Trends & Guides

10 Taiwan Hidden Gems Not to be Missed!

24 August 2018 | Klook Singapore

Taiwan is one of South East Asia’s best holiday destination with so much to explore! From hot springs to mountains to even secret valleys, the possibilities are endless! If you’re tired of the usual skyscrapers and the hustle and bustle of the crowded city, why not explore the scenic side of Taiwan? Take the off beaten track and and visit these underrated spots that is worth a trip down for your complete Taiwan holiday!

Bonus: One of the best ways to travel from cities to cities in Taiwan would be via the Taiwan High Speed Rail! Travel smart and Klook your Unlimited 3 Day THSR pass for the best deal. From Taipei to Kaohsiung, the THSR helps you get to your destination in the fastest way possible. To find out more about the THSR and the cities it cover, read our THSR pass guide to discover the pass that best suits your travel needs!

1. Beitou Hell Valley

Thanks to its location in the mountainous region of Taiwan, Beitou is home to various hot springs including the Beitou Hell Valley. One of Taiwan’s 12 Great Sites, this hot thermal valley is not to be missed.

With its temperature ranging from 80-100℃, the heat emitted from the pond is almost as though you’ve experienced the fires of hell! However, the sulphuric steam rising from the surface of the pond and dancing in the air is a magical sight that will leave you awe-struck!

Beitou Hell Valley
Wenquan Road, Beitou District, Taipei City, Taiwan 112
Opening hours: Daily, 9am to 5pm

Bonus: And since you’re around the area, why not experience one of Taiwan’s best hot springs and spa! Spend the day soaking your nerves away at the Spring City Resort Beitou Hot Spring Spa and take your pick with 9 different pools of varying temperatures. Not to mention the white sulphur spring within the resort that will leave your skin feeling as soft as a baby’s!

2. Lanyu (Orchid Island)

Home to the Yami aboriginal tribe, Lanyu also known as the Orchid Island is an untouched area of Taiwan that is worth a visit! A 2 to 3 hours ferry ride away, this hidden gem is a great nature spot to spend a relaxing day away from the hustle and bustle of life.

Visit the Hong Tou Village to learn more about the aboriginal people and their livelihood of fishing that has helped them to survive through the times. Get up close with the colour traditional Yami fishing boats docked on the rocks that are built by hand without the use of nails! If you’re lucky, you might even be able to spot the villagers out on sea hunting for the island’s staple - flying fish!

Due to the high occurrence of typhoons in this area, various interesting rock formations are scattered around the coastal area. Located at the hills, take some time to spot the iconic ones such as the Jade Rock which features a smaller rock within a larger rock.

Alternatively, head to the north east coast of the island and visit the Lovers Cave - where you can witness a heart shaped reflection in the inner pond of the cave. One of the best places to witness the sunset, come here at dawn to witness the romantic sight with your better half.

Source: Flickr

Plus, if you enjoy snorkelling, take a dive into the crystal clear waters around the island and make friends with the fishes underwater!

Orchid Island
Address: Lanyu Township, Taitung County, Taiwan 952

3. Dulan Township

Source: ellieroad on Instagram

Known to be an art enclave thanks to the Dulan Sugar Factory, this little town is one of exotic atmosphere. Thanks to its cultural fusion of indigenous people Taiwanese and foreigners, there’s a mix of everything here that one can enjoy.

Roam the streets and discover various murals and paintings on the walls that are perfect for your next Instagram upload!

Source: Piyactengonatafa on Instagram

Home to the Amis tribe, take part in cultural activities and learn more about the unique aboriginal culture that is native to this quaint town. The best period to visit would be the months of July and August where the whole town comes together for the Harvest Festival! A celebration of dance to thank the Gods and their ancestors for the town’s yearly harvest, this is akin to the Amis’s version of Chinese New Year!

Source: cruzologic on Instagram

Or visit the iconic Dulan Sugar Factory, a retired sugar factory that is now converted into one of the hottest hangout spots for the younger community in Dulan. The hottest spot on Saturday evenings, visit the Dulan Sugar Factory Cafe and chill out to local performances by Taiwanese indie artists - complete with an icy jug of beer!

Dulan Township
Address: Dulan, Donghe Township, Taitung County 959, Taiwan (R.O.C.)

4. Qixing Mountain

The highest mountain in northern Taiwan, Qixing Mountain literally translates to the “Seven Star Mountain”! Standing at a height of 1120 meters within the Yang Ming Shan region, hike up to the peak and behold the majestic sight of nature that will leave you in wonder.

Also Taiwan’s highest dormant volcano, experience sulphuric air and pass by unique scenes such as steam coming out from the rocks nearing the peak of the mountain. Scale the mountain and make your way down to the beautiful sight of lalangs swaying as the breeze goes by!

Qixing Mountain
Address: Start your hike at Xiaoguanyin trailhead and continue on the path. This trek will take about 3 hours 15 minutes.

5. Mukumugi

If you love to swim, you wouldn’t want to miss out on the paradise like lagoon that is Mukumugi! With water from the Qingshui Stream that flows through the valley, this area is filled with both deep and shallow pools that is perfect for wading!

This hidden gem is located in the Tongmen Village of Hualien City and is a paradise unknown to many tourists headed to Taiwan. The hike up to the valley takes about 3 hours and the best way to cool down would be to jump right into the crystal clear waters that greets you upon your arrival.

Plus, this area is a heavily protected area with a limit of 600 visitors daily to ensure that this natural oasis doesn’t get oversaturated with crowds. And you can be sure that this untouched beauty is one that will leave you awe-struck!

