Sun Moon Lake

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Sun Moon Lake
日月潭
Zintun
View of Sun Moon Lake From Shueishe Pier (5457292307).jpg
Sun Moon Lake from Shueishe Pier
Location Yuchi, Nantou County
Coordinates 23°52′N 120°55′E / 23.867°N 120.917°E / 23.867; 120.917Coordinates: 23°52′N 120°55′E / 23.867°N 120.917°E / 23.867; 120.917
Primary outflows Shuili River
Basin countries Taiwan
Surface area 7.93 km2 (3.06 sq mi)
Average depth 25 cm
Max. depth 27 m (89 ft)
Surface elevation 748 m (2,454 ft)
Islands Taiwan island

Sun Moon Lake (Chinese: 日月潭; pinyin: Rìyuè tán; Pe̍h-ōe-jī: Ji̍t-goa̍t-thâm; Thao: Zintun) is a lake in Nantou County, Taiwan. It is the largest lake in Taiwan.[1] Sun Moon Lake is one of the Eight Views of Taiwan.[2] The lake was named because the east side of the lake looks like a sun, and the west side of the lake looks like a moon.

The lake is famous because the scenery looks very beautiful. In the morning and evening, there are clouds and mist with the rising or setting sun.[3]

History[change | change source]

Inside one of the power plants

The land around the lake is home to the Thao tribe. They are an aboriginal people. According to legend, Thao hunters discovered Sun Moon Lake after chasing a deer. The deer led them to the lake. They found that the lake was beautiful and had lots of fish. An island in the middle of the lake is thought of as the worship place for the Thao people.[1]

The lake was called Lake Candidius in the past. It was named after the missionary Georgius Candidius.[4] The lake was first called Sun Moon Lake in 1821, in a book called Travels to Shueilishe by Deng Chuan-an.[4] In the Qing dynasty, Chinese people began moving to the area around Sun Moon Lake. Many people wanted to open restaurants, hotels, and stores there.[5]

When Taiwan was ruled by Japan, they made many changes. The first power plants were built in 1934. It was being built for 15 years and the project began in 1919.[6] The Jiji Line railroad was built to help the construction of the power plants.[7] Lalu Island was renamed "Jade Island". The Japanese built a large dam in 1931 that made the lake much bigger.[8] In 1946, the new Chinese government renamed the lake "Kuanghua Island". The name stayed that way until the 921 earthquake in 1999 that damaged the island. After the earthquake, the island was renamed Lalu Island. It was renamed because the Taiwanese government wanted to help preserve the Thao culture.[9]

In 1967, an Aboriginal Culture Centre was created to help preserve the Thao culture. In 1975, the centre was opened.[5] In 1990, a yacht turned upside down while in the water. It caused 57 people to die. Only 25 people survived.[5] In 2012, a picture of Sun Moon Lake was used in the People's Republic of China passports. It made the Taiwanese government angry because they say that Taiwan and Sun Moon Lake is not part of the People's Republic of China.[10]

Geography[change | change source]

Sun Moon Lake is 748 metres (2,454 ft) above sea level. It is 27 metres (89 ft) deep.[11] Many mountains and forests are around the lake.[12]

The water of the lake is very clear and crystal-like. There is an island in the middle of the lake that is called Lalu Island. The public is not allowed on the island because it is only allowed for aboriginal uses.[12]

Climate[change | change source]

Sun Moon Lake is in a warmer area. The average temperature there is 21°C.[13]

Climate data for Sun Moon Lake (1971-2000)
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Average high °C 19.5 19.8 22.1 24.2 25.6 26.9 28.0 27.3 26.9 25.7 23.3 20.6 24.16
Average low °C 10.9 11.6 13.7 16.3 18.3 19.6 20.0 19.8 19.3 17.9 15.2 12.2 16.23
Rainfall mm 52.4 103.3 119.3 192.1 354.3 483.8 349.6 431.8 199.9 54.9 25.0 38.2 2,404.6
Average high °F 67.1 67.6 71.8 75.6 78.1 80.4 82.4 81.1 80.4 78.3 73.9 69.1 75.49
Average low °F 51.6 52.9 56.7 61.3 64.9 67.3 68 67.6 66.7 64.2 59.4 54 61.22
Rainfall inches 2.063 4.067 4.697 7.563 13.949 19.047 13.764 17 7.87 2.161 0.984 1.504 94.669
Humidity 77.2 80.6 81.9 83.7 86.0 86.4 85.0 86.5 85.2 83.2 80.2 76.9 82.73
Sunshine hours 164.2 128.0 128.2 114.6 117.6 127.0 167.4 138.7 130.1 149.8 156.2 168.8 1,690.6
Source: Central Weather Bureau[14]

Attractions[change | change source]

The view from the ropeway/gondola

There are many museums and monuments around the lake. The town Ita Thao has many shops and businesses. They are mainly owned by people of the Thao tribe. The Formosan Aboriginal Culture Village is very close to Sun Moon Lake.[12] It opened in 1986 and helps teach about Aboriginal culture. It has beautiful gardens and forests.[5] There is a gondola that people ride over the forests next to the lake.[15]

People can ride bicycles around the lake. There are many bike trails around the lake. There are also many hiking trails around the lake that go up Mount Maolan.[15]

References[change | change source]

  1. 1.0 1.1 Sood, Suemedha (7 October 2011). "Taiwan's cultural past and present". BBC Travel. Retrieved 14 November 2017. 
  2. "台湾八景". Baidu百科 (in Chinese). Retrieved 14 November 2017. 
  3. "The Tourist Spot". Sun Moon Lake. Retrieved 15 November 2017. 
  4. 4.0 4.1 "Why Is It Called Sun Moon Lake". Sun Moon Lake. Retrieved 15 November 2017. 
  5. 5.0 5.1 5.2 5.3 "The Tourist Spot". Sun Moon Lake. Retrieved 15 November 2017. 
  6. Lanfang, Lin. "Sun Moon Lake Hydraulic & Electric Works Project". Encyclopedia of Taiwan (in Chinese). Retrieved 15 November 2017. 
  7. Shan, Shelley (25 January 2010). "TRA's historic Jiji Line to close in March for repairs". Taipei Times. Retrieved 15 November 2017. 
  8. McEneaney, Ciaran (15 August 2017). "The Legends of Sun Moon Lake in Taiwan". Culture Trip. Retrieved 15 November 2017. 
  9. "Sun Moon Lake Lalu Island". Taiwan. Retrieved 15 November 2017. 
  10. Mo Yan-chih; Shih Hsiu-chuan; Wang, Chris (24 November 2012). "Taipei protests China's new passports". Taipei Times. Retrieved 15 November 2017. 
  11. Crosthwaite, Andrew (27 December 2007). "Sun Moon Lake has it all for tourists". The China Post. Archived from the original on 14 September 2010. Retrieved 15 November 2017. 
  12. 12.0 12.1 12.2 "Sun Moon Lake". Guide to Taipei.com. Retrieved 15 November 2017. 
  13. "When is the best time to go to Sun Moon Lake?". WhereandWhen. Retrieved 15 September 2017. 
  14. "中央氣象局". Central Weather Bureau (in Chinese). Retrieved 15 November 2017. 
  15. 15.0 15.1 "Sun Moon Lake, Yu Chi Village in Nantou County". EnglishInTaiwan. Retrieved 15 November 2017. 

Other websites[change | change source]