[ Nantou ] The Formosan Aboriginal Culture Village

[ 童年過後的九族文化村 & 公主小妹]

Last time I visited the Formosan Aboriginal Culture Village in Nantou (county in the centre part of Taiwan) was at least 10 years ago I think. Can’t really remmeber much except the huge performance stage where tribal people were doing their tribal performances. Aside from the “aboriginal culture” things, there are also a few theme-park rides. We took the gondola (cable car from the entrance to…

the top and walked downfrom there through the various “villages”.

View of the mountain valley from th parking lot. If you didn’t know that, you’d probably think it’s Switzerland!

fore we took the gondola, my friends tried this thing. I have enough of this kind of drop feelings from airplanes. It’s too much for my heart muscles. :p

View from the gondola.

Passing through the aboriginal villages (or more like prototypes).

We had the “traditional” aboriginal food with the rice cooked in bamboo, taro cake in fresh leaf, water-boiled broccoli and steamed sweet potato. It was quite filing! I’m glad that Jenny & I shared this one!

We also had some spare to get the “diamond” dessert. It’s basically large chunks of ice with some fruity or sweet potato+tiny rice sauce and goodies.

The rice wine produced by the aboriginal tribes is quite popular & it generally taste quite good.

Another aboriginal dish is the grilled wild boar meat. It’s comparatively hard to chew on (like rubber band) and it has a “distinct” taste to it.

We saw a ranch with quite a lot of rabbits. Somehow we ended up feeding them tree leaves we got from the tree above.

We watched a performance that summaries the highlights of performances and rituals by the different tribes in Taiwan. In this photo, you see an aboriginal teen on a canoe. He was already IN the canoe when his tribal men carried him + the canoe to the edge of the stage and basically THREW the canoe and him into the water. He managed to still be in the canoe when the canoe dropped. I think that really requires some skill if not luck.

There are more than 10 different tribes in Taiwan. A few of the still-existing tribes are on the edge of “extinction”. Efforts are made to preserve their language, music, cultural heritage and ways of living. But it’s already too late. I have once writen a major essay on the different tribal music of the aboriginals for my world music lecture during my 4th year of university. It’s really only when you have study so much about other cultures, their music, and ways of living that you start reflecting upon yourself and ask: have we got what we’re really proud of and how are we treating them? Do we even know them?

The “Alladin” area where we find the more ‘child-like” rides.

The Carribean Splash – I thought this actor’s make up was quite well-done. He looked like Johnny Depp!!

We went on this splash thing. It really got us WET. & this thing is actually taller than it looks here.

The tablet at the entrance into the theme park. It shows symbls that are related to the ways of living for the various tribes that inhabit the Formosa (Taiwan) as early as 3,000 years ago.

Before we left, we briefly watched a festival dance probably by the a-mei tribe at the main entrance.

Before we headed back to the car, we went to the large European garden. I suppose the building doesn’t have much inside (probably a restaurant) but it does look quite elegant from the outside. In fact, it was the filming spot for the great mansion in the Taiwanese drama 公主小妹 (transl. Romantic Princess). The plot goes: a girl from a poor family one day suddenly realizes she is in fact the lost daughter of the richest man in Asia. (kinda cheesy I know) So she was taken back to her long-lost grand father and lives in the mansion with 4 other young guys  who were trained by her grandfather to be the person to succeed him (business, property, etc.) after his death, if his grand daughter were not found. So the story goes from there.

It’s kinda cheesy plot but I like the dreamy-ness & “sweetness” of the whole feel. What are you going to do about it? haha. :p

More photos on MY FLICKR: http://flickr.com/photos/perladipace/sets/72157607134212544/


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