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Thousands get a taste of Asian cultures in Taipei

2012/11/26 20:18:00

Taipei, Nov. 25 (CNA) Taiwan's first-ever Asian culture day, which featured the customs and food of different countries in Asia, drew thousands of people from home and abroad Sunday.

On the first sunny day in Taipei for nearly a week, several Asian dance groups performed in their traditional costumes at the event at Huashan 1914 Creative Park.

The groups of child and adult dancers and drummers from Vietnam, India, Indonesia, Japan, South Korea and the Philippines in colorful, glittering costumes were surrounded by a big crowd of spectators.

One of the main highlights was a world-famous comic martial arts performance "JUMP" from South Korea, which involves martial arts, acrobatics and dance moves in a funny plot. The 20-minute show won big rounds of applause from the audience.

Another feature of the two-day event that kicked off Saturday was a series of booths set up by the participating countries -- Brunei, India, Indonesia, Japan, Malaysia, South Korea, Singapore, Thailand, Vietnam and the Philippines -- to display their specialties.

For example, the Thai booth had on display an array of melons with delicate flower carvings that caught the attention of many visitors.

Many of the booths handed out samples of their food specialties, such as durian puffs, Filipino milk candies and Korean kimchi. Some of the participating countries also showcased their traditional clothes and musical instruments.

Jason Wang of Taiwan, 35, said the event offered "a great opportunity to get up close and personal with different cultures in Asia."He said the most eye-catching item for him was a musical instrument made from bamboo, which was on display at the Indonesian booth.

Wang said he hopes the organizers -- the Ministry of Foreign Affairs -- will expand the scale of the event in the future to help give the Taiwan public a broader understanding of other cultures.

At a separate event at the same venue, a pavilion was set up by Japan's Okinawa Prefecture government to promote its tourism.

Visitors to the pavilion had a chance to see a seven-minute video of Okinawa's landscape, its fishermen's lives and tug-of-war event that usually draws the participation of hundreds of thousands of people.

Many visitors to the pavilion were seen sampling Okinawan food and drinks and posing for photos in front of huge posters of the popular tourist destination.

Since it opened on Friday, the pavilion has attracted more than 2,000 visitors seeking to learn more about Okinawa, according to the organizers. (By Alex Jiang and Elaine Hou)ENDITEM/ pc