trail

Nan ’ao

to H en uali 22

Mystery Beach

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Rive r

This harbor, sleepy most of the day, is bracketed by high bluffs. Wushibi serves as the natural barrier on its north side. The waters beyond the harbor are the richest fishing grounds in Su’ao Township’s south area. The rocky shores here are also a favorite with shore fishermen. Local buyers and tourists flock here daily at around 7am and 4pm, when boats arrive laden with catch from the deep open sea and especially the rich Kuroshio Current that rushes north off the east coast. After boats dock impressively large and high-value migratory catch is tossed up, and camera-toting tourists are mightily impressed with the seemingly chaotic yet highly disciplined public buying process, carried out rapidly with surprising quiet.

Chaoyang Fishing Harbor

Pacific Taiwan

English and Chinese Chaoyang Fishing Harbor 朝陽漁港 Chaoyang Trail 朝陽步道 Doufu Cape 豆腐岬 “dragon beard” candy 龍鬚糖 Fenniaolin Fishing Harbor 粉鳥林漁港 Han Tê 漢茶 Mystery Beach 神秘海灘 Nanfang’ao (Observation Deck) 南方澳 ( 觀景台 ) Nantian Temple 南天宮 Neipi Beach 內埤海灘 Qixingling Trail 七星嶺步道 Sangang Iron Factory Museum 三剛鐵工廠文物館 Scholar Huang’s Residence 黃舉人宅 “Secret Rocky Shore” 祕境岩岸 Su-Hua Highway 蘇花公路 Wenchang Temple 文昌祠 Wenchang Dijun 文昌帝君 Xiangcheng Jingong 鑲澄金工 Zhu Dayu Culture Museum 祝大漁物產文創館 Zhuo Ye Indigo Dyeing House 卓也藍染


“I Want to Visit Them All” An Adventurous Traveler in Search of the Best Natural Spots Around Taiwan

Text & Photos: Asher Leiss


’m one of those people who has to travel. It’s a need. A calling. Something that drives me. On backpacking trips around the world spanning several years, I traveled to 45 countries across North America, Europe, Asia, and Africa, usually spending no more than a few months in each place. And so it came as a great surprise to my friends and family that when I came to Taiwan as part of my “I must see the entire world” adventure, I stayed. That was five years ago. Instead of circling the island once and then hopping on the next flight to Anywhere, I unpacked my bag, began studying Mandarin, and attended a university. At a quick glance it may appear that I’ve finally “settled down,” but that isn’t the case. I’ve never stopped traveling. I am constantly traveling. Traveling in Taiwan! Every week I go to places that I’ve never been before, following winding roads that take me further and further into the wilderness. The size of Taiwan can be misleading. The mountains here have fractaltype terrains. The deeper one goes, the more there is to see. Each turn on a mountain road is another fold in an endless pattern, with new adventure possibilities presented beyond. There’s always another ridge, another tea farm, another waterfall. I want to visit them all. One of my favorite mountain regions is the Maolin National Scenic Area in southern Taiwan. It’s only one hour from the center of Kaohsiung City, Taiwan’s southern hub of industry and culture, but it feels very remote and exotic. The landscape changes dramatically on your approach to its isolated tropical valleys – from flat fields of mango and dragonfruit to steep, undeveloped mountains with thick jungle and cascading waterfalls. Eagles are easy to spot circling in the open skies. High-flying pedestrian suspension bridges, colorfully painted by the local indigenous people, span the rivers below. It’s a paradise for bird and butterfly watchers, who come to see the endemic purple butterflies nest in the thousands. And a goal for adventuresports enthusiasts, who come to hike up the many hills and canyons.

Spectacular gorge in Maolin National Scenic Area

My first scenic adventure in Taiwan was in Maolin. It’s been five years, and I still keep going back. No matter how many times I visit Maolin, I find there’s still so much more that I want to go and see.

If you want to follow Asher on his adventures in Taiwan, visit his blog: Travel in Taiwan



River tracing along Jiaoxi’s Dezikou Stream

24 Travel in Taiwan


Slippery, Cold, and Wet…

But So Much Fun! An Unusually Scenic River Tracing Trip in Yilan County Text: Richard Saunders Photos: Chen Cheng-kuo

A subtropical/tropical mountainous island with abundant rainfall, Taiwan is a wonderful playground for outdoor enthusiasts. One of the best ways to spend time in the embraces of Mother Nature here is following a mountain stream uphill, preferably with a magnificent secluded waterfall waiting for you as highlight of your adventure outing.


hat first step into the stream, as the ice-cold water seeps into our neoprene boots and sends chills coursing upwards through our bodies, is the hardest part. As we wade deeper, towards the center of the watercourse, and begin to plot a way upstream between the rocks and white-water cascades, we begin to warm up as our minds turn from the cold to the adventure ahead. We’re river tracing up the Dezikou Stream in Yilan County, and although Taiwan in early March isn’t high season for this increasingly popular outdoor activity, after a few minutes we’ve adapted to the cool air and water and are enjoying our river exploration. Canyoning, river tracing, kloofing (derived from Afrikaans), suoxi (Mandarin Chinese) – no matter what it’s called, tracing a mountain stream is one of the very best ways to see Taiwan’s mountainous interior at its finest. It’s been a popular activity here for quite some time now, and for outdoorsy sorts, it’s a prime way to spend a hot summer day.

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Standing in the car park beside the Dezikou Stream in Yilan’s Jiaoxi Township before beginning our trace, we meet our guide, Wusa Lin, who explains the basics and hands out our gear for the day, which we put on. The most essential item is a pair of river-tracing boots; the felt-covered soles of these boots help prevent slipping on algae-covered rocks. Then there’s a waterproof bag (for clothes, camera, etc.) and a helmet to protect the head in the event of a slip or rocks falling down from above. We’re also given a wetsuit (in early March, the northern Taiwan winter is only just beginning to let go). A safety harness and buoyancy aid round out the river tracer’s essential equipment. Waterproof sunscreen is compulsory too, at least during the summer. Even deep in a wooded gorge, the midday sun can be very powerful! Wusa gives a quick rundown of conditions in the stream we’re about to enter, and we’re off! Taiwan is a very mountainous country and affords not only fantastic hiking and trekking but also literally hundreds of scenically stunning waterways suitable for river tracing. However, the incredibly varied terrain, coupled with the remoteness of much of the interior, means that many river-tracing trips either must be multi-day camping expeditions or have serious obstacles, such as challenging waterfalls, which makes them strictly for the highly experienced and well-equipped. Nonetheless, there are also many easier, one-day river traces around the island, suitable for beginners or those with just a little experience. Two of Taiwan’s classic easygrade river traces, Lupi Creek and Golden Grotto, are on the east coast of the island in southern Yilan County and northern Hualien County, respectively. The trace up Lupi Creek, near the port town of Nan’ao in Yilan County, culminates at a magnificent waterfall, while at the beginning of the trace an eight-meter-high cascade doubles as one of Taiwan’s most hair-raising natural waterslides. Arrive on a busy weekend and there’s a good chance you’ll see rivertracing daredevils launch themselves off the brink and slide over the waterfall into the deep water below. Several outdooractivity companies are based in Nan’ao, a few

26 Travel in Taiwan

Walking upstream Lunch

Clambering over rocks Yuemeikeng Waterfall

Wusa Lin of Eco-Explore


Beautiful spot Having fun

kilometers from Lupi Creek, and can organize trips not only there but also to several other excellent river-trace locations in the area. Just a short drive south of the oceanside entrance to the fabulous Taroko Gorge, the Golden Grotto is probably Taiwan’s most revered one-day trace. This deep, stream-cut slot canyon is carved into the marble above the little Truku tribe village of Sanzhan, and to get there means climbing up three cascades, each taller than the last. Between each waterfall is a deep pool of deep blue-green water, which tracers must swim across. At the top of the canyon, the stream leaps over a tall and spectacular waterfall into the largest and most beautiful pool of all. Although the Golden Grotto is suitable for those with only a little river-tracing experience, a guide is essential, both to ensure safety and to put ropes up on each of the waterfalls. The Hualien area is also riddled with other beautiful river-tracing routes, and safe, guided trips to many of these (and to the Golden Grotto as well) can be organized by Hualien Outdoors, run by a knowledgeable expat from Canada with years of experience who offers tracing excursions to many of the beautiful streams in Hualien. Down in the south of Taiwan, another famous easy trace is Haishengong (“Sea God’s Palace”) in Pingtung County’s Sandimen District. The Sea God’s Palace itself is formed by two deep, rounded, cliff-bound pools at the lower end of the gorge. Above it, a series of deep, interconnected pools culminates in a pair of small waterfalls, between which lies the largest plunge pool of all, called Dai’ena Sacred Pool. The curious names of the pools in the gorge come from a Paiwan tribe legend, which attributes their formation to the legendary antics of their Sea God.

Our river trace today is a great beginner’s route. Not only is it easier than the classic traces described above, it’s also only just over an hour’s drive from Taipei, and it’s very scenic too. After entering the water just above a large weir, we start gingerly making our way upstream, feeling our way and trying to avoid loose or algae-covered rocks. After ten minutes or so we’ve already started to grow accustomed to where (and where not!) to put our feet, and we start to look up more to enjoy our increasingly

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scenic surroundings as we enter a very beautiful rocky gorge. In a few places the going then gets slightly more challenging, with a few short scrambles up rocks beside little cascades, but we all make it up with the help of Wusa, our ever-vigilant guide. Our sense of accomplishment continues to grow as we proceed further and further upstream.

Eco-Explore ( 野地探索有限公司 ) Tel: (02) 2862-0159 Website:

For trips in the Hualien area, contacting Matt Hopkins of Hualien Outdoors is highly recommended.

Hualien Outdoors

Tel: (09) 8951-2380 Website:

English and Chinese Dezikou Stream 得子口溪 Dai’ena Sacred Pool 黛娥娜神池 Golden Grotto 黃金峽谷 Haishengong 海神宮 Lupi Creek 鹿皮溪 Nan’ao 南澳 Paiwan tribe 排灣族 Sandimen District 三地門鄉 Sanzhan 三棧 suoxi 溹溪 Truku tribe 太魯閣族 Wufengqi Waterfalls 五峰旗瀑布 Wusa Lin 林學淵 Yuemeikeng Waterfall 月眉坑瀑布 to Ta


Wufengqi Waterfalls

Dezikou Stream




After nearly three hours clambering up the stream, stopping every few meters to snap a photo of the enchanting, everchanging rock-and-waterscape around us, we reach the mouth of a slot-like canyon. After cooking up a much-needed hot lunch on a small sandy spot beside the stream, our guide takes us further up, into the mysterious gorge. We clamber up some rocks off the left side of the tumbling stream, and finally come face-to-face with Yuemeikeng Waterfall, the stunning climax of the day’s adventure. Here the stream plunges over a 40-meter-high cliff in a wide veil, falling into a very large pool. It looks a little like the uppermost of the three much-easierto-visit Wufengqi Waterfalls, which are in the same watershed area – but unlike at that famous tourist attraction, apart from the four people in our little group there’s not a soul about at Yuemeikeng. Since there’s no way to build a trail or path through the narrow cleft below it, the waterfall can only be reached by walking up the streambed. That, perhaps, is the greatest attraction of river tracing: it’s the sole means of getting to some of Taiwan’s most breathtaking, pristine places, and if you visit, you’re more than likely to have these places all to yourself!

