A Taiwanese Grandpa Turned His Village Into Instagrammers’ Dream and Saved It From Demolition
Imagine living a quiet life for almost 40 years, when suddenly, the government threatens to destroy your home. You can choose to hold onto your memories and move on, you can protest, or you can do nothing. Well, one grandpa from Taiwan picked up a paintbrush and turned his village into a work of art, and now people around the world come here to pay him a visit.
We at Bright Side were fascinated by the story of this brave and creative senior, and we want to share it with you.
Meet Huang Yung-fu and the Nantun village.
The small village of the Nantun District in Taiwan was on its last leg but still harbored its 11 dwellers. And among them, was then-86-year-old Huang Yung-fu. “When I came here, the village had 1,200 households and we’d all sit and talk like one big family,” Huang recalled. But things changed.
About 10 years ago, the Taiwanese government decided to demolish the village and build an apartment complex in its place, offering the residents compensation to move elsewhere. “Everyone moved away or passed away and I became lonely,” the man explained. Huang refused to leave his home only to watch it fall to the ground. That’s when he started to paint.
Huang was never a professional artist, just someone who loved to draw — a skill he was taught by his father.
First, he painted a bird on the wall of his house. From there, he continued adding animals, birds, flowers, and people, soon moving onto the other buildings. He kept drawing until every inch of the village was covered with the brightest paint and the most fantastical designs.
Good fortune smiled upon Nantun, as local university students stumbled upon the village. After hearing Huang’s story, they promised to help. A few photos of drawings and a fundraising campaign with a petition to save the village had begun.
The news went viral and “Rainbow Village” was born.
The bright, colorful, and extraordinary creative artwork drew interest and visitors. After the story caught the public eye, the Taiwanese government decided to revoke the demolition order and instead, keep the village as a tourist attraction and a place of cultural heritage. Best of all, Huang got to keep his home.
2 million people come to visit Rainbow Village every year.
Rainbow Village has become one of the most popular tourist destinations, and it’s an Instagrammer’s dream. It is lovingly maintained by Huang himself, who is the lifeblood behind the scenes, always checking on the paintings and adding new ones. Even though it requires a lot of energy and hard work, Huang boasts he will keep painting, even when he’s over 100 years old.
The village is more of a fairy tale than a real-life town.
Huang is now fondly referred to as the “Rainbow Grandpa.”
Would you like to visit the Rainbow Village? What are your favorite unique places around the world?