Thursday, July 16, 2009

Meinong: Parasols, butterflies and curing sheds (Taiwan Business Topics)

“A destination that offers something for everyone.” A tired slogan in the tourism industry, to be sure, but Meinong comes closer than most. Even if you’ve never been there, you probably associate this little town in Kaohsiung with Hakka food, oil-paper parasols, and millions of butterflies.

You may not know that Meinong also has a network of cycle paths (seven in all, each devoted to a theme), and a legacy of tobacco barns that beguiles architecture aficionados.
For at least eight months out of every 12, the weather is excellent. Wildflowers bloom throughout the year. And possibly because of Hakka living habits - Hoklo Taiwanese sometimes describe their Hakka compatriots in the same way Italians talk about the Swiss - the buildings, streets, and fields seem to be tidier here than in other parts of Taiwan.

If you think a place this nice must be inconveniently remote, you are in for a pleasant surprise. As the crow flies, Meinong is 40 kilometers northeast of downtown Kaohsiung. The town is just 10 kilometers from the Qishan (Cishan) terminus of Freeway 10, a high-speed road that links both north-south freeways. For people who live south of Chiayi, Meinong makes for an excellent day-trip...

The rest of the article can be seen here.

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