Attraction Highlights －The biggest in Taiwan! 370 hectares of intact algal reef landform. －A gem of the time, a masterpiece that took thousands of years to finish. －The marine life museum in Northern Taiwan with abundant species.
What is "time"? Let the Guanxin Algal Reefs, the biggest and most complete algal reefs in Taiwan, tell you. You'll be shocked by the amazing ecosystem that has taken thousands of years to grow and become conscious of the insignificance of human existence. Covering an area of about 370 hectares, the Guanxin Algal Reefs are different from coral reefs formed by a multitude of marine animals. Algal reefs are organic rocky structures formed by crustose coralline algae through the processes of slow accumulation and deposition of calcium carbonate, and it takes about 10 years to form a one-centimeter-high reef. Algal reefs were found in Dayuan, Guanying and Xinwu. However, due to the industrial growth along the coastline, the algal reef shoreline has been reduced from 27 kilometers to 5 kilometers only. To retain the natural treasure that have been in existence for over 4,000 years, the "Guanxin Algal Reefs Ecosystem Wildlife Refuge" was established in 2014 as a wall-less classroom. Every year, thousands of people participate in the walk "Saving Taoyuan's Algal Reefs" along the shoreline, calling attention to the need for algal reef conservation.
Located on the coastline starting from Hsiaofanli Creek in Guanyin District and ending at the mouth of Houhu Creek in Xinwu District, the Guanxin Algal Reefs, besides the precious landscape, are rich in biodiversity. Surveys have shown that 10 species of algae and 129 kinds of animals have been discovered in the area and its animal density is five times more than Gaomei Wetlands in Taichung City and eight times more than Xiangshan Wetlands in Hsinchu City. Abundant ecological resources have made it an outdoor marine ecological museum in northern Taiwan. The refuge is divided into three zones: core zone, buffer zone, and sustainable zone. Whenever the reefs become exposed during ebb tide, plants and animals such as algae, fish, crustacean and mollusk, are easily visible in the intertidal zone. Moreover, visitors can walk along the wooden trail to the Mangrove Education Park to observe mudskipper and fiddler crabs at a close distance. We also recommend three nearby ecotourism attractions along the coast, including Xinwu Century-old Stone Weirs, Guanyin Caota Sand Dunes and Xucuogang Wetland. Together with the Guanxin Algal Reefs Ecosystem Wildlife Refuge, the four ecological scenic spots of Taoyuan are definitely worth visiting!
■Please notice that the area is regulated by the zoning ordinance. The core zone is off-limits. South and north buffer zones allow a maximum of 200 visitors per day, respectively. (Applications for access permits are accepted online.) The sustainable zone is open to the public and no application is required. ■The area is open from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. All visitors must leave by 5 p.m. ■For tide prediction information, please visit the Central Weather Bureau website. ■Please do NOT walk upon or stand on the reef and algae.