Our river trace was organized by Wusa Lin of EcoExplore, a local outfit which arranges river-tracing excursions for both beginners and those with rivertracing experience, at locations all around Taiwan.

to Yilan City

If you’re new to river tracing in Taiwan, be sure to engage the services of a qualified guide, who will supply the correct equipment, choose a route suitable for your group, ensure safety, and obtain insurance and any necessary permits. Most beginners join an organized tour, for which equipment such as footwear, life vest, ropes, wetsuit, and other extras are all provided. Summer is naturally the perfect time to try your first river trace, offering the perfect retreat from the intense heat. Nevertheless, at lower altitudes and in the south, winter isn’t such a bad time to try it either. While at higher altitudes waterways are icy-cold year-round, the water in streams closer to sea level never really gets too cold, even during the winter months. Whatever time of year you go, choose a dry, settled day, and definitely don’t head out on any adventures for a couple of days after heavy rainfall. During summer, afternoon thunderstorms can cause dangerous flash floods in certain areas, so groups usually get an early start, and a

responsible and professional leader will keep an eye on the weather situation and be aware of escape routes at all times.

Recruitment of International Students for Fall 2017 & Spring 2018 About the University Established in 1946. 9 colleges, 54 departments, 1 affiliated senior high school. More than 284 sister schools in Europe, North America, the Americas, and Oceania. A diverse and internationalized university attended by 1,500 degree-seeking international students and 1,700 Mandarin Training Center students (3-month average). 1,762 faculties (including 3 Nobel laureates) with 18:1 of students to faculty ratio. The Mandarin Training Center is the oldest, best-known and largest such center in Taiwan with students from more than 70 countries having studied at the center. Famous MTC alumni include the former prime minister of Japan, Ryutaro Hashimoto and former prime minister of Australia, Kevin Rudd. Times Higher Education’s World University Rankings (2015-2016) – 1st in the International Outlook category among Taiwan universities Quacquarelli Symonds (QS) World University Rankings (2016) – 44th in Education and Training, 58th in Asian University, 160th in Arts and Humanities, and 310th in Overall Performance. 11th QS Asia Pacific Professional Leaders In Education conference and exhibition (2015) – Silver of Creative Awards for Best International Website.

Term Dates and Application Information Terms

Application Deadline

Fall Term

March 15

Mid May



Spring Term

October 31

Mid December



Announcement of Term Begins Admission Results

Term Ends

If different, please follow the dates published in the Admission Prospectus. For application documents, eligibility, admission procedures and individual program requirements, please refer to the NTNU Admission Prospectus for International Students, which is downloadable at: (*Online application site).

English-taught Programs NTNU offers a variety of English-taught courses for international students to meet graduation requirements. From program list, please refer to our Admission Prospectus for International Students.

Chinese Language Degree Courses

Distinguished Colleges Arts, Education, International Studies and Social Sciences, Liberal Arts, Management, Music, Science, Sport & Recreation, Technology and Engineering

Students with basic Chinese proficiency and who are interested in Chinese language and culture may consider applying for the Department of Chinese as a Second Language (Bachelor’s degree program, taught in Chinese, focusing on Chinese listening, speaking, reading, and writing skills).

Applications to Degree Programs – Office of International Affairs


Tel: 886-2-7734-1272


NTNU offers various categories of scholarships. Please refer to

Fax: 886-2-2362-5621



All Systems Ready to Go for the Proud Host City Come on out to cheer on the world’s best university athletes in one of the world’s great cities this summer! Text: Rick Charette Photos: Department of Information and Tourism, Taipei City Government


he starting gun for the 2017 World University Games is set to go off. The games, commonly known as the Universiade and sometimes referred to as the “little Olympics,” will be held at a series of locations in and around Taipei City August 19 to 30. The Taipei Universiade will be the highest-level large-scale international sporting competition ever staged in Taipei and will set a record as the largest integrated international sporting competition ever staged in Taiwan.

What Is the Universiade? The name for the world university games, “Universiade,” is derived from “University” and “Olympiade.” Organized by the International University Sports Federation (FISU), it is an international multi-sport event for university athletes. 30

Travel in Taiwan

The Big Bid Win Taipei City has built up a mountain of experience hosting big international events. In the run-up to winning the Universiade hosting rights in 2011, Taipei was the stage for the 2009 Summer Deaflympics, the 2010 Taipei Int’l Flora Expo, and the 2011 Taipei World Design Expo, among other accomplishments. The honor of being chosen host city was all the greater in light of the sterling competition Taipei was up against: Brazil’s capital city, Brasilia. The Emblem The official emblem features a “U” shape, referencing the words Universiade, United, and University. The five bright colors utilized symbolize international harmony and friendship. The Slogan The chosen slogan is “For You•For Youth .” In 2017, vows the Taipei City Government, you will witness the best and most exhilarating Universiade to date. And at this mega sportsfest, legends will be created, the dreams of young people will be realized, and through the embracing of the power and strength of our youth, this world will be made a better place.

The Mascot The Formosan Black Bear symbolizes Taiwan’s strength and courage. Featuring gradient colors from black to grayish, and sporting a gold medal representing victory, mascot Bravo also symbolizes Universiade athletes' spirit of self-challenge and pursuit of excellence. Competition Categories In each Universiade there are 14 compulsory sports: artistic gymnastics, athletics, basketball, diving, fencing, football, judo, rhythmic gymnastics, swimming, table tennis, tennis, volleyball, water polo, and taekwondo. And for this year’s edition, seven optional sports have been chosen by the host city: archery, badminton, baseball, golf, roller sports, weightlifting, and wushu (martial arts). Billiards will be a demonstration sport. Competition Venues The key to the city’s selection, of course, was the quality and quantity of its sporting venues, world-class in all respects. Facilities already in place include the central-city Taipei Stadium and Taipei Arena. New facilities will include the Taipei Tennis Center and Taipei Basketball Arena.


Athletes’ Village The Athletes’ Village, located in New Taipei City’s Linkou District, is Taiwan’s first-ever village built for the athletes of a major sports event. The emphasis, as with the competition venues, has been on eco-friendliness. A “Green Energy Community” base is being created for the management unit that will take over the complex in the future. Special Events Numerous special events are being staged in the run-up to the games to celebrate Taipei’s choice as host and introduce the Universiade to the public.

Taipei Arena Taipei Stadium

Don’t miss out on the “Ready To Go! Bravo!” special exhibition being held at the Discovery Center of Taipei, which is just inside the main entrance at Taipei City Hall ( taipei ; free entry; open Tuesday~Sunday). This exhibition features “The Home of Bravo,” with interactive media and augmented reality used to introduce visitors to the different Universiade sporting events, The mascot along with a medals display, an exhibit on training processes and equipment, and Taiwanese athlete a section on special Universiade stories “unknown to outsiders.” Find out more about the Taipei Universiade on the official website: . Universiade exhibit English and Chinese Discovery Center of Taipei 台北探索館 Green Energy Community 綠能社區 Linkou District 林口區 Taipei Arena 臺北小巨蛋 Taipei Basketball Arena 臺北籃球館 Taipei Stadium 臺北田徑場 Taipei Tennis Center 臺北網球中心

Travel in Taiwan



Discovering the Relaxing and HeartWarming Side of Taoyuan Int’l Airport

A Pleasantly Surprising Exit

from Taiwan! Text: Rick Charette

Photos: Ever Rich

Ever Rich Duty Free has made a tour of Taiwan’s main international airport a fun and relaxing edu-tational mini-tour of the Taiwan culture – its traditional culture and modern cultural-creative dynamism.culture and modern cultural-creative dynamism.


ome airports are a joy. Some are a nightmare. Most lie in between, bland, generic, and soon forgotten. I’m from eastern Canada, and travel between my Taiwan Asia home and youth-years home necessitates either invariably pleasant time in the Vancouver or invariably unpleasant time in the Toronto international airport.

Living in Taipei, my portal for off-island excursions is Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport. In recent years management of its huge, interconnected duty-free area in Terminals 1 and 2 by the Ever Rich Duty Free group, laid out in a giant easy-to-navigate square, has meant an upgrade in the airport-visit experience that makes it a rival of the first-class experiences you’ve enjoyed elsewhere. Let’s take the tour. Ever Rich fills every space and every moment with sensory stimulation, from the moment you leave the departures hall to the moment you pass through your boarding gate. There is heavy showcasing of Taiwan’s most unique and attractive cultural elements throughout, making your duty-free area exploration a true “tour of Taiwan.”

Feel like a movie? Can do. An art exhibit? Can do. A massage, or a good shower? Browsing scores of unique-character shops for souvenir hunting and eateries for quality cuisine? All can do. Here’s a sample plate of what yours truly has gotten up to on my last few airport jaunts. The Passageways: Ever Rich has transformed the passageways that take you to and through the duty-free shop/restaurant areas into cultural-arts spaces. Special exhibits showcasing the work of Taiwan artists are also staged periodically. My favorite example: the beautiful calligraphy-covered Wall of Literature, spread over two Terminal 1 locations, created by a celebrated Taiwan calligrapher and award-winning music lyricist renowned for bringing Taiwan landscapes, foods, and everyday culture to life through word imagery. The Shops: Roam the endless array of bright, attractive-decor shops, hunting for precious bits of Taiwan to take home with you. I never leave the island without bringing home some iconic pineapple cakes for my Mom and Alishan high-mountain Oolong tea leaf for my Dad. They’ve visited Taiwan’s southwest pineapplegrowing and famed central-mountain Alishan National Scenic Area, so these treats contain the “true tastes of Taiwan” for them, cakes bursting and tea brimming with fond memories. Among my other more recent purchases have been Year of the Rooster-theme jars, mugs, etc., made of Taiwan’s renowned high-quality ceramics, nougat candy, and Hakka floral fabrics. Note that Taiwan Image (C6) has a large map-poster displaying Taiwan’s scores of regional mingchan, or “famous products.”

Of course, all the world’s greatest international consumer brands are also found in the area. The New Facilities: Moving the Taoyuan airport experience that much further beyond your normal airport experience is a range of new facilities that Ever Rich has brought online. Take advantage of the free-sample food and drink service, taste-testing iconic Taiwan treats. Send Taiwan-theme postcards for free to family and friends, or to Santa or anyone else you like. Relax into a comfy massage chair for free, or opt for a kung fu massage by a visually impaired professional. I find that the massages greatly help me relax and fall asleep on long flights. There’s even a small cinema with relaxing lounge-chair where you can take in a culturally edutational flick. Note that travelers in transit can head to a dedicated transit lounge where free private shower facilities are available for use. The Waiting Lounges: Your Taiwan cultural exploration doesn’t stop once you decide to head for your plane’s boarding gate. Ever

Rich has made each lounge a m i n i museu m /a r t galler y showcasing one element of the Taiwan cultural mosaic in depth. My favorite: the Taiwan Aboriginal Arts lounge (A6), where indigenous artist Siki Sufin has used three classic native mediums, driftwood, rattan, and bamboo, in a powerful wall-art display of traditional artistic motifs. Among the other intriguing lounge themes are Taiwan Alpine, Taiwan Fruit, Glamorous Textile Art, Taiwan Orchid, MIT Bike, Taiwan Opera, Taiwan Music, and Taiwanese Local Cuisine, the last mimicking the island’s raucous, colorful traditional night markets.

