There is no such a cow able to fly in the ranch, but Flying Cow Ranch (飛牛牧場) is named after butterflies and cows. In this 0.5 square kilometers ranch, there are cows, ducks, horses, sheep, goats, rabbits, and more than 10 species of butterflies. It’s a good place for parents and kids. Visitors can feed the animals, and making cookies and ice cream. If you want to experience farm life, you can stay in the chalet or camp on the ground.
Opening Hours: 07:00~22:00
Show: Duck Show (10:00 and 13:45 everyday, extra in holidays at 16:00)
Chateau in the Air (天空之城) is a garden with restaurant beside Liyutan located in Miaoli. Because the unique architecture, many couples come to here for pre-wedding photos. The main attraction is the castle with climbing plants.
Shinto (神道) is the local religion in Japan. Japanese believes everything has spirit. Shinto’s spirits are collectively called yaoyorozu no kami (八百万神), which means thousands of spirits. Sinto Shrine is the holy place for Japanese to pray for these spirits.
Tongxiao Shinto Shrine (通霄神社) was built in Showa-20 (1937A.D.), Japanese Colonial Era in Taiwan. After World War II, main hall was changed by mayor of Tongxiao Town into Tongxiao Zhonglie Shrine (通霄忠烈祠), where people honored the soldiers died in battle field, in 1947. This shrine is a worship place for Koxinga (延平郡王) as well. Therefore, Tongxiao Shinto Shrine was also called Koinga Shrine (延平郡王祠).
After 921 Earthquake in 1999, the structure of Tongxiao Shinto Shrine was damage. In 2002, the government assigned this shrine as historic remains and put some money for restoration. Now, visitors are able to see Tongxiao Shinto Shrine, including the main hall, Shito gate, and Japanese garden lanterns.
Tongxiao Shinto Shrine is located at the mountainside of Hutoushan Park (虎頭山公園). On the top of Hutoushan has a platform to see the city and freeway along the coast. Also, it is a perfect spot to see in Tongxiao.
The Taian Hot Spring Area at the foot of the Xueba National Park has unique landscapes and the best carbonated hot springs. Onsen Papawaqa (泰安觀止) is one of the most luxurious hot spring/resort in Taian.
Taiwan incense cedar is the main material of the resort, and it was usually used in building temples, deity statutes, and altars. Room spa, basins, water ladles, bed, special doorsteps, decoration plats, and even the lobby counter are made with Taiwan incense cedar logs. Unique wood, creative methods and forest essence together make up romantic and relax trips. The logging of Taiwan incense cedar has been banned. The resort obtained a large amount of driftwood Chinese incense cedar originally grown inside the Xueba National Park after the 921 Earthquake and the July 2 Flood in 2004. These valuable Taiwan incense cedars are not just expensive but also extinct.
Clear water cement and glass are the two structural elements of the resort’s appearance. Iron-wooden railings are lined irregularly along the edge of the corridor. The 100-meter wide façade of the building is a revolutionary design, because it does not run along a straight line. The simple appearance seems to be hiding half of its face, while a pipa attracts you to look forward.
There are outdoor hot spring, private hot spring, and naked hot spring. Based on the height of terrains, combining with the mountain and river natural landscapes, you can listen to the running water, to watch the splashing, to see the forest, and definitely release your stress.
It was opened to public on 9th April, 1995 and it is the only public wood sculpture museum in Taiwan. There are 9 themes of exhibition, such as introduction of wood sculpture, Austronesia tribe wood sculpture, temples deities, architecture & furniture,…etc.
The tradition of Taiwan wood sculpture derived from the same origins as the Fujianese and Cantonese during the dynasties of Ming and Ching. Tainan, Lugang and Dasi had once been in prosperity. Until the Japanese colonial era, there was increasing trend in the wood sculpture industry in Sanyi, Miaoli County. During the 60’s, owing to abundant resource of camphor, Sanyi has become internationally famous as the City of Wood Sculpture. In that time, there were more than 200 workshops in Sanyi.
Sanyi is located in a mountainous area, and the acid clay of the hills is suitable for cultivation of camphor trees and tea trees. Before Taiwan was ceded to Japan, the hills were covered with camphor forest. During the Japanese colonial era, the Japanese cut down camphor trees for medical and industrial purpose. When camphor trees were deforested, workers were hired to grow tea trees. The workers accidentally discovered roots of chopped camphor trees had high decorative value after excavated and cleaned. Based on original shape of roots, skilled sculptors carve woods into artworks.
Longteng Bridge (龍騰斷橋) was built in 1905. The whole structure didn’t contain any of steel bars, and bricks and bricks were held together by sticky rice. Like Rome Colosseum, arches support the weight of railway. Unfortunately, after 2 severe earthquakes in Taiwan, only these broken arches remain and vine covers the remaining bridge. Many couples love to come here to shoot their pre-wedding photos.
Hakka Compound (客家大院) was built in 2010 years and located in LOHAS Tung Blossom Park. Originally, the purpose of this building is for administration. After discussion between traditional sculpture craftsmen and modern architects, the building mixed with classical and contemporary beauty become one of the most popular attractions in Miaoli, especially during Tung blossom season.
The composition of three-section compound, or also called sanheyuan (三合院), was the basic pattern used for residences, palaces, temples, monasteries, family businesses and government offices. In ancient times, a spacious compound would be occupied by a single, usually large and extended family, signifying wealth and prosperity. Today, many remaining traditional compounds are still used as housing complexes, but many lack modern amenities.
Tung blossoms, or called “May Snow” in Taiwan, are 2.5–3.5 cm diameter, with five pale pink to purple petals with streaks of darker red or purple in the throat. In April and May, visitors can see white Tung blossom spreading on the ground. It is just like snowing in summer time.
Besides the flowers and architecture, visitors can understand more about Hakka culture, such as food, furniture, working, …etc.
Shengxing Station (勝興車站) was the highest station on the west coast railway. There is a monument marking 402 meters above sea level. This station was built in 1916, and it is more than 90 years old. The whole structure is made by wood and none of girders and pillars are supported by an iron nail.
Due to the steep railway and powerless train engine, the train needed two locomotives front and back to pull and push the train climbing up in the old time.
The tunnel near Shengxing Station was built in 1905. The length is 726 meters and now is accessible as no train passing.
Miaoli County (苗栗縣) is a county in western Taiwan, located between Hsinchu and Taichung counties. Miaoli is known as “Mountain Town”, owing to the number of mountains nearby, making it a destination for hiking. One of the popular ones for hiking is Shei-Pa National Park (雪霸國家公園). There are other tourist attractions scattered, such as Flyingcow Ranch (飛牛牧場), Shihtoushan (獅頭山), Shengxing Station (勝興車站)…etc. However, the population density in Miaoli is only 1/30 of Taipei. Along the way, what coming into your eyes are flowers, trees, paddy field, small rivers, old traditional houses, and mountains. The air here is clean, the pace is slow, and residents are friendly.
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