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“Springs” of Delicious Fruits: what you can’t miss in Taitung

Written by Senior Editor, Xue-Yao KUO, and Travel Blogger, Johnson WANG

Guanshan Township in Taitung County is Taiwan’s smallest “town” in size. Located between Central Mountain Range and Haian Range, the terrain is flat and good for rice growing. While there are high mountains, hills, tablelands and plains in Luye Township, where there are also vast rice terraces and sufficient sunshine, as well as natural hot springs, which all make it competitive for agriculture and tourism development. After Guanshan Dazun, the important irrigation facility for agricultural industry in Guanshan and Luye, was enabled in 1960, rice becomes the most important agricultural produce in Guanshan while Luye, a location gathering the Eastern agricultural quintessence, becomes the source for bulk production of red oolong tea, sugar cane (Saccharum officinarum Linn. cv. Badila), and jackfruits (Artocarpus heterophyllus).

Guanshan Bento: Scrumptious Rice
Coming to Guanshan, Guanshan Bento is something can’t be missed. Located in front of the train station, the popular “YuanChang Guanshan Bento” store has a history of more than 40 years. The store uses local T'ai ken yi san jiu hao rice, side dished with chemical free vegetables, salty cucumbers and homemade marinated eggs so that the customers can chew and taste each bead of the rice and the traditional savory dishes.
“Springs” of Delicious Fruits: what you can’t miss in Taitung
Guanshan Rice is famous, but along with time, space and environment transitions, the farmlands can no longer satisfy needs in modern life so that the agricultural development has no choice but to transform. Hence, the Council of Agriculture and Guanshan Farmer’s Association started to assist the development of agro tourism based on traditional agricultural conservation. “Guanshanhuanbao Riverside Park” is set rested on the 12-km cycling lane surrounding the town. By the Guanshan cycling lane located the 713 Farm, where tourists can enjoy picking strawberries at the year end till the next April.
“Springs” of Delicious Fruits: what you can’t miss in Taitung
713 Farm: Picking Fresh Fruits
Unlike general strawberry gardens, 713 Farm adopts the latest “loft bed” strawberry cultivation, which not only fully uses the space and increase the production, but farmers can also be more relaxed when attending to the strawberries and tourists don’t have to bend over and worry getting dirty. The two-layer arrangement of the loft bed offers a proper height that even kids can easily pick the strawberry.
“Springs” of Delicious Fruits: what you can’t miss in Taitung
Strawberry-flavored ice cream is nothing special, but have you tried the ice cream made of strawberry pulp and rice? 713 Farm’s strawberry pulp rice ice cream is an unexpected innovation. During the strawberry season, the farm owner often finds the little strawberries left without picking, he couldn’t bear to see them rotten, so that he spent a year test making and finally he made it to have the handmade natural-without-any-additive pulp ice cream. The sweetness of pulps goes well with the sourness of the yogurt. Besides they also grow Guanshan Rice, so that they bring the rice to the ice cream to enhance the texture and mouth feel, even the crunchy corn is made of rice bran. Caring for a different try? There are flavors such as mulberry, pitaya/dragon fruit, and roselle available, also with the pulps or petals. There are even handmade ice pops to try! The benefit of making them into the ice products is to elongate the expiration date, so that even if the fruits are not in season, tourists can still have a chance to taste them!
“Springs” of Delicious Fruits: what you can’t miss in Taitung

Asides from strawberries, 713 farm also grows Japanese radish (ダイコン), same as Meinong Radish, and the indigenous Hakka concubine radish. Every January, many adults and kids will come pull radishes here, because radishes grown here are strong and sturdy. In the new year, why not come here with your family so to experience the fun of strawberry picking and boost your strength and increase the stamina through pulling the radishes!

YingChia Spa: A delightful experience
In the cold freezing season, a hot spring bath to warm up is the best choice! YingChia Spa in Luye Township, Taitung County shares the same hot spring source with the famous Hongye hot spring, it is a so called “Beauty Spring”, the bicarbonates spring. Though close to the highway with a convenient traffic, staying here tourists can still feel being surrounded by the mountains and fully enjoy the phytoncide in the forests.

Without the splendid massage bath tubs or water treatment facilities, YingChia Spa features the pristine and natural “static hot spring bath”, the public bath is designed alfresco with a panorama view as if in the embrace of nature. The greatest appeal is that no additional water is added to the hot spring, no cycle or recycle after usage; therefore, a 100% quality hot spring.
“Springs” of Delicious Fruits: what you can’t miss in Taitung
The cabins are equipped with independent showers, instead of common bath tubs, the owner uses the stone material to build the large sized hot spring bath for the lodgers to enjoy a relaxing bath. Stone tables and chairs are next to the bath, serving as a rest place between intervals when taking the bath, so to avoid the concern of getting colds because of the air conditioning in the rooms.
“Springs” of Delicious Fruits: what you can’t miss in Taitung
Asides from taking Spa bath, YingChia Spa also serves dishes made from home grown floral plants, vegetables and fruits. The lady owner insists the principle, “no fresh materials, no dishes served”, so that the fresh vegetables are picked right before cooking. Plums and mulberries are home grown as well, and there is also featured hot spring herbal tea available. Local free-ranged chickens, with quality fleshy texture, grown in Luye are used for roasted chicken in the barrels and hot-spring plum chicken dishes, crunchy and juicy. Because the food materials are strictly chosen and the making process is complex, reservation is required. Breakfast served is delicate porridge and small dishes, cooked with local foods as well; therefore, it won’t be too much to the body because there are no excessive chemical additives and much grease so that the lodgers can relaxingly take the hot spring bath after the meals with a short break.
“Springs” of Delicious Fruits: what you can’t miss in Taitung

Another highlight in YingChia Spa is the countless stars over the sky. When the nights are clear, staff will turn off the lights for the tourists to enjoy a vast star sky, free of light pollution. It is not necessary to go to high mountains to enjoy such a view, plus the quality hot spring and yummy dishes; it would be a pity if you don’t come experience it!

713 Farm

Address: No84-20 Kanding, Guanshan Township, Taitung County<br/>TEL: 0935-712637<br/>Direction: About 1km after turning from 334.5KM on Highway Line 9<br/>Official Website: http://www.713.com.tw <br/>Facebook Fan Page: https://www.facebook.com/happy713/

YingChia Spa

Address: No 86, Sec.1 Zhonghua Rd, Luye Township, Taitung County<br/>TEL: 08-956-1615<br/>Official Website: http://yingchia-spa.com.tw/ <br/>Facebook Fan Page: https://www.facebook.com/TaiDongLuYeYingJiaWenQuan/