We all know that Yilan is famous for their green onion pancake (蔥油餅 – it’s so good it deserves a trip on its own) but do you know that Yilan is also very popular among Taiwanese for their interesting factory tours? Plus, most factory tours offers free admission so imagine the amount of money you would be saving! If you have young kids tagging along, you’ll happy to know that there are plenty of activities to keep them occupied. 😉
Quite importantly – Yilan is just an hour’s ride away from Taipei so if you have 1 to 2 days to spare, why not go somewhere new?
#1. Tiger Brand Rice Noodle Factory
This was one of my favorite factory tours because (1) the free-flow beehoon was so good (my brother had 3 bowls) and (2) you can see that they spent a lot of effort in doing up the musuem / factory to showcase its history and the production process. The museum was done up in 1960s style and you’ll get to see/touch the machinery used in the past – it was really educational and I believe families with young kids would appreciate the educational aspect of the tour.
Admission is not free but it’s really affordable. TWD 200 for adults (approx SGD 8) and TWD 100 for kids under 12 and senior citizens above 65. Included in the admission ticket is a TWD 100 voucher which you can use to purchase any products and a complimentary gift (which was a pack of tong fen in our case).
Address: No. 5, Lixing 3rd Road, Wujie Township, Yilan County, Taiwan 268
Operating hours: 9.30am – 4.30pm daily
#2. Kavalan Distillery
A must-go especially if you have someone who loves Whisky in your group! There’s lots to do so if you are a huge fan of Whisky (and Kavalan is a really good brand!), you might opt to reserve half a day here for the plant/distillery tour, whisky tasting, DIY blending, etc. You may not believe it but the tour is free. Basic whisky tasting is free but if you top up a little more, you can try a couple of the award-winning Solist series and Premium single cask Sherry series.
Address: No. 326, Section 2, Yuanshan Road, Yuanshan Township, Yilan County, Taiwan 264
Operating hours: 9am – 6pm daily
#3. Yilan Ox Tongue Biscuit Factory
I didn’t expect much when my driver said we are going to a biscuit factory because .. biscuits? We went anyway and boy was I glad that we went with our driver’s recommendations! Although this factory is well-known for their ox tongue biscuit (basically shaped like ox tongue), their other traditional pastries are equally amazing! I found myself going back to the same corner for more samples and ultimately we all succumbed to at least 3 boxes of pastries each.
If you are a fan of 太陽餅, I’m 99% sure you’ll love this factory. The tour is free and you can also top up a little for their DIY class to bring out the baker in you.
Address: No. 369, Haishan W. Rd., Su’ao Township, Taiwan
Operating hours: 8.30am – 6pm daily
#4. Lucky Art Crayon Factory
The Lucky Art Crayon Factory is a god-sent for young families because there’s a whole lineup of activities for your little ones and you can watch them unleash their creativity from one station to the other! From DIY crayon marker class to scribbling the different crayons on the white/blackboards, your kids may not want to leave this place! Admission costs TWD 200 (approx SGD 8) and TWD 100 is redeemable for their products.
Address: No. 7, Dexing 6th Rd., Su’ao Township, Taiwan
Operating hours: 8.30am – 5pm daily
Assuming that you spend about 1-2 hours at each factory visit, you should be able to cover 3 factories in one day – which is perfect for a day trip from Taipei! But if you have never been to Yilan, we highly recommend that you stay one night in Yilan to explore the Lanyang Museum and spend some time at the hot springs. Sometimes all we need is a break from the hustle and bustle of the busy cities, isn’t it? 🙂