TW-441996 357 - ая открытка

Country: Taiwan

Distance: 8,460 km

Travel time:  11 days

On postcard: Taroko National Park

Taroko National Park (Chinese: 太魯閣國家公園; pinyin: Tàilǔgé gúojiā gōngyuán; Pe̍h-ōe-jī: Taroko kok-ka kong-hn̂g) is one of the seven national parks in Taiwan and was named after the Taroko Gorge, the landmark gorge of the park. The park spans Taichung City, Nantou County, and Hualien County.

The park was originally established as the Tsugitaka-Taroko National Park (次高タロコ国立公園 Tsugitaka Taroko kokuritsu kōen) by the Governor-General of Taiwan on December 12, 1937 when Taiwan was part of the Empire of Japan. After the Empire of Japan's defeat in World War II, the Republic of China assumed control of Taiwan. The ROC government subsequently abolished the park on August 15, 1945. It was not until November 28, 1986 that the park was reestablished.

Origin of the name

The name, Taroko, means "magnificent and beautiful" in Truku, the language of a local indigenous people group. Long ago a Truku tribesman saw the beauty of the azure Pacific when he walked out of the gorge. On seeing the magnificent scene, he cried "Taroko!". And so it became the name of the place, in a fashion not dissimilar to how the island, Formosa, got its name.


Taroko Gorge and its surrounding area are well known for their abundant supply of marble, leading to its nickname, "The Marble Gorge". The rock now seen in Taroko began over 200 million years ago as sediment on the bottom of the ocean. As the sediment collected, it was subject to increasingly large amounts of pressure which eventually hardened it into limestone. Over the past 100 million years, tectonic compression between the Philippine Sea Plate and the Eurasian Plate supplied additional pressure that metamorphosed the limestone into marble. Uplifting forces from the plate collision pushed this rock above the surface of the ocean to where we see it today. In fact, the region is still being uplifted by approximately 0.5 cm per year.

The gorge itself was carved into the marble by the erosive power of the Liwu River.

In addition, there are known to be jade in this gorge. This jade is only found in Taiwan and the jade from this area supplies the jade market in Hualien. These mountains can be seen from rafting (a common activity during summer months in Taroko Gorge) through the rivers.

The Tupido Tribe Trail was built by the Batto Bulego family of Taroko some 120 years ago, and now only parts of its ruins remain on the Tianhsyang mesa (天祥台地). Four generations of the family resided there until the Japanese army massacred the tribe and banished the survivors in 1914.



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