Note: To ensure the richest possible airport-adventure for you, Ever Rich has info centers with multilingual staff in both terminal areas, and prepared the free Journey Through an Airport brochure, setting out duty-free area tours of differing duration.



RK Text: Nick Kembel Photos: Maggie Song


Travel in Taiwan


Kaohsiung’s New Shopping Center/Sports-Theme Amusement Park Hybrid Not even remotely related to the famed Taroko Gorge scenic natural wonder on Taiwan’s east coast, Taroko Park is a brand-new multifunctional theme park in the southern metropolis of Kaohsiung, where a wide variety of action-fun facilities for the whole family is offered.


pen one year by the time this issue of Travel in Taiwan is published, Taroko Park in Kaohsiung City is Taiwan’s latest shopping mallslash-theme park. It follows the tried-and-tested formula that has proven successful elsewhere on the island. This is not to say that you should give this one a miss; Taroko Park is Taiwan’s first sports-theme park, and arguably offers the best range of facilities for toddlers and young children, making it ideal for families. What’s more, it is the only major theme park accessible by metro in Taiwan; and being located only one stop from Kaohsiung International Airport, it tempts travelers with a last-stop shopping and entertainment experience before catching their flights.

Main square of Taroko Park Travel in Taiwan



Bowling alley

Taroko Park was inaugurated in May 2016 with much fanfare as a joint project by the Kaohsiung Rapid Transit Corp. (KRTC) and Taipei-based Taroko Development Corp., part of the Taroko Business Group, with the aim of increasing metro ridership. The 8.7-hectare multifunctional facility is located a stone’s throw from the northwest corner of the city’s airport in Qianzhen, a city district just south of downtown Kaohsiung. The twin Kaixuan and Jinzuan night markets, which together are billed as Taiwan’s largest night market, are just two stops from the Red Line’s KMRT Caoya Station, which gives you direct access to the park. One thing to note about Taroko Park is that, unlike most theme parks in Taiwan, there is no entrance fee. You pay for individual facilities, making the park a great place to while away a few hours if you’ve got time to kill before a flight, for example, and your visit can be as cheap (or expensive) as you want it to be. Also, even if you aren’t much of a shopping mall person, the mall here contains multiple entertainment and dining facilities that may appeal to you nonetheless.

Kochira Driving School

In the hallway leading to Exit 2 at Caoya Station, cute pastel murals of animals riding amusement-park rides will confirm you’re on the right path. The exit brings you right to the main square of Taroko Park, where the first things that catch your eye will be an impressive water fountain and the park’s name in block letters right in front of a gorgeous carousel, the largest in Taiwan, which has an 88-person capacity. Even if you don’t take a ride on one of its bobbing horses or carts (NT$40), get up close for a moment to admire the craftsmanship of the merry-go-round and scenes of Venice painted on the ceiling. Right next to the carousel, you can hop on board the only trolley car (NT$50) in Taiwan, bright orange and built to Circuit Wheel

resemble a vintage streetcar, complete with uniformed drivers. The car meanders up Manli Avenue, the park’s main artery, and terminates at the entrance to the amusement park area. It’s not a long ride, and there are runs every 12~15 minutes. Manli Avenue is reminiscent of a typical European boulevard. You’ll find toyshops, ice cream shops, donut shops, a handmade-pizza restaurant, and a convenience store, as well as multiple entrances and staircases for the three floors of the malls on either side. West Mall, the smaller of the two, features an exhibition center and a POYA outlet; POYA is a Taiwanese shopping-mart chain that sells a bit of everything. On the side facing the outdoor amusement park, you’ll find Taroko Laser Wars (NT$250/30mins), where daily specials and group discounts are offered. The second floor is home to the Crazy Jump Trampoline Park (NT$299/1hr), where you can literally bounce off the walls. There’s also a laser room, Xbox console stations, and a kids’ jungle gym within the trampoline park. If in need of a more traditional workout, there’s a fitness center next door. The second floor also features the handsomest bowling alley I have ever seen (NT$140/ person/game or NT$599/hour/lane + NT$20 for shoes), with


Travel in Taiwan


Drop Zone

Mini golf course


illuminated lanes in a darkened room with blue lights decorating the red-brick walls, cushy sofas to sit on between turns, and a bar at the back. On the third floor, you’ll find a handful of restaurants. East Mall contains most of the 220+ international-brand outlets housed at Taroko Park, including a number of flagship stores, biggest stores, only-one-in-southern-Taiwan stores, and so on. Ray-Ban, Converse, Puma, Swatch, Uniqlo, Calvin Klein, Levi’s, Guess, Patagonia, and H&M are just the tip of the iceberg and, in keeping with the park’s sports theme, over a quarter of the retail shops are sports-related. Besides the shopping options, one of the first things you’ll see on the first floor if you enter from the main square is VR+, a virtualreality center with four games to choose from (NT$129~$299). At the amusement park end, you’ll also find a WeSport basketball court (NT$85/70 weekends/weekdays per person/single time session), where you can shoot some hoops with friends. The second floor features a large number of shops selling baby clothing, and Brick Works, a Lego-theme café. There’s also a 125-meter WeSport track where kids can enjoy rollerblading using their own blades (NT$30/20 weekends/weekdays per single

time session), and can ride Strider pedal-free bikes, while kids/ adults can try out Fliker Air three-wheeled scooters (bikes/ scooters NT$80 per single time session). There’s also a mini golf course (NT$120/90 weekends/weekdays per 20min session; 40min also available) beside the track. The third floor offers the largest variety of eating options, and the west side of the food court boasts an expansive view over the amusement park. Beside the food court, Yu Kids Island is the best children’s play center I’ve seen in Taiwan, with the largest ball pool, blow-up slides, and areas where children can pretend to go grocery shopping or work as night-market vendors. Also on the third floor is a movie theater, a baseball center with batting and pitching cages (NT$499 for 15 tokens), as well as basketball, pool, and a mini bowling alley for kids. The center also sells official merchandise of the Lamigo Monkeys professional baseball team. North of the two malls lies the amusement park, Suzuka Circuit Park, named after its most notable feature, a 1/10-scale go-karting version of the renowned F1 raceway in Suzuka, Japan. Eight minutes of ripping around the 600-meter, figure-8 track on a stateof-the-art Birel N35 go-kart (NT$550/700 single/tandem, NT$400

Travel in Taiwan



Mini Suzuka Circuit

Central Kaohsiung



Zho Rd.

Taroko Park

KMRT Caoya Station


n Is


Kaohsiung Int’l Airport

Ready to race


from 11am to 2pm and for female riders all day on Wednesdays) is itself worth the trip to Taroko Park. After you have taken the safety class (NT$100), you get a membership card so you don’t need to do so again for subsequent rides. The class is conducted in Mandarin, but a full printed version of everything you need to know is offered in English. On the track, I put the pedal to the medal but was still left in the dust by more than a few local go-karting enthusiasts. The top five racers’ times are continuously updated on a board that can be viewed from the second-floor spectator area, and at the end of your run you get a printout of your own times and those of all your competitors on each lap. Sandals and long skirts are not allowed, but pants can be rented.

and wet course at Acro-X, plunge to the earth at Drop Zone, and spin wildly at G-Speed. Taroko Park is packed to the gills on weekends and national holidays, but when I visited on a recent weekday afternoon there were virtually no lines, and there was a lot of space to spare, at all of the facilities described above. Some activities require tickets, such as a ride on the trolley, which are available from the booth at the entrance of the amusement park, while for most rides you can pay in cash or swipe you KMRT iPASS and enjoy a small discount. The park is open 11am to 10pm Monday to Thursday, 11am to 10:30pm on Friday and holiday eves, 10:30am to 10:30pm on Saturday and public holidays, and 10:30am to 10pm on Sunday.

The modestly sized amusement park features two other areas in addition to the racetrack. Kochiro’s Putti Town features Circuit Wheel, Taiwan’s fastest Ferris wheel, and three different driving facilities for kids: motorbikes at Kids Bike, entertainingly difficultto-control cars at Drift Kids Racer, and parent-and-child cars at Kochira Driving School. The Tic Tac Train circumnavigates the full area on an elevated track (NT$60-160 per ride). In Skill Up Village you can try adult-sized drifting cars at Drift-S, fly in the air (and even do sidewise flips if you get the angle right) at Air Racers, ride all-terrain vehicles along a bumpy, steep,

Taroko Park ( 大魯閣草衙道 ) Add: No. 100, Zhongshan 4th Rd., Qianzhen Dist., Kaohsiung City ( 高雄市前鎮區中山四路 100 號 ) Website: (Chinese)


Travel in Taiwan

English and Chinese Jinzuan Night Market 金鑽觀光夜市 Kaixuan Night Market 凱旋觀光夜市 Manli Avenue 曼麗大道 Qianzhen District 前鎮區 Suzuka Circuit Park 鈴鹿賽道樂園 Taroko Development Corp. 大魯閣開發股份有限公司


Sweet and exotic treats await you at Taipei’s traditional-confection makers, such as Hoshing 1947, located in the old neighborhood of Dadaocheng

Sinful A Revival of Old-School Confections in Taipei


Text: Dana Ter Photos: Maggie Song


Osmanthus adzuki bean cake Travel in Taiwan


wholesalers selling dried food products. Many of the shop owners are third- or fourth-generation masters of their trades. A whiff of hazelnut beckons me into a single-story shop with a narrow façade bracketed by two red-brick pillars. Outside the shop are two old-style wooden benches and a humble red-fabric awning with the Chinese characters “合 興” (“Hexing ” in Hanyu Pinyin, spelled “Hoshing” here). Pastry chefs in aprons are fitting flour, nuts, and other ingredients into a traditional wooden mold, which they then slap onto a tray for baking. Tarts, rice cakes, jelly cakes, and other delicate, bite-sized Taiwanese cakes and pastries are on display in a glass cabinet, the treasures ranging from NT$25 to NT$45 apiece. The seating area is a compact back-of-the-shop space with red draperies that are minimalist sleek, and simple-frame tables with trays used as tops. Underneath the seats are rattan baskets for patrons to place their belongings. The owner, Ren Jia-lun, is busy serving her first customers of the morning. She apologizes for her tardiness and then, as I begin asking her questions, busies herself preparing honey-scented black tea and an assortment of pastries for me to nibble on.

