Friday, December 18, 2009

Way back when...

Having just griped about the inadequacies of public transport in certain parts of Taiwan, I think it's a good moment to point out just how much things have improved for the traveller since the 1930s, which is when Taiwan's rulers (who at that time were the Japanese) first began promoting tourism. At that time, any trip away from the main north-south railroad took many hours indeed and involved either slow buses or 'push carts' like those pictured here.

Several years ago, I visited an elderly British ex-missionary who had fond memories of going up through central Taiwan by the kind of human-powered railway trolley pictured in these photos. Of course, as a paying passenger, he didn't have to push the thing...

These pictures are courtesy of David Reid, the man behind the excellent David on Formosa blog.

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