Senior Travel to Taiwan, the Heart of Asia

Aug 11th, 2011 | By James E Becker | Category: Senior Travel

Seniors Visit the Heart of Asia

Taiwan, the “Heart of Asia“, is one of Asia’s must see destinations with lots of things for seniors to see and do. Shaped roughly like a sweet potato, the nation is home to more than 23 million people and is one of the most densely populated places in the world. Besides its crowded cities, Taiwan is also known for steep mountains and lush forests. In addition to the island of Taiwan, the Republic of China also governs the tiny Pescadores, Quemoy, and Matsu. Taiwan boasts some very impressive scenic sites.

Taipei is a vibrant center of culture and entertainment and at night, it transfigures itself.  Trip Advisor can take you right into Taipei with discount hotels, flight deals and many other travel offers. Their listing of 408 things to do might be a bit of overkill, but it does tell you something about the vibrant island.

Long controlled by China, it was a military defeat in 1895 that forced China to cede Taiwan to Japan. 50 years later, after the end of World War II, Taiwan reverted to Chinese control.  On China’s mainland the Communist Revolution took hold in the mid-1940s, and after the Communist victory in 1949 with General Chiang Kai-shek and his forces, the losers sought refuge on Taiwan, and quickly established their strict military control. Over the next few years an additional two million Chinese Nationalists fled to Taiwan, but they remained in the minority as they collectively made up only 15% of the overall population.

Seniors Remember Formosa

Taiwan also known in the past, as Formosa (“Beautiful Island“), is an island of East Asia in the western Pacific Ocean and located off the southeastern coast of mainland China. The island forms over 99% of the current territory of the Republic of China (ROC) following the Chinese Civil War in 1950. Therefore, the name “Taiwan” has also become the pars pro toto common name for the ROC itself. Separated from the Asian continent by the 99 mile wide Taiwan Strait, the main island of the group is 245 miles long and 89 miles wide. To the northeast are the main islands of Japan and the East China Sea, and the southern end of the Ryukyu Islands of Japan are directly to the east.

Barely the size of many American states, in Taiwan lies a world of contrasts and a melange of cultural influences you’re not likely to find anywhere else on the planet. jeb



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