Preparing steamed rice cakes


aro balls, tofu pudding, pineapple cakes, herbal jelly, glutinous-rice dumplings – traditional sweet-treat choices in the Taiwan capital are endless and diverse. Lately, however, Western-style bakeries and confection shops with attractive window dressing have begun to rival food stands and shops in wholesale markets. To remedy this, small dessert-shop owners are revamping many traditional Taiwanese confections by simplifying the flavors and making them more palatable to younger customers and foreign visitors. Another way they have chosen to go is adding fruits to sweet treats to appeal to the more health-conscious. Hoshing 1947 A thriving commercial port for international trade in the late Qing Dynasty, west Taipei’s Dadaocheng still buzzes with activity these days. As I stroll past narrow-front two-story shophouses and watch people sipping tea on stools outside, I imagine that much hasn’t changed in over a hundred years. Many owners operate businesses on the ground floors and live on the upper floors. A common sight is clothes hung up on street-facing balconies to dry. Today newstyle enterprises are being opened in the area, including arts and crafts stores, cafés, and craft beer pubs, but the architecture is resolutely 19th-century, a blend of Baroque, Japanese, and southern Chinese influences – lasting legacies of imperial and colonial times in Taiwan. I walk down Dihua Street – a popular street known for heritage shops selling sweets and other regional specialty goodies before the Lunar New Year – and encounter teahouses, dessert shops, and

“When I was growing up, each year as Lunar New Year approached I would look forward to eating these kinds of treats with my family,” the third-generation pastry chef tells me. When her grandfather moved to Taipei from Shanghai in 1947, he opened a traditional-style cake and pastry shop in Nanmen Market, located just south of Chiang Kai-shek Memorial Hall. The leadup to the Lunar New Year was always a busy time, because it was typically a time when families would buy confections in bulk to eat during the long holiday. “I would think, ‘Why can’t we eat these all year round?’” she laughs. Ren has put her own spin on Lunar New Year treats, which she does indeed serve year-round in her Dadaocheng shop. A trip to Europe a few years ago inspired her to revamp her operation to make it more attractive to younger visitors. She found many small family-run shops, such as cupcake stores and even delis, to be charming, modern, and appealing. “I was surprised that young people were not ashamed of doing this kind of work,” Ren recalls. In Taiwan, young people are less willing to take over the family business. After spending two years researching different recipes, at the end of last year Ren moved Hoshing to its present location in Dadaocheng, rebranding it “Hoshing 1947” to commemorate the year that her grandfather opened the original shop. Since the idea was to attract a younger crowd, she made sure that everything from the store’s façade down to the cake and pastry flavors and presentation was modern, yet with a tinge of nostalgia. For example, a black-and-white picture of the old Nanmen shop from its heyday in the 1950s greets customers at the entrance. “I wanted to introduce young people and foreign visitors to the history and significance of traditional desserts,” Ren explains. The confections themselves are the result of many rounds of recipe experimentation. Ren whipped up different batches for friends to sample, and the results were clear-cut – most friends, Travel in Taiwan


Hoshing gift box

Taiwanese and non-Taiwanese, gravitated towards offerings that were simple and not too pungent or sweet. “It was telling, because traditional Taiwanese confections are very sweet,” Ren says. “So I had to tweak the flavors to make them more appealing to customers, especially younger ones.” I dig into my osmanthus sesame rice cake, which has a pleasant jam-like flavor and a light, fluffy texture on the outside. Traditional cakes are made with osmanthus, which is normally very sweet, but in Hoshing’s version the sweetness is offset with a dab of sesame paste on the inside. Another delightful choice is the sesame adzuki bean rice cake. Texture-wise, it’s similar to the osmanthus cake, though grainier, and I also find it very refreshing and cooling. Next up is the hazelnut-walnut puff pastry. Be careful when eating this one, as it can get quite messy, with pastry flakes crumbling in your hand with each bite. The inside is an assortment of nuts that tastes incredibly earthy and fruity. My favorite, however, is the seaweed puff pastry – an odd combination, I admit, but one that works surprisingly well. There are just a few strands of dried seaweed, which are barely discernable and melt in your mouth along with the crumbly pastry. Another selection that I much fancy is the adzuki bean rice cake, which is Ren’s own version of the traditional Shanghainese sweet bean jelly, in which she substitutes rice for jelly to make the cakes less saccharine. “People don’t make and eat these treats at home anymore,” the entrepreneur tells me. It explains why she tries to make her shop as homey as possible. I imagine that this is what it must have been like for Ren when she was growing up – the sounds of the cake and pastry molds being moved about, the smell of hazelnut in the kitchen – and I understand her need to savor these memories and to create them anew for the next generation of sweet treat-lovers. Golden Generation Specializing in traditional Taiwanese confections, Golden Generation has a menu that might have some foreign visitors – especially those used to chocolate and buttery treats – scratching their heads in confusion. Adzuki-bean soup, sweet peanut soup, mung-bean cakes, and glutinous-rice dumplings in sweet soup – the menu is a smorgasbord for adventurous diners who prefer glutinous and chewy sweet treats. There’s also a good mix of sweet/savory and healthy/ sinful. The interior is as quirky as the menu – ingredients are displayed on shelves, and there is a designated arts-and-crafts area with walls covered with spools of yarn. Children (and adults) can take advantage of the DIY activities offered should they feel the need for a break from their confection indulgence.

At Golden Generation

Adzuki-bean soup

Ice Monster A big bowl of shaved ice from Ice Monster is one of the most refreshing treats one can find in Taipei on a sweltering summer day. Founded nearly 20 years ago, Ice Monster has two branches in Taipei, and shops have also been opened in mainland China and Japan. The Taipei branches use fresh, seasonal fruits sourced in Taiwan, including watermelon, pineapple, and banana, though they are best known for their refreshing mango shaved ice, a common Taiwanese sweet treat that’s especially in demand during summertime. Also on the menu are shaved-ice options with such other popular Taiwanese ingredients as adzuki bean, taro, and grass jelly. If visiting the Zhongxiao branch, plan to get there before noon, as the lines can spill to the street. The plus side while waiting, though, is that you can watch the staff prepare your shaved-ice bowl behind a long glass window.


Hoshing 1947 ( 合興壹玖肆柒 ) Add: No. 223, Sec. 1, Dihua St., Datong Dist., Taipei City ( 台北市大同區迪化街一段 223 號 ) Tel: (02) 2557-8060 Website: (Chinese) Golden Generation ( 金時良房 ) Add: No. 6, Ln. 77, Songjiang Rd., Zhongshan Dist., Taipei City ( 台北市中山區松江路 77 巷 6 號 ) Tel: (02) 2508-1128 Website: Ice Monster Add: No. 297, Sec. 4, Zhongxiao E. Rd., Da’an Dist., Taipei City ( 台北市大安區忠孝東路四段 297 號 ) Tel: (02) 8771-3263 Website: (Chinese) English and Chinese Chiang Kai-shek Memorial Hall 中正紀念堂 Dadaocheng 大稻埕 Dihua Street 迪化街 Nanmen Market 南門市場 Ren Jia-lun 任佳倫

Ice Monster ice treats

Advertisment by the Penghu County Government

Twin Heart Weir on Qimei Island

One of the Best Bays in the World! Penghu offers island-hopping fun all year round The Penghu archipelago consists of 90 volcanic islands located in the Taiwan Strait. The islands are notable for their endless sundrenched golden beaches and magnificent black basalt formations along the coasts. Over Penghu’s 700 years of history, ancient battlegrounds and villages with Southern Fujian style buildings where time seems to have stood still many years ago have been left behind. The archipelago was once the stopping-off point on the

Lighthouse on Mudouyu Island

migration path of immigrants. These days, visitors from around the world are flocking to Penghu with cameras, diving suits, and windsurfing boards. Tourists are having glorious times exploring these mysterious islands that are like a string of glittering pearls in the sea to the east of mainland China. This should remind everyone why the Portuguese described Penghu in the 17 th century as “The home of fishermen, beautiful islands.”

Chixi Rock Waterfall on Xiyu Island

The Most Beautiful Bays in the World (MBBW) World Congress will be held in Penghu in 2018. Penghu is a relatively new member of this organization, and people on the islands are really excited to be hosting such an important event, which will attract many lovers of island travel from around the world who will have the chance to enjoy all of Penghu’s charms. Not even the powerful monsoon that has been lashing the islands for tens of thousands of years will blow away the fact that Penghu will be embraced by the world in 2018! Penghu natives are understandably proud of the 90 islands that make up the archipelago. Each has its own charms. Mudouyu has a venerable century-old lighthouse that has stood the test of time and weather. Jibei has golden sands that stretch for miles. Wang’an, the “honeymoon island,” is a place where lovers can spend sweet time together. Qimei’s twin-heart stone fish trap is one the most romantic cultural heritage sites in the world. Established a few years ago, the South Penghu Marine National Park has pushed mysterious Dongjiyu, Xijiyu, Dongyupingyu, Xiyupingyu, and other islets on to the tourism frontline, revealing their basalt

landscape and old settlements for the first time to visitors. Smallisland travel has become a travel mode that visitors love and the local government actively promotes. The different seasons give Penghu distinctive charm all year round and this is why visitors will never be bored as they hop from island to island, no matter when they visit. In spring, the stunning India blanket, the county flower, is in glorious full bloom. In summer, turtles migrate back to the sandy beaches and lay their eggs to the sound of the waves lapping on the shore. As fall becomes winter, religious festivals, ancient settlements, and windsurfing can be enjoyed by visitors. Every island has a different look in each season. People everywhere are now discovering the beauty of the small islands of Penghu, driving the boom in yacht transportation and small-island travel. Penghu is sending out an invitation to the world, welcoming everyone to enjoy its pristine unique beauty, its seductive charms that vary throughout the seasons, and its small island wonderlands, promising that every visitors will be glad to have come!

Penghu Tour Website:

Dongyuping Islet


A Day in

Chiayi City Exploring Cultural Creativity in Old Neighborhoods

Text: Rick Charette Photos: Maggie Song

Let’s go on a day-tour walkabout taking in old places around Chiayi Railway Station that have been dynamized with new cultural-creative pizzazz 46

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Chiayi Brewery in the old days The former Chiayi Brewery today

Cultural-creative park market


ld, slow-paced Chiayi City sits on Taiwan’s western plains not far from the soaring central mountains. Its fortunes flourished when the Japanese built Taiwan’s main railway system and the Alishan Forest Railway in the early 1900s, connecting the lines here, and the Jianan Plain irrigation system, which nourished an explosion in regional agricultural production. For tourists, the sleepy city was long considered not a destination itself worth spending much time in, but a jumpingoff point for trips to places with more illustrious names, notably popular Alishan in the mountains to the east. The Chiayi brand has seen much positive change over the past decade, government and civic bodies together harvesting anew the city’s rich trove of historical and traditional-culture jewels, with efforts aimed specifically at the tourist. Following, we present one of the newest offerings, guided daytrips in the Chiayi Railway Station area celebrating old Chiayi’s traditional craft industries and a burgeoning concentration of cultural-creative tourist-inviting enterprises. The railway station is the heart of the old-city area, and all sites visited below are within easy walking distance of each other. Old-Time Architecture Chiayi Cultural and Creative Industries Park, better known as the G9 Creative Park, is a short walk from Chiayi Railway Station. Enjoy the train-spotting ops as locomotives rumble by on the lines right behind the grounds, charges in tow.

