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8 days: From Taipei to Kaohsiung. Crossing the mountains

FROM TAIPEI TO KAOHSIUNG, 8 Full days licensed English speaking guide/driver: Hualien; Taroko, Cingjing:, Sun Moon lake, Alishan, Tainan and Kaohsiung.

Itinerary Features

Highlights:
  • All transportation including 5-seater sedan / 8-seater van and driver;
  • English speaking licensed guide;
  • In one day you will go from the ocean to 3.275 meters above the sea;
  • Be amazed by the “sea of clouds”;
  • This tour can be customized.

Travelling with a licensed driver/guide means: 
– You can change plans in case you want or need.
– You can decide your daily schedule, your morning wake up alarm and for how long you want to stay or visit a place or a restaurant where you would like to stop for food.

Prices won’t appear in here. It will be created according to your budget.  Price depends on the type of accommodation, number of participants and the season. Please do contact us for a quotation.

Itinerary:  

  • 1st day: Taipei – Hualien ( visit the northern coast, Jiufen, Shifen ) – with English speaking guide / driver & car

  • 2nd day: Hualien – crossing Taroko Gorge – Cingjing – with English speaking guide / driver & car

  • 3rd day: Cingjing – Sun Moon lake – with English speaking guide / driver & car

  • 4th day: Sun Moon lake – Alishan – with English speaking guide / driver & car

  • 5th day: Alishan – Tainan – with English speaking guide / driver & car

  • 6th day: Tainan – Kaohsiung ( FoGuanshan on the way to Kaohsiung ) – with English speaking guide / driver & car

  • 7th day: Kaohsiung – with English speaking guide / driver & car

  • 8th day: Back to Taipei with High speed train or continue your trip.

 

Day 1

Taipei – Northern Coast - Hualien

In the morning pick up at the hotel and leave to visit the Northern Coast, Jiufen and Shifen.

JIUFEN OLD STREET

During the Qing Dynasty, this isolated village housed only nine families; thus the village would request ‘nine portions’ every time shipments arrived from town. “Jiu” means “nine”, “Fen” means “portions”. Until the 1950’s, Jiufen was a prosperous gold mining town but in the next years the town started to decline. This small village is located within hills, next to the mountains, and facing the ocean. Its special location saved it from becoming another anonymous mining ghost town. Jiufen is now a popular tourist destination for Taipeites eager to relieve scenes from the past.

SHIFEN WATERFALL

Shifen Waterfall is a 40 metre tall waterfall that creates a rainbow as it splashes into the lake, widely regarded as the most scenic in all of Taiwan.

SHIFEN SKY LANTERN

Shifen is a small town about an hour away from Taipei by car. The main reason tourists come to Shifen is to release sky lanterns. Historically, sky lanterns were released by brave villagers who stayed behind when their villages were ransacked by outlaws, signalling to fellow villagers who escaped to safety that it was safe for them to return. Today though, sky lanterns are released as a way to make.
Depending on the time, other visits will be discussed directly with your guide on the way to Hualien.

Dinner at the night market or in a local restaurant ( not included, guide will suggest )

Overnight in Hualien
Type of accommodations available: B&B – 3* or 4*.
5* hotel available in Taroko Gorge ( not in the city of Hualien )

Traditional Art center Yilan

Day 2

Hualien - Taroko - Cijing

Breakfast at the hotel and meeting with your guide.
Leave to explore the breathtaking, world-renowned Taroko National Park. Enjoy a guided tour of its spectacular mountains, marble canyons, gorges, rapid rivers, and stunning waterfalls.  Crossing the Central Mountain Range on the Central Cross-Island highway and enjoy the wondrous high mountain scenery.  Explore the breathtaking, world-renowned
Taroko National Park. Enjoy a guided tour of its spectacular mountains, marble canyons, gorges, rapid rivers, and stunning waterfalls. Visit the eternal Spring Shrine and the Swallow Grotto trail till the Bayang Waterfall through the Water Curtain Tunnel (itinerary might change according to the weather).  Pass by the Bilu Sacred Tree.
On the way to Cinging cross the Hehuanshan and its 3.422 mt, one of the most beautiful and breathtaking mountain landscapes in Taiwan.
Arrive in Cijing and check in.  Taiwanese Dinner in local panoramic place.
Free time for dinner, the guide will suggest.

Overnight in Cingjing 
Type of accommodations available: B&B – 3* or 4* hotel.

Taroko

Day 3

Cingjing - Sun Moon lake

After breakfast, meet your guide/driver and drive to Sun Moon Lake 

Breakfast at the hotel.

