With over 20% of Taiwan designated as protected land either in the form of National Parks or reserves, the hiking opportunities in Taiwan are more than plentiful. Whether it’s a short day trip just outside Taipei or an epic trek through the majesty of Yushan, there’s something for all types of hiker. We take a look at the 10 best trails in Taiwan.
Wuling Sixiu Trail, Shei-Pa National Park
Located in the Shei-Pa National Park, this hike is said to be one of the most challenging that the country has to offer. Taking three to four days to complete, this trek takes hikers up and down a group of four mountains, so a certain level of fitness is required but the photo opportunities are out of this world.
Zhuilu Old Trail, Taroko National Park
This easy access trail in Taroko National Park is anything but easy to complete. It’s not that physically taxing but at one point hikers will need to make their way along a 60cm wide ledge with the river 500m below. Not for the fainthearted and many hikers turn back claiming that no view in the world is worth the risk.
The Beidawushan Trail, Pingtung
A relatively comfortable overnight hike on the most southerly mountain in Taiwan takes hikers along a 10 km trail. One of the most popular sights on this trail is a 1,000 year old red cedar tree that is an incredible 25 meters in circumference. The trail ends at the summit of the mountain with breathtaking views of the Pacific.
The Yushan Peaks Trail, Yushan National Park
The most popular trail in Taiwan is quite possibly this two day hike through the country’s famed Yushan National Park. The going on this trail is quite easy, and if hikers manage an early start on the second day, they may make it to the summit for sunrise.
Eryan Ping Trail, Alishan National Scenic Area
Any tourist that makes it to these shores wants to see the sunrise at Alishan, and the best vantage point is said to be at the viewing platforms at the end of this trail. The walkway offers fabulous photo ops along the entire route so the trail can get quite busy.
As far as difficult day hikes go, this is up there with the best of them. Located in New Taipei City just a short MRT and taxi ride from the city, this trail is only for the most physically fit of hikers. The climb is quite intense at times but once again worth it for the views of the local countryside.
Pingxi Crags, Pingxi
Only the fearless will climb the crags at Pingxi, and they are certainly not recommended for those with vertigo. A stunning walk through the abundant greenery of the countryside brings hikers to the Cimu Feng and Shaozi Shan where they may just spot a few lanterns from nearby Pingxi.
Linmei Shipan Trail, Yilan
Just a short train ride from Taipei lies the ever popular day trip county of Yilan. It’s well known for its hot springs, but hikers can take advantage of a short trail that many tourists are unaware of. It’s an easy trail that takes hikers through jungle like greenery, passing waterfalls along the way.
Dakeng Trail No. 4, Taichung
This trail is equipped with log staircases that look rather quaint but can actually hamper a hiker’s progress at times. The fixed ropes are needed though as the trail can get rather steep in places. Of the 10 trails through Dakeng, this is said to be the best.
Qi Xing Shan, Yangmingshan National Park
This is the highest peak in Yangmingshan, and a trek to the top offers panoramic views of Taipei Basin and the north coast. It’s a relatively easy hike that takes hikers by Xiaoyoukeng, which is a massive crater continuously letting off steam and sulphur.