The park is on the site of the former Chiayi Brewery, closed in 1999, which was established by the Japanese in 1916 to produce sake and other products. Later it was rededicated to the production of kaoliang (sorghum) liquor and medicinal spirits by the Nationalist government. There are 21 buildings in the complex, with an intriguing heritage-treasure bounty of bottle washers, packaging machines, scales, conveyors, barrels, and other equipment on display. Info boards (mostly in Chinese) around the site explain what you’re looking at. You’ll also see the remnants of spur lines that brought trains right up to the buildings. The park is a project of the Ministry of Culture, managed by a non-profit group. A three-year comprehensive renovation is underway with many sections already back up and running. This is the largest of the ministry’s five cultural-creative parks around Taiwan, all in revivified heritage complexes. It is designed as a national hub for innovation in traditional arts, with a specific focus on southern Taiwan. Signature local art forms such as koji pottery and both wood and stone sculpture are promoted. Browse the vibrant market-style array of offerings for sale at the many stands set up by artists, artisans, and private cultural-creative enterprises. Other promotional stands of note are operated by the National Palace Museum Southern Branch and the Yunlin Hand Puppet Museum. What else can you get up to? There are art exhibitions and gallery-cum-cafés/teahouses, a cultural-creative DIY experience area, and even an Alleycat’s franchise (pizza, calzoni, wraps, etc.). Travel in Taiwan



Guided Tours To book a station-area cultural-creative tour, contact Ms. Huang Yi-zhen at LinkIn (Link Intelligence; tel: 0905-188-033;; Chinese), a group that works in concert with the local government. Huang is the proprietor of 25X40 Art Space, and the dynamo behind local cultural-creative/tourism efforts. English-language tours are available; call a week in advance. 25X40 Art Space is owned by Huang Yi-zhen, the friendly lady who served as our cultural-creative tour guide. She takes great pride in Chiayi’s history and traditional culture and has brought local entrepreneurs together, their plan to revivify the old community spirit in the commercial/residential district before the railway station, to showcase the best of old-time Chiayi for tourists and to spark a neighborhood cultural-creative renaissance built on this inheritance. It is Huang who initiated the new cultural-creative tours. 25X40 is on long, narrow Zhongzheng Road, one of Chiayi’s oldest commercial arteries, starting directly before the railway station. There are score after score of venerable family-run businesses in this district. Look for the original carved/painted enterprise signs and other original embellishments on the facades of the old shophouses; Huang has taken one of these and remodeled it. She offers an eclectic cultural-creative mix. For sale are craftworks by local artisans, paintings by local artists, and imported Japanese-made decorative knick-knacks. Master artisans are invited to give DIY classes most every weekend, there are regular cultural-topic talks by experts, and arthouse films are staged on many weekends (a fee is charged for all these events). Huang organizes a celebratory Zhongzheng Street street market once a year. The art space is also a café/teahouse, serving premium Alishan teas, imported coffee, and snack treats. 25X40 Art Space Add: No. 554, Zhongzheng Rd., Chiayi City ( 嘉義市中正路 554 號 ) Tel: 0905-188-033 Website:

Old-Time Culture & Industries Should you ever decide to open a Chinese temple, you’ll find all needed accouterments at Guang Cai Embroidery Shop. From floor to ceiling inside, and onto sidewalk and street edge outside: deity statues, censers, prayer blocks, and on and on – even palanquins, large and small. You’ll invariably see a lady or two hard at work embroidering the exquisite apparel worn by the Chinese deities. A small icon’s apparel takes 20 days to complete. Everything here is for sale, surely to be the most unique of your Taiwan souvenirs. Most popular with international tourists are the bright-color Chinese traditional-style Guang Cai Embroidery Shop Add: No. 173, Guanghua Rd., Chiayi City ( 嘉義市光華路 173 號 ) Tel: (05) 222-9788


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Not far from 25X40 Art Space, in another old residence renovated and dedicated to new purpose, is where B. Quirky and charmingly quixotic, this is an art gallery that is also a wine and cigar bar that is also a bistro. All operator hats are worn by the same person, a local artist with a fervent passion for the world’s best wines and cigars who wants to introduce them to Chiayi denizens to broaden their world. All the paintings on the walls are, yes, also his creation. At Taiwan Majolica Tiles House, literally everywhere you look, you will see a thing of beauty. This lovely, scent-filled old home from the Japanese era, meticulously restored, was built with highquality hinoki cypress brought down from the high mountains along the heritage, tourist-favorite Alishan Forest Railway, which happens to run directly behind the house. Most beautiful, however, is the superb collection of heritage decorative wall tiles, with thousands displayed. These come from the exterior and interior walls of traditional Chinese three-sided courtyard-style residences – embedded as decorative flourishes in homes of the better off. The proprietor has spent 30 years hunting them – sources are now dear – and has opened Taiwan Tiles, a cultural museum. He has also designed tile-theme souvenir items, such as postcards and coasters. where B. Add: No. 658, Zhongzheng Rd., Chiayi City ( 嘉義市中正路 658 號 ) Tel: (05) 229-0533

Taiwan Majolica Tiles House Add: No. 282, Linsen W. Rd., Chiayi City ( 嘉義市林森西路 282 號 ) Tel: 0979-060-750 Website:

decorative lanterns. DIY deity-attire embroidery experiences are also available, with flowers and other themes (a fee is charged and courses are conducted in Chinese; call in advance ). Entering old Feng Yi Printing Shop, you’ll feel you’re in for a bit of spelunking. The long room-cum-hallway that leads into the heart – and the cramped depths – of the operation is more like a tunnel. As you delve in ever deeper, another image may come to mind – the recesses of the labyrinthine old places described in Dickens novels. Feng Yi Printing Shop Add: No. 58, Xinrong Rd., Chiayi City ( 嘉義市新榮路 58 號 ) Tel: (05) 222-5265


Majolica Tiles House where B.

25X40 Art Space Guang Cai Embroidery Shop

Reminder: Excessive consumption of alcohol is harmful to your health.

Feng Yi Printing Shop

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The shop was opened in 1954 by the current owner’s father. One unforgettable image is the stack upon stack of dies, an incredible 180,000 in all, all self-created using machines that look impossibly antique, the oldest dating back to 1934, imported from Japan. Once upon a time there were a few dozen competing printing shops clustered on this street; Feng Yi is among the last, and proudly the oldest.

ChiaYi Sewing Machine

Sew, where to go next? ChiaYi Sewing Machine, that’s where. For many, visions of grandma hunched over her hoary machine may well play mentally throughout a visit, as in “historical times.” But this is real, a living shop where “ancient” machines are fixed for home use to make very real apparel for modern Chiayi folk. The owner says he can fix anything handed to him. The oldest machine being worked on at time of visit was dated 1946. The oldest on permanent display (still working) dates to 1896. You’ll inspect brands Taiwanese, Japanese, and Western, many familiar, many now out of business. d.

shan R








Ciji Temple 25X40 Art Space

Guang Cai Embroidery Shop


Old-Time Temple Culture Experience The first Taiwan region settled by Han Chinese was the southwest, and Chiayi is one of Taiwan’s oldest settlements. The city is known for its passionate temple culture, and more specifically for its “Eight Generals” temple-parade performance troupes. Wearing elaborate garb, the generals are in the forefront of parades, protecting the bigger temple gods that follow from evil demons. Want to be a god, at least for an hour or two? The resident troupe at Chiayi’s venerable Ciji Temple, a key site in Eight Generals historical development, will give you a personalized Eight Generals experience, explaining temple and generals, dressing up, dressing you up and painting your face, then showing you all the moves (a fee is charged according to type of custom-experience and group size; contact Ms. Huang for more info) .

where B.

ChiaYi Sewing Machine

Chiayi Cultural and Creative Industries Park

Minzu Rd. Feng Yi Printing Shop

Minsheng Rd.

At Ciji Temple ChiaYi Sewing Machine Add: No. 453, Zhongzheng Rd., Chiayi City ( 嘉義市中正路 453 號 ) Tel: (05) 222-2743 Website: Ciji Temple Add: No. 2, Ln. 216, Guohua St., Chiayi City ( 嘉義市國華街 216 巷 2 號 ) Tel: (05) 222-5162 Getting There A free shuttle bus runs between Chiayi High-Speed Rail Station and downtown Chiayi Railway Station (rides take about 20 minutes). Inexpensive scooter and bicycle rentals are available at shops around the latter. English and Chinese 25X40 Art Space 25x40 藝文空間 Chiayi Brewery 嘉義酒廠 Chiayi Cultural and Creative Industries Park 嘉義文化創意產業園區 ChiaYi Sewing Machine 嘉義針車行 Ciji Temple 慈濟宮 Guang Cai Embroidery Shop 光彩繡莊 Feng Yi Printing Shop 豐益打字印刷材料行 Huang Yi-zhen 黃逸蓁 Taiwan Majolica Tiles House 台灣花磚古厝 where B. 口舍土也方 Yunlin Hand Puppet Museum 雲林布袋戲館


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Slow Down and Savor

Chiayi County Government Advertisement

Enjoy the Beauty of Chiayi County at the Ruifeng-Taihe Leisure Agriculture Area and Chashan Village

In contrast to Chiayi County’s Alishan Forest Recreation Area, Ruifeng Village and Taihe Village in Meishan Township are crisscrossed by trails and the valleys are covered in neat rows of tea bushes. Here you can walk on trails lined with pristine vegetation alongside cold streams and stroll through moso bamboo groves and original forest. Throughout the four seasons, plum, peach, pear, and cherry blossoms can be viewed as well as over 100 species of fern native to Taiwan. A visit to Chashan in the far south of Alishan Township gives visitors a chance to experience the traditional hufu pavilions and sharing culture of the Tsou tribe. Visiting these places, remember to slow down and savor the tea plantation feast and be moved in the purest and most natural way.

The Tea Fragrance and Ancient Trails of the Ruifeng-Taihe Leisure Agriculture Area The Ruifeng-Taihe Leisure Agriculture Area can be reached by following County Road 162A. The road, rising from an elevation of 100 meters to 1,000 meters, is famous for its numerous turns. It goes from hilly, low-elevation to deep-mountain terrain. The area’s many mountain paths and historic trails are an important part of the cultural heritage of Meishan Township. Offering distinctive scenes, including waterfalls and cliffs, a dense network of ancient trials, and bat caves… the magical mist-shrouded deep mountain scenery attracts many visitors. Dayao viewing platform, on County Road 162A, at the point where the counties of Nantou, Yunlin, and Chiayi meet, is also an excellent spot from which to view the Alishan sunrise. Most township residents are farmers, their produce including jelly fig, high-mountain tea, wax apple, Mandarin orange, betel nut, Taiwan jewel orchid, and red plum. The output value of the high-mountain tea produced here is amongst the highest of any of the economic crops of Chiayi County. At tea harvest time every year, a large number of tea picking women and tea makers descend on the usually quiet mountain area. Meishan Township is like the tea it produces, intriguing, and always appealing.

Aveoveoyu! The Pavilions of the Tsou at Chashan Located in the far south of Alishan Township, Chashan has a beautiful name in Tsou language, Cayamavana. The Tsou people of Chashan are known for their love of sharing and the warmth and hospitality with which they greet many visitors, leaves deep impressions. Summer is when the people of the village are busy working in the fields, river fishing and hunting; the activities only coming to an end in August. In winter, when there is little work to be done in the fields, villagers often gather together at night around a fire and tell stories. In recent years, Chashan has become well known for its hufu pavilion culture. Pavilions large and small can be seen all around the village, mostly made of grass, bamboo, and wood. In November every year, Chashan village holds the Hufu Festival for which villagers decorate their pavilions and hang up freshly harvested fruit, waiting to welcome visitors. Visitors are free to share the fruit but should remember to say the phrase of appreciation aveoveoyu, which translates as “my heart is filled with gladness.”

Contact information

Ruifeng Village, Village Chief Huang Wen-zhong, Tel: (05) 250-1627

Taihe Village, Village Chief Hsu Yuan-shun, Tel: (05) 256-1826

Chashan Village, Village Chief Liao Wen-diao, Tel: (05) 251-3384


Fengjia Night Market

One-Day iBike Tour of

Taichung Text & Photos: Vision


aichung, Taiwan’s third-largest city, strikes visitors as a very modern place, but it’s also known for numerous heritage buildings that have long and splendid histories and for its magnificent food culture, built on the foods of the common people. The public-rental bicycles of Taichung’s iBike system ( are well suited for short-distance trips exploring this interesting city. In this segment we introduce some of Taichung’s most popular locations for taking photographs and experiencing local delicacies. Let’s spend a day slowly pedaling here and there to savor all the food, drinks, fun, and entertainment Taichung has to offer!

