The amazing thing about hiking in Taiwan is that in a single afternoon you can travel from rugged coastal cliffs…
The amazing thing about hiking in Taiwan is that in a single afternoon you can travel from rugged coastal cliffs through a maze of subtropical forested canyons to high elevation sub-alpine coniferous forests!
Did you know that Taiwan has a well-established network of hundreds of hiking trails, and the vast majority do not require a guide. Hiking tracks are rarely crowded, and visitors are more likely to meet friendly rambling locals than other international visitors.
Zhuilu Old Trail, Taroko National Park (east Taiwan)
The 10.3km Zhuilu Old Trail traverses Taroko National Park, and is one of the most easily-accessible hiking trails in Taiwan.
The trail leads hikers along the only remaining section of the old Hehuan Mountain Road that is still intact. At its most challenging part, it skirts along the side of the 1,100m-high Zhuilu Cliff, where you can walk along a ledge that is just 60cm wide at its narrowest point. The trail boasts bird’s-eye views of the Liwu River, which lies a vertigo-inducing 500m below. A number of hikers have been known to abandon their plans at the sight of where they are going!
Those looking for a gentler version of the Zhuilu Old Trail might want to consider the Lushui-Holiu Trail, which is just 2km long and gives the same spectacular views of the gorge, without the extreme cliff edges!
The Zhuilu Old Trail was reopened in 2008 on a permit-basis only. Please note that applications for the permit must be made at least a week in advance. See the Taroko National Park website for details.