Benshan Fifth Tunnel

Chinkuashih Gold Ecological Park


Useful Information

Location: Rueifang Township, Taipei County, northern Taiwan.
Open: All year Tue-Fri 9:30-17, Sat, Sun, Hol 9:30-18.
Closed on Chinese New Year's Eve, Chinese New Year's Day, and Election days.
Last entry one hour before closing.
Guided Tours: Tue-Fri 10, 14, 15, Sat, Sun, Hol 10, 11, 14, 15.
[2008]
Fee: Park Entrance Ticket: Adults TWD 100, Concessions TWD 70, Seniors (65+) free, Children (-120cm) free, Disabled free.
Groups (20+): Adults TWD 70, Students TWD 50.
Mine Tour TWD 50.
[2008]
Classification:  Gold Mine
Light: electric.
Dimension: L=600km.
Guided tours: Self guided. Guided tours are available and free.
Photography:  
Accessibility:  
Bibliography:  
Address: Benshan Fifth Tunnel, Gold Ecological Park, 22450 No. B Jinguang Rd, Rueifang Township, Taipei County, Taiwan, Tel: +86-2-224962800, Fax: +86-2-224962820. Booking Tel: +86-2-224962860.
As far as we know this information was accurate when it was published (see years in brackets), but may have changed since then.
Please check rates and details directly with the companies in question if you need more recent info.
Last update:$Date: 2015/08/30 21:52:47 $

History

 
1890first gold discovered by railroad workers.
1987mining ended.
2002planning of the park started.
04-NOV-2004opened to the public.

Description

The Gold Ecological Park is located in the mountain town Jinguashi, in Reuifang township, Taipei County. The area has rich natural resources, especially gold, but also a historical and cultural heritage. The park was planned in order to protect the heritage and open it for the public. This is the first museum in Taiwan planned as an eco-museum.

The park includes four different exhibitions. The Museum of Gold presents the history of gold mining in the area. There is also an exhibion about the characteristics of gold, it's use, and one of the biggest gold nuggets on Earth, the 220kg gold ingot. The Environmental Education Center explains much about the nature of the area. The Crown Prince Chalet is a typical Japanese upper-class building constructed in 1922. And finally there is the Living Art Experience Workshop.

The first gold in the area was discovered in 1890 by a group of railway construction workers who were washing their rice bowls in the Keelung River. The gold mining started with the washing of river sediment, so-called placer mining. All along Keelung River gold washing started, but Jinguashih in Rueifang Township, Taipei County, turned out to be the major source of gold. Soon underground mining started and produced gold, copper and silver. The small mountain village Jinguashih grew with the rise of the mining industry and became a densely populated mining town. Between 1900 and 1970 more than two million tons of precious metals were mined. The result is a system of 600km of abandoned mine tunnels.

Japan occupied Taiwan between 1895 and 1945, and most of the mining happend in this decades. So the mined wealth was draining to Japan. After World War II Taiwan belonged to China, now the wealth was draining to China. However, old miners tell how they earned a lot of money for their work, while the cost of living was very low. Unfortunately they payed their wealth with bad working conditions like 40°C, long working days, and finally the so-called miners lung or silicosis, which is called black lung locally.

The Benshan Fifth Tunnel (also called Benshan 5th Tunnel or Benshan Tunnel No 5) is a renovated tunnel of the mine. There is an underground tour which shows the daily work of the miners and the technology they used. Wax figures demonstrate the mining process. This tour is not a regular part of the park and required additional tickets.


See also


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