Sun, Sep 01, 2019 - Page 2 News List

Aboriginal community wins PATA gold award

Staff writer, with CNA

A slate house in the Payuan Aboriginal community in Pingtung County’s Majia Township is pictured in an undated photograph.

Photo provided by the Maolin National Scenic Area Management Office via CNA

An Aboriginal community in Pingtung County’s Majia Township (瑪家) has been named among the winners at the Pacific Asia Travel Association (PATA) Gold Awards, the Maolin National Scenic Area Administration said on Friday.

Payuan, a Paiwan community, is known for its well-preserved slate houses, the agency said in a statement.

At its peak, Payuan housed the second-largest Paiwan community in Taiwan and is an important cultural site, it said. It is also home to the largest Vuculj community.

However, due to transportation, education and medical care difficulties, residents moved away in the early 1970s, it said.

It was not until 2001 that the government in collaboration with civic groups began restoring and rebuilding the slate homes, the statement said.

The Tourism Bureau has been working to promote the site through cultural and ecological tours, said PATA, which published the 34 winners of its gold award on its Web site.

Other achievements in Payuan include the installation of solar panels to generate electricity and the construction of a road between Majia and Payuan.

“Payuan is a historic place where many legends originated and it has strong vitality. It is an outdoor museum with a culture and an ecology that are worth exploring,” the PATA Web site said.

The awards are given to tourism organizations and individuals who make outstanding contributions to travel promotion in the Asia-Pacific region, it said.

This year’s awards attracted 198 entries from 78 organizations and individuals worldwide, it said.

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