Yunlin Travel Guide
Chinese Name: 云林县 (yí lán xiàn)
Area: 1,290.8 square kilometers (498.4 square miles)
Location: in the west-central area of Taiwan Island, southeast China
Administrative Division: 1 county-administered city (Douliou); 19 townships
Area Code: 05
Zip Code: 640
GDP (2019): CNY 97.5 billion (USD 14.1billion)
A Mazu Resort with Glove Puppet Show
Yunlin County is located in the western part of Taiwan, bordering Nantou County to the east, Taiwan Strait to the west, Chiayi County to the south, and Changhua County to the north. Yunlin has developed aquaculture because its open sea has been an excellent fishing ground since ancient times. Beautiful grasslands, mountains and waterfalls spread over the county. It is enjoyable to hike and camp in Caoling, Huashan Mountain and Zhanghu Lake.
Yunlin also has brilliant folk cultures. The ancient glove puppet show spread from Fujian is still imparted and inherited in Yunlin. The Yunlin Glove Puppet Theater which displays many glove puppets can satisfy tourists' curiosity.From January 15 (the Lantern Festival ) to March 15 of the lunar calendar, it is the liveliest time in Yunlin when Mazu believers from all over Taiwan flock to the Peikang Chaotien Temple to burn incense and pray.
Attractions - Things to Do
Lying against the mountains and facing the sea, Yunlin has beautiful natural scenery.
Caoling is at the east of Gukeng Township. Wandering along 5-mile-long (8.5-kilometer-long) Caoling Old Road built in Qing Dynasty (1644-1911), you can see the vast sea, valleys, cliffs, streams, waterfalls, dense grass on the mountains, and historical relics such as Tiger Word Tablet.
Huashan Mountain Scenic Area is near Caoling. The hills are rolling, the air is fresh, and the tea plantations and coffee gardens are all around the mountains. There are also mountain trails, making it a good place to hike. You can also camp and picnic here.
Zhanghu Lake Scenic Area is also adjacent to Caoling. It is surrounded by high mountains with cliffs, rocks, streams and waterfalls everywhere. The main scenic spots include ancient mysterious trees, Dragon Phoenix Waterfall, Zhanghu Mountain, and shell fossils which are 200-500 years old.
Janfusun Fancyworld, situated at Gukeng Township, is a famous amusement park covering over 148 acres (60 hectares). It consists of Sky Square, Children’s Playground, Running Wave Water Park, Nice Cinema, and Janfusun Museum. You and your family will surely have fun both in the water and on the ground.
Peikang Chaotien Temple is the general temple of over 300 Matzu temples of Taiwan, and almost 300 years old. It combines the religious architectural style with the art. The carvings no matter on the windows or on the columns are very exquisite.
Yunlin Story House at Huwei Township was built according to the typical Japanese official residences in 1920-1923. A number of senior officials used to live here. There are many Taiwanese snacks being sold around the house such as honey sweet potatoes, bean balls and peanut tofu.
Other Attractions: Silou Bridge, Silou Old Street, Bee Story House, Taiwan Temple Art Museum…
How to Get to Yunlin
Taiwan Rail Line has five stops in Yunlin, but people usually get off at Touliu or Townan. The train from Taipei to Touliu takes you 3-4 hours and TWD 407-527, from Taichung costs TWD 118-153 with the duration of 1 hour, from Changhua takes 40 minutes with the ticket price of TWD 87-113, from Chiayi costs TWD 55-71 with the travel time of 30 minutes, and from Kaohsiung takes 1.5-2.5 hours and TWD 244-316.
If by Taiwan High Speed Rail, the train from Taipei to Yunlin takes 1.5 hours, and TWD 900 for a non-reserved seat and TWD 930 for a standard seat. It from Changhua costs TWD 105-110 with the journey time of 10 minutes.
To travel around the scenic spots, the passenger transport bus is available at Touliu and Townan. Or you can hire a private car with the rental of about TWD 4,000 for a day.
See more about Taiwan Train
Yunlin Travel Tips
Customs and Festivals:Dabu Flower Drum is performed when the temple fair is held and during the farm work break to greet gods or for entertainment. You can watch it in Dabu Village.
Cloth Puppet Show is a folk drama originating from the 17th century. The performers put their hands into the cloth puppets, move them while saying the words, seeming like the puppet is talking. You can see it at Puppet Show Museum in Huwei Town.
Peikang Ox Fair, located at the right of Peikang Bridge, was the largest ox market in Taiwan with the history of 300 years old. Now lots of chicks, ducks, dogs, mini pigs, fishing goods, and hardware are sold here. There is also a second-hand stuff market selling many things that you may have never seen.
The lantern show in Lantern Festival is held at Chaotien Temple, which lasts for a month. In addition, Matzu in the temple will tour around Peikang Town on March19th and 20th. The volunteers carry the divine sedan chair followed by a large number of artistic pavilions. Each family along the tour route will welcome Matzu by setting firecrackers around the chair. Inside the fancy pavilions, there are kids being dressed up as legendary persons for people to appreciate.