Tag Archives: Kites

Taiwan’s North Coast Kite Festival 2017 @ Baishawan Beach 白沙灣, Shimen District ~ YES!

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Privileged to live so close to one of northern Taiwan’s best beaches, and today is THE day!  Every year we have a kite festival on Baishawan Beach 白沙灣 in Shimen District 石門, with thousands of people, hundreds of kites, lots of sun and hopefully lots of wind.  This is the scene this afternoon, with the lighthouse on Taiwan’s northern tip in the far distance…

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Last year’s blog post about the kite festival 2016 is here.  This year’s kite festival is a bit different.  Although it’s being held all this weekend, in fact yesterday was a working day for most people in Taiwan, in lieu of Monday October 9, to make next weekend a 4-day weekend.  So yesterday at Baishawan was really quiet – in terms of people.  But there was tons and tons of wind.  It was so hot, but the wind was strong, and there were lots of windsurfers and kite-surfers there too.

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Today, there’s tons of people. Lots of kites, lots of sun (it’s even hotter than yesterday – 36°C plus) – but hardly any wind!  There’s not a windsurfer in sight, just surfers today.  Of course there’s always a little sea breeze, fine for the smaller and lighter kites but for the bigger ones, they can’t get them off the ground.  This is the best it’s gets…

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And the other thing that’s different from last year is that on June 2 this year we had a massive rain storm that washed away the boardwalk and the footbridge at Baishawan. Not yet repaired.  It also changed the course of the river flowing into the sea at that point. This is the scene now….

Our students have been volunteering all weekend, and some of our students have part-time jobs in the restaurants there.   It’s hot, hot, hot.

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But there’s some fun kites, a large rooster…..

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Cartoon characters, some struggling to get off the ground…

A Taiwan flag….

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And plenty more….

And when it gets too hot, there’s a museum about the Baishawan scenery and nature – (with air-conditioning!)…

I missed the opening ceremony with the mayor of New Taipei City this morning, plus lots of dancing and singing performances, plus there’s lots of DIY activities for making your own kite, and tonight there’ll be fireworks.

Y’know, all-in-all it’s a great event – ah, I just love kites!

Taiwan’s North Coast Kite Festival 2016 @ Baishawan Beach 白沙灣, Shimen District ~ YES!

Kites, kites and more kites ~ amazing kites, beautiful kites, fun kites, crazy kites, stunt kites, home-made kites, kites of every kind and from every where ~ and all on show at Taiwan’s annual North Coast Kite Festival, held ever year since the year 2000 at Baishawan Beach in Shimen, just near Taiwan’s northernmost point and lighthouse. Happens also to be only 5 minutes on a bus from where I live ~ YES!

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Last year, this last weekend of September was Mid-Autumn Moon Festival, and also a big typhoon was on its way, so although it was nice and windy and cool, it was grey, grey, grey! This year though ~ what a contrast!  Yesterday was all blue skies and blue seas to match. But another typhoon is on its way, so it was wildly windy, but oh so sunny.  Perfect!

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There were zillions of people everywhere ~ including the Mayor of New Taipei City, Eric Chu 朱立倫 who came for the opening ceremony at 2:00 pm along with lots of other VIPs. We had dancing and singing from the Beinan (Puyuma) 卑南族 Tribe, greetings from all the VIPs, and then a tour down to the beach where Mayor Chu launched a kite, and then walked around shaking hands, mine too.  As I was in hat and sunglasses, don’t suppose he’ll recognise me again ha ha!  Here he is shaking the hands of the people next to me…

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There were displays by all different kite teams from all over the world.  All amazing!

The kite display teams did a great show, each had their own kite, and somehow even in the huge winds, they would control them to fly in formation and do all sorts of shapes – and even form words.   And there were parachuting sweets that fell out of a bag sent up on one of the kites!

No time to attend the evening show of kites that were all lit up. And today the skies are grey, so the 400 photos I took yesterday will have to do!

Yep, I love kites ~ they are such fun!

North Coast Kite Festival 2015 @ Baishawan 白沙灣 !

It’s Mid-Autumn Moon Festival today, one of the most important festivals of the year, celebrated with barbecues and moon-gazing, visits home and moon cakes.  We even have a day off on Monday to make the most of it all.   Yippee!

IMG_6015It’s also the weekend of Taiwan’s annual North Coast Kite Festival at Baishawan Beach 白沙灣 just a mile or so up the road from here.  Must-go!

Ah yes, and to top it all, we have a typhoon on the way! Hopefully the last of the season. Typhoons mean rain and wind, and certainly no moon-gazing, but the wind is of course ideal for kites and the grey skies mean it’s a very pleasant temperature…

So this was the scene yesterday afternoon at Baishawan – millions of people and zillions of kites.  You can just spot the lighthouse at the northern tip of Taiwan in the far distance….

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A great atmosphere!  The beach was cordoned off, and the whole area dedicated to kite flying and kite-surfing displays.  Beautiful!  The photos are, well, a bit grey, but hey those kites were huge and pretty amazing!

I just love kites!