Hakka Tung Blossom and Cherry Blossom Festivals in Taiwan mark onset of Spring
It is often said ‘Earth laughs in flowers’ and March welcomes the season of joy and hope in Taiwan with two festivals honouring the onset of blooms. The Hakka Tung Blossom Festival which begins in March, and The Cherry Blossom Festival, for which the trees have already begun to blossom. Both festivals will continue till early-May and apart from being a delightful sight for visitors, they also mark a time for harvest, prosperity and prayers.
Dr Lin Trust, Director of Taiwan Tourism Bureau for India, Middle East, Singapore and Asia-Pacific, says, “Taiwan is one of the few destinations that has something to offer every season. To me, — spring is the best time to visit with the weather and flowers. The Visitor numbers from India have been increasing year-on-year and we want to offer travellers the option to explore Taiwan for reasons that delight them. We are also working closely with airlines to improve connectivity to Taiwan.”
During the Tung Blossom Festival, visitors are invited to soak in the beauty of the white blooms of the Tung trees and participate in a grand ceremony to worship the three Mountain Gods, the guardian spirits of the Hakka. The Tung tree appears vastly different throughout the four seasons and bears a beautiful snowy white colour up until May. The inspiration of the Tung Blossom Festival comes from the Hakka people, who possess deep feelings and heartfelt gratitude towards the Tung trees, the surrounding mountains and nature in general. Tung trees cover the hills and fields of the Taichung area and have historically been an important cash crop for the Hakka.
Northern and central Taiwan are currently bearing pink hues, with the Wulai Cherry Blossom season in full bloom. Taichung City and Nantou’s Sun Moon Lake are some of the prettiest sights in Central Taiwan, and for those who are slightly more adventurous, the Wuling Farm on the outskirts, with its over 30,000 cherry trees, is one not to miss — you’ll get to admire varieties including the Oshima cherry, Yaezakura cherry and Wusheh cherry.