After breakfast meeting with your English speaking guide and driver and transfer to Sun Moon Lake. On the way to SML and depending on the weather – your guide will suggest today’s itinerary with some visits or just go directly to Sun Moon Lake to enjoy the area.

Arrival in SML and time to discover and enjoy the majestic scenery.

Taiwan’s largest freshwater lake, located at an elevation of 748 meters above sea level. The lake is divided into two sections by Lalu Island. One section is circular, somewhat shaped like the sun, while the other is more crescent shaped, similar to the moon. Thus, this is how the lake got its name. Lalu Island is considered the dwelling place of the ancestors and the sacred land of the Thao tribe. Thao legend tells that the tribe originally lived in Alishan but hunters following a mysterious white deer found their way to the banks of this lake and found it to be a good place to live. This is a very diverse scenic area with more than a dozen hiking trails, cycling paths and boat tours. In addition to a Thao village, there are several temples to explore including those devoted to Confucius and to two monks from the Tang Dynasty. 

Depending on the arrival time and the weather: take a boat ride to Ita Thao Wharf to Xuanguang Temple or cycling around one of the top ten cycling routes in the world or take the Gondola to the top of the hill and enjoy the magnificent view. 

There are several activities you can choose (OPTIONALS, can be decided with the guide or book in advance.) :

– Cycle round one of the best bike paths in the world: It is about 30 km with hills and will take 3-4 hours with stops at a few of the attractions along the way. A local guide will follow you and show the paths.

– Cable car overlooking the lake: On a good day you can enjoy stunning views of the lake with the trip taking about 7 minutes each way, however in peak times the wait can be hours.

– Formosan Aboriginal Cultural Village;

– Boat tour (Shueishe, Ita Thao and Xuanguang Temple piers)

– Visit Ita Thao: is the origin of Thao people; it is believed that their ancestors, originally from Alishan, chased a white deer to a faraway lake where they found an abundance of fish. They returned to their homeland, brought the whole tribe, and decided to settle down at Sun Moon Lake, as we call it today. Although tribal life is almost extinct now, a visit to Ita Thao allows you to experience the aboriginal culture and you get to taste delicious aboriginal food too.

– Antique Assam Tea Farm: Shuili Snake Kiln is the town where remains the eldest tradition of kiln-making. There is a biggest kiln work which is in the Guinness Book of Records by the size of 6.68 meters.
– Visit the Ci’en Pagoda and its panoramic views of this breathtaking lake and its surrounding mountains.

Overnight in Sun Moon lake Type of accommodations available: B&B – 3* or 4* and 5* hotel.

Sun Moon lake

Day 4

Sun Moon lake - Alishan

Breakfast at the hotel.
After breakfast visit Sun Moon Lake or take the road to Alishan ( you can decide with the guide). 

The Alishan National Scenic Area covers four townships in Chiayi County, located in southern Taiwan. It is famous for its towering mountains, pristine forests, cherry blossoms, tea plantations, coffee plantations, and indigenous Tsou culture. Although this scenic area is rich in natural forest, Alishan was once home to a flourishing forestry industry. Traces of that can be seen in the small town of Fenqihu and in the narrow gauge railway that zigzags up the mountain.
On the way to Alishan stop in some beautiful viewpoints and at the Elephant Mountain National Scenic area to learn about tea culture and magnificent views.

Your guide will also suggest some stops along the road; there are several train stations with small villages and old street markets as well as stunning tea plantations.

 

Lunch on the way will be in a local place with aboriginal taste and cooking.

In the afternoon transfer  to Alishan. Dinner in Alishan is not included. 

Overnight in Alishan Area.  Type of accommodations available: B&B – 3* or 4*.

Alishan

Day 5

Alishan - Tainan

Early in the morning you will take the Alishan Mountain Railway to Zhushan Station and witness one of the famous sunrises. You will then have a walk at the Alishan Forest Recreation Area and meet the thousand year old Taiwan cypress tree.
Back to the hotel and breakfast.
After breakfast, transfer to Tainan. Depending on the weather some stops in the mountain will be suggested by your guide.

Arrival in Tainan and check in at the hotel.

Visit the city center of Tainan, Taiwan’s oldest and fifth-largest city which was formerly its capital during the Qing Dynasty, is one of Taiwan’s greatest hidden gems.

Overnight in Tainan.
 Type of accommodations available: B&B – 3* or 4* and 5* hotels.

