In recent years, several former industrial sites around Taiwan have been repackaged as tourist attractions. What is known in Britain as "industrial archeology" - the study of disused factories and mines - is coming into its own here, among both academics and local history enthusiasts.
In southwest Taiwan, salt production used to be an important economic activity. It has a long history: When Zheng Cheng-gong (also known as Koxinga) arrived in the Tainan area in the 1600s, his men found lowland aborigines engaged in salt-making.
The Southwest Coast National Scenic Area has been working to preserve and promote relics associated with the salt industry. At Cigu, there is the Taiwan Salt Museum. And in the northern part of Tainan City, an entire salt-making village has been turned into a tourist attraction.
Funded by government agencies plus donations from the private sector, the Anshun Salt Field Ecology and Culture Village provides a glimpse of the Taiwan of yore. Salt production came to a halt here in 1998. The human population - at its peak 120 households - moved out in late 2002.
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