Most Scenic Hiking Trails Of Taiwan

Most Scenic Hiking Trails Of Taiwan
| 5 min read

When taking a trip to the beautiful island of Taiwan, you must check out all the wonderful natural attractions that it offers. From pristine water bodies such as Sun Moon Lake to protected national parks, Taiwan has enough to impress nature lovers. For thrill-seekers, a trip to this island is sure to be rewarding, thanks to its various hiking trails. You can follow spectacular trails in the mountains or explore lush forests while taking in the beautiful surroundings. We have curated a list of the most scenic hiking trails of Taiwan, to help you have an exciting getaway amidst nature.

1. Zhuilu Old Trail, Taroko National Park (from USD 110.0)

Taroko National Park is a popular destination for tourists to explore when going to Taiwan. It is located in the county of Hualien along the east side of the island. The place is mountainous with rapids and trails to explore. The most famous trail there is the Zhuilu Old Trail. It is 10 km (6.2 mi) long, mostly going uphill. This trail offers spectacular views of the mountains and greenery surrounding it.

Part of the Zhuilu Old Trail is carved onto the side of a cliff. If you are planning to hike this trail you better pack your best running shoes and maybe walking sticks for extra support if needed. This trail takes about 3-6 hours to cover.

Zhuilu Old Trail

Address: 972, Taiwan, Hualien County, Xiulin Township

Opening hours: 7am-10am (daily)

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Taroko Gorge Hike: Zhuilu Old Trail from Hualien City

Duration: 8 hours

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2. Yangmingshan National Park

Yangmingshan National Park-jerry012320-1
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user Jerry012320 used under CC BY-SA 4.0

Nestled between New Taipei City and Taipei, Yangmingshan National Park is the perfect nature getaway. It is conveniently located and is easily reachable from the city. There are many sights to see and trails to explore when visiting this national park.

You have the option of hiking on various different mountain peaks. The trek time and distance vary depending on the peak you want to hike. An interesting thing about this park is that it houses a dormant volcano called Qixing Mountain. Apart from the amazing views, you have the opportunity to admire some wildlife as well. Please be aware of the venomous snakes in the area. When you feel like you need to relax, you can just take a dip in one of the hot springs.

Yangmingshan National Park

Address: No. 1-20, Yangming Creek Walkway, Beitou District, Taipei City, Taiwan 112

Website: Yangmingshan National Park

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3. Yushan National Park

Yu-Shan National Park(WDPA-9030)-PeterWen-6
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user 温文佑 used under CC BY-SA 4.0

Yushan National Park is located in Nantou County in the Town of Shuili. In its center stands the peak of Yushan, which covers most of the park. This park is a habitat for various species of animals and native plants. Animals that you may be able to spot on your adventure could be mammals such as Taiwan Macaque, black bears, sambar deer, various amphibians, reptiles, and birds.

There are other amazing things that you can experience on your hikes, such as a variety of flowers, large trees, and dense forests. Make sure to pack accordingly!

Yushan National Park

Address: No. 515, Sec. 1, Jhongshan Rd., Shueili Township, Nantou County 553203

Website: Yushan National Park

Opening hours: 8:30am - 12:30pm, 1:30pm - 5:30pm (daily)

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4. Heping Island Park

Peace Island Park 和平島公園 - panoramio
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user lienyuan lee used under CC BY 3.0

Heping Island is located in Northern Taiwan just beside the city of Keelung. Hundreds of years ago, it was occupied by the Spanish, who were using it to do business with the Chinese and Japanese. Nowadays, it is a major tourist attraction featuring beautiful rock formations and greenery.

There are hiking paths around the formations from where you can enjoy spectacular sea views. A tourist service center is present on the island, where you can ask for information about the island and the surrounding areas.

Heping Island Park

Address: No. 360, Pingyi Rd, Zhongzheng District, Keelung City, Taiwan 202

Opening hours: 8am - 7pm (daily)

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5. Alishan National Forest Recreation Area

Source: Maxpixel

Alishan National Forest Recreation Area is a mountain resort located in the county of Chiayi. It has many beautiful hiking trails making it a magical place. You can expect to enjoy mesmerizing sunrises and explore lush forests when you’re here. You’ll also see a sea of beautiful clouds in this year-round destination.

Alishan is not only known for its beauty but it is also popular for its tea plantation. Alishan tea is a popular souvenir for tourists to bring back home from Taiwan.

Alishan National Forest Recreation Area

Address: No.51, Checheng, Chukou Village, Fanlu Township, Chiayi County 602037, Taiwan R.O.C.

Website: Alishan National Forest Recreation Area

Tip from Content Creator

I finally visited Taiwan’s most famous national park and honestly, I’m not surprised that it's so popular. We went on a cloudy day, and the whole forest was giving an eerie and mysterious vibe that I loved! Everyone comes here for the sunrise, so definitely do it if possible.

There's a train that runs through the forest. While it feels nice to watch it go by from the outside, it's not really a great ride. The interior is old and we could hardly see anything from the foggy windows. there's also a giant tree in the national park that we missed during our trip. No regrets though, as we loved all the trees we saw!

