Driving Directions Taiwan
TAIWAN was formerly known to the West by its Portuguese name of Formosa, “Beautiful Island.” It is the largest of a group of islands located in the Pacific Ocean about 161-kilometers or 100 miles off the southeast coast of mainland China, across the Taiwan Strait.
Taiwan’s independence, resulting from the island’s seizure by nationalists in 1949, is not entirely accepted internationally, and China lays claim to the territory. An additional 78 islands make up Taiwan province, including those called the Pescadores (“Fishermen’s Islands”) by the Portuguese but known as Penghu to the Chinese. Other islands, such as Quemoy (Jinmen) and Maju, lie closer to the coast of the mainland.