By Dipal Khatri
Translated by Ann Lee
Summer is the queen of seasons
in Taiwan, with a reign that stretches through
most months of the year. The lifesaving antidote
to the stifling, relentless heat is water
and Taiwan, being an island, has no shortage
of water-related activities. Here are a few
priceless gems sure to make your summer sparkle.
Taipei County's Formosa Fun
Coast is perfect for a wet, fun-filled day
out. Roller coasters and rides are replaced
by water slides of different heights, lengths
and speeds. The water park provides plenty
of thrills for everyone, ranging from zippy
free falls and winding slides, to a relaxing
float down a lazy river that travels through
the watery kingdom.
Another option is to pepper
the stagnant summer with a pinch of adventure
along the northeast coast. The golden-sand
beach of Yanliao Seaside Park in Taipei County
is the longest in Taiwan, extending three
kilometers to Fulong Beach. Fulong is a popular
location for non-motorized water activities,
such as swimming and canoeing. Other all-time
favorite beach options are Green Bay for paragliding,
surfing and other water sports, and White
Sand Beach for swimming. Longdong Bay, the
largest bay on the northeast coast, is among
Taiwan's top diving and snorkeling sites.
Its clear aquamarine waters provide an intimate
rendezvous with kaleidoscopic marine life.
For urban refreshment during the summer, consider
taking a leisurely cruise along the Danshui
and Keelung rivers of Taipei's "Blue
Highway". There are many types of boats
to choose from, including ferries that stop
at some of the capital's major tourist spots.
*Until Sept. 16, the 2007
Taiwan Northeast "Water World Festival"
will take place for the first time ever in
Yanliao Seaside Park, which is located in
Fulong district of Gongliao township in Taipei
County. The theme of this festival will be
an imitation of natural elements, such as
wind, rain, water and fire, merged with sound/light
technology and special effects to "wow"
the audience with an amazing, stimulating,
and virgorous "water world".
How to get to the beaches:
Keelung Bus Co. provides transportation from
Keelung to Fulong on the northeast coast.
You can also take a Da-you bus from in front
of the Taipei Railway Station. Take the Hualien
line to any one of the numerous stops on the
Formosa Fun Coast
1-6, Xia Gu Zi, Xia Gu Village, Neighborhood
1, Bali Township, Taipei County
Hours: July & August, 9 am-9:30 pm,/holidays
8:30 am-10 pm; Septmber 9:30 am-5 pm,/holidays
9:30 am-5:30 pm
Yanliao Seaside Park
45, YanHai St, Gongliao Township, Taipei County
Hours: 10 am-7 pm weekdays; 9 am-9 pm holidays