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Discovering Back Cihu
The crescent shaped Back Cihu originated from a small creek in Mt. Baishi. Previously
known as "Long-Guo-Mai-Pi," it was an irrigation pond of the Taoyuan Irrigation
Association with a water area of 41,076 hectares of water area, 177,500 m3 of water
storage capacity, irrigation area of 117,29 hectares, irrigating the 3 main areas
At one time during the 1950s, Chiang Kai-shek was travelling to Baiji Tunnel and
when his motorcade was unable to move forward, Chiang changed cars and rode on a
sedan and then arrived in Cihu. This area made a deep impression on him, because
it resembled his hometown in Fenghua County, Zhejiang Province. In 1955, the Lin
Ben-Yuan family of Banciao donated 19 hectares of the surrounding Cihu area to be
built as a hotel. The "Cave Hotel" was completed in June 13, 1959, and was later
renamed to "Cihu Hotel" in Oct. 1962.
In 1962, in accordance to the Office of the President's evacuation plan, Chiang
Kai-shek instructed to buy land, thus an air-raid shelter was built in the Back
Cihu area. Official residences and office premises to the Presidential Secretary-General,
the army chief, Deputy Secretary-General, etc. were also constructed. A shrine also
built in Cihu for Chiang Kai-shek when he passed away in April 5, 1975, which was
renamed the "Cihu Mausoleum." The Cihu Mausoleum Management Office was established,
responsible for tasks such as reception services. In November 2007, Taoyuan County
Government took over management of said office.
From Intense Military Efforts to the End of Martial Law
1961 coincided with Communist China's failure to implement the Great Leap Forward
movement, the Vietnam War, and the threat that came from China's successful nuclear
bomb test, Chiang Kai-shek thus felt the need to start a counter-offensive. So in
April 1961, the military was instructed to build a "Guoguang Operations Room" in
Sanshia, Taipei County, mobilizing 207 elites to secretly develop a military counterattack
against the mainland, called the "Guoguang Plans", making Back Cihu a high-level
military control zone.
In the 1960s, Communist China were actively developing the atomic bomb (China's first successful atomic bomb test was conducted on Oct. 16, 1964), this made Chiang Kai-shek very uneasy, so he ordered the government to actively carry out air defense exercises.
Many large-scale air-raid shelters were also constructed, and the Back Cihu air-raid
shelter was used as war-time command post. Construction of the air-raid shelter
was completed in August 1963, with a total distance of about 150 meters, assuming
an F-shape, with a bathroom, kitchen, generator room, communications equipment,
command post and so on. The two main entrances were built with three heavy explosion-proof
steel doors, to resist artillery attacks, and in the event of war could be an independent
operation and command post.
Back Cihu has a total of 5 official residences. Aside from No. 3, which was finished
at 1969 because of a landslide, the remaining four residences were completed in
1963 to 1964. The Bank of Taiwan was responsible for the construction of residences
1 & 3, and the Office of the President was in charge of the others. The residences
were respectively used as a guest house, and also as the official premises of the
Secretary-General, the Deputy Secretary-General, the army chief, and the evacuation
office. However, since the war has not yet occurred, with the exception of No. 2
being used as staff quarters for management, and the 3rd used as a Military Police
post, the rest has not been used.
Back Cihu has no military use anymore, because of the Taoyuan County government's
efforts to open the area to the public. In November 2007, control formally shifted
to the Taoyuan County Government, and plans began for the renovation and reopening
of the area. Back Cihu, for years, was a military control zone, free from outside
interference, thus the original integrity of the forest and the natural ecological
environment needs to be retained, giving the public access to another recreational
For Inquiries, contact the Taoyuan County Scenic Area Administration Office:
To get there, take NationalFreeway 3. After arriving at the Daxi Interchange, change
to Taiwan Provincial Highway 3, connect to Taiwan Provincial Highway 4, go straight,
and make a left turn when arriving at Puwei by following the road signs. Then connect
with Taiwan Provincial Highway 7, go straight to Cihu Parking Lot, and walk to reach