Saturday, May 9, 2009

Taiwan - Alishan Forest Railway (TW-39314)

My collection of railways related cards keeps on growing :D I've even found a railway tag on postcrossing forum :) Fortunately, it's allowed to send cards showing railway stations there, as I haven't seen any with trains in my area... And I doubt if such ones could be issued here in the nearest future, because there are no special or old railways in my area. People probably wouldn't be interested in buying and sending cards showing regular Polish trains :))) But I don't complain, as I understand that collecting cards showing trains isn't a very popular hobby. I'd be satisfied if I could buy real map and flag cards here... Am I asking for too much? :))

This card shows the Alishan Forest Railway in Taiwan. It was listed by Taiwan's government as a potential UNESCO site, but of course it can't be accepted, as Taiwan doesn't belong to United Nations and it's independence isn't recognized by most of countries... That's why there are no World Heritage Sites in Taiwan, just because of a political issue :(


The Alishan Forest Railway (阿里山森林鐵路) is an 86 km network of narrow gauge (2 ft 6 in (762 mm)) railways running up to and throughout the popular mountain resort of Alishan in Chiayi County, Taiwan. The narrow gauge lines were originally constructed by the Japanese Colonial Government in 1912 to facilitate the logging of cypress and Taiwania wood, however today the line caters mostly to tourists. Passenger carriages were first added to the trains in 1918.

Unlike the national rail system administered by the Taiwan Railway Administration, the Alishan railway is managed by the Forestry Bureau. The system is currently operated using diesel locomotives, although there are occasional special public runs using the old steam powered Shay locomotives.

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