Tannan Community: Modern graffiti, cultural revival
From the elementary school, walk uphill to view some of the graffiti art, as well as ceramic murals of Bunun legends and traditional rites and ceremonies. Continue upward until the road ends at the Tannan Catholic Church. This is the highest elevation church in Nantou County. Even before the building comes into view, a white statue of Jesus appears on a hillside, His arms spread outward, bringing to mind the Christ the Redeemer statute overlooking Rio de Janeiro. A glass wall allows natural light into the small sanctuary. On the other walls are paintings of the final events of Jesus' life including His crucifixion. His followers are shown in the traditional clothing of Taiwan's indigenous tribes, creating unique interpretations of these events.
Heading back, pass the elementary school and patrol station to reach "Hunter's Home". This is based on the increasingly popular concept of "hunters' schools" in indigenous communities, which provide information about and the chance to experience various aspects of traditional indigenous life. An exhibition room has been created by a local hunter filled with cultural artifacts and items such as tobacco pipes, hunting rifles, weaving loom, baskets, and hunting knives. In addition, there are rows of deer antlers and wild boar skulls. This hunter uses these items to describe traditional Bunun culture. Outside this exhibition room, he demonstrates how Bunun hunters set traps and snares. There is also an archery area where visitors can test their prowess with a bow and arrow.
Across from the exhibition room is a covered area with tables and benches. Here, lunch can be served with advance reservation. Local ingredients are used, such as cultivated pumpkin, sweet red pepper and bamboo shoots. Dishes can include steamed fish with magao (mountain peppercorn, a traditional indigenous spice), roast chicken, and stewed pork. Wild greens are also served and in this community is an area for wild greens education and collection.
All in all, Tannan is a peaceful, hillside community full of artistic and cultural surprises that can be easily combined with a visit to beautiful Sun Moon Lake.