Lonely Planet Writer

This ordinary commuter bus has been turned into a beautiful 'forest' in Taiwan

Public transport just got a whole lot more delightful in Taiwan, with the introduction of a ‘forest bus’ filled with greenery and flowers. The vehicle is currently travelling around Taipei, and it gives it passengers a soft ride on its moss-covered seats, while they can admire the lush plants decorating the interior.

Inside the "forest bus" in Taipei. Image: Sam Yeh/AFP/Getty Images
Inside the “forest bus” in Taipei. Image: Sam Yeh/AFP/Getty Images

The ‘forest bus’ offers a fragrant leafy ride for passengers more used to crammed public transport in Taiwan’s capital. It travels through an area in Taipei that is popular with tourists and passes by major museums, which means that visitors to the city may get to enjoy the experience for themselves.

Gardens on buses were also introduced in Madrid last year, and saw their rooftops being filled with greenery in a measure designed to improve the city. While this project in Taiwan is a temporary one, residents are hoping it will become a permanent fixture.

Inside the "forest bus" in Taipei. Image: Sam Yeh/AFP/Getty Images
Inside the “forest bus” in Taipei. Image: Sam Yeh/AFP/Getty Images

A local florist, Alfie Lin, designed the temporary project, and he transformed a standard commuter into a haven of moss, orchids, and ginger lilies, He told Agence France-Presse that he hopes the public will feel that it’s a beautiful and interesting experience. “They can smell the scent of summer on the bus and see the vibrant green plants to feel messages from nature,” he explained.

Aside from being pretty to look at and beautifully scented, the bus also provides an oxygen-filled respite to the high levels of pollution that the city has experienced since the beginning of the year.