Top 5 beautiful places to explore in Taiwan

Top 5 beautiful places to explore in Taiwan
Teapot Mountain. [email protected]

By Jules Tan

Did you know that two-thirds of Taiwan is blanketed by forest landscapes? That makes Taiwan a great choice for outdoor exploration. It has hundreds of well-maintained natural trails for hiking, mountain streams for river tracking, and over 1700 campgrounds available for camping.

If you are looking for an amazing retreat, there are many hot springs scattered all over the island.

The best weather to go outdoors is from September to December and March to May. This is when the weather is pleasant and with lesser crowds as it is not the peak of the tourist season.

Taiwan is still an undiscovered gem in terms of travel. If you are looking for your next travel destination, I would recommend these top 5 beautiful places to explore in Taiwan.

Yinhedong

Silver Stream Cave
Silver Stream Cave. [email protected]_stagram1337

 

Also known as “Silver Stream Cave”, this hidden treasure is conveniently located not far from Taipei City.

It starts with a hike through the forest with trail markings leading up to the caves. You may find certain sections of the stairs a little steep. You will then arrive at an unusual ancient temple, embedded into the stone right above your head behind a gorgeous waterfall curtain.

Just like a movie set, be amazed by the stunning views of the waterfalls flowing out from the cracks of the cave. If you are lucky, you might even catch the sight of a rainbow above the waterfall.

It was said that the cave used to be a hideout for a guerrilla who famously led a rebellion in the early years of the Japanese colonial era.

You will see a series of small chambers built against the natural rock of the cave, while passing the temple. The trail continues under the waterfall to the edge of a sheer cliff, and extends until Maokong Gondola station. Many would opt to then take the gondola back down.

As you walk, you get a commanding view over the surrounding tea plantations of Maokong. If you are looking for something off the beaten trail, Yinhedong is a great place for a day visit while you explore in Taiwan. It is recommended that you pack a picnic lunch before you tackle the climb.

 

 

Wulai

Wulai Hotsprings - Explore in Taiwan
Wulai_Hotsprings. [email protected]_steklov_photography

 

This charming mountainous countryside is an hour’s drive from Taipei City, making it an awesome escape from the capital. Wulai is famous for its trail hiking, glowing blue azure hot springs, and beautiful waterfalls. It is home to the third-largest aboriginal group in Taiwan, the Atayal tribe.

“Wulai” literally means hot springs in the Atayal tribal language. The hot springs here contain pH-neutral sodium bicarbonate water, which is great for skin hydration. You can see the locals have arranged little pools with large stones at the side of the river. Natural cool water from the river is then channeled to these little pools to cater for different bathing temperatures.

After a while, the geothermal earth will heat up your pool, sometimes even to a boil if you’re not attentive. So, if the locals warn you that the pool is hot, they are not joking! It feels great soaking in the natural hot tub, especially in December, when it is really cold.

If you visit between January to April, you will be drawn to beautiful cherry blossom trees (also known as Sakura) lining up the county. For the adventurous, try hiking up the nearby Wulai Waterfalls, which is pretty impressive as the mountains are very pretty.

Another popular activity here is river tracing, which is similar to canyoning, at the Jiajiuliao Stream. It involves walking upstream, jumping into pools of water or sliding down a rock slide.

 

 

Bitou Cape

Bitou Cape explore in Taiwan
Bitou Cape. [email protected]

 

Bitou Cape is a natural geological classroom, filled with sea-eroded platform marine fossils, mushroom-shaped rocks, or honeycomb rocks. You will witness first-hand intriguing landforms of undercut bluffs and sea cliffs, which overlooks the scenic views of Taiwan’s northeast coast.

Bitou Cape is one of the Three Capes of North Taiwan. Bitou which literally translates to “Nose tip” in Chinese, named for its nose-shaped cape that extends out into the ocean.

It is recommended to drive there, as getting public transportation may be inconvenient. Its 2 km paved footpath runs up to the top of the cape giving access to a rugged coastline of the East Sea.

