Exploring the endless trails of Taipei’s volcanic neighbor
Taiwan is full of hiking trails for those who crave for some outdoor activity spending little to no money on a regular basis. Whether it is a small hill trapped in the middle of the concrete jungle, a mountain just in the city outskirts, or a multi-day journey to a summit, hiking in Taiwan is somewhat the “unofficial” backpacking activity for the weekends, or whenever there is free time, for that matter.
Usually referred as Yangming “Mountain”, this popular national park in Taipei City is actually a mountain range that extends across the north, and also makes a natural border on the north and northwest with the neighboring New Taipei City. Not only its Seven Star Peak is the highest point in the capital city of Taiwan, with an elevation of 1120 meters, Yangming Mountain is also Taiwan’s largest dormant volcano.
Abundant flora and beautiful fauna welcome those who visit and travel across the gloomy forests and picturesque grasslands. And with plenty of hiking routes to choose from, it really depends on the adventurous spirit and available time to stay here, before the sun goes down, that is.
While hikers and nature lovers visit this place for its waterfalls, ponds, natural hot springs, and fumaroles. Many weekend warriors take a car, bike, or motorcycle and drive the winding roads that run through the mountains looking for movie-like landscapes.
Reaching Yangming Mountain is also convenient and inexpensive. There are several bus options that go from different parts of Taipei City, straight to the main starting points for hiking and many picnic spots. The tricky part, though, is to be lucky enough and enjoy clear good weather at the time of visiting. After a few previous attempts, such was my luck during my most recent visit.
This gallery depicts my route through Taipei’s sleeping mountain, which started from Shengren Bridge bus stop to Qingtiangang Grassland. This hike is one that can be done in about 4 hours (not including the stops for pictures and resting).
All pictures were taken with the Canon EOS M50 camera system.