Taipei

Plan a Three (3) Days of Cycling Tour in Northern Taiwan

Some visitors may only have couple days to visit Taiwan on their trip for any reasons. It could be a short break during their conference or exhibition trip in Taiwan. Or it could be that they only stop over in Taiwan because their final destination is Japan or South Korea. But no matter what reason it may be, they still want to get the best experience out of they short stay in Taiwan. Then we would surely recommend to take one day to enjoy the rides along the riverside parks and the bike ways built along the main rivers.

If you have a bit more time, then you can arrange couple more days and a bit more into the east to get experience both into the mountains and the Pacific ocean.

We plan a simple route for three days to ride the northern part of Taiwan, which will cover Taipei city (台北市), New Taipei city (新北市), Yilan county (宜蘭縣), and Keelung city (基隆市).


Taipei and New Taipei City Riverside Park bikeways

Taipei and New Taipei City Riverside Park bikeways

This route starts from Taipei riverside park and enter the mountain from Xindian (新店) to Pinglin (坪林) and exit to Jiaosi (礁溪) where you can relax and immerse yourself into a well relaxed hot spring after an exhausting day of long bike ride.


NorthEast Coast of Taiwan, Pacific Ocean blue

NorthEast Coast of Taiwan, Pacific Ocean blue

The second day riding plan will start from Jiaosi and directly head to east and reach the coastline where you will have the Pacific ocean on your ride all the time during your ride. Today will be less climbing comparing to the previous day, so simply relax and take as much time as possible to take photos and taste the local foods. At night you should visit one of the most famous night market in Northern Taiwan - Keelung Miaoko (廟口), literally means market in front of temple.


Enjoy your time deep in the mountains 

Enjoy your time deep in the mountains 

Third day you can either ride along the coastline all the way back to Danshui (淡水) or either travel as we suggested here to pass and visit one of the National Park in Taiwan called Yangminshan (陽明山) since you would not have chance to visit the most famous Taroko (太魯閣) that is located in the East Taiwan. Yangminshan is still a live volcano but really no need to worry since it has been quietly sleeping for a long time now and no signs of being active again any time soon. However, due to the volcanic characteristics, the scenes along the way would really pay off for all the climbing efforts. 


As we firmly believe, there are always places to enjoy your biking experience in Taiwan. Just plan a little bit in advance and do not worry of getting lost in Taiwan since there are always people willing to help any visitors to have their best memory in Taiwan. Hop on and have a great time in Biking Taiwan and wish to see you back in this wonderful place again soon!

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Send any inquires or questions to us at any time because we are more than happy to help. And of course, it would be great to meet you during your journey in Taiwan as well!! http://www.bikingtaiwan.com/

Biking in Hualien City (花蓮市) and Liyutan (鯉魚潭)

Since for most people visiting HuaTung will come from Taipei or Yilan by train to Hualien first, there won't be a lot of time left after arriving at Hualien train station. Therefore, we recommend to take a short tour of Hualien city along the coastline bike paths and then head to the mountain to spend for the night at Liyutan. <*If you do arrive earlier, make sure you could ride also to Qixingtan.>

This route is ideal for a 3-4 hours ride, and the only hilly part is the last 5 km of the ride.

Plan your biking trip in Taiwan

Many people simply wish to complete the milestone of cycling around Taiwan, but I say you will miss a lot if you are not planning it right.

Plan it well if you have limited time for the trip! 

Don't plan at all if you have nothing but time! 

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After more than one year of assisting visitors to plan their bike tours in Taiwan, I have heard several complians that riding in the westcoast is extremly boring and gets nothing but polluted air and madness city views. 🙊🙉🙈

And I say, of course, there are more than 23 millions people living on this small 36,000km2 island and most of them do live in the westcoast, so what do you expect. 😅 

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But if you consult or read more information and have a little bit more time to detour around the places, you may find beautiful places to visit as this one.  Then your tour of Taiwan may not be so boring and tiring.

