EASY HIKES IN TAIPEI CITY

Walks listed with the most recent at the top. There might be some overlap between easy and moderate hikes.

JIANTAN TRAIL NIGHT HIKE (劍潭山步道夜爬)


There are lots of trails close to the city that offer opportunities for exploring after dark. The ever popular Jiantan Hiking Trail is one such route – although if you visit at night you can expect to have the paths almost entirely to yourselves.

NANGANG TEA MOUNTAIN TRAIL (南港茶山步道 )


If you picture Nangang District in your mind what do you see? The train station? The exhibition centre? The giant software park? I bet you didn’t envision quiet hillsides cloaked with neat rows of tea. This trail offers an insight into a side of Nangang that not so many people know about.

MOUNT ZHONGZHENG TRAIL (中正山步道)


Mount Zhongzheng Hiking Trail makes for a quiet and easy wander in the westernmost reaches of Yangmingshan National Park. Starting just a couple of blocks away from Xin Beitou Station, the trail leads you up through farms and bamboo to a peak with commands wide views over the city.

NEIHU’S PATH LESS TRAVELLED


The hills around Jinmian Shan are crisscrossed with hiking trails of varying degrees of popularity and difficulty. This post details one of the quieter walks that you can do in the area.

FAIRY SHRIMP at XIANGTIAN POOL (向天池的仙女蝦)


Xiangtian Pool is an ephemeral body of water in an old volcanic crater on the northwestern edge of Yangmingshan National Park. It can be seen after periods of heavy rain, and only then for a brief time. As if this didn’t make the pool intriguing enough, it is also home to a population of fairy shrimp which spawn in great numbers when the conditions are just right.

SCISSORS ROCK NIGHT HIKE (剪刀石夜爬)


Scissors Rock is up there with Elephant Mountain in terms of its popularity among the easily accessible trails of Taipei. But unlike it’s Xinyi District counterpart, this trail in Neihu falls quiet as soon as night settles on the city. Travellers willing to brave the dark will be treated to peaceful city views and maybe even a flying squirrel (or two, or five)

BATTLESHIP ROCK NIGHT HIKE (軍艦岩夜景)


Close to the city, Battleship Rock Trail is an ever popular walk, and on weekends in particular you are likely to find it pretty crowded. But for those who are feeling brave it offers an easy after dark hike and a stupendous night view of Taipei.

GUIZIKENG TRAIL (貴子坑步道)


Guizikeng Trail is a short and easy walk in Beitou District. In the spring you can see cherry blossom, in summer you can come to enjoy the irrigation canal, and in winter you can round off the day with a trip to the nearby hot springs.

BIHU TRAIL (碧湖步道)


This really easy walk in Neihu is suitable for pretty much anyone who can climb a few steps. In the summer remember to bring a towel so you can have a paddle in the stream that runs through Dagouxi Park.

CARP HILL (鯉魚山)


Carp Hill may not be the highest peak in Neihu District, nor does it have the prettiest scenery or most exciting walk. However it’s a good all-rounder and it can lay claim to being the route that I have walked the most. This is my go-to walk for when I’ve just got a couple of hours free and need to stretch my legs. It’s a great little workout, and it also has plenty to make it interesting time after time. There’s a lookout spot with views over Taipei, Neihu’s oldest Buddhist temple, a waterfall and a curious series of hand-crafted miniature landmarks.

DENG FENG CANAL TRAIL (登峰圳步道)

A quiet and gentle stroll along some of the irrigation canals in the hills of Shilin District. This would make a great summer walk for those hoping to escape the city heat.

ZHISHANYAN STROLL (芝山岩)

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In this quiet suburb of Taipei sits a hidden gem of a trail. Suitable for people of all ages and abilities, the trails of Zhishanyan have layer upon layer of history to reveal. On these slopes you can encounter a potted version of Taiwan’s past lives, the walk takes in prehistoric bones, the waves of mass immigration from China, a tragedy from the Japanese colonial era and Taiwan’s recent military past.

BIHU PARK AMBLE (碧湖公園)

A very short and simple stroll around a pretty lake. This walk should be an easy one to do if the weather isn’t being cooperative, or if you want to bring the kids.

TAIPEI GRAND HIKE – MAOKONG (南區茶鄉大縱走 – 貓空)

The closing section of Taipei’s long distance path leads you up into the tea-growing hills of Muzha. There’s a waterfall, one of Taiwan’s top 100 religious sites, (Chihnan Temple), and the opportunity to take a rest stop in your pick of Maokong’s famous tea houses.