National Taichung Theater

Fengjia Night Market 逢甲夜市 This is where many of Taiwan’s innovative snacks originate, such as Taiwanese crepes and pepper pork buns. These were created here, and then spread across the island. The night market has many shops and over 1,600 stalls, offering all kinds of merchandise, food, and fun. Enjoy the bustling night-market atmosphere, shop, and have fun in a place that offers all the variety of a large department store. Add: No. 117, Wenhua Rd., Xitun Dist., Taichung City ( 台中市西屯區文華路 117 號 ) Hours: Different hours for different businesses iBike Station: Feng Chia University ( 逢甲大學 )

Rainbow Village

Rainbow Military Dependents’ Village 彩虹眷村


National Taichung Theater 臺中國家歌劇院

In 2008, a resident of this village for retired servicemen, Huang Yong-fu, now 92 years old, began using the walls of houses in his neighborhood as canvasses to paint on. He uses cement paint to portray colorful deities, figures, and animals, in paintings filled with whimsical fun. The village has become a popular Taichung spot for photographers. If you admire his work, you can also buy postcards and related merchandise here, helping the artist to continue with his creative productions.

Named by international news agency Reuters as one of “the nine new landmark buildings in the world,” this theater was designed by renowned Japanese architect Toyo Ito. Its interior-design shapes are based on the caves that primitive humans lived in; and its unique construction techniques can be described as creating “sound caves.” The building is surrounded by fountains, water channels, and green lawns and has become a popular destination for Taichung citizens to view arts performances or engage in leisure activities.

Add: Ln. 56, Chun’an Rd., Nantun Dist., Taichung City ( 台中市南屯區春安路 56 巷 ) Tel: 0920-162-888 Hours: Open for visits during the daytime; please keep noise levels down during the midday break. Website: (Chinese) iBike Station: Chunshe Park ( 春社公園 )

Add: No. 101, Sec. 2, Huilai Rd., Xitun Dist., Taichung City ( 台中市西屯區惠來路二段 101 號 ) Tel: (04) 2251-1777 Hours: Sun.~Thu. 11:30am~9pm, Fri.~Sat. and national holidays 11:30am~10pm Website: iBike Station: National Taichung Theater ( 臺中國家歌劇院 )

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Use the Tour Taiwan App in Taichung! Using the Taiwan Tourism Bureau’s Tour Taiwan App makes travel more convenient. The App provides information about accommodation, shopping, restaurants, and tourist info centers near various attractions, ensuring that you’ll have a good time in the city, as you travel with ease and comfort! Download the app on your iOS or Android mobile device!

Miyahara 宮原眼科 This was originally a clinic opened by Dr. Miyahara, director of the Taiwan Governor General's Office Hospital during the Japanese colonial period. In 2010, the building was renovated and turned into a popular ice-cream parlor/café/restaurant. The exterior retains the original red-brick arcade. Inside, tall European-style bookshelves line the high walls, tempting cakes are displayed in cabinets, and a variety of ice creams, Taiwanese teas, traditional snacks, and Chinese and Western dishes are available. Add: No. 20, Zhongshan Rd., Central Dist., Taichung City ( 台中市中區中山路 20 號 ) Hours: 10am~10pm Tel: (04) 2227-1927 Website: iBike Station: Taichung Station ( 臺中火車站 )

12 Moon Calligraphy Greenway Fantasy Story Green Ray


Calligraphy Greenway 草悟道 This is a narrow 3.6km strip of green urban space that links the National Museum of Natural Science, the Civic Square, arts spaces, the National Taiwan Museum of Fine Arts, distinctive restaurants, and other city attractions. It was given the name Calligraphy Greenway due to the greenery, the unique feel of the street blocks, and the natural, smooth spatial flow, which resemble cursive-style calligraphy. Add: Xiangshang N. Rd., West Dist., Taichung City ( 台中市西區向上北路 ) Hours: 24H iBike Station: National Museum of Natural Science ( 國立自然科學博物館 ), Greenway ( 經國園道 )

12 Moon 十二月 粥品 茶飲 私房菜

Fantasy Story Green Ray 范特喜 綠光計畫

Located in a renovated house over 50 years old, this restaurant mainly serves Chinese dishes and Taiwanese tea drinks. For the “Earthenware Pot Rice Congee,” diners have 12 flavors to choose from. Also popular are crispy and fragrant “Taro and Sweet Potato Duck,” made using cherry duck from Yilan, which is wrapped around mashed local sweet potato and taro, “Fried Daikon Cake,” and sugar-free old-time-style “Pineapple Tea,” made purely from pineapples, with no added sugar.

Green Ray was created by renovating old Taiwan Water Corp. dormitories. Restaurants, apparel shops, hair salons, and craft shops are now housed in the attractive buildings, drawing shoppers, diners, and photo/history/ architecture buffs. From second-floor terraces, visitors can leisurely observe life in the nearby alleys. The complex also often serves as a venue for markets and cultural-arts performances.

Add: No. 12, Ln. 179, Sec. 2, Formosa Blvd., West Dist., Taichung City ( 台中市西區台灣大道二段 179 巷 12 號 ) Tel: (04) 2328-9393 Hours: 11am~1am Website: (Chinese) iBike Station: Chung Cheng Elementary School ( 中正國小 )

Add: No. 2-26, Zhongxing 1st Ln., West Dist., Taichung City ( 台中市西區中興一巷 2-26 號 ) Tel: (06) 2301-6717 Hours: Different hours for different businesses Website: iBike Station: Greenway ( 經國園道 )

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The Old Plains Town of

Xingang Text: Rick Charette Photos: Vision

Where Yesteryear Remains at the Heart of Modern Daily Living


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ingang, the urban hub for Xingang Township, sits on the plains in Taiwan’s southwest near Chiayi City. Surrounding it is a region of small villages and farms, one of the island’s first settled by Han Chinese, way back in the 1600s. In many ways life goes on here much as it did in imperial times, before railways and highways transported the outside modern world in. Visit Xingang to explore snack foods, religious architecture, arts, crafts, and souvenir treats that have aged very well with time.

Religious Heritage Site – 1National Fengtian Temple Established in 1700, this is the religious heart of Xingang – aged and ornately grand, always busy, always bathed in the heady aromas of worship incense. The southern destination on the famed annual 8-day, 7-night Dajia Mazu Pilgrimage, one of the world’s great religious-pilgrimage spectacles, it stands at the north end of Zhongshan Road, the approach road for religious processions. These deliver Mazu (Goddess of the Sea) icons from temples around Taiwan for “visits” with Fengtian’s Mazu icon, among Taiwan’s oldest and most powerful; the belief is that the icons gain strength from her to better protect their home districts. The people of central/southwest Taiwan have always had a close relationship with the sea, and Mazu is by far Taiwan’s most worshipped deity. The temple area becomes breathtakingly busy around the time of her birthday (third lunar month). Website: (Chinese)

Fengtian Temple

At Bantaoyao Crafts Studio of Jiao-Zhi Pottery & Chien-Nien

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Traditional Specialty Snack Foods – Duck Meat Thick Soup In the countryside of Xingang Township an abundance of food ingredients is produced so that there is unbeatable freshness to the taste of Xingang’s must-try specialty snacks. Duck farming is a venerable regional industry, and one of Xingang’s signature treats is yarou geng , or duck meat thick soup. And the provider esteemed above all others is Xingang Yarou Geng, at No. 17 on Zhongshan Road, the pedestrian-busy road directly in front of and perpendicular to Fengtian Temple. This dish features duck-bone broth thickened with starch, thinstrip duck meat, and goodies such as shredded bamboo shoot and ginger, onion, dried preserved cabbage, mushroom, black fungus, and seasonings.


Duck meat thick soup

Traditional Art – Bantaoyao Crafts Studio of Jiao-Zhi Pottery & Chien-Nien Koji (cochin) pottery is a traditional Taiwan art form featuring bright, glossy pastel colors, originally used for decorations on temple-roof ridges and walls. The region around Chiayi is this form’s home. Xingang’s Bantaoyao is a learning park where the koji production process and role in temple construction is showcased. Among the attractions are a craft museum, workshop with DIY pottery-crafting opportunities, a classical Eastern-style garden, and a theme restaurant.


Website: (Chinese)

Typical temple decoration

Koji pottery wall


Favorite – 4 Souvenir Xingang Candy Xingang Candy, sometimes also called Xingang Maltose, is an oldtime Xingang confection and one of its most popular take-home souvenir buys. The main ingredients are maltose, granulated sugar, wheat flour, and peanut. The bite-sized treats are only lightly sweet, comparatively low in calories, and chewy without being sticky. At the heart of this Xingang specialty is the tasty regionally cultivated Taiwan No. 9 Peanut, giving it unique flavor and character. Xingang’s best-known maker/seller is Jin Zan Cheng Food Shop, near Fengtian Temple at No. 130, Zhongshan Road, in operation since 1931. Website: (Chinese)

Traditional Craft Industry – Singang Incense Artistic Culture Garden The Xingang region has been one of fervent Chinese-religion devotion for over three centuries, so it’s only natural that many related traditional industries have taken root here to serve devotees’ varied worship needs. One is the craft of incense-making. The Singang Incense Artistic Culture Garden is unique in Taiwan, introducing the history of incense and the art of making it. Among the subjects explored are the origins and development of incense, the varied religious rites and ceremonies in which it is used, and of course the secrets of its traditional manufacture by hand. As well, visitors can explore a themed herb and flower garden, where many natural ingredients used in incense making are on display. There are also demonstrations, DIY sessions, and an incense-products shop.


Getting There Taiwan Tourist Shuttle ( ) buses depart from both Chiayi’s High Speed Rail Station and Chiayi Railway Station on the service’s hop-on, hop-off Southern Branch of the NPM (National Palace Museum) Route, with stops at Fengtian Temple and Bantaoyao. Staff at either station’s visitor information center can provide English assistance. English and Chinese Bantaoyao Crafts Studio of Jiao-Zhi Pottery & Chien-Nien 板陶窯交趾剪黏工藝園區 Dajia Mazu Pilgrimage 大甲媽祖遶境 Fengtian Temple 奉天宮 Jin Zan Cheng Food Shop 金讚成食品行 koji pottery 交趾陶 Mazu 媽祖 Singang Incense Artistic Culture Garden 新港香藝文化園區 Taiwan No. 9 Peanut 台灣 9 號花生 Xingang 新港 Xingang Candy 新港飴 Xingang Yarou Geng 新港鴨肉羹 yarou geng 鴨肉羹 Zhongshan Road 中山路

Website: (Chinese)

Singang Incense Artistic Culture Garden

Xingang Candy

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here's something almost indescribably alluring about traveling by rail. The slow lurch of the cars as they are coaxed into motion by the pull of the engine. The clickety-clackety sound of the wheels running over the small gaps between rails. The changing landscapes seen from the comfort of your carriage.

