Hiking River tracing in Hualien must-do in few days!

Taroko Zhuilu Old Trail Hualien Taiwan
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FAQ I’m going to Hualien, what should I do?

Hualien is a good choice and a very touristic destination in Taiwan. There are so many things to do with hiking trails in Taroko gorges and famous river tracing like Golden Grotto.

Most of the hiking trails will require 2 permits to protect you. Permits must be asked online minimum 8 days before !

Taroko Xincheng Train Station Hualien county Taiwan

Taroko Xincheng Train Station Hualien county Taiwan

To go to Taroko gorges, the train station is Xincheng not Hualien ! At Xincheng, catch a bus (not convenient, every 2 hours…), catch a taxi or rent a scooter (only one shop at the corner of the plaza).


  Here are the trails in Taroko easy to access and easy to walk :

Shakadang Trail : no permit needed. Family friendly.
Famous Zhuilu Old Trail : 2 permits ! Guard at the entrance with a gate and lock to cross the long suspension bridge. This trail has an overview of more than 400 m over the river and was carved into the cliff, imagine you walk on the border of Taipei 101 building ! BEWARE ! every year 1 or 2 persons fall… even if there is a cable on the cliff, it is still super scary !
LuShui Trail : no permit needed. It’s a little Zhuilu trail (description above) but with fence for security. Family friendly.
Lushuiheliuyouqifuwu Station : nice exhibition and also trailhead of LuShui Trail : no permit needed
The Baiyang Waterfall Trail : no permit needed to reach the Shuiliandong waterfall and
Baiyang Falls. Take your headlamp or a torch. Very impressive dark tunnel at the beginning. Family friendly.
Xiangde Temple : no permit needed
Eternal Spring Shrine : no permit needed
Forbidden Hotsprings of Wenshan 文山溫泉 : many people jump over the fence at their own risk (falling stones)
Taroko entrance Hualien Taiwan

Taroko entrance Hualien Taiwan

Top100 Bilu Mt Trailhead 毕禄山登山口 : requires 2 permits. Famous “Spicy mountain” start at Bilu, exit at YangTou mountain. Very steep and difficult in 2 days with 2 nights camping after trailhead and before reaching Yangtou mountain Top100.
Yangtou Mt Top 100 羊頭山 : requires 2 permits. Yangtou  mountain belongs to  Top 100 and is a famous “Spicy mountain” too. It is usually linked to Bilu Mt Top 100 in 3 days hiking trip. Very difficult.

Here are the Must-Do River Tracings in Hualien :

Golden Grotto 黃金峽谷 : The famous Golden Grotto is here. One of the best river tracing ! The Grotto is made of several open caves with beautiful pools. Easy but tiring Full One Day river tracing. It is a Forbidden place as it belongs to Taroko National Park but still many operators go there, it means you are not insured in case of accident.
Mugumuyu RT慕谷慕魚生態廊道 : Mugumuyu River tracing is lovely and family friendly with beautiful spots to jump and swim. Requires police permit but you can get it  on site near the parking place.

To be short here is the map, the map also contains hostels, camping grounds and places to visit :


Potential Dangers : venomous snakes, falling stones, flash flood, poisonous wasps

It is rare but always pay attention of where you put your feet and your hands, some snakes are in the trees, they usually flee if they are not surprised. Take a walking stick and knock the ground and the grass. You are lucky if you see one snake or a bear.

Learn about snakes habits, no need to fear them :



FAQ I only stay in Hualien 2 days, any advice ?

You can still do most of the trails described above but we strongly advise you to rent a scooter : you will need 2 ID, driving license + passport, roughly 500 NT/24 hours or cheaper.

Some shops accept only one ID but the law says 2 ID to rent a scooter.

We also advise you to go camping, it’s more flexible (you can rent tents in Taipei). Anyway you don’t need to book hostels in advance as there are so many hostels and guesthouses in Hualien county !


FAQ after Hualien, what should I do ?

You can continue your trip to Taidong, on the way there are many spots to visit !

From Taidong, go to the port and take the boat to Green Island and Orchids Island : famous international diving spots !


At Hualien, near the train station, go to visitor center to book the touristic bus going to Taidong. The bus will also stop 15-30 min at interesting places along the way. Cost 800 NT


This post will be completed according to your comments and questions 🙂

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2 thoughts on “Hiking River tracing in Hualien must-do in few days!”

  1. Hello. I have checked your hikingtaiwan.club and thanks so much for the useful info. Our trip in Hualien was a blast! The hikes and the river tracing was AWESOME! Thanks again!

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