Taiwan is staking a claim in the eco-travel market as it declares 2020 as Year of the Mountain and encourages tourists to experience the many hiking trails across the island.
The announcement follows moves to improve public access to the island’s national parks and ecological protected areas.
Taiwan has 268 mountains standing more than 3,000 metres high, making it an enticing market for eco-travellers as well as sports and adventure tourists. It has long been a popular destination for nature-lovers, particularly bird-watchers, who come to spot some of the 28 endemic bird species.
The tourism board says Taiwan is where visitors come to experience traditional Chinese culture that dates back for centuries. Last year, it welcomed 10 million visitors – a figure set to rise to 12 million by the end of 2019. Of those, 80,000 will be from the UK. By 2030, Taiwan is targeting 20 million visitors annually.
The tourism board says Taiwan can offer the British market a different tourist experience, as it works to position the island as a must-visit destination in Asia. To further spread its message, it is opening its first office in London next month.