Hsinchu Botanical Garden
Revel in the blooms and tranquility of Hsinchu Botanical Garden, nicknamed the Green Library of Hsinchu City. Stroll along attractive paths and glean insights into Taiwan's indigenous flora as you go.
The garden was first established in 1932 as an experimental forest research center by the Japanese colonial government. Today, you will find a number of trees in the garden that are more than 50 years old. There are also more than 300 different kinds of plants.
As you walk along the garden’s paths stop to read the plaques that identify each plant species as well as their various uses. Look for eucalyptus and Taiwan acacia, the latter of which is used for a number of medicinal purposes. Inspect the round green fruits of the Ceylon olive trees, which can be used to treat various gastrointestinal illnesses. The garden’s gently sloping paths are also popular with those who like to get out on their bicycles.
If you are visiting on the weekend, there is even more plant life to see at the nearby open-air Hsinchu Flower Market. Browse the many stalls for an array of gorgeous cut flowers. Vendors also sell a range of other items, from fresh fruit smoothies and street snacks to household items and clothing.
After exploring examples of Taiwan’s flora, check out some of its fauna with a visit to Hsinchu Zoo. This is one of the oldest zoos in the country and it is situated less than 2 miles (3.2 kilometers) from the botanical garden. The zoo is home to Bengal tigers, hippos, orangutans and Malay bears. In total, there are more than 250 animals representing 70 different species.
If you are making Hsinchu Botanical Garden your first stop, you can arrive by taking a bus from Hsinchu Station. The pastoral attraction is on Baoshan Road, close to National Tsing-hua University.