Wednesday,  Nov 21, 2018,03:15 (GMT+7) 0 0
Colorful nature in Dongshi Forest Garden
Minh Tuan
Tuesday,  Jun 12, 2018,11:28 (GMT+7)

Colorful nature in Dongshi Forest Garden

Minh Tuan

Visitors are talking in front of a red maple tree in Dongshi Forest Garden - PHOTOS: MINH TUAN

As an industrialized economy, Taiwan may come across the tourist’s mind as a small island studded with factories in industrial parks. That is true, but Taiwan also boasts another aspect of the people living in harmony with nature. The largely mountainous island also attracts tourists with a chain of mountains running from north to south and many mysterious and marvelous forests. Located in Taichung County, Dongshi Forest Garden is well known as the most beautiful forest garden in central Taiwan.

The forest garden covers nearly 224 hectares along the river side of Da An creek in the southeastern part of Dongshi Township. Containing rich ecological resources, it is a perfect place for hiking, camping, training or holding workshops about ecological education.

The garden was established in 1984 and operated by Changhua County Farmers’ Association. It receives some 20,000 visitors a year, with April and May being the peak season thanks to the firefly festival and picturesque plum blossoms.

Located between 500 and 700 meters above the sea level with mild temperatures, the area boasts a perfect habitat for fauna and flora to thrive. Visitors will be able to mingle with nature and vibrant landscapes painted by all four glorious seasons. 

The sight of cherry blossom blooming serves as a sign that spring has come before plum flowers greet visitors from all directions in summer. The landscape celebrates autumn by suddenly erupting into a blanket of maple flowers and then in winter, the forest will turn red with maple leaves.

Dongshi Forest Garden is also home to a wide variety of fauna, including more than 500 species of insects, 13 species of firefly, and many birds, butterflies, and reptiles.

In addition to exploring the nature, visitors can take part in a number of exciting activities at the Youth Activity Center, which is well equipped with BBQ pits, camping ground, cottages, forest pool, horse-riding course, orange farm, artificial skiing lanes and many more.

The area’s specialty is Lei cha, or ground tea, a traditional tea-based beverage made by Hakka people. Lei cha consists of a mix of tea leaves and herbs that are ground together with various roasted nuts, seeds, grains, and flavorings.

Lei cha is a healthy drink that will help the visitors quench their thirst after a trip to the forest garden.

Visitors can have a cup of Lei cha to quench their thirst after a long trip. The beverage is made from tea leaves and herbs that are ground together with several other ingredients

A room in the forest garden costs about US$100 per night for two persons and US$160 per night for four persons. 

After exploring Dongshi Forest Garden, visitors can visit nearby destinations such as Shigang Dam, Dongshi Night Market, Zhongshe Flower Market, Lonsheng Fallen Bridge, Zhuolan Grand Canyon and Dongfeng Bicycle Lvlang.

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