Cycling in Taiwan & ‘The Tour’

This one is for my cycling friends – all the MAMILs!

Before I arrived here, over 2 weeks ago now, I confess I knew very little about Taiwan. I could point it out on a map and knew that many electronic components were ‘Made in Taiwan’ but that was about it. Due to our fantastic hosts from IBM and the New Taipei City Police Department we have visited the different city districts, tourist attractions, the coast, the national parks and the mountains. – all without leaving the city boundaries of Taipei and New Taipei City.
There is much more to see of Taiwan but that will require another visit. One way to travel to the south of the island is by the high speed train link but the other way to travel is by bike. Both Taipei and New Taipei City have invested in bike lanes and bike paths along the rivers. Taipei has also just introduced the ‘You Bikes’ which is their version of the London ‘Boris Bikes‘.

This weekend the Tour de Taiwan comes through New Taipei and Taipei cities. This was the annual professional road biking stage race held in Taiwan. The Tour de Taiwan was established by Giant Sports Foundation’s founder, King Liu in 1978 and was classed a 2:1 category race for the first time in 2012. This cycling tour championship was recognised by the International Cycling Union in 2005 and is now part of the UCI Asia Tour. Teams from Europe, Asia, US and Africa are competing so I went out to see them start Stage 7 this morning.

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We have also met a couple of people who have cycled round Taiwan – following a route of approx 1,000 kilometers – in about a week to ten days at normal touring speeds. Taiwan alsohas a unique “triathlon” undertaken by many local and visiting outdoor enthusiasts.  This involves participating in the Sun Moon Lake cross-lake swim held each September, climbing Yushan – at 3,952m, Northeast Asia’s highest peak – and cycling around the island.

#ibmcsc Taiwan #smartercities challenge

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