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Talk to people, and you will find your trip more joyable because this is how you experience and bring memories back home. A local grocery shop is the best place to start, and do not worry about language barrier. A big smile 😊 and body/sign language can solve them all. 👍

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Next time, I hope your biking expereince could be as fun as ours. Have a good time in cycling tours everywhere. 

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Seeking for advice on cycling route planning in Taiwan ~ http://www.bikingtaiwan.com/

Trying to make your own bike map for traveling in Taiwan ~  Biking Taiwan Bikemap Routes 

Yangmingshan National Park

Taiwan island was created because of the massive collision of Eurasian continent plate and Philippines oceanic plate millions of years ago. Therefore, volcanic terrains are not hard to find in many places in Taiwan. And for most visitors, Taipei is a must visit city when planning the trip to Taiwan. If your time is really limited, but still want to see more than only city views, Yangmingshan is for sure a place that you might want to put into your itinerary since it is also known as the back garden of Taipei city.

Yangmingshan National Park as we know it today covers mountainous areas in the Taipei City districts of Shilin and Beitou, and in the New Taipei City districts of Tamsui, Sanzhi, Shimen, Jinshan and Wanli. The park's eastern boundary lies east of Mt. Huangtsui and Mt. Wuchih, and it extends westward as far as the western foothills of Mt. Hunglu and Mt. Miantian. To the north it includes Mt. Zhuzi and Tudigong Ridge, while its southern boundary stretches from the southern foothills of Mt. Shamao eastward to Pingdeng Village and Shuangxi. It covers a total area of 11,338 hectares with elevations of between 200 and 1120 meters above sea level. Yangmingshan also used to be known as Tsaoshan (Grass Mountain), a term which embraced the whole area of Mt. Datun, Mt. Qxing and Mt. Shamao with its grassy slopes.

What to see in Nature?

There are currently some 1,359 species of plants in the park, growing in water plant and land plant propagation environments.

Yangmingshan is home to a large number of birds of around 123 different species, and its accessibility has made it one of northern Taiwan's top bird- watching haunts. 

It is also home to no less than 53 species of reptiles, of which the Sauter's ground snake, red back pine root snake, common scaled water snake and flower snake are the most common. 

Animals such as the Formosan rock-monkey (macaque), Formosan boar, Formosan hare, red-bellied squirrel, Formosan gem-faced civet, Formosan blind mole, spinous country-rat and Taiwan bandicoot rat are often to be seen in the park's conservation zones.

What to see in Scenic Spots?

Yangmingshuwu - Formerly known as the Zhongxing Guesthouse, Yangmingshuwu was built during 1969 and 1970. It was originally used by former President Chiang Kai-shek for receiving foreign guests and as a summer home. Today, it is an important cultural and historical site in Yangmingshan National Park which features both natural and human history, making it an intellectually and emotionally resonant recreational site. Tourist information and guided tours are available.

Xiaoyoukeng - A post-volcanic geological landscape area and located on Mt. Qixing's northwestern foot, it is approximately 805 meters above sea level and is famed for the fumaroles, sulfur crystals, hot springs and spectacular 'landslide terrain' formed by post-volcanic activity. The hiking trail next to the Xiaoyoukeng parking lot offers access to Mt. Qixing, from which it takes about an hour to reach the summit. At 1,120 meters above sea level, it is Taipei City's highest peak. Taking the East Peak path when descending leads to Qixing Park, Menghuan Pond, and Lengshuikeng, offering a bird's-eye view of Mt. Shamao and downtown Taipei.

Erziping - This area is in the volcanic dip between Mt. Datun's main peak and Mt. Erzi, which boasts a lush forest and a variety of vegetation, made possible by its temperate weather, in between the sub-tropical and temperate zones. The trail here is even and flat surrounded by wide open spaces with three ponds in the middle. 

Datun Nature Park - Located at the northwest foot of Mt. Datun and about 800 meters above sea level, here is known for its warm-temperate climate, broad-leaved forest, and volcanic cone. The Datun Visitor Center hosts an exhibition hall dedicated to early human activity in the Yangmingshan area, in particular the local indigo industry, so you can understand more about the history of this wonderful place.

