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Amis village, cycle route highlighted at South Korea green tourism forum
Date: 2016-10-12    
The Old Caoling Loop Line Bicycle Path on Taiwan’s northeast coast is a good example of sustainable tourism development. (Courtesy of Northeast and Yilan Coast National Scenic Area Administration)

The Cihalaay Cultural Landscape Area and Old Caoling Loop Line Bicycle Path were among a number of environmentally friendly tourism endeavors highlighted at a conference and forum recently organized by the Global Sustainable Tourism Council in South Korea.

The gathering was held in response to the U.N. World Tourism Organization’s declaration of 2017 as the International Year of Sustainable Tourism Development.

Located in Fuli Township of eastern Taiwan’s Hualien County, the Cihalaay Cultural Landscape Area is a farming village inhabited by members of the indigenous Amis tribe. The 20-kilometer Old Caoling Loop Line Bicycle Path spans New Taipei City and Yilan County on the nation’s northeast coast. In late September, both sites were included in the 2016 Sustainable Destinations Top 100, a global ranking conducted by leading international authorities on environmentally responsible tourism.

“Our sustainability goals are to promote low-carbon travel and preserve cultural and historical heritage through collaboration between government agencies as well as local industries and residents,” Fang Cheng-kuang, director of the Northeast and Yilan Coast National Scenic Area Administration, said Oct. 7 at the Global Sustainable Tourism Conference held in the city of Suwon.

One of the major attractions along the scenic cycling path is the Old Caoling Tunnel, completed in 1924 during the Japanese colonial era (1895-1945). Measuring 2,167 meters long, the tunnel was closed in 1986 and designated a cultural monument in 2004. The tunnel reopened in 2008.

The Cihalaay Cultural Landscape Area is known for local farmers’ commitment to eco-friendly practices. “Tourism isn’t the only solution to community development, but it can play a supporting role, just like the case of Cihalaay in Hualien,” Sustainable Travel International Taiwan Chairwoman Monique Chen said Oct. 10 at the Sustainable & Smart Tourism Forum in Seoul. “This is why Taiwan should continue promoting sustainable tourism.”

A strategic coalition of partners under the umbrella of the U.N., the GSTC establishes and manages global sustainability standards with the aim of promoting sustainable tourism knowledge and practices. (KH-E)

Write to Taiwan Today at ttonline@mofa.gov.tw


 


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