In Taiwan a number of different railway services are available, each catering to different kinds of travelers. Business travelers on trips between major cities on the island’s west side, for example, might prefer the faster and more expensive High Speed Rail system, a bullet-train service that connects the city of Taipei in the north with Kaohsiung in the south. The fastest trains take just 90plus minutes to travel between these two major metropolitan areas.

58 Travel in Taiwan

Travelers who aren't in so much of a hurry and want to save a bit on ticket cost might board a train of the Taiwan Railways Administration (TRA) service. TRA operates the regular rail service, with its lines forming a loop around the island. The Puyuma Express and Taroko Express trains are its fastest and most modern. Other train types are Ziqiang, Juguang, Fuxing, and EMU (Commuter), the last of which is the slowest and most inexpensive, with stops at every station along its routes. Most TRA trains ply the main lines on the western plains and along the coasts, allowing travelers to circumnavigate the whole island. There are, however, also a number of branch lines that connect to places further inland, notably the towns of Pingxi and Neiwan in the north, Jiji in central Taiwan, and the Alishan region in the central-south. Today popular with

Through the Peaceful and Scenic Central Taiwan Countryside Taking a Jiji Line train brings you to the base of Taiwan’s soaring central mountains and close to its geographical center. It allows you to get a glimpse of days gone by with stops at old railway stations, in a former logging town, and near a large heritage “snake” kiln..

Text: Joe Henley Photos: Maggie Song

Jiji Line and Green Tunnel in Jiji Township

tourists, these lines where originally built for industries such as logging and mining. The old sawmills and mining operations are mostly gone or closed down now, with many of those remaining having fallen into neglect or disrepair. Some have been preserved, however, providing visitors with a clearer glimpse of life in times gone by. Recently I went on a trip to explore one of the branch lines – the Jiji Line in central Taiwan’s Changhua and Nantou counties. This line has been in near constant operation for almost a century. Since construction was completed in 1921, service between some stations has only been halted twice, for a three-year period from 1999 to 2002 due to damage caused by the devastating Jiji Earthquake, and due to repair work on several tunnels in 2010.

Other than those instances, trains have rolled smoothly, taking travelers through the peaceful and scenic countryside of this part of central Taiwan. Trains on the line, which is just under 30 kilometers long, start in the west at the town of Ershui in Changhua County before crossing over into Nantou County, making stops at the Yuanquan, Zhuoshui, Longquan, Jiji, Shuili, and Checheng stations. The trains consist of just a few cars; the railway itself is a single-track narrowgauge line. Tourists will often get off at stations along the way, explore the surroundings, and hop on the next train to continue their rides (there are services about every 80 minutes; a single ticket from Ershui to Checheng is NT$45, a day ticket NT$90). The full trip, one way, takes just a little over 40 minutes, but if getting on and off at the various stations, plan to spend the whole day.

Travel in Taiwan



At Checheng Station

Checheng’s log-storage pond

Checheng I went about things backwards, starting at the eastern end of the line in Checheng, just south of the towering Mingtan Reservoir dam, and working my way back. The reservoir is fed by the waters of Sun Moon Lake, located up in the hills east of the village. The rustic logging-village charm has been preserved well in Checheng. Attractions include an old sawmill that has been turned into the Checheng Wood Museum, and the well-maintained railway station from the Japanese era (built in 1922). Checheng’s railway history dates back to 1911, when a line was constructed connecting Puli, north of Sun Moon Lake, to Checheng and Ershui. It was used to transport sugar produced at the Puli Sugar Factory (the Puli-Checheng section does not exist anymore). Later, when the Daguan Power Station was being constructed upriver from Checheng in the 1930s, a large number of engineers and workers poured into the settlement. The railway line was used to transport people and building materials to the construction site. After the completion of the plant, however, there was an exodus, and the village remained quiet until 1959 when a major 60 Travel in Taiwan

logging corporation chose it as base for processing timber from the Danda Forest Area in the Central Mountain Range. Remains from this logging period, which lasted until 1971, are a scenic logstorage pond, nowadays teeming with koi fish rather than timber, and a wooden structure that originally housed a crane used to hoist the large trunks from the water to be milled for shipment. The area between the pond and the railway station, once bustling with shops catering to the workers and their families, is now a popular tourist area with restaurants, small mom-and-pop eateries, and stores selling snacks and souvenirs. Steam, a restaurant with floor-to-ceiling windows overlooking the former log pond, offers tranquil views of the pond and the reservoir dam along with its moderately priced set meals and drinks. Located near Checheng Railway Station is the Shuili Farmers' Association Plum Hall, where you can find Shuili Township produce and processed goodies. To sample a local drink with a nice kick, try the Checheng Chateau plum-wine brewery, where the potent alcoholic beverage, closer in taste and alcohol content to something like vodka than to wine, is distilled on-site.


Jiji Station

Jiji Military History Park

Shuili Snake Kiln

Shuili From Checheng the Jiji Line runs parallel to County Route 131, snaking its way down to Shuili, a town that sits next to the Zhuoshui River, the longest river in Taiwan. Shuili is home to the Shuili Snake Kiln ( ; Chinese), established in 1927, one of Taiwan's last remaining “snake” kilns (an elongated kiln with a snakelike form). The Shuili area's abundant timber was gathered to fire the kiln up to temperatures of 1,200 degrees Celsius, with all manner of pottery produced. Among the products were “self-defense vats,” man-sized vats designed during WWII to be buried along beaches so that Japanese soldiers might conceal themselves as the first line of defense against enemy encroachment from the sea. Visitors can actually walk through the kiln, from a side entrance all the way to its rear/top. Workers once donned flame-retardant clothing to enter the kiln, when the temperature was still as high as 300 degrees Celsius, to retrieve newly fired wares, holding their breath so as to avoid irrevocably damaging their windpipe and lungs. Shuili Snake Kiln is located about 2km south of Shuili Railway Station along Prov. Hwy 16. Entrance to the large kiln complex, which is full of interesting tidbits of information in English, is NT$150. The site is open daily from 8am to 5:30pm.

Jiji The next station on my tour of the Jiji Line was Jiji. There, I visited the Mingxin Academy, a place of learning and culture dating back to the late 19th century – a time when Jiji was a thriving center for the island's camphor industry. A short distance away (by bike if you prefer, as the town has a dedicated bike path running between points of interest, and cheap bike rentals available at the railway station), is the Jiji Military History Park, featuring decommissioned relics of the ROC Armed Forces, including M18, M41, and M48 tanks, a C-119 bomber, and an old TF-104G fighter jet. West of Jiji is also the locally famed Green Tunnel, a 4.5-km stretch of leafy canopy covering County Route 152, a great place to go for a bicycle ride. Steam ( 隱茶 ) Add: 101-3, Minquan Lane, Checheng Village, Shuili Township, Nantou County ( 南投縣水里鄉車埕村民權 巷 101-3 號 ) Tel: (049) 277-6471

Shuili Snake Kiln ( 水里蛇窯 ) Add: No. 21, Ln. 512, Shuixin Rd., Dingkan Village, Shuili Township, Nantou County ( 南投縣水里鄉頂崁村水信路一段 512 巷 21 號 ) Tel: (049) 277-0967 Website:

Travel in Taiwan




Mr. Wu of Sun Yee Tea




Taiwan Jiji

Train Station

Zhuoshui Ershui

Sun Yee Tea

Ershui Bikepath Jiji Military History Park

to Chiayi

Old Residence of Hsieh Tung-min

Evolution 1001 The Jiji Line is a major tourist attraction in central Taiwan. As part of efforts to make the railway-travel experience even more attractive, the trains running are often painted with colorful imagery, depicting Nantou tourist attractions, popular cartoon figures, and so on. At present one train, dubbed Evolution 1001, sports a futuristic theme, with images of two cute alien characters, Miss One and Mr. Ten, created by local artist Akibo Lee. The train is painted light blue throughout, with images of the characters painted on the outside and figures found inside the cars.

Zhuoshui Next on my tour was the town of Zhuoshui. Just down the road leading out of the main exit of the railway station is Sun Yee Tea, where for the past 63 years three generations of the Wu family have provided some of the finest tea in the country. The owner, who introduced himself humbly as Mr. Wu, is a softspoken gentleman of 78 who is as eager to show off pictures of his grandchildren as he is to talk about his business. During my visit he treated me to an oolong variety from Lishan, a Taiwan highmountain area famous for its apples, peaches, and pears. As I drank the tea, he shared with me his secret to good health and longevity: “When people ask me what I've been eating to stay so healthy, I tell them all I need is tea.”

62 Travel in Taiwan

Mingxin Academy

Ershui The western terminus of the line, and its only stop in Changhua County, is the town of Ershui, which is known for the Ershui Bikepath, which follows alongside the Jiji Line railway tracks, and the Old Residence of Hsieh Tung-min, who was the governor of Taiwan Province (1972-1978) and Vice President of the Republic of China (19781984) under President Chiang Ching-kuo. His old family home has been preserved as a heritage site. It may be trite to say, but a trip along the Jiji Line is indeed like taking a trip through time, visiting a version of Taiwan that might be long gone for the island as a whole, but which those who have worked to preserve the history in this small corner of the country have ensured will not soon be forgotten.


Checheng Wood Museum Shuili

Snake Kiln

Nantou County Evolution 1001 train (Photo by Yan Zan-cheng)

Sun Yee Tea ( 三億茶行 ) Add: No. 65, Yuanji Rd., Mingjian Township, Nantou County ( 南投縣名間鄉員集路 65 號 ) Tel: (049) 273-4567 English and Chinese Checheng 車埕 Checheng Wood Museum 車埕木業展示館 Daguan Power Station 大觀發電廠 Ershui (Bikepath) 二水 ( 自行車道 ) Evolution 1001 進化 1001 號 Green Tunnel 綠色隧道 Jiji (Line) 集集 ( 線 ) Jiji Military History Park 集集軍史公園 Mingxin Academy 明新書院 Mingtan Reservoir 明潭水庫 Old Residence of Hsieh Tung-min 謝東閔故居 Puli (Sugar Factory) 埔里 ( 糖廠 ) Shuili 水里 Shuili Farmers' Association Plum Hall 水里農會真梅館 Sun Moon Lake 日月潭 Zhuoshui (River) 濁水 ( 溪 )


Taipei 台 北


Taipei 台 北



Taipei 台 北

華 泰 王子大 飯 店


柯 達 大 飯 店 - 台 北 天 津 Taipei 台 北

No. of Rooms: 60

No. of Rooms: 160

No. of Rooms: 220

No. of Rooms: 57

Room Rates: Deluxe Room Grand Deluxe Room Premier Room Premier 9 Éclat Suite

Room Rates: Single Room Deluxe Single Room Deluxe Twin Room Suite Room

Room Rates: Single / Deluxe / Executive NT$ Suit NT$

Room Rates:


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

(All rates are exclusive of 5% VAT and 10% service charge)

Desk PeRsoNNel sPeak: English, Japanese, Taiwanese, Chinese, Cantonese RestauRaNts: Éclat Lounge 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.


