Taiwan – Traveling deep into Taroko

Despite many years living not far away we had not yet been to Taiwan – we decided to remedy this by finally going as a family to discover the gorges of Taroko on the east coast of the island.

In Taroko, the most accessible of the scenic spots are packed with busloads of tourists, therefore it is advisable to pick your visit times wisely and explore the gorge a bit further to escape the crowds.

A permit is required for walking adventures off the main tourist sites but for shorter walks closer to the roads, which we did with our two young children, they are not needed – we saw a magnificent waterfall on one walk, followed a trail cut from rock alongside the gorge on another, and one day ended up at some hot springs nestled in the gorge beside the river, where you can bathe with the locals.

Note that Typhoons often visit Taroko with terrible force and as we saw ourselves they leave certain areas and trails of the park closed indefinitely.

If you are staying at the Silk Place Hotel you can take advantage of the spa and pool on top of the building to take in the splendor of the gorge.

Taroko and its gorges are really impressive and it would be nice to go back one day to explore some more.

Voyagista’s Tips

  • From Taipei take a plane or train to Hualien. A big problem getting to Taroko by train is getting tickets – because of demand you need to reserve tickets as soon as they become available online in the morning two weeks before your travel date. You therefore need to reserve your seats to go and return on different days as the become available. Try to book the fast trains if there are seats available. If you pay by credit card, you can pick up your tickets on the day at the station. The online credit card payment website is in chinese – you can get navigation support from this blog
  • Once you are there use rental scooters or taxis to get around
  • Make sure you check the park’s website to see what walks are open.
  • If you want to do some canyoning, hiking in the restricted areas, or explore other hidden parts of Taroko I recommend Hualien Outdoors
  • The Silk Place hotel is very nice (if you have a decent budget)

Have you been to Taroko Gorge? What are you tips?

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