 

Tainan

Day 6

Alishan - Kaohsiung

Breakfast at the hotel and meeting with your guide/driver.

In the morning you will explore Tainan and the AnPing Old Fort area.

After Lunch ( not included ) transfer by private van to Fo guan Shan, the largest Buddhist monastery in Taiwan. Visit Fo Guan Shan ( entrance is free but donations are very appreciated) and after the visit take the road to Kaohsiung.

Dinner free and night time boat tour on the Love River ( optional and to be book and paid on the spot).

Overnight in Kaohsiung.
 Type of accommodations available: B&B – 3* or 4* and 5* hotels.

Fo guan Shan

Day 7

Kaohsiung

Breakfast at the hotel and meeting with the guide/driver at the lobby of the hotel.

Full day visit Kaohsiung and the surroundings: ( Sample itinerary, the order of the visits can change )

⇒ The British Consulate at Takow: built in 1867, it is the most antique western-style modern architecture as well as the first British Consulate in Taiwan. Shoushan, the “love” Deck from where you will enjoy the spectacular view of the city.

⇒ Kaohsiung Rose Basilica, designed in a Gothic style., was rebuilt in 1928 and is the largest cathedral in Taiwan and one of the 3 cathedrals in Asia.

⇒ Formosa Boulevard Station was rated second most beautiful subway stops in the world. The real treasure is underground — the 2,180-square-meter Dome of Light, a glass mural built into the ceiling of the station. The colorful ceiling was created by American-Italian artist Narcissus Quagliata. It’s the largest such glass installation in the world.

⇒ Lotus Pond is an artificial lake, ended in 1951, it is – as you can guess from the name – famous for the lotus plants!

Lotus Pond, only 5 Km from the city center, it can take around 2 to 3 hours to walk all around the lake. The most interesting thing about the pond is that there are more than twenty temples worshiping different deities around the lake. Among the temples, one of the main attractions is the Dragon and Tiger pagodas.

⇒ Dragon and Tiger Pagodas: The name comes form the the 2 buildings represented a dragon and tiger. Visitors enter the towers through the statues’ bodies. Entering the dragon’s mouth and exiting via the tiger’s mouth is believed to be auspicious. The towers are connected to the shore with a 9-angle bridge (九曲橋).

⇒ Cijin or Qijin Island: Cijin or Qijin Island is a small and narrow island about 10-15 minutes away by ferry from Kaohsiung harbor.

Here you will have some time to explore this little island. There are many bike rental shops on Cijin Island but you can rent or just take a drink in one of the bars on the beach and relax on the quiet Black Sand Beach.

If instead you want to visit the island with your bike don’t miss the Chi Jin Mazu or Tianhou Temple, one of Cijin Island’s foremost attractions. Opened in 1673, it’s Kaohsiung’s very first temple dedicated to Mazu, the Chinese goddess of the sea. Cihou Lighthouse and Cihou Fort are both offering great views of the ocean and island and a nice spot to take pictures. The colorful Rainbow Church – which is actually not a place of worship – is also a nice spot to take some photos due to its colorful architecture, it is located at Cijin Seaside Park.

Dinner in the city and overnight in Kaohsiung. 
 Type of accommodations available: B&B – 3* or 4* and 5* hotels.

Day 8

Kaohsiung ( end of the itinerary )

Breakfast at the hotel.

High speed train to Taipei  or other destinations. 
We do suggest to continue your trip towards Xialioqiu and Kenting. Or take the ferry or the plane to Penghu. 

useful information:

PLEASE NOTE:

  • Price will be calculated  for the dates you will request and for the number of participants and type of accommodation.
  • To confirm the reservation a deposit of 30% is required, final payment has to be done at least one week before the tour starts.
  • Due to the very limited space, we suggest to book this tour as earlier as possible.

CANCELLATION POLICY

  • Guests canceling at any point up to 31 days prior to this tour’s starting date will receive a full refund.
  • Cancellations made between 30 and 15 days prior to departure will receive a 70% refund.
  • Cancellations made between 14 and 7 days prior to departure will receive a 50% refund;
  • Cancellations made less than 7 days prior to departure are non-refundable.
  • There will be a 100% charge for no-shows.

OUR GUIDES AND DRIVERS: 

– Our guide/drivers are official licensed authorized guide. They drive carefully and they know the territory.
– Guide/Driver and car are available for 8 hours a day. 
– Guide/Driver can decide to change the itinerary in case of emergency as well as you can also decide to change or stop longer or skip one destination.

Request price & availability

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