Through the “Youth Trekker’s Wanted” campaign, the National Youth Commission (NYC) has over the past three years awarded travel funds to nearly 50 youths from around the world to help them achieve their travel dreams in Taiwan. NYC is again welcoming international youth to Taiwan for the 4th “Youth Trekker’s Wanted Campaign”. Applications must be submitted by December 11th, 2011. We encourage all international youths aged 18~30 (between Jan 1st, 1981 ~ Dec 31, 1993) who love to travel and share their travel experiences to submit a Taiwan itinerary for consideration. Submitted itineraries must be 10 days or longer and center on a theme chosen by the applicant. Once completed, itineraries must be uploaded to the activity’s official website. We will award the best 20 entrants with US$2,000 ~ US$3,000, good toward making your Taiwan dream trip come true!
Three Japanese were among the 3rd Youth Trekkers Wanted campaign finalists.
Masaharu Okawara is an avid athlete who holds several professional licenses. A proficient badminton player, he had already visited Taiwan as both a World Morning Cup Badminton Championship participant and a professional consultant to the Taipei International Cycle Show. This time, Masaharu landed in Taiwan with his 15kg backpack ready to cycle around the island in an 11-day “road warrior” adventure. Not knowing Chinese, he had no trouble melting away language barriers … making fast friendships with his smile and a badminton racket that was always ready for a friendly game.
Yukari Yoshikawa had visited Taiwan seven times and considered the island her second home. She designed her winning trek itinerary as a way to plumb Taiwan’s enticing folk traditions. Yukari joined in Taipei Baoan Temple’s cultural festival and felt touched by the deep faith and sense of peace found amongst the sea of worshippers. Being her first experience with Taiwan’s folk religion, she had no idea where to start. Fortunately, helpful locals assisted her journey and she successfully completed a pilgrimage to ten different religious sites – an experience that left her both spiritually at peace and happy with her accomplishment. Her visit to the Wulai Atayal Museum inspired interest in the colorful weaving traditions of Taiwan’s Malayo-Polynesian cultures. Yukari also included remote Orchid Island on her trek itinerary where she experienced the life of local Dawu natives and sampled the small island’s unique cuisine centered on locally harvested poi and flying fish.
Haiku poetess Ayaka Murakami framed her Taiwan trek around her poetic whims. Inspired by Taiwan’s cultural verve, she created a stream of new poems. Ayaka gave each stop a specific poetic theme. Taipei’s haiku theme, for example was the food on offer in city night markets; so her itinerary was replete with wanderings through Shilin, Huaxi Street, Ningxia Street and other hot night market venues. At the encouragement of friends, Ayaka also sat for a traditional “face threading” – experiencing first hand the unique pains of traditional beauty. A trip to one of the city’s many foot massage parlors gleaned unexpectedly fruitful results – easing a chronic foot pain that helped Ayaka complete her Taiwan trek in comfort.
Rich culture … Lovely scenery … Friendly people. Would you like a grand tour of Taiwan? Enjoy your Taiwan holiday in your own creative way!
Please visit our official activity website: http://youthtravel.tw/youthtrekker for more details.