Planning a tour of the eastern part of Kaohsiung County we began our drive through the odd landscape of Moon World.
Which was once perhaps a center for lively tourism with Moonscape World park and the likes, but now is completely deserted. The few folks left living in the area seemed unmotivated.
Still, up on the mountain there were some nice views of the area with a small monument for a Goddess that seemed like she’s in immediate need for medical attention or she’ll quickly merge with the moon.
Driving on, to Meinong, famous for Hakka culture. Quiet Taiwan country-side, rice fields, and very very simple standard of living. As we were driving around and getting a bit lost, I had strong flashbacks from some of the countryside I stayed at for a while at Central Vietnam and Northern Thailand.
The main lake, for example, has seen much better days and looks like it could use an enthusiastic politician to decide brushing it up can get him reelected.
To get a sense of the more commercialized Hakka culture, we made a stop at the Meinong Folk Village.
Chinese Hakka umbrellas are the most famous folk produce.
But the real attraction is the beautiful countryside scenery.
My mother had her first scary encounter with Winter Melons…
and Taiwanese "massage" (AKA torture) shoes.
That whole Meinong area has so much potential but tends to leave the visitor feeling a bit disappointed and expecting more. Looks like it was once a much more vibrant tourist destination. What happened?