Taipei Wulai

This weekend I had another interesting trip. This time to Kaohsiung in the south of Taichung. Before I tell you about this trip I have to finish my story from last weekend though:

As you know we went to Taipei for the last weekend. Saturday we visited Taipei Zoo and Maokong as well as a nightmarket. Sunday we went to Wulai and then back home to Taichung. So in this blog entry I want to tell you about my visit to Wulai:

Wulai is an area in the mountains around Taipei which is known for its hot springs and waterfalls. I really enjoyed my visit there and I recommend it if you don’t want to travel far from Taipei but still want to do hiking and see waterfalls. For the Taiwan trips with my sister and my boyfriend who will visit me here I won’t plan Wulai: Instead we will go to Taroko National Park. This is supposed to be a better place for hiking and waterfalls. And when it comes to the hot springs aspect of Wulai: This is much different to what I expected. What they call hot springs there are just small pools of hot water inside hotels (I expected a bit more nature and outdoor pools). But my travel guide book actually says that there are some free natural hot springs somewhere in the area. So with a bit more research we could have found them, maybe (I really should read my guide book BEFORE i visit places ^^). Other than that, Wulai offers many restaurant and small souvenir shops.

To go there we took a bus from the Xindian Station (MRT). We just managed to squeeze in the bus before it was full.

By the way: Don’t eat or drink on MRT in Taiwan! 😉

In the crowded bus:

First impressions of Wulai:

Waterfall a short distance walking from Wulai:

At the tourist information in Wulai we were told that there are more waterfalls at NeiDon National Forest Recreational Area. This place is only a short taxi ride from Wulai. As we were 5 people, taking a taxi was really cheap per person. While walking to the waterfall at Wulai was just a short stroll, at NeiDon we really had to walk a lot. That place has nice views on waterfalls but no shops or restaurants. There are some benches to sit down and there are simple toilets at some places in the area. The people at the ticket counter can call a taxi for the way back.

This picture shows waterfall views from Wulai (left) and NeiDon National Forest Recreational Area (right).

After all that walking we were eager to get some lunch and stopped at one of the many restaurants in Wulai.

To go back home we went to the big bus station at the main train station in Taipei. We asked at the Ubus counter for tickets to Taichung. They told us to wait more than 2 hours! It being already late in the evening we really didn’t want to wait so long. Instead we asked at another bus company that goes to Taichung: Aloha bus. They had a bus just a few minutes after we bought the tickets. It was a bit more expensive (still not more than 10 € per person) but it was soooo much more comfortable! I can really recommend this bus company. The seats are huge and they have a massage function! 😀

5 Comments Add yours

  1. StefanMuc says:

    I’ve been to Wulai too – but my waterfall picture didn’t come out nearly as well as yours. I liked it there, but probably won’t go again … it’s silly, but the many cables over the river just annoy me too much. Really it’s a touristy area, it relies on people wanting to visit, how is it possible that they can’t fix this eye sore?

    Did you take the cable car up the mountain? There is a very nice park up there, and you can rent some a boat and row around the lake there.

    Taroko is spectacularly beautiful, but can be rather crowded as it’s on the standard “Chinese tourist route” . I think I wouldn’t recommend it on weekends. Also if you want to do proper hiking you should investigate whether you need permits – not all routes are generally open to the public. Also check beforehand if the trails are accessible – sometimes trails disappear after a taifun, or are damaged so much that they can’t be used anymore.

    Some other good hikes are described here:

    We did the Sandiaoling Waterfall Walk and never met anyone on the trail. 🙂

    1. vena2taiwan says:

      Hi Stefan,

      True, the cables are not a pretty view. We didn’t take the cable car up the mountain… We weren’t sure if it is worth it as we didn’t have much information. Now that you say there is a lake with boats it sounds as if we missed something!

      I will go to Taroko next month – on a Monday and Tuesday, good that i didn’t plan it for a weekend! Can you recommend any route in Taroko? I will have to do some research as we only have limited time there.

      Thank you for the link, that’s really interesting!

  2. StefanMuc says:

    Hi Vena,

    Apart from the lake there is also a sort of “adventure playground”. I proposed to my wife there, I suppose that’s an adventure of sorts. 🙂

    I don’t really know much about hiking in Taroko, each time I wanted to go there, there was hurricane damage. The area is quite unstable ecologically, so I think it makes sense to actually pay attention when they close a trail. Some of the more interesting hikes require permits, I think. I’ve never really planned ahead sufficiently to think about permits …

  3. bjoerne says:

    The bus with the massage seats is a great tip. And your whole blog is awesome. Can’t stop reading.
    I’ll visit Taiwan for a few days in December.

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