︱The Hengchun Geothermal Natural Fires︱
The famous Ground Fires are situated adjacent to a bridge not far from Hengchun Town’s East Gate. Flames come up naturally from the ground all year round; if the wind blows them out, they come up again as soon as the wind dies down. Visit the area at night, and you will see faint red “Ghost Fire”, which in the dark of night makes for a very spooky atmosphere.
︱The Sihjhongsi Hot Springs︱
The Sihjhongsi Hot Springs are one of Taiwan’s “Top Four” hot spring resorts. Turn off the main highway at Checheng, and you will be there in just 10 minutes or so. There are several hot spring hotels in the area. The Sihjhongsi Hot Springs were famous during the era of Japanese colonial rule; even Emperor Hirohito visited the hot springs during the trip to Taiwan that he made while he was still Crown Prince. The hot springs are alkaline carbonic acid springs; the water is very clear, and is potable. If you come to Kenting in the winter, don’t miss the opportunity to come and have a relaxing soak in the Sihjhongsi Hot Springs!
︱Shihmen Historic Battlefield︱
Continue along County Highway 199 from Sihjhongsi, and you will reach the site where the Battle of Shihmen was fought. There is a commemorative stele by the side of the road. The Mudan Incident resulted from the murder of a group of shipwrecked Japanese sailors by local aborigines in 1871; the Japanese sent a punitive expedition, which fought a fierce battle with the aborigines at Shihmen (Stone Gate). After the battle, the Japanese set up a monument to honor their dead; after Taiwan was returned to China in 1945, the Japanese monument was replaced by the commemorative stele that can be seen today.
Mudan Reservoir provides the water supply for the inhabitants of the Hengchun Peninsula; it is located in an area where many indigenous customs have been kept alive. Besides supplying water to six townships and rural townships, Mudan Reservoir is a tourist attraction in its own right, with beautiful scenery, and a water park. There are small restaurants in the area where visitors can enjoy traditional Paiwan food, the unique flavors of which are a treat not to be missed!
The Kangtzu sand-dunes are one of the most popular attractions along the coastal highway that runs down the Hengchun Peninsula; visitors might be forgiven for thinking that they had been transported into the desert! Particularly in the summer, the bright sunshine and the sea air make for a heady atmosphere. The steep slope of the sand-dunes here has made this a popular venue for “sand racing”; if you enjoy a challenge, why not come and try it yourself?