List of national parks in Taiwan
The National Park Law of the Republic of China, commonly known as "Taiwan", was passed in 1972 to protect the nature, wildlife, and history in its current jurisdiction. The total area of current nine national parks is 7,489.49 square kilometres (2,891.71 sq mi). The 3,103.76-square-kilometre (1,198.37 sq mi) total land area constitutes around 8.6% of the entire land area of the republic.
A National Park should not be confused with a National Scenic Area: the latter fall within the control of the Tourism Bureau of the Ministry of Transportation and Communications of the Republic of China, while National Parks fall within the jurisdiction of the Ministry of the Interior of the Republic of China. The philosophies that govern the development of the two types of areas differ. For a National Park, the emphasis is on the preservation of natural and cultural resources, and development for human utilization is definitely a secondary priority.
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Current National Parks
The following is a list of the National Parks of the Republic of China:
|Kenting National Park||332.90 km2 (82,261.4 acres), 180.84 km2 of land, and 152.06 km2 water||1984||Located on the southern tip of Taiwan, it is also the oldest national park on the Taiwan (Pingtung County), Kenting is famous for its tropical coral reef and migratory birds.|
|Yushan National Park||1,031.21 km2 (254,817.5 acres)||1985||The largest national park in Taiwan, located on the central part of the island. it contains Jade Mountain (Yushan literally means "Jade Mountain", 3952 m) which is the highest peak in East Asia.|
|Yangmingshan National Park||113.38 km2 (28,016.8 acres)||1985||The northernmost national park on the island of Taiwan; it has a volcanic landform. Yangminshan is famous for its hotsprings and geothermal phenomenon. Each spring, Yangminshan also have a dazzling flower season. It is partially in Taipei City and partially in New Taipei City.|
|Taroko National Park||920 km2 (227,337.0 acres)||1986||A magnificent marble gorge cut by Li-Wu River, creating one of the most astounding landscape in the world. It is also the home of the indigenous Truku people. Taroko is located in eastern Taiwan.|
|Shei-Pa National Park||768.5 km2 (189,900.5 acres)||1992||Located in the central northern part of Taiwan island, in Hsinchu County and Miaoli County. It is the home of Xueshan, or Snow Mountain, Taiwan and East Asia's second tallest mountain, and of Dabajian Mountain and the Holy Ridge.|
|Kinmen National Park||35.29 km2 (8,720.3 acres)||1995||Due to its proximity to Mainland China, there are historical battlefields in Kinmen. It is also famous for its wetland ecosystem and its traditional Fujian buildings that dated back to the Ming Dynasty. It is not located on Taiwan Island, but instead on an island just off the coast of Mainland China.|
|Dongsha Atoll National Park||3,536.68 km2 (873,932.7 acres), including 1.79 km2 of land||2007||The first oceanic National Park. It houses about 72 species of endemic plants,and 125 species of insects. Like Kinmen National Park, it is not located on Taiwan Island. Because strict protection is being taken on Dongsha, it is currently not open to public tourism.|
|Taijiang National Park||393.1 km2 (97,137.1 acres), 49.05 km2 of land, and 344.05 km2 water||2009||Located in southwest Taiwan on the coast of Tainan. The park's tidal landscape is one of its most distinctive features. Around 200 years ago, a large part of the park was part of the Taijiang Inland Sea. There is a rich variety of marine life, including 205 species of shellfish, 240 species of fish and 49 crab species that thrive on the marshes of southern Taiwan.|
|South Penghu Marine National Park||358.44 km2 (88,572.5 acres), including 3.70 km2 of land||2014||Located in the south of Penghu. The seas feature large clusters of Acropora coral and a diversity of fish and shells living among the reefs. The islets are also known for magnificent basalt terrains and unique low-roofed houses built by early inhabitants with coral stone and basalt.|
National Parks in Taiwan under Japanese rule
- Daiton National Park (大屯国立公園): including what is now Yangmingshan
- Shintaka (New Highest) Arisan National Park (新高阿里山国立公園): now Yushan and Alishan
- Tsugitaka (Second Highest) Taroko National Park (次高タロコ国立公園): now Taroko National Park and Shei-Pa National Park
The administration of these National Parks was no longer in force when Japan withdrew from Taiwan in 1945 after World War II.
Proposed National Parks
Three other national parks were proposed but the plans of formation were halted due to opposition:
- 馬告檜木國家公園 ("Magao National Park for Chamaecyparis formosensis", opposed by local indigenous peoples)
- 能丹國家公園("Neng-Dan National Park", opposed by the Bunun people)
- 蘭嶼國家公園 ("Ponso no Tao National Park", opposed by the Tao people)
- Reference on Act Title from Kinmen Park website
- 各國家公園基本資料表 (PDF) (in Chinese). Construction and Planning Agency, Ministry of the Interior, R.O.C.(Taiwan). June 6, 2014. Retrieved October 21, 2014.
- "Taiwan's National Scenic Areas: Balancing Preservation and Recreation". Academia Sinica. 1995-06-01.
- "Beauty of south Penghu islets on display at new national park". Central News Agency. October 18, 2014. Retrieved October 21, 2014.
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