The Republic of

China (Taiwan)


Tour 2: Around the Island







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Touring the Island of Taiwan
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Surprizingly few visitors get outside of Taipei. Since that forms the usual point of debarcation, I made that the first of three tours while had I gone in historical order (as in my Japan tours), I would've ended with Taipei and started with Tainen.

Anyway, Taiwan boasts a first rate round and train system, so that you can go around the island with little difficulty. I went from one place to another, getting out to see what I wanted and getting on the next train after I finished. Often I found myself the only Westerner on the trains, a real pity.

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The East Coast
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Hualein's Matyr's Shrines honors victims of various wars.

This beautiful view of Hualein shows typical Eastern
scenery with sea and city against mountains.



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Tokoro Gorge
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Tokoro Gorge actually cuts through those mountains shown in the last picture. A precarious highway leads to these springs. The Japanese, during their occupation, frequented this place, and most foreigners come here on a day trip (but that's all they see besides Taipei).

These steps lead to the top of the tower shown in the previous picture.

This would make a nice postcard.

This shows the water itself.

A long climb down reaches this point.



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Lanyu Island
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The inhabitants of Lanyu Island, off the eastern coast of Taiwan. have their own, non-Chinese culture and ethnically do not relate to them. Unlike the Chinese, most have converted to Christianity. You can get to Lanyu on a propeller plane as I did and walk around the island as I did.

This shows the view from Lanyu Hotel.

Doesn't this island look like Bali Hai?

This view shows the coastline from overlooking caves.

I thought, at first, the Taiwanese had built bunkers in case of Chinese attack (though the Mainland lies in the opposite direction). Actually, they built these for the islanders to use when one of the frequent hurricanes hit the island. Instead, however, the islanders insist on hunkering down in their traditional wooden huts, and in the holes underneath.

These islands bear the name of "Battleship Isles."




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Kenting
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Probably, tourists don't think of beaches and Taiwan in the same thought. Actually, however, Taiwan boasts a sub-tropical to tropical climate, like nearby Okinawa and one genuine beach, shown below. Surf's up.

It looks good, and, unlike Okinawa, has sand instead of coral.

Yes, I did swim here, Christmas Break or not. On that note, get back on the train, for this tour is over, and I want to hit that water again. Kawabunga.

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Related tours:
Back to Taiwan Tour 1: Taipei
Onward to Taiwan Tour 3: Tainen

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