From here you are rewarded with views of Hoping Island, Keelung Island, and Keelung Mountain. Don’t miss the Wangyue Slope, which is located on top of a high cliff at the side of the trail. This is where you can laze in the meadow and soak in the views of the expansive ocean.

 

 

Taroko National Park

Baiyang trail
Baiyang trail at Taroko National Park. [email protected]_kuo

 

Taroko National Park is a UNESCO site and is the best national park in Taiwan. If you want to go there, the best options are either to hire a driver or to rent a scooter. The busses are not very reliable as the schedules are limited.

When you arrive there, you will be in awe by the gorgeous rock formations of Taroko Gorge which spans for 20km in length. It is carved out of solid marble by the erosive force of the Liwu River which began over 200 million years ago.

This is the area around the Swallow Grotto Trail and the Tunnel of Nine Turns, where the cliffs on each side rise several hundred meters almost vertically. You can see the sedimentation on the surface by recognising its black and white layers, which is evidence that this used to be under the ocean.

As there are often falling rocks on this part of the trail, you would be required to wear a safety helmet. It is provided for free at the roadside before going to the entrance.

If you are in for excitement, check out the Baiyang waterfall trail, which brings you through several waterfalls and tunnels. You will need to prepare a flashlight as the trails in the tunnels are long enough to get pitch black in the middle. At the end of this tunnel, you will reach the Water Curtain Cave.

This is where waterfalls pour down from the cracks of the rock to form curtains of water deep inside. So, it is best you wear a raincoat when you enter, else you will find yourself soaking wet when you come out.

If you have the time, do plan to stay for more days, as there are so many trails to explore in Taiwan.

 

 

YehLiu Geopark

YehLiu Geopark
YehLiu Geopark [email protected]_harrykurniawan1000e

 

Yehliu Geopark is a place that makes you feel that you have just landed on an alien planet or even Mars. This is a 1.7km long cape, formed by Datun Mountain extending into the sea.

Famous for its hoodoo stones, these rocks are carved over time by the wind, rain, and sun. You can even find exposed fossils that are a million years old.

These geological forms are given interesting names signifying certain profiles and characters, like The Queens Head or the Fairy’s shoe. It’s fun trying to identify shapes to its name, like a sort of game.

If you are lucky, you might catch some formations which are only visible for 2 weeks in a year, when the tides are low enough.

Certain things to remember when you are there is to layer your wear, as it can get cold as it is located facing the North Coast and the Pacific Ocean. But it can also get scorching hot if you arrive in the middle of the day. So bring sunscreen and a hat.

In order to preserve nature’s creations, it is important not to touch any rock formations and to stay behind the red lines drawn on the ground.

Within the birding community, this area is also renowned as a ‘Migration Hotspot’. Its ideal wet and windy conditions attract migrant birds like the Red-flanked Bluetail and Siberian Rubythroat.

So remember to bring along your camera, as there are many opportunities for photography in this area!

 

Are you keen to explore in Taiwan? 

Let us know your thoughts in the comments below.

I am Jules, founder of Outdoormagnet. I work as an engineer in the manufacturing industry. During my free time, my husband and I write articles relating to our hobbies on our site. Outdoormagnet is all about outdoors and travel adventures. We are located in one of the beautiful islands of Malaysia, Penang.

48 thoughts on “Top 5 beautiful places to explore in Taiwan

  • November 20, 2020 at 2:44 pm
    Permalink

    Yehliu Geopark really does look like another planet, but all the other places look like a tropical painting… too beautiful to even be real! I really do need to visit Taiwan, based on your blog I think it fits my travel style very well and is full of breathtaking views. Thanks for sharing!