TAIPEI GRAND HIKE – NANGANG MOUNTAIN RANGE AND FUYANG BRANCH LINE (南區茶鄉大縱走 – 南港山系/富陽支線)


The Taipei Grand Hike’s southern arm stretches over the peaks of the Nangang mountain range and up to the huge temples and tea plantations of Muzha. In this section, you will experience wonderful views over Taipei, some of the most popular trails in the city as well as some much quieter, less frequented routes. Take in 360 degree views, historic trails, a mountain-side cemetery and a whole load of temples. This walk is a great way to start your Taipei Grand Hike adventure.

TAIPEI GRAND HIKE – FENG GUI ZUI TO DAGOUXI RIVERSIDE PARK (北區稜線大縱走 – 風櫃嘴/大溝溪生態治水園)

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The fourth installment of the Taipei Grand Hike takes you to some beautiful and quiet corners of Yangmingshan National Park, as well as some of the more popular scenic spots in Neihu. The best thing about this portion is that it has an abundance of water, from the natural and charming stream running alongside Shuangxigou Old Trail, to the manmade Sweet Water Lake, and the easily accessible Yuanjue waterfall.

GOUYINQIN OLD TRAIL ALONG WEILUN CANAL (狗殷勤古道/尾崙水圳/平頂古圳步道)

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Tucked away behind the National Palace Museum you’ll find the unassuming entrance to this trail. If you’ve eaten your fill of museum exhibits and choose to follow the old stone steps up the hill, then you will come face to face with one aspect of life in old Taiwan which is still very much alive. The historic waterways in this area have been supplying water to the farms here for generations, and what could be more soothing than walking alongside flowing water.

EGRET HILL (白鷺鷥山)


Egret Hill is probably not on most people’s radar, but if you’re looking for a place for a family stroll, a lazy day walk then it’s definitely worth considering. As well as offering a short and straightforward walk through some pretty trees, the path leads you back to the MRT station via the beautiful Dahu Park.

MOUNT DATUN MULTI PEAK TRAIL (大屯主峰連峰步道)

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Right on the western edge of Yangmingshan National Park you can find a quieter alternative to some of the park’s busier walks. The Mount Datun trail takes in three peaks. Short but strenuous roped sections lead you over the west and south peaks followed by some serious steps up to the main peak, and then a gentle coasting down to finish at Erziping.

PINGDING HISTORIC CANAL TRAIL (坪頂古圳步道)

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Some pretty easy walking in some exceedingly picturesque surroundings. Ping Ding Old Canal cuts its way through a quiet corner of Yangmingshan park where you can find gently flowing water and terrace farming to enjoy.

JIANTAN HIKING TRAIL TO WENDE (劍潭山親山往文德)

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Sandwiched between the busy Zhongshan district and the more northern Shilin district rises a green ridge stretching from near Jiantan station in the west to Neihu in the east. A big network of trails of varying difficulties crisscrosses this area and offers the city explorer plenty of opportunities for fun.

FIREFLY SPOTTING IN TAIPEI ON TIGER MOUNTAIN (虎山的螢火蟲)


You don’t need to travel to the remote mountains of central Taiwan to experience the magic of seeing fireflies lighting up the evening forest. Hushan has a trail within walking distance of the MRT which is adapted for firefly viewing in peak season. If you visit Taiwan in April or May, you should definitely set aside an evening to step into this enchanting realm of fireflies, night birds and noisy frogs.

QINGTIANGANG CIRCULAR TRAIL (擎天崗環形步道)

A gentle and incredibly scenic circular route around the famous, cow-grazed grasslands of Qingtiangang in Yangmingshan National Park. This trail is accessible by public transport and should be ok for anyone who can handle some steps and an uneven walking surface. Make sure to come on a clear day, (when you can see Qixing Mountain peak from the city), in order to enjoy the views at their best.

JUANSI WATERFALL TRAIL to LENGSHUIKENG (絹絲瀑布/冷水坑)

A gentle and relaxing stroll beside a stream with plenty to enjoy. This walk will take you past a couple of historical remains, a charming waterfall, around a couple of interesting ponds, over Jingshan suspension bridge and finishes at Lengshuikeng Visitor Centre.

MOUNT SHAMAO TRAIL (紗帽山)

An easy spring hike in Yangmingshan national park for lizard lovers to enjoy. If you go at the right time of day, you can soak your feet (and body) afterwards in the public hot spring baths.

QIXING SHAN (七星山)

An exciting hike through the uplands of Yangmingshan National Park with the promise of a hotspring soak for your feet at the end.