No.750, Sec. 3, Qingyun Rd., Toucheng Township, Yilan County 261, Taiwan (R.O.C.)
Many foreign tourists who go to Wushi Harbor (烏石港) to surf will be momentarily shocked by the huge concrete building that looks as though it has collapsed into a lake as a result of an earthquake. But this is actually Lanyang Museum, which had been planned for many decades before finally being built. It is designed by architect Kris Yao, whose other representative works are the China Steel Corporation Headquarters, the Southern Branch of National Palace Museum and several unique high-speed rail stations. In the entrance to Lanyang Museum, the main building looks like a cuesta emerging from the surface of the lake. Cuesta is the outcome of colliding crustal plates and this sort of special landscape is common in north-east Taiwan.
Entering the hall inside, guests are amazed by the glass curtain and dolphins flying in the sky. Natural light has replaced the fluorescent lamps generally used in such buildings. A tilted array of tiles resemble the texture of terrain cuesta, looking just like crustal plates formed over hundreds of thousands years. Taking the elevator to the top, visitors are greeted by wax figures of aboriginal people dressed in traditional costumes. In the pavilion area, visitors are met with common trees and ecology of the Yilan area.
Lanyang Plain has nurtured a wide range of rice paddies and farmers who live there. Being close to the Pacific Ocean means there are many fishermen who need to jump on boats to catch fish in the middle of the ocean. People in Yilan depend on both the land and ocean, so they worship the sky and pray for a better harvest. Many folk activities in Yilan are unique and especially valued, such as “Qiang-Gu” (搶孤). Rural life and modern changes are depicted in forms of words or models at Lanyang Museum. This museum is more an interesting record of local life than it is a monotonous display of “stuff”. It doesn’t matter whether you are coming here just to hide from the rain or intending to see the building and exhibition, this is the attraction site that you definitely have to visit while you are in Yilan.