6,400 7,000 7,800 12,000

Desk PeRsoNNel sPeak: English, Japanese, Chinese RestauRaNts: Golden Ear Restaurant (Western semi buffet); Golden Pot (Chinese Cuisine) sPecial featuRes: Business Center, 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

6,000- 8,500 9,500-20,000

Desk PeRsoNNel sPeak: English, Japanese, Chinese RestauRaNts: L’IDIOT RESTAURANT & BAKERY (Western), CHIOU HWA RESTAURANT (Chinese) sPecial featuRes: Coffee Shop, Fitness Center, Business Center, Meeting and Banquet Facilities,Laundry Service, Non-smoking Floor, Parking Lot, Airport Transfer Service

(Exit M2, MRT Taipei Main Station; 7 min. by foot) (捷運台北車站M2出口,步行7分鐘)


Taipei 台 北


No. of Rooms: 203

Room Rates: Single/DBL Suite

Room Rates: Deluxe Room Business Room Executive Deluxe Room Boss Suite Premier Suite

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

477 , Linsen N. Rd., Zhongshan District, Taipei City 10451 10451 台 北 市 林 森 北 路 477 號

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


No. of Rooms: 500 (Suites: 57)

Desk PeRsoNNel sPeak: English, French, Spanish, and Japanese



Room Rates: Superior Room Business Room Deluxe Room Executive Deluxe Room Executive Suite Sense Suite

NT$ 8,200-13,000 NT$ 18,000-30,000

Tel: +886- 2-2581-2222, 0800.020.222 Fax: +886- 2-2581-1900


No. of Rooms: 79

Desk PeRsoNNel sPeak: English, Japanese, Chinese

Business center, K lounge, free parking, free self-service laundry, free Wi-Fi, 24 hours free coffee for guests

10441 台 北 市 中 山 北 路 一 段 53 巷 22 號

186 Songjiang Rd., Taipei City,10467 10467 台 北 市 松 江 路 186 號 369, Lin-sen (Linsen) N. Rd., Taipei City, 10447 10 4 47 台 北 市 林 森 北 路 3 6 9 號 Tel: +886-2-2581-8111 Fax: +886-2-2581-5811

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

sPecial featuRes:

22, Ln. 53 Sec. 1, Zhongshan N. Rd., Taipei City, 10441

Tel: +886-2-2541-5511 Fax: +886-2-2531-3831 Reservation Hotline: +886-2-2541-6888 E-mail:

Taipei 台 北

4,400 4,700 5,200

Desk PeRsoNNel sPeak:

Exit 1 of MRT Xingtian Temple Station on the Luzhou Line.



English, Japanese, Chinese

370, Sec. 1, Dunhua S. Rd., Da-an District, Taipei City 10684 10684 台 北 市 敦 化 南 路 一 段 370 號 Tel: +886-2-2784-8888 Fax: +886-2-2784-7888 Res. Hotline: +886-2-2784-8118


Superior Room Executive Room K Suite

Taipei 台 北

Hsinchu 新 竹

No. of Rooms: 141 NT$ NT$ NT$ NT$ NT$

8,000 10,000 11,000 17,000 21,000

Desk PeRsoNNel sPeak: English, Japanese, and Chinese RestauRaNts: Rain Forest, Garden Terrace, Lounge 81, Tic-Tac-Toe Café sPecial featuRes: Business Center, Multifunctional Room, Fitness Club, Outdoor Pool, Sauna, Spa, Aromatherapy, Car Park



6,000 7,000 8,000 9,000 12,000 20,000

Desk PeRsoNNel sPeak: English, Japanese, and Chinese RestauRaNts: The Zone Bar & Restaurant sPecial featuRes: Gym, Sky Lounge, Sky Garden

3 minutes by foot from Exit 2 of MRT Zhongshan Elementary School Station

Tel: +886-2-7743-1000 Fax: +886-2-7743-1100 E-mail:

1 Chung Shan N. Rd., Sec. 4, Taipei City, 10461 10461 台 北 市 中 山 北 路 四 段 1 號 Tel: +886-2-2886-8888 Fax: +886-2-2885-2885

83 Civic Boulevard, Sec. 3, Taipei City, 10491 10491 台 北 市 市 民 大 道 三 段 8 3 號 Tel: +886-2-8772-8800 Fax: +886-2-8772-1010 E-mail:

111, Sec. 2, Gongdao 5th Rd., East Dist., Hsinchu City 30070, Taiwan 3 0 0 7 0 新 竹 市 公 道 五 路二 段111號 Tel: +886-3-623-1188 Fax: +886-3-623-1199 E-mail:

Travel in Taiwan


53 HOTEL 寶島53行館

Taichung 台 中





礁 溪.冠 翔 世 紀 溫 泉 會 館


Kaohsiung 高 雄

Yilan 宜 蘭

No. of Rooms: 70

No. of Rooms: 311

No. of Rooms: 80

Room Rates: Standard Room Superior Room Deluxe Room Family Room Deluxe Family Room

Room Rates: Standard Room (Single/Business/King) NT$ 6,600/7,000/7,600 Superior Room(King) NT$ 8,000 Deluxe Room(Twin) NT$ 8,600 Panoramic Room(King) NT$ 8,600 Elegant Room(Triple) NT$ 9,600 Sweet Family Room NT$ 9,800 Suite(Executive/Corner/Presidential) NT$ 16,000/20,000/120,000

Room Rates: Rock-lined Pool Room Rock-lined Pool Family Room Nordic Suite Nordic Family Room Royal Suite

Desk PeRsoNNel sPeak: English, Japanese, Chinese

sPecial featuRes: Parking Lot, KTV, Fitness Center, Business Center, Outdoors Spa


4,500 5,000 5,500 6,000 6,500

Desk PeRsoNNel sPeak: English, Japanese, Chinese sPecial featuRes: Our guests enjoy easy access to all attractions lively Taichung City has to offer. From the hotel it’s a two-minute walk to Taichung Railway Station and a three-minute walk to the bus station, from where guests can easily reach popular tourist sites, such as Qingjing Farm, Xitou Forest Recreation Area, and Sun Moon Lake. 53 Hotel offers a wide range of services, including laundry/dry cleaning, a business center, a gym, and free wireless Internet access.

(All rates are exclusive of 5% VAT and 10% service charge)

RestauRaNt: Passage Patisserie & Café(1F), Tea Lounge(2F), Tivoli(6F), VIP Rooms(7AF), Sky Chinese Restaurant(40F), Bar The 42(42F)

Hualien 花 蓮

No. of Rooms: 95 NT$ 7,200 NT$ 9,600 NT$ 10,000 NT$ 12,000 NT$ 12,000

(All rates are exclusive of 10% service charge)

Desk PeRsoNNel sPeak: English, Japanese, Chinese

Room Rates: Standard Twin Room Standard Double Room Standard Triple Room Standard Family Room Deluxe VIP Suite


4,800 4,800 5,800 6,800 10,000

Desk PeRsoNNel sPeak: English, Chinese RestauRaNt: Lishiuan Restaurant, Tastefulness Cafe sPecial featuRes: Rooftop Garden, Fitness Center, Business Center, Spa

sPecial featuRes: Business Center, Pool, Gym, Sauna and Beauty Saloon, Free Wi-Fi, Shuttle bus, Parking lot

27, Zhongshan Rd., Central District, Taichung City, 40042 40042 台 中 市 中 區 中 山 路 27 號 (距離火車站 2 分鐘) Tel: +886-4-2220-6699 Fax: +886-4-2220-5899 E-mail:

33, Sihwei 3rd Rd., Kaohsiung City, 80250 80250 高 雄 市 苓 雅 區 四 維 三 路 33號 Tel: +886-7-332-2000 Fax: +886-7-336-1600 E-mail:

6,Lane 66,Ren-ai Rd.,Jiaoxi Township,Yilan County 26243 26243 宜 蘭 縣 礁 溪 鄉 仁 愛 路 66巷 6號 Tel: +886-3-987-5599 Fax: +886-3-987-5800 E-mail:

( two minutes from railway station)


Taipei City Tour 台北市區觀光

Pingxi Sky Lantern Experience & Old Street Walk


3-Day Southern Taiwan Tour


(Tainan, Kaohsiung, Kenting) (Taiwan High-Speed Rail – Bullet Train Ride) 三天二夜 台南 ‧ 高雄 ‧ 墾丁深度之旅 ( 含台灣高鐵體驗 )



Wulai Aboriginal Village Tour 烏來高砂族部落觀光

Taipei Night Tour





Folk Arts Tour (Sanxia & Yingge)


民俗藝術觀光 ( 三峽、鶯歌 )

Yangmingshan National Park & Hot-Spring Tour

花蓮太魯閣 ( 大理石 ) 峽谷觀光

2-Day QingJing & Fruit Picking Tour

陽明山國家公園及溫泉觀光國家公園 及溫泉觀光

Jiufen Village & Northeast Coast Tour



(Stay at QingJing) 2 天 1 夜 南投清境 世外桃源採果趣 ( 住清境 )

3-Day Tour to Sun Moon Lake & Alishan 3 天 2 夜 日月潭、阿里山觀光

TOUR TAIWAN! Our package tours include daily coach services


Travel in Taiwan


2-Day Sun Moon Lake, Puli & Lukang Tour (Stay at Sun Moon Lake) 2 天 1 夜 日月潭、埔裡鎮、及鹿港觀光 ( 住日月潭 )


台北市松江路 190 號 4F

4-Day Central & Southern Taiwan Tour

千島湖、坪林自然美景 茶飄香

1-Day Taroko (Marble) Gorge Tour

Northern Coast Tour


"Thousand Island Lake" & Pinglin Tea Plantation

99-1 Chung Mei Rd. Hualien Country 97061 97061 花 蓮 市 中 美 路 99-1號 Tel: +886-3-824-6898 Fax: +886-3-824-6299

(Sun Moon Lake, Kaohsiung, Kenting) 四天三夜 台灣中南部觀光 ( 日月潭、高雄、墾丁 )

4-Day Eastern Taiwan Tour NT$6,600


(Yilan, Hualien, Taitung) (Taiwan Railway Train Ride) 四天三夜 海岸、縱谷豐富之旅 ( 宜蘭、花蓮、台東 ) ( 含臺灣鐵路體驗 )

5-Day Round Taiwan Island Excursion NT$12,500

(All hotels are 5-star hotels) 五天四夜 台灣環島巴士之旅 ( 全程五星級旅館 )

Edison Travel Service specializes in Taiwan Tours and offers cheaper hotel room rates and car rental services (with drivers) . Edison welcomes contact with other travel services around the world.

NT$ 14,000

NT$ 15,500

4F, 190 Song Jiang Rd., Taipei, Taiwan, R.O.C. TEL: +886-2-2563-5313 +886-2-2563-4621 +886-2-2541-6785 FAX: +886-2-2563-4803 +886-2-2531-1353

NT$ 16,900


Welcome to your home in Taipei

www.parkt aipei . com

Park Taipei Hotel is conveniently located in the heart of downtown Taipei. The hotel is just in front of the Exit 6 of the MRT Daan Station and is only 6 minutes to Taipei Songshan Airport. A carefree place in the center of the bustling Taipei  City, you can relax and indulge your senses in your room after returning from a busy and hectic business schedule or a long day of shopping.   Park Taipei Hotel, Your Home in Taipei! Tel: (02) 5579-3888 Add: 317, Sec. 1, Fuxing S. Rd., Taipei City (台北市復興南路一段317號) Website: How to get there: Take the MRT Wenhu Line or Xinyi  Line to Daan station. The hotel is just in front of Exit 6 of the Daan MRT train station.



200 NTD

Travel in Taiwan (No.81 2017 05/06 )  
Travel in Taiwan (No.81 2017 05/06 )