Tour route on Canary Islands in memory of late Taiwanese writer

Taipei-The tourism promotion authorities of the Spain-ruled Canary Islands in the Atlantic Ocean have mapped out a tour route in memory of the late Taiwanese writer Sanmao (??), in the hope of attracting millions of Chinese Sanmao fans, according to a report from China.

Sanmao, a pseudonym, was born as Chen Mao-ping (???) in Chongqing, China in 1943. At the age of 6, her family fled the Communists, moving to Taiwan.

In 1976 her autobiographic book, "Stories of the Sahara," which portrays her experiences living in the then-Spanish-controlled Western Sahara with her Spanish husband Jose Maria Quero, was published in Taiwan. This established Sanmao as a travel writer in Chinese society with a unique voice and perspective.

The writer, described as being representative of the epitome of the cultivated and liberated woman, further captured the hearts of more fans with subsequent essays featuring her life with Jose -- the name by which Sanmao's fans know her husband in her books -- in the desert and later the Canary Islands in the 1970s.

The seemly idyllic life ended with the death of her beloved husband, a diver, who drowned off the Canarian island of La Palma in September 1979.

Sanmao committed suicide in Taipei in 1991.

Citing a member of the city administration committee on Gran Canaria, the Beijing-based Xinhua news agency reported Sunday that millions of Chinese readers know about the Canaries, a group of seven islands lying 100 kilometers west of Morocco at their closest point, through Sanmao's work.

The city government of Gran Canaria, where Sanmao and Jose resided from 1976 to 1979, studied Sanmao's writings carefully to track her life on the island in an effort to draw up a tour route that will allow travelers to savor her lifestyle, Xinhua quoted the official as reporting.

The tour route was unveiled during the 2018 International Tourism Trade Fair, held Jan. 17-21 in the Spanish capital of Madrid, according to the report.

Source: Focus Taiwan News Channel