31 Aug 2006

Green Island

Clear blue sky, clean crystal water, sweet fresh air! Welcome to Green Island, a tiny island that lies on the east of Taiwan. This is the last paradise where we can retreat and truly relax ourselves from the hassle of life.

It takes about 40 minutes to get there by ferry from Taitung, Taiwan. But beware of the seasickness! Whether you are strong or not, take the pills first. You don't want to waste your precious time feeling ill on that beautiful island.

This island is so small, too small. Get a scooter, hit the road; it takes only an hour or so to drive around the island. No, this is not the end of the story. The view is just so amazing that you cannot concentrate on your driving. Thank Buddha there isn't much traffic on that island. Those amazing views will stay in your mind forever, and you definitely will keep going back.

Going back ... Yes, that is what I will do. Of course the view is the reason that drags me back, but I want to make sure that what is amazing is still as clean, clear and beautiful as I remembered. Everyone who goes there shares the responsibility of keeping the island as what it is now. Even those who plan to go there should have a positive attitude to help protect the environment of Green Island.

What else to do there? Not many, to be honest. There is a thing to do, and it is addictive, that is 'snorkeling'. Some of you may know that Green Island is in fact listed as a world-class spot for scuba diving and snorkeling. This island is surrounded with coral reef, and all you need to do is jump into the water. You need a license for scuba diving, but why bother so much when the colorful underwater view is only a short distance away. I agree that we get to see more from scuba diving, but for a person like me, it is just too difficult. I rather choose the easiest way.

Not long before, I still had difficulties going into sea water. I guess lots of people would feel the same as I did. Now, I am the one who is telling everyone to go. You can't imagine how beautiful the underwater view is. Yeah, some people may say 'I can see it on the Animal Planet'. But trust me, seeing it right in front of you is just not the same. I got really stunned that I almost forgot to breath. Listen, I am truly not able to describe what I saw underwater. You just have a go and you will know what I have been through.

Besides underwater activity, there is a hot spring on the island. I think the hot spring comes from under the sea because it tastes salty. Lots of people go there to enjoy both the hot spring and sunrise, but I am just not an early bird for that. My friends and I tried more snorkeling there! Again, just put on your goggles and jump into the water in the tideland. This experience is very different from snorkeling in deep water. You will have a closer contact with the marine life. Please do not leave any garbage there! I saw some water bottles and trash left in the tideland. This is truly sad! Let's all try and help protect this environment. Most of us live in the big cities, and it is always full of different kinds of pollution. Why ruin such a pretty place when it may be the last pure land we have!

People on Green Island are very friendly, and the food there is great. Sea food BBQ, Yummy! After your meal, you can enjoy your KTV time in the open air restaurant. Only 10 NT dollars for a song. You can sing as many songs as you can and remember 'sing out loud'. We even sang out loud while driving on the road. Basically, we always sing, whenever and wherever.

If you are lucky, you may catch some lobsters in the tideland. Thanks to the diving coach, he got us quite a lot of lobsters. Imagine this, you eat lobsters till you are tired of them. The bottom line is that we should be nice and friendly, so we get the chance to be friends with the locals, and this of course will lead to many more surprising experience. Don't be sad if you don't have any lobsters. Think in a positive way, at least you are there, you smell the sweet air, you enjoy the nice warm water, and you get a good suntan.

Room price comes with a scooter and snorkeling. I think it is a very good deal since traveling to anywhere else in Taiwan would cost you way more. 2 days 1 night is the usual package for most tourists. We had a 3 days 2 nights trip, but still not enough. According to the diving coach, you can join the special tour to go down some isolated beaches. They level it to three scales according to the difficulties to get there. What interests me the most is the secret path that goes down to the beach of the sleeping beauty (a huge stone that looks like a woman lying down). Do I really want to risk my life for that? Will you do that?

Allow me to say this again, please keep that environment as what it is now. Do not hurt the ecological environment of Green Island. Please also take it as a chance to educate your kids on the issue of environmental protection. Only by saying it loud that we can get people's attention and help protect this charming and stunning island.

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