Your trip to Taiwan will never be complete if you will not visit and see the stunning beauty of Taroko Gorge National Park. It is one of the top tourist destinations in the old Peninsula Formosa located on the east coast city of Hualien.
Known as the Grand Canyon of Taiwan due to its incredible 19 kilometer-long gorge and ravine. It has spectacular marble and rock formations which appear to rise like tall buildings.
How To Get There And Get Around
There are flights and trains available to Hualien from Taipei, Kaohsiung and Taichung. From Hualien, you can either take a taxi or a bus to Taroko Gorge which is quite affordable.
From Hualien, you can go to the visitor’s center as they offer a whole day tour in a bus ranging from USD 8 to 10 per person. If you want a private car or taxi, you can hire it for half day (USD 50 to USD 80) or full day (USD 80 to USD 100). For the adventurous ones, you can rent a bicycle or explore Taroko Gorge by foot.
Exploring Taroko Gorge National Park
We opted to join the tour with a bus to the National Park. The roads along the entire stretch of Taroko gorge has many tunnels. They are narrow and the drivers are very cautious when passing through especially if there is a another vehicle ahead. There are lots of zigzag but barely noticeable as the views around are exhilarating.
The Eternal Spring Shrine
Also known as Chang Chun Shrine, is the initial stop of our tour. The shrine was erected as commemorative to the workers who lost their lives constructing the road across central Taiwan.
Swallow Grotto Trail
It is one of the most popular stops in the entire Taroko Gorge National Park. The grotto provides an amazing sight of the river below, which shaped a narrow canyon. There is also a long suspension footbridge which is only open for visitors who have special permit.
Buluowan is a hill-top grassland with a terrace which is perfect for picnic and unwinding. It is divvied into Lower Terrace and Upper Terrace. You can take the trail to reach the river valley from the Lower Terrace. Then visit the exhibition halls where you can discover the aboriginal culture of the Taroko Tribe. In the upper terrace, there is a 300-meter Bamboo Groves trail, where you can enjoy the scenic bamboo forest and the attractive sight of a huge rock entirely held by the Strangling Figs Tree.
A day tour in Taroko National Park is certainly fun and amazing as you can get to enjoy the great phenomenon of nature. If you have extra days in Hualien then you can also try to stay overnight in one of the hotels within Taroko and be close to natural surroundings.
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