Interesting fact: When Taiwan was occupied by Japan, they built the railroad tracks up here to transport wood that they used to build their temples and shrines. It would be interesting to know which ones are built from the timber gathered from here!

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6. Pingxi Crags

Editor's Note: There's no photo available at the time of writing

Pingxi Crags are located south of the Pingxi Village. The area has beautiful views of the mountains and greenery and huge sedimentary rock formations. The trails are steep and exciting, sure to impress an adventurer.

There are six peaks that hikers should traverse - Xiaozishan, Cimu Peak, Cien Peak, Putuoshan, Choutoushan, and Zhongyangjian Peak. It is best to hike these trails on a dry day as when the area is wet it is extremely slippery and dangerous. It takes about one or two hours to hike on these trails.

Pingxi Crags

Address: 226, New Taipei City, Pingxi District, Stone Bottom Street No. 24

Opening hours: 12am - 12am (daily)

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7. Shei-Pa National Park

Editor's Note: There's no photo available at the time of writing

Shei-Pa National Park is located in Miaoli County, which is an hour and a half away from the capital city of Taipei. There are many different trails available for hiking, including East Xue Trail, West Xue Trail, Shengleng Trail, Wuling Quadruple Trail, Daba Peaks Trails, Zhijiayang Trail, and Taoshan Waterfall Trail. This park is home to many species of vegetation and animals as well. When you are out for a hike on the trails, be aware of the animals you could come across, including rare species such as the Formosan black bear and Mikado pheasant.

Shei-Pa National Park

Address: 100 Shueiweiping, Fusing Village, Dahu Township, Miaoli County,36443, Taiwan (R.O.C.)

Website: Shei-Pa National Park

Opening hours: 9am - 5pm (daily)

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8. Elephant Mountain

Elephant Mountain
Source: Kaitlin Mills

If you are staying in Taipei and you don’t feel like going out of the city, Elephant Mountain would be the best trail for you. It is definitely a great workout. When hiking this trail, you will be walking up hundreds of steps; but in the end, it is all worth it when you get to capture the most amazing picture of Taipei 101 and the rest of the city.

When hiking up the mountain you will see a lot of lush greenery, tall trees, and colorful flowers. After the hike, you can explore the stalls that sell refreshments for hikers.

Elephant Mountain

Address: Xiangshan (Mt. Elephant), Xinyi Dist., Taipei City Taiwan, R.O.C

Opening hours: 12am-12am (daily)

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9. Wuliaojian Trailhead

Wuliaojian 2
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user Mx. Granger used under CC0

Wuliaojian Trailhead is located in Sanxia, New Taipei City area. This trail is known to be exciting and tough, so make sure you prepare yourself for a full day of hiking. Hikers can enjoy climbing up the steep cliffs, but if you are scared of heights, you should definitely just stick to walking the trails. You will enjoy the beautiful views of mountains along with lush greenery and maybe come across some animals too!

Wuliaojian Trailhead

Address: 237, Taiwan, New Taipei City, Sanxia District

Website: Wuliaojian Trailhead

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10. Monkey Mountain

Shoushan National Nature Park
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user Vintagejhan used under CC BY-SA 4.0

Monkey Mountain is located in Kaohsiung City, in southern Taiwan. It is a noticeable verdant mountain towering high above the city. It is easily accessible for hikers as there are stairs and decks instead of plain old trails. It takes about two to three hours to hike.

True to its name, this mountain is home to numerous monkeys. specifically, Taiwanese Macaques. There are other animals living on the mountain as well, such as snakes and deer, and you will also come across stray dogs.

Monkey Mountain

Address: Shoushan Gushan District, Kaohsiung City, Taiwan 804

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Experience magical hikes in Taiwan

When visiting the beautiful island of Taiwan, you can’t just explore the lovely cities. You must also make time for nature. You will not regret hiking on all the beautiful and exciting trails that Taiwan offers. Don’t forget to take pictures to remember your Taiwan adventure forever!

Shakadang Trail, Taroko National Park

Contributed by Content Creator, Krysten

Source: Krysten

Shimmering turquoise waters everywhere you look? Not all easy trails get this scenic! So, if you’re looking for a family-friendly hiking/natural destination when you head to Taiwan, Taroko Gorge must be on your list.

You can absolutely explore the area without a guide or an entrance fee. There are easier trails that you can manage for day trips, and for those who can’t or are not too keen on roughing it out, the popular Shakadang Trail is paved and super duper easy to follow. If you have more time and are looking for challenging routes, you can try the more strenuous treks around the area.

Remember to check the weather. I went in September, so most of the trails were closed due to rockfall and unpredictable weather. I did the pretty easy ones, but I had so much fun! I also acquainted myself with some of the park rangers. Oh, and did I mention that the gorge also has a free campsite where you can pitch your tent and stargaze as you rest between mighty mountains? That was definitely the best part of the trip for me!

Any must-sees we missed? Tell us about them in the comments section or write a post here to help out fellow travelers!
Disclosure: Trip101 selects the listings in our articles independently. Some of the listings in this article contain affiliate links.


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Kaitlin Mills is a Toronto-based freelance travel writer, luxury travel coordinator, and former ESL teacher. She enjoys traveling and immersing herself in local cultures. She loves to experience...Read more

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