Lintianshan Forestry Culture Park

Lintianshan Forestry Culture Park
(All photos courtesy of CNA)

Chinese name: 林田山林業文化園區

Located at: Fenglin Township, Hualien County

The Lintianshan Forestry Culture Park is famous for having the most intact logging base in Taiwan. In the park, there are not only rich cultural relics such as various logging tools and traditional fire-fighting relics, but also a large-scale Japanese-style cypress building complex. Lintian Mountain, with its strong forestry history, has become a must-see cultural attraction for tourists visiting the East Rift Valley.

Lintian Mountain

Located in Hualiens Fenglin Township, the Lintianshan Forestry Culture Park was once the fourth largest forest farm in Taiwan during the Japanese occupation era, second only to the three major forest farms of Baxian Mountain (八仙山), Alishan (阿里山) and Taiping Mountain (太平山). The forestry industry in Lintianshan began in 1918, when Japans "Hualien Port Timber Co., Ltd. (花蓮港木材株式會社)" began logging in the area. After 1938, construction of the transportation railway, Zhongshan Hall (中山堂), staff dormitory, medical clinic, welfare agency, rice shop, grocery store, laundromat, hair salon, fire brigade, kindergarten and elementary school began, turning Lintianshan into a well-functioning logging community that gathered four to five hundred households in its heyday.

forestry industry

The year 1960 was the peak period of logging development in the forest farm. There were about 2,000 employees and about 123 dormitories here at the time. But in 1970s, the forestry industry began to decline as environmental consciousness grew and the government became more aware of the need to preserve Taiwan’s forests. The forest farm was later taken over by the Forestry Bureau and in 1988, the Bureau ended logging in Lintian Mountain. The forest farm was then turned into the "Lintian Mountain Forestry Culture Park". In 2006, Hualien County Government’s Cultural Affairs Bureau designated it as an historical settlement. Currently, there are still about 32 households with more than 50 retired employees living in the dormitory in the park. They have witnessed the most vivid history of forestry development in Lintian Mountain.

Among the buildings in the forest farm in Lintian Mountain, the most classic building is Zhongshan Hall. The entire building of Zhongshan Hall is made of cypress. Providing space for people to see films, Zhongshan Hall had two movie projectors in 1961. Two to three movies were shown in the hall every week, which at the time were highlight events for local residents.

With the implementation of the comprehensive ban on logging of natural forests in 1991, Lintianshan’s once vibrant years of logging have entered into history. Now when you come to Lintianshan Forestry Culture Park, you may wish to have afternoon tea in a cafe full of cypress fragrances and visit Zhongshan Hall where you can imagine the happy time residents had watching movies in the old days. You can also admire the exquisite woodcarving art in the hall, stroll through the Lintianshan Forestry Cultural Relics Exhibition Hall, and feel the graceful years of Lintianshan’s past.