One of the time-honored scenic wonders in Taoyuan, the Yeheng Terraces is a terraced hillside located in Baling in Fuxing Township, close to Yufeng River and overlooking the Sanko Village. During the Japanese colonial period, the government promoted rice cultivation in the slope area, with the Atayal villagers being mobilized to develop the terraces starting from the peak until the river valley. Looking from afar, the terraces are uniformly arranged and consistent. Upon strolling around, you will observe the domesticity and simplicity of the Atayals’ daily living.
Home to the aboriginal community of Atayal, Yeheng villagers belong to the Zihing tribe. In Atayal, the term ‘Yeheng’ means the land of the morning sun shining brightly from the east. It is located next to Malikoan Creek, near the North Taiwan Cross-Island Freeway. You can access the place from Xiabalin via Guanghua Road. Besides its terraced fields, Yeheng is also popular for its hot spring located at the bottom part of the terraced field. Today, many photographers come here to snap artistic shots. The best spot to take photos is in Sanguang, situated in front of Yeheng Terraces.
At Sanko Village, the terraces’ stretch runs to the valley layer by layer. The terraced hillside consists of 1200 steps, with a drop in elevation reaching over 1000 meters, which brings sustainable livelihood for the villagers and a beautiful transformation of Yeheng’s natural landscape. Local vegetables and fruits are grown in the field to create structured greenery and striking terraced landscape. Upon seeing the abundant green crops and the neatly arranged terraces, visitors are captivated by the pastoral view resembling the mystic Arcadia of the western culture or the beautiful spring in Chinese culture. Since Yeheng terraces are located in a protected zone in the mountain area, visitors should apply an entry permit for Type A mountain before they can get there to enjoy the rare and refreshing view.
Besides the hot springs and terraced hillside, a number of natural attractions can be visited. The formation of oxbow-shaped meander is a stunning sight as well as the red Baling River Bridge over the Yufeng River and the Yasaka Bridge. Another hidden attraction is the Phantom Waterfalls, which is a beautiful waterfall near Sanko village, although the area is hidden with no established mountain path.
Visitors can also sample the exotic matchmaker guava. This guava variety has a unique crispy sweet taste and red pulp. Harvest season is usually during September until November each year so do not miss it. There are also the delicious peaches, which are often harvested from May to mid-June. Visitors should not leave without trying some gui or green bamboo shoot dishes. Green bamboo shoots can be used in soup, salad or stir-fried. The bamboo fiber tastes sweet and is tender and tasty.
Getting to Yeheng Terraces is easy and convenient, with public buses almost everywhere in Taoyuan and heading to Baling Station. If you drive, go to North Taiwan Freeway 2. After reaching Daxi Interchange, proceed to Daxi and Fuxing direction and then take the Taiwan Provincial Highway No. 7 for 47.5km. When you arrive at Baling, take the Guanghua industrial road.