For those looking for a thrilling experience, Taiwan has plenty to offer. From cycling up the country’s highest road to hiking it’s highest peak, one can spend weeks getting their adrenaline pumping. To help you plan an adventurous itinerary in Taiwan, here are our top suggestions.

Note: For help finding adventurous activities and making bookings you can also contact the Taiwan Tourism Board at tbrocnyc@gmail.com or info@taiwantourism.org, as sometimes websites are only in Chinese.

For those looking for a thrilling experience, Taiwan has plenty to offer. From cycling up the country’s highest road to hiking it’s highest peak, one can spend weeks getting their adrenaline pumping. To help you plan an adventurous itinerary in Taiwan, here are our top suggestions.

Note: For help finding adventurous activities and making bookings you can also contact the Taiwan Tourism Board at tbrocnyc@gmail.com or info@taiwantourism.org, as sometimes websites are only in Chinese.

Cycle The Route Of The King Of Mountain Race (KOM)

Taroko Gorge National Park
Photo: jareed / Flickr

The King of Mountain Race (KOM) is an annual cycling race in Taiwan that traverses about 100 kilometers (62 miles), ending at the top of the highest accessible road in the country at 3,275 meters (10,745 feet). You’ll begin at Cisingtan Scenic Area in Quixingtan, Hualien County, cycling along the water toward the lush Taroko Gorge National Park. Once inside, you’ll be immersed in a world of bright green and water-carved marble. And at the top, called Wuling, you can enjoy aerial views of deep-cut green valleys dotted with cypress trees, striking layers of shift rock, majestic cloud forest and tea fields. Note that because of the route’s high altitude, it is recommended to bike with someone else and/or have a car follow you to the top. Camping is available along the way.

Other great cycling area’s in Taiwan include Sun Moon Lake in Yuchi Township, Water Bird Park Byway in Anping and Dapeng Bay National Scenic Area in Pingtung County.

Climb Taiwan’s Highest Mountain

Yushan
Photo: CheMin Lee / Flickr

The highest mountain in Taiwan is Yushan, also known as Jade Mountain, with an elevation of 3,952 meters (12,966 feet). Located in the Yushan National Park, adventurous travelers wanting to reach the top will have a challenge ahead of them as the Paiyum Cabin — which is usually the overnight accommodation for climbers — is currently closed. This means climbers will need to do a tough single-day ascent. Expect a steep climb with some scrambling of over 1,700 meters (5,577 feet) in about 12 hours. While difficult, you will be rewarded at the top with spectacular views of cloud forest, deep valleys, the Pacific Ocean, Taiwan Strait and surrounding mountains. Moreover, you’ll experience an array of ecosystems, from bamboo groves to ancient pine forests, along the way. Keep in mind there are numerous peaks on the trail, so you’ll want to follow the signs for “Main Peak.” Fun tip: Look for the “Johnny Depp Fanclub Ecotoilet” along the trail to pay homage to a beloved star in a unique way.

Bungy Jumping

Bridges in Taoyuan
Photo: Li-Ji / Flickr

For about 16 years Taiwan outlawed bungy jumping; however, the extreme sport has recently been reintroduced, specifically in Taoyuan (about two hours from Taipei). For about $66USD including insurance and photos, you can hurl yourself off a mountain into a creek-based canyon. Although you’ll most likely be screaming your brains out during the free fall, make sure to take in the beautiful forest and rugged peaks that surround you. And if you decide to go again, future jumps are offered at a discounted rate. While the Taiwan Bungy Jumping Club website is in Chinese, you can contact them at bungy@bungy.com.tw or (02) 8666-6019 for more information.

Water Sports in Kenting National Park

Diving, Kenting
Photo: CT Snow / Flickr

There aren’t many places in Taiwan where the water is swimable; however, in Kenting National Park it’s a different story. Along with being a well-known surfing spot (FuDog Surfing offers English lessons at a reasonable price), visitors to the park can peddle boat, swim, kayak, jet ski and even scuba dive, as there exists a beautiful underwater landscape featuring vibrant corals. Moreover, you can choose from an array of dives, some of which include long dives, wall dives and drift dives.

Paragliding

Paragliding
Photo: Jennifer / Flickr

If you’ve ever dreamed of flying like a bird, paragliding can give you that experience. Wings Taiwan has launch sites in a number of scenic cities in Taiwan, including Keelung, Puli and Saichia. Thrill-seekers will sit in a harness suspended below a hollow, motor-less fabric wing and propel themselves off a clifftop, praying they actually fly (don’t worry, you will). As you soar through the air, enjoy aerial water, mountain and city views.

Categories: Taiwan

One comment

Adventurous Traveler’s Guide to Taiwan

  1. This lady is WAY more adventurous than I managed to be. All I did is devour the amazing food and hide in the air-conditioned shopping malls. Yet I have no regrets!

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