The Qilan Forest Recreation Area is home to the only grove of primeval Chinese cypress in Asia. The area is famous for having 51 gigantic Japan red cypress trees that are all more than a thousand years old. In recognition of their lofty character, all 51 of the old-growth cypress trees are named after a prominent and outstanding person from the history of China. The names were chosen according to the approximate age of the time the historical figure lived in. Not surprisingly, one tree is named after the great teacher Confucius who lived over 2,000 years ago. Other figures include Sima Qian and Emperor Taizong of the Tang Dynasty.
East Asia: Tipping the World
Our world now has over 7 billion inhabitants. If the planet would tilt based on population density, it could get tipped over easily by East Asia. This subcontinent that is made up of only three nations is home to 1.7 billion people. That’s about 24% of all living individuals in the world today.
Technically, however, East Asia is not made up of only three nations – China, Japan and Korea. Macau, Mongolia (which many people confuse to be part of China), Hong Kong (which is now part of China), Taiwan (which some political quarters of the world consider as just a part of China) and North Korea (which consider itself not part of any organization of nations) are also East Asian countries.
Clearly, this subcontinent’s top guns are China, Japan and South Korea, three of the wealthiest countries and with the most potential for future economic growth. Just how rich is this corner of the world really? Well, according to Global Finance, Hong Kong is the sixth wealthiest (one notch higher than the US), Taiwan is 17th (ranked over Germany and oil-rich Kuwait), Japan is 22nd (besting the UK) and Korea, 26th. China ranked way below at 90th only because it has too many mouths to feed. China is home to 1.3 billion people, which explains why East Asia is the most populous subcontinent.
East Asia is definitely an important region in the world, as it is a top tourism draw. The only man-made structure that can be seen from the moon and probably the most popular tourist attraction in the world is China’s Great Wall. It is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, for obvious reasons, and that you should definitely see when traveling to this part of the continent. The ultra-urban city of Tokyo is also a must-see, especially if you love sushi. Nothing compares to taking a bite of authentic sushi inside an authentic sushi restaurant in Tokyo.
For people who were born after the 1970s in Taiwan, they never got to experience lifestyle and entrainment habits much like their elders. Taiwanese opera performances and traditional folk arts are basically unheard of, which makes them difficult to relate to. So in order to preserve and pass on techniques and arts inherited from their Taiwanese ancestors, the government began to push for an establishment of an arts center for local arts during the 1990s. After six years in the making, the National Center for Traditional Arts was officially opened to the public in year 2002. The art center covers an area of 24 hectares and is located above the Tungshan River and the Chinghsiu Park. The center’s aim is to gather the diverse cultural activities of Taiwan into a single complex. The concept was then to establish the center as an actual living community that provided a close look into local culture and folk arts.
Whether you are a visitor of the Yilan County or are just interested to know about Taiwan’s traditional arts, a day at the National [Read more…]
The Dongshan River Water Park is an artificial canal that stretches to about 24 kilometers long. The riverbank is surrounded by green rice fields on both sides, creating a relaxing atmosphere amidst nature. The carefully designed riverside recreation area was developed to provide both local and tourists a place for sports, leisure and recreational activities in a truly scenic wide water land.
The park was designed back in 1987 but was only officially opened to the public in 1994. The stream was divided into the upstream, midstream and downstream sections, with each exhibiting a different recreational appeal and character. Together, it then became the [Read more…]
The Northeast Coast National Scenic Area stretches to 102 kilometers in length from the Distric of Nanya in New Taipei City all the way to the Neibi Beach in the Township of Su-ao. It covers about 17,421 hectares of both land and sea and is found at the northeastern edge of Taiwan.
This truly scenic vicinity is famous for its abundant bays and capes with a majestic backdrop of green mountains. The area’s geological sights are a result of more than a thousand years of erosion, displacements and sedimentation. It is most noted by several attractions [Read more…]
The Luodong Sports Park is a complex park that began constriction back in 1986. After seven years and a ton of detailed constructions, it was officially opened to the public in 1996. The sports park has a total land area of 47 hectares and is divided into three different themes: Oasis, Aqua and Health zones that integrate landscapes, plantations and amazing sceneries into sports facilities.
The entire design of the Luodong Sports Park is a combination of the local distinctiveness of Taiwan and the specialties of the Yilan County. The park features a large green area with distinct architectural structures that provide an excellent place for outdoor leisure [Read more…]
The Caoling Historic Trail connects Gongliao to Dali on the northeastern part of Taiwan. It was initially constructed in year 1807 to serve as an important transport link between the capital city of Taipei and Yilan. At the time, the only other connection between the two cities was to travel by sea. Now, it has come to be a destination for hikers and tourists.
The trail is about 8.5 kilometers long and will take about three to four hours to complete depending on your level of fitness. The hiking trail has a relatively low difficulty that can easily be completed by non-hikers with a steady pace. [Read more…]