Taroko, National Park covers 92,000 hectares of majestically awesome scenery-world class scenery, the result of the uplifting of the earth’s crust and the slow cutting away by rivers, creating a gorge that has been called one of the wonders of the world.
The little village of tiansiang once went by the aborigine name Tupido, meaning “mountain palm”, and was the home of Atayal tribespeople. When the Central Cross-Island Highway was opened it was renamed to honer Wen Tian-siang, the last prime minister of the Song Dynasty, a patriot who was executed by the Mongols.
Hualien Ocean Park
Hualien Ocean Park cover an area of over 50 hectares, divided into eight theme area: Crystal Castle, Mariner’s Cove, Main Street, Discovery Island, Brighton by the Sea, Underwater Kingdom, Harbor Square, and Dolphin Lagoon. There are plenty of enjoy, as well as various theme stores to satisfy your shopping bug. When you’re ready for a break, you can refuel at Moby Dick’s Restaurant. Make sure to get an outside table to fully enjoy the view.
Tzu Chi Still Thought Hall
The headquarters of the Tzu Chi Buddhist foundation in Hualien comprise the Tzu Chi General Hospital, Still Thought Hall, Still Thought Abode and Tzu Chi University, representing the four missions of medicine, charity, culture and education carried out by Tzu Chi founder Dharma Master Cheng Yen. The headquarter grounds and Jing-Si Books & Café are also highly visit worthy for anyone with an interest in Buddhist culture.
Qixingtan Scenic Area
Located on the northeast beach of Xincheng Town, Qixingtan is the only county level scenic area in Hualien. Besides the crescent bay and clear blue waters of the Pacific Ocean, the beach is full of colorful agates that are easily found and appreciated. Qixingtan used to be a small fishing village. Due to its abundant natural beauty, multiple scenic trails, beach pavilions, pagodas, and Star-Gazing Square, Qixingtan has become a popular tourist destination, particularly known for its remarkably blue sky and turquoise seas. Qixingtan beach is the best place to watch the moon and the stars, or simply meditate as you are soothed by the sound of the ocean waves washing over the pebbles.
Cingsiou Temple was originally the Yoshino Religious Center of the Shingon Buddhist sect. The center was built with funds raised by Mitsuji Kawabata in 1917 to facilitate Japanese immigration to the area. There were originally 88 stone Buddhist status at the temple form the places visited by Shingon sect founder Kobo Daishi(Kukai) during his 1,400-kilometer pilgrimage through Shikoku, Japan.
With a surface area of 104 hectares, liyutan(Carp Lake) is the largest inland body of water in Hualien County. The glistening barrier lake is surrounded by mountains, including the carp-shaped Liyu Mountain to the east, after which the lake is named. A lakeside trail, water park, and rest pavilions are among the many facilities at liyutan. Rowing, paddle boating, windsurfing, sailing, bicycling, birding, lakeside camping and picnicking are other popular recreations here.
Songyuan Guest house
Songyuan Guest house look out to the Pacific with its back to the Central Range. During the Japanese occupation period, the guest house was used by high-ranking Japanese military officers. After World War II, the guest house was repurposed for entertaining U.S. military advisors based in Taiwan, and it remains as the best preserved building in Hualien from Japanese occupation period.
Stone Art Street
With its abundant stone resources, Hualien was the center of stone art in Taiwan. The stone art trade in the city had been in steady decline until it was revived by the opening of Stone Art Street in 2002.
A total of 67 stalls selling stone art are clustered in this 6,600-square-meter area. The most numerous and highest quarried Fongtian jade and rhodonite. Shoppers can be relatively rest-assured of the authenticity of the pieces sold here, and prices are reasonable as well.