Running Vacation with “Sea-Crossing + Island Hopping + Lobsters” Race the Wind at the 2022 Gaillardia Island Penghu Cross-Sea Marathon!
Now that epidemic prevention restrictions are being progressively lifted around Taiwan, a range of domestic travel stimulus plans to encourage members of the public to travel once the COVID-19 situation improves. The unique natural resources and rich cultural heritage of Penghu have made the offshore island one of the top destinations for domestic tourism in the post-COVID era. The Gaillardia Island Penghu Cross-Sea Marathon is now entering its fifth year and will kick off with much fanfare on November 6, 2022 (Sunday). The event consists of a variety of themed fun runs including holiday style, food festival, creative spark, environmental protection, and crazy wind party. The most picturesque bay-side race track on Penghu, creative cheerleading teams, and gourmet supply stations join the local community. Parties and other activities all come together to transform the island into a symbol for sports, vacation and running, as well as foster a romantic atmosphere.
The promotional press conference for the event was hosted Director Hsu Tzung-min (許宗民) from the Penghu National Scenic Area Administration at the Visitor Center of the Tourism Bureau, Ministry of Transportation Communications at 6PM on June 15. Guests on the day included Tsai Chi-hsien (蔡淇賢) (Staff Officer, Penghu County Government), Chen Ren-he (陳仁和) (Executive Director, Penghu Tourism Association, Lu Chia-chin (呂桂琴) (Section Chief, UNI Air), Nadia Huang (黃尤欗) (PR Manager, Mandarin Airlines), and Wu Chien-hsing (吳建興) (Assistant Vice President, EverFun Holiday). Windy Duan, event ambassador and well-known host of travel programs, as well as Kerstin Chuan, the popular news presenter, were also invited to take to the stage and help promote the “2022 Gaillardia Island Penghu Cross-Sea Marathon.” The theme of “#誰與爭風” was chosen for this year’s competition and runners are invited to come challenge their own personal limits!
According to Penghu-NSA, the “2022 Gaillardia Island Penghu Cross-Sea Marathon” will not only offer an in-depth experience of the unique local landscape, people and culture through the competition. A number of “gourmet supply stations” based on local delicacies have also been set up, including lobsters straight off the boat, shrimp balls, squids, mackerel, clove-fish, giant grouper seafood congee, brown sugar cake, white gourd cake, and cactus juice. These will make runners wish that the run never ends. The cheerleading teams along the route will also communicate the enthusiasm of the local people to every runner. What will set the marathon apart from other road runs is the extra challenge offered by the powerful northeast monsoon winds. In keeping with the marathon’s theme of “Race the Wind” this year, the Penghu Kite Association has been invited to fly a variety of specialty kites along the route and at the finish line to cheer the runners on and serve as another highlight of the event. Runners will be able to experience a very different kind of vacation running atmosphere.
The “2022 Gaillardia Island Penghu Cross-Sea Marathon” is an IAAF/AIMS accredited event and the only resort-style running vacation competition with “Sea-Crossing + Island Hopping.” The track is a classic marathon that runs from A to B with no doubling back, no loops, and no repeat of the scenery along the way. The route incorporates unique offshore island elements of Penghu and the main route passes by many famous local sights including Yuwengdao Lighthouse, Niuxin Bay, and Daguoye Columnar Basalt. It then crosses over the Penghu Great Bridge to reach the Tongliang Great Banyan Tree Activity Center. Full-marathon runners get to run through the Xu Painted Village to reach the 300 year-old Guanyin Pavilion.
As an incentive to bold road running enthusiasts, this year’s competition will provide a rich selection of giveaways worth up to NT$4,000. To promote the philosophy of sustainability and environmental protection, runners taking part in the full marathon also receive a distinctive caped bath towel. Courageous runners from all around Taiwan can therefore expect to return home loaded with goodies. The creative costume race also makes a return this year. Wear a costume on the theme of “Penghu Style” and have your photo taken in front of the designated backdrop on the day. Next, upload the photo to the organizer's e-mail. All photos will then be published on the “Gaillardia Island Penghu Cross-Sea Marathon” Facebook fan page. The top 5 photos, according to online voting, will receive “Exquisite Gift x 1.” After the race, the venue will host a variety of special activities such as the Gaillardia Market. There will even be a live lucky draw where the winner gets to take the grand prize of a lobster home with them. We hope that runners and their families from all around Taiwan can go “Sea-crossing + Island hopping” for themselves and experience the beauty of Penghu in the fall and winter.
For more information about the “2022 Gaillardia Island Penghu Cross-Sea Marathon” and to register, visit the event website