Taoyuan County, Taiwan: Where Flowers Are Always in Bloom

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The tranquil beauty of one of Taoyuan County's forest reserves.

The tranquil beauty of one of Taoyuan County's forest reserves. [travel.sina.com.cn] 

Taoyuan County, located in northwestern Taiwan, is the smallest county on the island. As its larger neighboring counties teem with tourists, this tiny but resource-rich county still waits to be discovered.

Taoyuan Country used to be covered by large quantities of blossoming peach flowers in the spring, earning it the nickname "fairy land of peach blossoms." Today, the county still benefits economically from its prolific production of juicy peaches.

Most of the sightseeing spots in Taoyuan County are in the southeast. Its natural scenic attractions include Daguanshan Nature Reserve, Xiaowulai waterfalls, Galahe hot spring and Lake Cihu.

Besides its forest and water resources, Taoyuan County is also the largest production base for flowers in Taiwan. About 80 percent of the island's flowers sold at market come from Taoyuan County, giving it the second nickname of "kingdom of herbs and flowers." At the Daxi flower plantation, flowers of various species and colors in full bloom form a radiant rainbow in the fields. Because of its romantic scenery, the plantation is also a popular setting for Taiwanese soap operas.

Taoyuan County also has an appealing history as it is home to Taiwan's oldest ethnic group—the Atayal. Because the county is close to the Taiwan Strait, large numbers of mainland Chinese from Fujian and Guangdong provinces have immigrated to the county. Visitors can easily pick up traces of the mixed culture that distinguishes Taoyuan County from other places in Taiwan.

Taoyuan County is connected to major cities in Taiwan by highway and train. Taiwan-Taoyuan International Airport is the island's most important air traffic hub.

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