Hualien Sugar Factory
In 1913, the "East Taiwan Sugar Manufacturing Association" set up the "Hualien Harbor Sugar Manufacturing Center", which was also known as the "Carp Tail Sugar Factory" in Hualien County's Shoufeng Township. In 1921, the "Yamato Factory" was also set up in Guangfu Township, which produced sugar on a large scale. Towards the end of the Second World War, these two factories were damaged by bombing from the allied forces. After Taiwan retrocession, Taiwan Sugar Corporation took over, and decided to pull down the Shoufong Factory, which had suffered more serious damage. The Yamato Factory was rebuilt under the new name of the Hualien Sugar Factory. This became the major sugar manufacturing center for east Taiwan. Because the sugar factory is located in Guangfu Township, it is often called the "Guangfu Sugar Factory". However, its formal name is the "Hualien Sugar Factory".
The Hualien Sugar Factory has experienced many years of expansion and renovation. There have been increases in the amount of sugar produced, and improvements in the sugar quality. In order to provide the factory with raw materials, vast sugar cane fields can be found in Xincheng Township to the north and Fuli Township to the south, which have become a unique East Rift Valley sight. In addition to providing granulated sugar, Hualien Sugar Factory also has a frozen products department which produces all flavors of popsicles and ice cream. These products are very popular with both local and foreign tourists, and a "trip to the sugar factory to sample the ice cream products" has become a favorite tourist activity.
Next to the Hualien Sugar Factory are Japanese-style bungalows, organized in neat rows. Large-scale Japanese-style buildings like these are very rare in Taiwan. These residences, made of Chinese cypress, were built for the factory employees during the Japanese occupation. For many, these well-preserved old buildings create feelings of nostalgia.
In 2002, due to the long-term lowering of sugar prices and the WTO entrance, Taiwan Sugar Corporation decided to put the Hualien Sugar Factory, with its more than 80 years of sugar production, to rest, and to develop it for tourism and recreation instead.
Based on the existing iced sweets business, the Hualien Sugar Factory aims to work with all recreational businesses in the region to attract more visitors. Not only does it provide guided tours and creative workshops at the cultural park. Organic rice field trips and similar tours are also launched by nearby farms. Visitors can even rent bikes to hang around. The foundation of the Danongdafu Forest Park also brings extra highlight to the region.
Creative workshops are held regularly at the former hallway-dormitories, where visitors and local artists can exchange ideas and learn from one another. Handmade crafts are also sold here, including lemongrass essence oil, lemongrass-soap gift boxes, etc. The lemongrass is grown organically and no chemicals are added to the products.
Next to the factory is a row of well-preserved old buildings. They are among the few remaining wooded architecture from the Japanese Rule. Established many decades ago, they express a strong sense of nostalgia. They were renovated not long ago according to the Hualien County Government’s “no-chimneys” tourism development policies, and now operate as a Japanese-style hotel after obtaining a “general hotel operation certificate” on January 24, 2011.
There are two types of rooms at the hotel, Toyo Cabins (double), and Family Cabins (triple). Each cabin is equipped with private parking and a court yard, and is furnished with wooded floors and tatami (rice-straw floors), shoji (paper doors), and quilt cabinets. Guests staying at the Family Cabins can even take a bath in hand-made cypress bathtubs.
Simply spend a night at the Hualien Sugar Factory Hotel, feel the quiet charm of the Japanese culture, and get rid of all the pressure from city life. You are sincerely invited to stay in the classic cabins!
Status In operation
- Briefing notes
- Observation deck