Sun, Feb 03, 2008 - Page 1 News List

Yangmingshan festival gets underway

By Mo Yan-chih  /  STAFF REPORTER

A man takes a picture of flowers in bloom on Taipei's Yangmingshan yesterday, the first day of the annual Yangmingshan flower festival.


Cherry trees bloomed on the winding road leading to Yangmingshan National Park at the start of the annual Yangmingshan Flower Festival in Taipei yesterday.

This year's festival, which runs through March 2, opened at various locations throughout the city.

In addition to more than 2,000 cherry trees in Yangmingshan National Park, the festival features azaleas, camellias, peach blossoms and hydrangeas, among other plants and flowers.

Teddy Kao (高道涵), spokesman for Taipei City's Parks and Street Lights Office, said about 50 percent of the flowers are in full blossom thanks to recent low temperatures, with more flowers expected to bloom during the Lunar New Year holidays.

At yesterday's opening ceremony, Taipei Mayor Hau Lung-bin (郝龍斌) said the city government was holding the festival earlier this year to allow visitors to enjoy the horticultural spectacle during the holiday season.

He urged the public to take advantage of public transportation to avoid traffic jams around the park during the festival.

Kao suggested that visitors spend a day touring nearby attractions -- including the Lin Yu-tang House and the Shilin Presidential Residence, which is holding a rose show featuring various kinds of roses -- besides enjoying the flower festival.

Taipei City's Transportation Department said that, traffic control will be enforced along Yangde Boulevard. On weekends, a checkpoint will be established at Fuxing Bridge from 6am to 4pm to control vehicles entering the Yangmingshan area.

City-bound traffic will also be controlled at Lane 43 of Yangming Road, Section 1, from noon to 6 pm.

For traffic control information, call 02-2759-9741 and for bus route inquiries 0800-223-650.

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