I’ve always wanted to visit Penghu. My dear brother went there once for his university graduation trip and highly recommended it! It’s indeed a shame that I haven’t got a chance to visit there yet!
Biking, swimming, windsurfing and birdwatching are some of the outdoor activities that have made Penghu one of Taiwan’s ideal travel destinations
With so many islands, water sports are a natural fit. Besides swimming, many beaches have the traditional banana boats and jet-skis. Similarly, there are plenty of places for snorkeling and scuba diving. Windsurfing, however, is putting Penghu on the international sport’s map. Strong northeasterly winds bear down through the Taiwan Strait in the off-season from late October up till April while the flat terrain of the islands offers little resistance and the waves are not too large.
For the geologically inclined, the Penghu archipelago is worth examining. Formed some eight to 17 million years ago, volcanic lava eruptions rose to the surface and cooled down leaving the islands their columnar basalt base. Start with the Xiaomen Geology Gallery and the Tongpanyu Geopark, and then later boat to any of seven designated Basalt Nature Reserve islands spread from north to south; each has its own intriguing, unique formations.
With so many scenic islands, beaches and fishing towns, and over 180 temples, “photographic shots” are available most anywhere. Magong city offers old town walking tours, a temple that dates back to Shi Lang’s victory and its colorful Xiying Rainbow Bridge replete with summer fireworks, but time should also be made to take trips to the many outer islands with their famous fish trap stone weirs and villages where time has stood still.
■ Daily flights leave Taipei’s Songshan Airport on Uni Air, Mandarin Airlines, TransAsia Airways and Far Eastern Air Transport
SCOOTER AND BICYCLE RENTAL:
■ There are many shops in Makung City offering scooters and bicycles for rent. A 125cc scooter rents for NT$400 per day. Two helmets are provided but tourists must pay to fill the gas tank themselves.
ISLAND INFORMATION AND TOURS:
■ The South Sea Tourist Service Center in Makung City provides information and tickets for tours of the many islands south of Makung. The North Seas Tourist Service Center at the northeast tip of Baisha Island provides information and tickets for tours of Jibei and Mutou islands. Penghu Walker is a well-illustrated map that includes some of the more popular tourist attractions and destinations. The Beauties of Penghu is a detailed brochure explaining Penghu’s culture and environment. There are Chinese and English versions of each.
WHERE TO STAY:
■ Camping is possible on most public property. Just pitch your tent or unroll your sleeping bag. A complete list of hotels and homestays on all of Penghu’s main islands can be found at: tour.penghu.gov.tw.
Looking forward to next summer now? 😀