Source: mmmax_huang on Instagram

You can even have a splashing good time jumping off the high rocks - a past time that the aboriginal children of the area love!

To get to Mukumugi, don’t forget your passport as every visitor has to obtain an Entry Mountain Permit from the local police station located at the entrance to the area.

Address: Tongmen Village, Tongmen Township, Hualien County 972, Taiwan (R.O.C.)
Opening hours: Daily, 6am to 6pm

6. Golden Waterfall

Located in the Jiufen area where gold mines once flourished during the Japanese occupation lies the beautiful sight of Taiwan’s Golden Waterfall. This gorgeous sight of golden water and rocks surrounding the area is due to the heavy metal elements such as copper and iron from abandoned mineral processing plants and old Jinhuashi mines of this area.

A natural beauty, this waterfall was also formed naturally thanks fo the rainfall faced over the decades. It’s unique shape is simply due to the erosion of the rocks and forming cracks that eventually resulted in this majestic spot! Though pretty to look at, be careful not to get close to the waters as it is highly toxic!

Golden Waterfall
Address: Ruifang District, New Taipei City 224, Taiwan (ROC)
Opening hours: Daily, 24 hours

7. Shuiyang Forest

Source: Flickr

Home to a unique lake, the Shuyiang Forest is a once in a lifetime visit one has to make whne in Taiwan! Also known as “fallen heaven”, the beauty of this landscape can be attributed to the devastating 921 Earthquake that happened in 1999.

Formed out of a landslide dam, the Shuyiang lake was born, also affecting the trees in the area! With the Cunninghamia trees soaked in water, they were transformed into a sea of white trunks surrounding the lake.

Source: euuuuenjoy on Instagram

The best way to experience this natural beauty would be to plan for a two-day trip and camp through the forest. Due to it’s remote location, it is slightly difficult to plan for a single day trip there. But you won’t regret your decision as when night falls, one will be amazed gazing up to the sky to be greeted by a multitude of glistening stars!

Shuiyang Forest
Address: Sanli Ln., Zhushan Township, Nantou County 557, Taiwan (R.O.C.)
Opening hours: Daily, 24 hours

8. Gaomei Wetlands

Gaomei Wetlands is known to be one of the most stunning tidal flats one will encounter while in Taiwan. South of the mouth of Dajia river, soak your toes into the soft mud of this area to fully experience the wetlands. Alternatively, you can take a stroll on the boardwalk or you can even opt to cycle around the area!

Keep your eyes peeled for a myriad of creatures such as mudcrabs, mud-skippers and even various rare birds pecking at the ground for their next meal.

Famous for the windmills surrounding the area, the best time to enjoy the scenery is at sunset! Take a whiff of the fresh air and feel the breeze against your hair as you watch the changing colours of the sky. Don’t forget to snap a shot of this romantic scene for that perfect holiday memory!

Gaomei Wetlands
Address: Qingshui Dist., Taichung City 436, Taiwan (R.O.C.)
Opening hours: Daily, 24 hours

Bonus: For a fuss-free trip to Gaomei Wetlands, Klook your Gaomei Wetland & Rainbow Military Community tour and experience the best Taichung has to offer - all in a day! Apart from the Gaomei Wetlands, get the chance to experience the Rainbow Village filled with colourful paintings. Stop by at the National Taichung Theater and Dajia Jenn Lann Temple before ending the day off at Feng Chia Market where you can go on a buffet of local delicacies at this night market.

9. Black Dwarf Caves

Source: kevin70227 on Instagram

Located on Xiao Liuchiu’s west coast of Pingtung county, the Black Dwarf Cave is one that has a historical significance in the area. Previously colonised by the Dutch, this was one of the spots where they cruelly burned the aboriginals inhabitants living in these caves till they were black - thus the name of this place.

Source: seeyouqq on Instagram

With a narrow walkway, this cave is a hidden maze of unique lava rock formations. Tunnel through the route and don’t forget a torchlight as it can get pretty dark in these caves. And at the end of the trial, be greeted by a lookout point and feel the breeze over the Taiwan strait!

Black Dwarf Caves
Address: 929, Taiwan, Pingtung County, Liuqiu Township
Opening hours: Daily, 9am to 5pm
Admission: NTD120

10. Laomei Green Reef

Located at the Shimen district, Laomei Green Reef is a nature spot that is worth a visit! Formed out of volcanic rocks from the Datun volcanoes eruption that happened decades ago, be greeted by a whole shoreline is filled with these rocks!

A different kind of greenery that one usually encounters in the forest, check out the luscious green algae that blooms on top of the rocks.

A sight that one can only encounter when the tide is low, do remember to plan your visit to avoid disappointment. The best months to visit the green reef would be during the months of April to May where the weather conditions are ideal. The rocks tend to be slippery as well so do be careful when exploring the area!

Another great place to catch the sunset, spend a relaxing evening here enjoying the sea breeze as you watch the sun disappear into the sealine.

Laomei Green Reef
Address: Laomei Community, Shimen District, New Taipei City
Opening hours: Daily, 24 hours

This article is written in collaboration with Klook.

About Klook:
Klook is Asia’s largest in-destination services booking platform featuring more than 35,000 activities across 150 destinations. Apart from offering some of the best deals on the market, travellers enjoy special skip-the-queue privileges and instant confirmation to attractions like Tokyo Disneyland, Hong Kong Peak Tram and more!

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