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Thursday, 13 September 2018

Penghu, Cimei and Wang An (5)

Read? Penghu, Cimei and Wang An (4)

On the last day before flight departure at 17:55 and taking hotel provided (inclusive) transport from hotel to Magong airport at 16:50; we believe we should have enough time to visit three more attractions via two bus routes. Two attractions via Tongliang i.e. Great Banyan and Great Bridge and one via Wai-an i.e. Whale Cave.

We planned to take the Wai-an route bus along the Tongliang bus terminal stop to Whale Cave.

Great Banyan Tree

In front of the Baoan Temple in Tongliang Village, there is an old Banyan dated over 300 years, it is the oldest and largest tree in Penghu, with a total of 95 aerial feet, circling a square for people to rest under its shadow in front of the temple; if you do not look closely, you can hardly tell that they are all from the same trunk. One legend has it that between 1662 – 1722, a merchant vessel passed the waters around Tongliang when it encountered a shipwreck, and the only thing that survived was a sapling floating on the sea; residents of Tongliang picked it up and planted it in front of the temple; judging by this legend, the Tongliang Great Banyan could possibly be over 300 hundred years old.

Penghu Great Bridge is arguably the most prominent landmark on Penghu Island. Decades ago, considering the water currents between Baisha Island and the West Isle too treacherous to sail, the government built Penghu Great Bridge to link Baisha Island and the West Isle, therefore solving the problem. The bridge was completed in 1970 with a total length of 2500 meters, emerging as the first deep sea bridge in Southeast Asia. However, because the sea wind has corroded and worn the bridge day after day, the government has rebuilt and regularly maintained it afterwards. When you pass the existing new bridge, the former one's pier is just within your sight.

Because the bridge is so important for Penghu people, it is gradually becoming a tourist attraction that there is even a parking lot for tourist buses at the head of the bridge. Visitors should not miss the Penghu specialty "cactus ice cream" when visiting here. Located at the head of the bridge on Baisha Island, Yi Family’s Cactus Ice Cream (易家仙人掌冰) is an old brand selling the local specialty. Since it is windy and dry in Penghu, the place is ideal for cactus to survive. There is even a special cactus park in Qingwan, Magong City, a suitable place for families to visit together to better understand the cactus. However, it requires complicated procedures to make cactus ice cream. If you're interested, consult Yi family's old granny when you sample it!

We finished exploring Great Banyan and Penghu Great Bridge earlier and waited for 09:30 bus to Whale Cave. When the 09:30 bus came; we checked with Bus Sifu (here they don't called them bus captain) whether this bus going to Whale Cave. Bus Sifu said next bus at 10:30; but we can alight at the nearest bus stop and walk some distance to the Whale Cave.

Okay; we took this bus and walked there lor. 

Moo at the cow loudly and cow looked up!

Clear sea-water!

Squid fishing boats

Again we checked for the next two scheduled bus at Xiaomen bus stop to decide how much time we wanted to spend there.


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