Lengshuikeng - The Lengshuikeng region, cold water pit in Chinese meaning, is a low-lying depression which was created when the lava from Mt. Qixing and Mt. Qigu formed a barrage. Water then accumulated, turning the area into a lake, which eventually leaked out and dried up to expose the lake bottom and form today's landscape.

Qingtiangang - This area is a lava terrace formed when the lava from Mt. Zhugao flowed north after its eruption, and because of its flat terrain, a ranch was established and the area was used as a pasture for grazing cattle during the Japanese ruling period. The big grassland is the place most people would visit and taking panorama photos. 

Longfenggu - This valley is about 1 km long and 80-200 meters wide and has many volcanic fumaroles and artificial geothermal hot springs, which are the source of the Beitou Hot Springs. White smoke fills the area with plumes of slowly rising from the valley to form a magnificent view.


Is it a dream or is it a challenge to cycling around Taiwan?

The most difficult part of biking around Taiwan is having the determination and self-confidence needed to do it. If you think that you lack either of these attributes, just remember the story of
King Liu, who is the president of Giant, the GIANT bicycle manufacturing company. He was eighty years old when he completed a twelve-day trip cycling around Taiwan. Of course, before you set out you should consult with your doctor; if he gives you permission, then you only need to worry about how much determination you have.

One of the advantages of riding around Taiwan is that you can determine your own itinerary, so if you feel tired you can take more time but if you feel strong you can ride longer. If you lack fitness or want to take your time for sightseeing, then plan for your round-the-island trip to take between seven and twelve days. If you average of about ninety kilometers per day, with an average speed of 20 km/h for 4-6 hours a day, you’ll reach your goal of riding a bike around the island in Taiwan.

Biking Dajia Riverside Park, Taipei

2016/01/10 what a nice day to ride bikes in Taipei after all those rainy and cloudy days during the week! 

We met up with our best friends in Taipei after church in order to pick up my ordered secondhand Kindle, and of course hoping to enjoy a biking ride together in our favorite beautiful riverside bikeways that Taipei has to offer.  

You cannot spell LOVE without Velo!! 

You cannot spell LOVE without Velo!! 

Taipei is the capital city of Taiwan, so as you can imagine it is full of people, traffic, business, tourists, and mostly crowded all the time, not to mention the most famous landmark Taipei 101. But if you are trying to find a nice and peaceful place to spend your weekend or pure relaxation during your trip to Taipei, we highly recommend to hop on a Youbike or rent a bike and ride along the riverside bikeways that Taipei has prepared for you.

Rental bike with 6 speeds, good enough for strolling along the riverside! 

Rental bike with 6 speeds, good enough for strolling along the riverside! 

Bike rental is relatively easy here. All you need is an eligible ID or passport, and if you come in group one ID can rent for a max of 5 bikes at the same time. Today, we rented a bike with six speed and it is only 130NTD (4USD) for three hours. Some rental station also offers A-rent-B-return program, so you can enjoy the full bikeway without worrying the return journey. 

 

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Riverside bikeways are combined with Parks and are suitable for families or friends who just want to have leisure rides. Many people are doing picnic and kite flying besides biking. We really enjoy a wonderful trip with friends and have a chance to take some good photos since they are the professional photographers. This biking trip starts from Dajia Riverside Park and to Beitou traditional market and then same way back. Not very intense ride but many beauties to see.

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Photographer Boss, nice boots ~_~ 

Photographer Boss, nice boots ~_~ 

Miss Photographer, artistic hat and cute backpack ^_^ 

Miss Photographer, artistic hat and cute backpack ^_^ 

Thank you, Candy and Simon for joining this beautiful afternoon Biking Taiwan section!

but just on a side note, I still think renting Youbike might be easier and better option to get around in Taipei since we can just return and leave it to any Youbike station which is closer to Metro station and go on for the trip to anywhere. (Just look at me in the following photo, sometimes I get tired and don't wanna go back the same way hahahaha)

 

Twisted face on going up hills &gt;_&lt; 

Twisted face on going up hills >_<