After spending the morning in Beitou, we waited for the bus that goes to Yangmingshan. Similar to the bus and trains in Taipei City, there is a definite schedule for the bus going to Yangmingshan so we made sure that there was enough time for us to be in the bus stop.
I don’t recall anymore how long the bus ride to Yangmingshan is but it was a smaller bus compared to the regular buses around Taipei. There was a lot of stops on the way and a lot of people are getting on and off. It was a bit of a drive and we were going up. Even if I was just inside the bus, I can already feel that it was going to be a bit colder than in the city. The weather around that time ranges from 20-22C but when we reached Yangmingshan, it was 18C.
Yangmingshan is the last stop and after that we needed to ride another bus for us to get around the park. It was about 2:30 in the afternoon and we were just in time for the bus. We didn’t really know which stop we were supposed to go off but then a lot of people started going off at this stop and we decided to follow everyone else and went on the hike.
The Erziping hike is a 2 km. Walk. I didn’t know what to expect and I wasn’t wearing hike friendly clothes, but I did have walking shoes on. The whole hike wasn’t bad, except for the steep ascent at the start and the air was pretty thin. My whole body got a jumpstart and I was really out of breath within five minutes! But after that the rest of the hike is just a straight path. There’s a lot of people walking, even senior citizens. There are markers along the way to tell you how much walking you have left.
After a bit more walking, I had the surprise of my life. The view was so beautiful!
I was pleasantly surprised! I was really happy, and I must have said that to my friend plenty of times. This is my first hike and in the forestry path we took on, I expected it was just going to be some kind of rest stop or view of the mountains. Not this.
It’s so obvious with my clothes that this hike is unexpected. Everyone else is wearing comfortable clothes, or a hoodie whilst I am dressed like I came from an office meeting. Good thing the hike was easy and it was cold so I didn’t face any wardrobe challenges.
There was another trail that leads to somewhere should you wish to go with the hike further. We tried walking for a bit but didn’t go too far because we needed to catch the last bus that was picking us up and it seemed a bit more difficult to go on to.
I could easily spend the rest of the day in that place. It was peaceful, the weather was cool, and it had a lovely view (and modern bathrooms). I lowkey wished that we went there right away and if we had food with us, we could probably have gone on a picnic. I’m not sure what we’d do for the whole day, but I wouldn’t mind just sitting and basking in the view. It’s a view that I will certainly never get tired of.
This is another remarkable thing about Taiwan that I really appreciated. The whole country is filled with a lot of natural wonders and the government has tried to make visiting them very convenient to all kinds of people but keeping in as much of the nature part as they can. For someone who has a negative perception of hikes — I don’t mind long walks but all the hikes I know of always present challenging sections such as climbing up steep rocks, being on slippery slopes, the trail was heaven sent. I mentioned seeing a lot of senior citizens going there by themselves so you can already tell how easy the hike is. If you’re not used to cold weather like I am, you can really feel the air get thinner while you walk up. Hiking in Taiwan is a pleasant surprise for me and one that I don’t mind going on again. This is my first hike and even if I didn’t get a hiking fever, it has changed my perception a lot.
The bus came and we got on and I was able to get a seat. It was the last bus going down and there were so many passengers. The bus was really filled. This is probably the only time I have been to a Taiwanese public transportation that was filled to the brim.
We got back to the bus stop a little past six, and there was a long queue for the bus going back to the city. Going back to the city, it was really crowded inside the bus and there was a lot of traffic — my only experience of traffic in Taiwan. I think we arrive back at the city at around 9.
I read a little bit more about Yangmingshan park and they have a floral garden and other hiking paths. If you’re looking for a nature experience in Taiwan, then a visit to Yangmingshan is definitely worth it. Hiking to Erziping Trail is good enough for a half day, but I suggest doing it in the morning than in the afternooon so that you can have more time to dawdle and enjoy the views.