Off The Beaten Path in Taiwan

Forget about the hustle and bustle of city life in Taiwan, today we’re introducing a gem located in Southern Taiwan — Alishan, or “Mount Ali” in Chiayi County. Malaysian photographer Cheyenne Wan takes us through the most magical landscapes that will have you booking your ticket before you know it! 


HOW TO GET THERE

Alishan is the most visited national park in Taiwan since the 1920s, and it’s easy to see why. Most will visit the region during a longer Taiwan tour, but the closest airport to fly directly there is Kaohsiung International Airport (KHH). There are a few ways to get to Alishan but based on my experience, a private driver from one of the surrounding cities would be the best choice as it’s more flexible depending on your timing and liking (and in most Asian countries, hiring a private driver is incredibly affordable compared to what you’d expect in Europe or elsewhere!). While on the way up to the mountains, our driver stopped at a few scenic tea plantations in the mountains for us to snap some photographs and to enjoy the cool breeze (and a cup of the local staple – Oolong tea!) With train or bus routes, you wouldn’t have the flexibility to do this!

WHERE TO STAY

Located half an hour away from the national park, Alishan B&B YunMinGi is a cozy homestay offering incredible views. There’s an old traditional Taiwanese house and a modern hotel, I opted for the newer hotel where they serve lovely dinners in the evening. Venture down the hiking trails near the hotel – you can trek for the best sunrise view EVER! It was a shame I didn’t have the energy to hike.. but the view from my balcony in the room was magnificent as well. The sea of clouds was breathtaking!

DON’T MISS OUT…

The Alishan Forest Recreation Area needs as much recognition as it can get. The mountain caters for tourists to hike and explore on their way up to its summit. Tourists who are suckers for nature will surely appreciate a long hike while admiring Mother Nature’s beauty. We lucked out with perfect 20°C (68°F) weather. Along the way you get to see plenty of trees that are centuries old. It was truly an eye-opening experience. For the nature lovers, you can’t leave this behind your itinerary.