As I was driving around the southern part of the island I stumbled into ‘little Taiwan’, an eco park that is a joint effort between Taiwan and St. Kitts & Nevis. I was told Taiwan requires young men to put in a year of military service – and for those that don’t serve in the military, a volunteer position satisfies this requirement.
I was met at the entrance by such an individual who was spending his year of service on St. Kitts. Jimmy Wu is an enthusiastic young man with a noticeable passion for this property despite the fact he had only been there a month prior to my arrival. Normally local St. Kittians give tours but Jimmy was quite happy to show me around.
Forty acres have been set aside – planted to a wide variety of tropical fruit trees and other vegetables.
Fruit from the trees are sold to locals. The Taiwanese initially planted a number of fruit trees hoping to sell fruits from every variety grown on the property. As it turns out, only certain varieties are in demand. The locals love dragon fruit and the farm is unable to keep up with demand. Guavas are also highly coveted.
However when we reached the starfruit (carambola) section of the farm we could see these trees were dripping with over ripe fruit. Unfortunately the Taiwanese found out there is little or no demand for starfruit on the island (although we did enjoy a starfruit drink at the nearby Kittitian Hill Resort).
The main house features a number of Taiwanese pieces of art and tourist collectibles. You can even order a milk (bubble) tea here (just like in Taiwan!). The tiny circles in this drink have a texture of fish eggs perhaps, but when they burst in your mouth they release a quick spark of flavor and sugar.
A maze on site appropriately is planted in the geographical shapes of both Taiwan and St. Kitts.