By Shamsul Bahrin Zainuzzaman on June 24, 2011
Taiwan is a mountainous island with great terrains ranging from tropical beaches to spectacular Jade Mountain, as the highest non-Himalayan mountain in North East Asia standing majestically at 3952 meters.
The current population in Taiwan is 22 million with Taipei being the most populated city. The island was given the name “Formosa” (meaning beautiful) by the Portuguese in the 16th century when they first laid eyes on this leaf-shaped island.
Taiwan lies off the southeastern coast of mainland Asia, across the Taiwan Strait from Mainland China. With many airlines flying to Taiwan, it became the perfect travel destination for travelers from various parts of the world.
One of the main things Gaya Travel team wanted to see in Taipei was the 101 Tower, which is the second tallest building in the world. The name of the building as pronounced in English “Taipei One-Oh-One” reflects not just its home city and floor count, but its location in Taipei’s 101 postal districts, a rapidly developing hub of international activity. This giant skyscraper in the Xinyi district is an important symbol for Taiwan and the perfect place to plan your sightseeing around Taipei.
Hot Spring in Taiwan
Located in Taipei, Beitou features public hot spring pools and a great number of hot spring resorts and hotels. During Japanese rule, the four major hot springs in Taiwan were Beitou, Yangmingshan, Guanziling, and Sichongxi. Beitou is now one of the major hot spring areas in Taiwan.
Other than enjoying the hot springs in Beitou Hot Spring area, visitors are also recommended to visit nearby attractions and museums. Beitou Hot Spring Museum is a hot spring bathhouse that was built in 1913 during the Japanese colonization.
Located on Lane Yinguang, Rd. Wenquan, Beitou, Asia Pacific Resort occupies 70 thousand square feet of land with natural outdoor facilities including bamboo-woods walking trails, Japanese gardens, pavilions, waterfalls and outdoor private bathhouses.
Guests are often surprised and pleased by their distinctive bathhouses. It is the only outdoor private bathhouses in Northern Taiwan, which blends into nature with five different designs. Under the hundred-year-old trees of Mount Beitou, guests can enjoy the fun of bathing under the starlit sky and rest in the elegant Japanese tatami rooms.
How to Take a Hot Spring Bath
Taiwan Folk Arts Museum
The Taiwan Folk Arts Museum is another interesting Beitou tourist spot. It is one of the largest Japanese-style wooden buildings in Taiwan. Built in 1921, the museum was originally the “Jia Shan Hotel,” the best hot spring hotel in the Japanese occupation era. The two-story main building and its annex, Tao-Ran House, with a total area of around 2,500 square meters, stands in a quiet spot in Beitou surrounded by a garden of lush green. It is one of the largest freestanding Japanese all-wood houses in Taiwan.
It is said that the building was once the guesthouse for Japanese “kamikaze” squadron pilots during World War II. It was taken over by the ROC Ministry of Foreign Affairs as dormitory after the war. Later, following its use as the set for a traditional costume drama, it was given the nickname “Old Moon Manor.”
Management of the building was subsequently taken over by the museum founder who established the “Taiwan Folk Art & Antique House,” dedicated to preserving folk relics and aboriginal art from earlier times. The name was later changed to Taiwan Folk Arts Museum.
In 1998, Taipei City Government designated the well-preserved buildings as a historic site. Starting in 2002, restoration work began. The makeover took five years, and the buildings were eventually reopened in early 2008, setting a model example of non-government historic site restoration and reuse.
921 Earthquake Museum of Taiwan
People in Taiwan have learned how to “dance” with the earthquake. Besides preserving the ruins of the earthquake including the damaged athletic track and the classrooms, visitors can experience the tremors that the people of central Taiwan felt on the fateful night of Sept. 21, 1999, at 1:47 a.m. Situated in a mock classroom setting, visitors have to sit on the pod chairs on the floor. The experience goes for about five minutes on the vibrating platform of the Earthquake Simulation Area, with a video playing for you to watch which attempts to take you through a five-minute journey through the quake.
Leefoo Village Theme Park
Taiwan isn’t just everything for adults. Visitors can bring their kids to Leofoo Village Theme Park and have a day of fun.
Located in Guanxi, Hsinchu County, Leofoo Village Theme Park boasts four theme villages, namely:
There are also fun rides like Volcano Adventures, 360 degrees Roller Coasters, Pirate Ship and Jurassic Park in Leofoo Village Theme Park. For Muslim, Leo Foo Theme Parks provides halal restaurant known as “Aladdin” with various selections of Western-Asia. Leofoo Village Theme Park opens on weekdays from 9am to 5.30pm and on public holidays it is open from 9am to 6pm. You wouldn’t want to miss this exciting amusement park.
Tai-Yi Ecological Leisure Farm
Located in Puli, Nantau Country about 45 minutes away from 921 Earthquake Museum of Taiwan lies in a secluded area that possesses magnificent vistas of rolling hills. In this recreational park, visitors can explore all the 7 themed areas: Flower Goddesses’ Shrine, the Tropical Rainforest, the Aviary, the Sculpture Quad, the House of Butterflies, the Green House and the labyrinth.Tai-Yi Ecological Leisure Farm.