    Reply
  • November 6, 2020 at 5:29 am
    Permalink

    Taiwan has some real interesting sites. Though I loved to read all of them, Yehliu Geopark really stands out for the shapes of its stones. The fact that these rocks are carved over time by the wind, rain, and sun makes it very interesting. Seeing exposed fossils that are a million years old must be extremely engrossing. I have a friend who keeps inviting me to Taiwan. whenever I visit your post will come very handy

    Reply
  • November 6, 2020 at 12:36 am
    Permalink

    The image of teacup mountain had me sold immediately! And Silver Stream Cave is even more fascinating, I do not believe it will be off the beaten path for long. I’m adding a hike to the Water Curtain Cave to my Taiwan bucketlist

    Reply
  • November 5, 2020 at 11:55 am
    Permalink

    Taroko National Park looks so interesting! Actually, all of the places do (I can’t spell or pronounce them! 🙂 ). I really need to explore Asia more – there is so much beauty and history there. Plus, national parks usually are so well taken care of and beautiful.

    Reply
  • November 4, 2020 at 7:08 pm
    Permalink

    I never knew that Taiwan so many beautiful spots to explore which are full of nature. Tea pot mountain really looks heavenly. YehLiu Geopark looks interesting with that special geological forms and it really looks like we landed onto Mars. Also I love that, there are various landforms in Taiwan, hills, waterfalls, deserts, hot springs and sea.

    Reply
  • November 4, 2020 at 5:05 am
    Permalink

    I am always reminded why I should visit Taiwan when I come across great posts like these. I will bet after a hike through the wondrous forests and a relaxing hot spring dip – and enjoying the delicious Taiwanese cuisine makes an unforgettable trip. Now i have on my list Yin He Deong, Wu Lai hot springs and the Bitou Cape for the views!

    Reply
    • November 4, 2020 at 12:22 pm
      Permalink

      great to hear. there are many more treasures to be found in Taiwan.

      Reply
  • November 3, 2020 at 10:03 pm
    Permalink

    I did not know Taiwan had these…so beautiful! I’m loving the hot springs and Taroko National Park and the geopark too. So many lovely natural spots I’d never heard of here. Must visit!

    Reply
  • November 3, 2020 at 2:30 pm
    Permalink

    I need to dedicate a few years of my life to explore the beauty of east Asian countries. I’m yet to visit any of those – Taiwan, Philippines, Cambodia are atop my wishlist. Taiwan is indeed exceedingly beautiful. Yinhedong looks incredible. I love those little balconies in the middle of nowhere! Hiking up here and taking the gondola down would be perfect. Being a UNESCO Site, I definitely wouldn’t miss Taroko National Park.

    Reply
  • November 3, 2020 at 1:40 am
    Permalink

    Everything you mentioned sounds amazing, but the Silver Stream Cave just sounds magical! An ancient temple, embedded into the stone behind a waterfall curtain? It sounds like a mythical paradise. I’d love to visit Taiwan some day to see some of these places.

    Reply
  • November 2, 2020 at 11:41 pm
    Permalink

    I would love to take the footpath at Bitou Cape. I’m sure it provides a magnificent view of the sea.

    Reply
    • November 4, 2020 at 1:54 pm
      Permalink

      yes, it is very relaxing to be there, and just soaking in the views of the sea.

      Reply
  • November 2, 2020 at 7:48 pm
    Permalink

    oh Taiwan! It’s in my list and so want to visit it soon! great locations!

    Reply
  • November 2, 2020 at 6:19 pm
    Permalink

    Wow so beautiful! I’ve never been to Taiwan it looks like such a wonderful place .

    Reply
  • November 2, 2020 at 2:38 pm
    Permalink

    Oh man these pictures are stunning! People I know always come back in love. Can’t wait to start flying and feeling safe again.

    Reply
  • November 2, 2020 at 10:36 am
    Permalink

    I hadn’t considered Taiwan as a destination for nature lovers and landscapes, but I am now convinced – and I would definitely agree that it’s an undiscovered gem. Thank you for highlighting some of the truly unique and wondrous places to visit – the incredible Silver Stream Cave is spectacular, and the Waluai Hotsprings sounds so relaxing. All the different types of landscapes are equally impressive – from mountain to sea, to desert – Taiwan has so much beauty to offer.

