While Taiwan’s efficient metro system, particularly in Taipei, is well-known, there are plenty of other hidden transportation gems to uncover throughout the island. From quaint mountain railways and scenic ferry rides to nostalgic heritage trains, this blog will take you on a journey beyond the metro, showcasing lesser-known transportation options that offer unique experiences and a deeper connection with Taiwan’s rich culture and natural beauty.
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Mountain Railways: Ascend to New Heights:
Taiwan’s mountainous terrain is home to charming mountain railways that provide breathtaking vistas and unforgettable experiences. The Alishan Forest Railway, for example, takes you on a scenic journey through misty forests and tea plantations, offering panoramic views of the sunrise from Alishan Mountain. Similarly, the Jiufen-Keelung Mountain Line offers a nostalgic ride through rugged mountains, old tunnels, and historical towns.
Coastal Ferries: Sail Along Scenic Shores:
Taiwan’s stunning coastline begs to be explored, and coastal ferries provide an enchanting way to do so. Hop aboard a ferry from Tamsui in Taipei to Bali, a quaint fishing village with a laid-back atmosphere and picturesque streets. Alternatively, take a ferry from Taitung to the Green Island, where you can enjoy pristine beaches, coral reefs, and volcanic landscapes.
Hakka Trains: Step into Taiwan’s Heritage:
Taiwan’s Hakka culture has a rich history, and riding the Hakka trains allows you to delve into this cultural heritage. The Pingxi Line, for instance, is a nostalgic train route that passes through charming towns, historic bridges, and stunning waterfalls. During the Sky Lantern Festival, you can release your own lantern and witness the night sky illuminated with thousands of colorful lanterns.
River Boats: Sail through Scenic Waterways:
Taiwan’s rivers offer serene and picturesque settings for exploration. Take a river boat tour along the Tamshui River, which flows through Taipei, to experience the city from a different perspective. You can also embark on a boat trip along the Love River in Kaohsiung, passing under illuminated bridges and enjoying the vibrant ambiance of this waterfront district.
Bike Rentals: Pedal through Taiwanese Beauty:
For an active and eco-friendly transportation option, rent a bike and explore Taiwan’s scenic landscapes at your own pace. Many cities and towns offer bike rental services, providing an excellent opportunity to discover hidden trails, riverside paths, and rural areas. The Sun Moon Lake and the East Coast Scenic Area are particularly popular for cycling, offering stunning views and tranquil surroundings.
Electric Scooters: Sustainable Urban Mobility:
To experience the hustle and bustle of Taiwanese cities while maintaining a sustainable approach, consider renting an electric scooter. These eco-friendly vehicles are widely available in urban areas, offering a convenient way to navigate through crowded streets and explore local neighborhoods.
While Taiwan’s metro system is efficient and well-known, the island has so much more to offer in terms of transportation. From mountain railways that showcase stunning landscapes to coastal ferries that reveal the beauty of Taiwan’s shores, each lesser-known transportation gem offers a unique perspective on the island’s culture and natural wonders. So, step beyond the metro, embrace these hidden gems, and embark on a truly unforgettable journey through Taiwan’s captivating landscapes and cultural heritage.
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