Chao Feng’s collections of animals is quite extensive, but the highlight is without doubt the collection of raccoons, who along with some of the toucans, rabbits and sheep, provide the most interactive aspect of the animal experience. Chao Feng is now rearing its own raccoons in close human proximity, and the furry little creatures are hugely popular with children and shutter bugs. The parkland setting and a large number of open display areas make the menagerie quite a friendly experience for visitors.
In addition, many people visit Chao Feng for its small dairy, where children can see cows being milked and can also feed calves with milk and grass. As a working production area, the dairy is a little less cuddly than the petting zoo, and does not quite offer the same kind of outdoor experience as fully developed ranches such the Flying Cow Ranch (飛牛牧場) in Miaoli.
Chao Feng is large enough, and conveniently located for the Provincial Highway 9 (台九線) that runs the length of the rift valley and is a good option for an overnight stay. It has two residential areas, one called the Rosary and the other The Netherlands (complete with miniature windmill), well-appointed semi-detached wooden cottages with holiday season rates starting at NT$5,950 for a double room.
Information about Chao Feng Ranch can be found at www.skcf.com.tw. It is located at 20 Yungfu Rd,Fenglin Township, Hualien County (花蓮縣鳳林鎮永福街20號).
Extensive information about leisure farms around Taiwan can be found in English at www.taiwanfarm.com.tw.
The Hualien International Hot Air Balloon Fiesta runs from June 22 to Sept 1. Detailed information can be found at hibf.com.tw.