Mon, Jun 18, 2012 - Page 14 News List

Whale watchers in Hualien exceeded 100,000 last year
大「鯨」奇/去年破十萬人次 賞鯨創紀錄

A whale comes up for air off the coast of Hualien County on June 21 last year.
一頭鯨去年六月二十一日在花蓮縣海岸到水面呼吸。

Photo: Hua Meng-ching, Liberty Times
照片:自由時報記者花孟璟

Whale watching in the Hualien area was apparently resuscitated last year. For the first time in a decade, the number of whale watchers surpassed the 100,000 mark. The Hualien Fisherman’s Association will make a 30-second long commercial in an all-out effort to promote whale watching in the area. They hope this year’s turnout will be as good as last year’s.

Huang Yao-hsing, head of Hualien County’s Fisheries and Husbandries Section under the Bureau of Agriculture, says that a new record has been set for the number of whale watchers in the area, exceeding 100,000 for the first time in a decade. Compared to the annual average of between 70,000 and 80,000 in previous years, it is a significant increase and shows that whale watching is once again popular among tourists, he says.

Wang Teng-yi, chairman of the Hualien Fisherman’s Association, says that besides an abundance of beautiful landscapes that one can enjoy from the ocean, there are also plenty of whales and dolphins to marvel at as they jump out of the water in the Pacific coastal area. He also says that regardless of whether you depart from the Hualien or Shihti fishing harbors, the chances of seeing whales and dolphins in the area is as high as 97 percent, meaning one’s chances of leaving empty-handed are quite slim.

In order to popularize and promote local whale watching activities, the Hualien Fishing Association is making a 30-second long whale watching commercial, which they hope to air on non-profit television stations to boost the image of whale watching in Hualien, widely recognized as Taiwan’s original whale watching hotspot. The association welcomes tourists from across the nation to come and experience the delight of whale watching during the summer vacation.

Huang says that out of all of Taiwan’s tourist areas, Hualien receives the greatest number of whale watching certificates from the Council of Agriculture’s Fisheries Agency, and that four out of the eight government-certified whale watching locations in Taiwan are in Hualien County. Not only has Hualien received the most whale watching certificates, the Shihti Fishing Harbor was voted one of Taiwan’s 10 most gorgeous fishing harbors by Taiyi Advertising Inc. Aside from strengthening the development of the recreational fishing industry, whale watching also benefits other tourist industries and activities, such as recreational tourism, farming and fishing tours, bed and breakfasts, Aboriginal culture and art, specialty foods and beverages, and dance performances, making whale watching a crucial part of Hualien County’s tourist industry.

(Liberty Times, Translated by Kyle Jeffcoat)

花蓮地區賞鯨活動去年再度復甦,創下十年來首度突破十萬人次紀錄,花蓮區漁會近期將拍攝三十秒廣告全力行銷,希望今年再創賞鯨佳績。

花蓮縣政府農業處漁牧科長黃耀興指出,去年花蓮地區的賞鯨遊客人數,創下十年來首度突破十萬人次紀錄,較往年平均約七至八萬人次大幅增加,也顯示賞鯨觀光產業再獲遊客青睞。

花蓮區漁會總幹事王鐙億說,從海上看陸地,不僅有萬種風情,還有鯨豚在太平洋左岸跳躍,讓人「大鯨奇」,不管是從花蓮漁港或是石梯漁港出海,花蓮的鯨豚發現率高達百分之九十七,想要槓龜而返的機率相當低。

花蓮區漁會為了加強推廣、行銷花蓮的賞鯨活動,將製作三十秒的賞鯨形象公益廣告,希望透過全國有線電視台的公益頻道,強化花蓮賞鯨發源地的印象,歡迎全台灣遊客利用暑假前來體驗賞鯨的樂趣。

黃耀興說,花蓮縣是漁業署授證「賞鯨標章」評鑑最多的觀光縣市,在全國只有八張的證照中,花蓮縣就佔了四張,不僅是全國取得最多「賞鯨標章」的城市,石梯漁港並獲評選為太乙廣告行銷股份有限公司十大魅力漁港,賞鯨活動不僅帶動休閒漁業發展,附加價值還包括觀光休閒、農(漁)村體驗、特色民宿、原住民文化藝術、特色餐飲、舞蹈表演等觀光休閒產業等,成為花蓮觀光產業中重要的一環。

(自由時報記者游太郎)

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