|Salt flats of central west coast of Taiwan.|
We woke up on Wednesday morning and the sun was shining. It was a perfect day to go to the coast and see the salt flats. We drove on a beautifully modern “expressway” where we could look out over miles of dammed up land that had been salt fields for centuries until the 1970’s when they began to process salt through electrodialysis. We followed the map through small fishing villages starting at Dongshih and drove south through Budai and Beimen.
|Salt mountain in Budai just south of Dongshih.|
Then in the middle of nowhere there was a sign for the salt museum. We turned into a large parking lot with very few cars that was in front of a building in the shape of two pyramids. This was the Taiwan Salt Museum built to resemble the salt “mountains” of the past.
Inside the museum, we learned all about the process of solar drying (evaporation) seawater to extract the salt to be useable for three purposes: human consumption, industrial use and animal husbandry. It was labor intensive! First, the floor of the slat needed to be lined. There were two kinds of salt beds…mud floor and tile floor. The Japanese invented the tile floor where the bottom of the bed was lined with pottery shards and/ or tiles. These were laid by hand. And there were miles of them!
The sun shone the entire day! The air was warm, but not hot. It was an utterly delightful day!