    Reply
  • November 2, 2020 at 9:27 am
    Permalink

    I haven’t been to Taiwan yet, but it’s on my list. I like your list very much because it suits my interests. The good news is that there are as many as 1700 campgrounds available for camping. Silver Stream Cave is amazing. I would definitely like to go on this trail. I’m a fan of hot springs, so I add Wulai as a must-do to my list. With gorgeous rock formations of the Taroko Gorge and Baiyang Trail, Taroko National Park seems perfect for me. I don’t have experience with scooters, but I will try to rent it.

    Reply
  • November 2, 2020 at 9:24 am
    Permalink

    Every time I read or see pictures of Taiwan, I just want to pack my bags and visit that place. I really hope I can do that after the pandemic. The five places look so beautiful and I think I need to add them as well to my list. I can stay at the hot springs all day as I enjoy them so much.

    Reply
    • November 4, 2020 at 1:51 pm
      Permalink

      One of my good friends was just there recently, via a cycling trip.

      Reply
  • November 2, 2020 at 2:17 am
    Permalink

    I had no idea that there were so many beautiful forested areas in Taiwan. It’s an area of the world that I haven’t explored yet, but it looks like a place that both my husband and I would love. The pictures that you’ve shared here are stunning, especially the rock formations at Taroko Gorge. They look breathtaking!

    Reply
    • November 4, 2020 at 1:48 pm
      Permalink

      yes, the Taiwanese government did a great job of preserving their natural environment.

      Reply
  • November 1, 2020 at 1:58 pm
    Permalink

    These all look like incredible places! Sounds like there are plenty of wonderful spots to explore in Taiwan.

    Reply
  • November 1, 2020 at 8:46 am
    Permalink

    I need to visit this country soon as I am seeing super relaxing photos in here. I need that badly lol

    Reply
  • November 1, 2020 at 1:41 am
    Permalink

    Absolutely beautiful! I would love to try those hot springs.

    Reply
  • October 31, 2020 at 7:07 pm
    Permalink

    Pretty! This was a really wonderful post. Many thanks for supplying this info.

    Reply
  • October 31, 2020 at 6:57 pm
    Permalink

    I can’t wait to be able to afford trips. It will be great to walk on Bitou Cape. Scary but Beautiful views.

    Reply
  • October 31, 2020 at 6:57 pm
    Permalink

    So many gorgeous places to see and fun-looking things to do! I would love to hike through some of those landscapes, or join that lady for a soak in the pool!

    Reply
  • October 31, 2020 at 3:24 pm
    Permalink

    Hot springs are so fun to find. I love being so close to nature, without having to freeze my fingers off, ya know? (I’m from the Pacific Northwest US). Taiwan is on my bucket list, so I will have to make sure some of these make it on the itinerary.

    Reply
    • November 1, 2020 at 7:14 am
      Permalink

      Saving these are some beautiful photos! I would love to visit

      Reply
  • October 31, 2020 at 11:25 am
    Permalink

    All of these are gorgeous places!

    Reply
  • October 31, 2020 at 4:16 am
    Permalink

    Taiwan is such a beautiful place and wish to visit that once this pandemic ends.

    Reply
    • October 31, 2020 at 2:16 pm
      Permalink

      oh yes, and currently Taiwan is one of the safest place as its handling of COVID-19 has been exemplary.

      Reply
  • October 31, 2020 at 2:26 am
    Permalink

    Oh wow! That is gorgeous! I’ve never been to Taiwan. Would love to!

    Reply
  • October 30, 2020 at 9:56 pm
    Permalink

    Wow is all I can say. It looks absolutely stunning and is now a place I want to visit. Thank you for sharing.

    Reply
  • October 30, 2020 at 8:16 am
    Permalink

    I like your list and I have only been to one! That means I have four more places on my list for my next trip to Taiwan – thanks a lot for sharing with us.

    Reply
    • October 31, 2020 at 2:20 pm
      Permalink

      hehe, yes, Taiwan really has a lot of places to waiting to be discovered.

      Reply

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Pin It on Pinterest

Share This
%d bloggers like this: