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Taijiang National Park

Taijiang lagoon was a coastal lagoon existing in southeast of Taiwan before 19th century. It ranged from Bajhang river in the north, down the way to Erren river in the south. Its outskirt was surrounded by a chain of barrier islands, including BeikunshenĦBNankunshenĦBBeimenyuiĦBMashgouĦBChinkunshenĦBChialaowan and Beishanyi. Apart from tidal flow, it also collected streamflow from Bajhang riverĦBJishuei riverĦBJiangjun riverĦBCigu riverĦBZengWun riverĦBLuermen river and Yenshui river. In A.D. 1823, a destructive flood swept ZengWen basin, flushed large quantities of earth into Taijiang lagoon, changed it over into wetland. Then after years of natural sedimentation and man-made reclamation, lagoon vanished and became landmass of BeimenĦBJiangjunĦBCiguĦBXigang and Annan. Nowadays you can see remnants of Taijiang lagoon only in Cigu river delta and Sicao wetland.

In year 2009, Taiwan ministry approved Taijiang as the 8th national park in Taiwan. Taijiang National Park stretches from Qingshan harbor in the north, to Yanshuei river in the south; marine area expands from Dongji island to coastline of Tainan. Altogether the overall coverage is 393 square km. Taijiang national park was prominent for its abundant wildlife resources and historical background.

Wildlife resources

Historical background

Before 17th century, either immigrants from Mainland China or colonists from Japan or Europe, they sailed across Taiwan Strait, landed in Luermen and settled in Taijiang area. Therefore Luermen was regarded as entrance gate of Taiwan. At that time Taijiang was aggregated with people including Taiwanese aboriginesĦBChinese immigrantsĦBJapanese immigrants and European colonists. Hence you can find plenty of historic monuments or architectures in downtown Tainan or Taijiang national park.

Even though Xigang was not within the coverage of Taijiang National Park, but its history has a lot to do with Taijiang. Back in 17th century, Xigang was a small haven nearby Taijiang lagoon, then gradually became a marketplace between Chinese immigrants and Taiwanese aborigines. In 1661 when Koxinga landed in Luermen, he sent soldiers to station in Houying, which led to the foundation of Qing An temple. For the past 228 years, Qing An temple has been the religious center of Taijiang and Xigng Festival has blessed people who live in this area. Then in year 2009 Xigang Festival was certified by government as one of the most important intangible heritages in Taiwan. Thus you can see an intense tie between Xigang and Taijiang area.

Highway 61

Highway 61 is an expressway along the coastline of western Taiwan. It starts from Bali (in northwest of Taipei), runs through National Scenic Area & Taijiang National Park between Yulin and Tainan, then ends at Cigu. If you're planning a daytrip to Taijiang National Park, personally I would recommend you to travel via Highway 61, in which you can enjoy the beautiful landscape and seascape along the coastline.