I am Bi-khim Hsiao (蕭美琴), elected Member of the Legislative Yuan (立法院) representing the constituency of Hualien County (花蓮縣), Taiwan. I have been living and working here in Hualien since 2010, and on this blog site I will be sharing English information and stories about the people, culture, sites and beauty of Hualien.
Located on the eastern coast of Taiwan, Hualien is the largest county of Taiwan. It is backed by the Central Mountain Range (中央山脈) on the west, and toward the east it faces the vast Pacific Ocean. The population of roughly 330,000 consists of at least six indigenous peoples and Hakka, Hoklo and people of mainland Chinese descent. Agriculture, tourism, and marble cutting are main industries of Hualien. Transportation to neighboring counties is heavily dependent on the railway system and Route 9. There is an international airport which in addition to daily flights to Taipei and Kaohsiung, as of early 2018 has daily direct flights to Hong Kong via the airline Hong Kong Express.
The county is home to two national parks, the Taroko National Park (太魯閣國家公園) to the north and the eastern entrance of the Yushan National Park (玉山國家公園) to the south. The National Bureau of Tourism also manages two scenic areas, the Rift Valley National Scenic Area, which covers the stretch of farm land and natural scenery nestled between the central mountain range and the coastal mountain range, and the East Coast National Scenic Area, which extends along the Pacific coast of Hualien down to neighboring Taitung to the south. For decades, Hualien has attracted tourists from around the world, and we continue to pride our county as one of the most beautiful, unpolluted destinations in Taiwan!