INSTA-FAMOUS HIKES IN TAIWAN

Maybe you hike for the exercise, or maybe you hike to immerse yourself in nature, but for some people it’s all about the gram. The routes featured here are known to for their Instagrammable sights and frequently appear on Taiwanese hikers’ Instagram feeds. If you want to find the best outdoor Instagram locations in Taiwan, then this is a good place to start.

TAI’AN HIKING TRAIL (泰安登山步道)


Tai’an Hiking Trail is a short trail in Taichung’s northeastern Houli District. As well as the walk, you can enjoy a wander around Tai’an Railway Cultural Park, see the stunning red slopes of Huoyan Shan from a distance, and crack out your best model pose on the picturesque Da’an River Iron Bridge.

TURTLE ISLAND (龜山島)


Visiting Turtle Island makes for a great day trip in northern Taiwan. This post will tell you a little about the fascinating history of the island, as well as find out what to expect when you visit, and how to get there.

SANXIA LION’S HEAD MOUNTAIN (獅仔頭山/粽串尖)


Lion’s Head Mountain on the border of New Taipei’s Sanxia and Xindian Districts is one of several similarly named peaks scattered across the various counties of Taiwan. This particular lion offers excitement and adventure with a dash of history, and a visit is well worth the trouble of getting out there.

HUOYAN SHAN (火炎山)

Huoyan Shan’s flame-red slopes are an instantly recognisable landmark for motorists driving between Taichung and Miaoli. This formerly restricted nature reserve is home to a Minor 100 Peak, and has some of the most unique terrain that you’re likely to find in Taiwan.

MIAOLI’S LION’S HEAD MOUNTAIN (獅頭山)


Lion’s Head Mountain in Miaoli is just one of many peaks scattered across Taiwan to be named due to its resemblance to the King of the Jungle. What sets this particular lion apart from the others is its enduring role as a site of spiritual significance. Dotting the mountain’s slopes visitors will find a proliferation of temples, some of which have been open to worshippers for over a hundred years.

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)

TUCHENG TUNG BLOSSOM TRAIL (土城油桐花步道)


Every April and May the mountains around Taipei are cloaked with the white blossom of the tung tree. Getting out to observe this May ‘snowfall’ is a popular activity amongst the locals, and this trail in Tucheng is one of many places you can go to join in.

XIONG KONG NAN SHAN and YUNSEN FALLS (熊空南山/雲森瀑布)


This has definitely been one of my favourite hikes of the year. The walk starts with a reasonable climb through quiet and multi-layered forests to a peak that remained cool and breezy even in the summer heat. Then tracks down again to follow the playful Zhongkeng Stream as it spills and bounces it’s way through the valley. There are mountain views, grand waterfalls and even swimming holes to be enjoyed along the way. I will be adding this to my list of places to take visiting friends.

HUANGDIDIAN (皇帝殿)


This is the hike that made me fall in love with the trails and landscape of Taiwan. The first time I walked it was before I lived here, and the impression it made ran deep. This trail pretty much has it all: enthralling mountain views, exhilarating ridge walking, invigorating climbs and, (if you’re feeling bold enough), the opportunity to experience that famous Taiwanese friendliness by trying your hand at hitchhiking rather than walking back along the road.

BEIDELAMAN GIANT TREES (北得拉曼巨木步道)

Although most of Taiwan’s giant trees are found in remote forests with permit-restricted access, there are some just a short drive out of Taipei which can be seen by anyone willing to make the climb. (And who wouldn’t be willing to put in a bit of effort to visit these venerable old spirits.)

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.

SANDIAOLING WATERFALL TRAIL (三貂嶺瀑布步)

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This trail is one of the most popular day hikes in northern Taiwan, and for good reason. You’ll enjoy waterfalls, a shaded walk by a stream and a dash of adventure…and all easily accessible using public transport.

CAOLING HISTORIC TRAIL (草嶺古道)

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This historic and very accessible trail will take you over the hills from Dali to Fulong next to an inviting river stream. Better yet, you can look forward to a refreshing swim once you've reached your destination.

ST. MARIAN’S HIKING TRAIL (聖母山步道)

St. Marian’s Hiking Trail, also known more recently as Matcha Mountain is a well known trail in Yilan’s Jiaoxi District. It’s a big climb with views that are guaranteed to make you glad you made the effort.

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