Far East Adventure Travel

Audio Podcasts

I’m John Saboe, your host and publisher of Far East Adventure Travel and I’m excited to be bringing you many years of podcasts featuring my favourite places in the world. Podcasts are available on iTunes.

Far East Adventure Travel

Video Podcasts

Far East Adventure Travel Video podcast offers images, video and stories of the amazing experiences to be enjoyed in Asia and I hope they'll inspire you to visit some of my favourite places on the planet.

Far East Adventure Travel

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Traveling to the far east? Let Far East Adventure Travel inspire you with images, video, stories and travel advice for Asia and beyond.

Japan Blog Posts

World’s Greatest Fish Auction-Tsukiji Fish Market-Tokyo, Japan
Tsukiji Market-Tokyo, Japan. Home to the world famous tuna auction where wholesalers bid on blue fin tuna worth tens of[...]
Japanese Toilets-The Complete Travel Experience
Japan’s knack for innovation is unprecedented in all areas throughout the world but especially when it comes to technology. This[...]
Sakura Season In Japan-Celebrating Cherry Blossoms Tokyo Style
The Japanese call them Sakura, cherry blossoms and it’s one of the most celebrated events of the year when they[...]

Nepal Blog Posts

On The Road-Kathmandu, Nepal-Tihar-The Festival of Lights
Tihar is one of my favorite festivals to see in Nepal. Each day of the festival either an animal, a[...]
Everest Base Camp-Tips For Your Dream Trek
Hello, Namaste and welcome to another episode of Far East Adventure Travel-The Podcast-audio only edition brought to you by Far[...]
Adventures From The Upper Mustang, Nepal – Podcast
Hello, Namaste and welcome to Far East Adventure Travel The Podcast, brought to you by Far East Adventure Travel Magazine-now[...]

Cambodia Blog Posts

Siem Reap-Angkor Wat Travel Advice Video Series – Far East Adventure Travel
This series of talks will discuss the town of Siem Reap, Cambodia and it's close by world-famous Angkor Wat ruins.[...]
Phnom Penh, Cambodia-Tears And Joy-“Pearl Of Asia”
Phnom Penh has been the capital of Cambodia since French colonization. It is the country’s largest city with a population[...]

Taiwan Blog Posts

Tainan, Taiwan-Heritage, History And Delicious Snacks!
Tainan, Taiwan. It’s sometimes referred to as the capital city, it was the capital of the country for 200 years.[...]
River Tracing – A Far East Only Adventure
I'm hooked on the latest adventure sport I tried recently in Taiwan. River tracing. A combination of hiking, rock climbing,[...]
Mt. Dawu North Highest Point In Southern Taiwan
A message from my friend Yilang. Do you want to go with us to climb Mt. Dawu North in Southern[...]

India Blog Posts

Cochin-Kerala, India-Global Masala Mix Of Cultures
Cochin, or Kochi is the second largest Westcoast Indian city after Mumbai with a total population of just over 2[...]
The Taj Mahal’s Little Sister – Agra Fort
This of course is the most visited site in Agra. Seeing the Taj Mahal should be your main objective on[...]
New Market – Kolkata’s Crowded And Chaotic Shopping Experience
Crowded, Chaotic-New Market The stores, stalls, vendors, and food are so plentiful in the New Market shopping area of Kolkata[...]

A Pyrotechnic War Zone

The Beehive Fireworks Festival Yanshui, Taiwan

February 17, 2014 By John Saboe

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I had heard about the Beehive Fireworks Festival from some of my Taiwanese friends. It is one of the biggest events on the island that helps bring to an end The Lunar New Year festivities. The other one is the world famous Sky Lantern Festival held in Pingxi, Northern Taiwan. Having seen both now I would describe them as the complete polar opposites of each other. The Sky Lantern Festival, although crowded, is a ballet in the sky. The sky lanterns glowing and dancing as they fly away with the dreams of the releasers written on their four sides.

The Beehive Fireworks Festival held in Yanshui, Taiwan could be described as a war zone with no enemy. Hundreds of thousands, maybe even millions of firecrackers and or bottle rockets lit simultaneously. It’s called the “beehive” because when the firecrackers(rockets) are lit they stream out like bees leaving their hive. Wildly flying off in all directions. Spectators geared up with motorbike helmets, towels draped over the necks and heavy coats. Some wearing an extra pair of pants. It’s dangerous in the war zone of firecrackers.

I’m not exaggerating. I ignored advice from my friends and decided not to gear up. I thought if I was far enough away from the “beehive” I wouldn’t need any protection. I was lucky. That mistake could have cost me an eye, ear, or possibly even a finger. I was, I thought, far enough away from the action. But the force of the blast is so powerful firecrackers fly for hundreds of meters. I was in the street when the center of the beehive was about 200 meters away. Once I saw the firecrackers flying and heard them whizzing past me I ran for shelter.

I met a teacher from Tainan earlier in the evening who was showing me around the area. He was supposed to wait for me in this shelter. He too had no protection. But he was nowhere to be found. Missing in action. I think he was really scared. I hardly blame him. He took off never to be found.

The festival started in 1885. According to the official website for the event there was a cholera epidemic sweeping through Yanshui with little in the way of medicine to help. Locals prayed to the god of war Gaun Di for assistance. With the Gods help and the faithful lighting firecrackers throughout the streets the plague was wiped out overnight. The ritual has taken place ever since.

The video I hope captures some of the spirit of the evening. I know it helps me recall some pretty scary moments. If you see me there next year I’ll be the one dressed as a medieval knight.

Far East Adventure Travel

A stop on the rugged north coast of Taiwan while cycling the island. Taiwan is a cycling paradise!

Reviews

John's a former radio announcer so the audio on these is great - smooth pipes! The content is great if you're into traveling to exotic places, exploring other cultures, delving into your spiritual side and getting far off the beaten track. John climbs mountains, treks to far out places, explores rat palaces, caves, monkeys, gibbons, tigers, camel safaris and disappearing cultures. Highly recommended!

- Mark Bossert

Far East Adventure Travel

John's podcasts are both fascinating and entertaining. Having travelled to India, Nepal, Laos, Cambodia, Vietnam, Japan and Taiwan amongst others, his insights are based on first hand personal experience. I would advise anyone travelling to the far east to check these out first.

- Jergig

Far East Adventure Travel