Happy Travel Tuesday! I thought I’d finally start to share some of my Taipei adventures, starting with this day trip to Yehliu Geopark. I hope you enjoy this (mostly photos) virtual tour! And also, next week’s link-up is themed. Find out the theme at bottom of post!
I met Khee randomly at the mall on my first day in Taipei. D and I were there getting some phone SIM cards and I got distracted by a display of something sparkly and girly. I went into the shop to take a look – they turned out to be hair accessories – and Khee started showing me how to use the clips, demonstrating them on her own hair.
We started chatting (because I felt too awkward to say that I had no intention of purchasing anything) and it turned out that she was an exchange student from Malaysia, also looking forward to exploring Taiwan. I’m usually pretty shy, but I was gonna be in Taipei for a longer amount of time and didn’t want to have no friends, so I took a chance and asked “do you want to hang out sometime?”
And that is how I came to travel with Khee to Yehliu Geopark (野柳地质公园), a natural attraction on the northeast coast famous for its otherworldly rock formations. But more on that later…
We boarded the 1068 bus from next to National Taiwan Univeristy (NTU), which directly goes to Yehliu. We didn’t have too many real plans, so we decided to get off a couple of stops before the actual Yeiliu Geopark stop. We wanted to walk along the coast and take in the sights.
It was a slightly drizzly chilly Taipei winter day, so the beach was very deserted. But despite the grey, it was still a calming atmosphere. It’s always nice to be by water.
How cute are these little round bungalows by the sea?
As we continued walking, we came across this site that wouldn’t look out of place by the Mediterranean coast. They were charging money to go in (there was absolutely nobody else there), and we’re cheap so we just poked around the outside. I still have no idea what it is, but I think it’s maybe part of the hotel there?
Some more sights along the walk:
This pretty little rocky beach area, made even more picturesque by a lone fisherman:
One of my favorite things about Taiwan is their temples! I love the colorful rooftops and intricate dragons sculptures. You can always expect to find random temples tucked away almost anywhere you go. It was no surprise that we came upon a few too on the walk.
And then from the main road, there was a little tiny, almost hidden, pathway (you’ll have to clamber up some rocks) that led to a large expanse of perfectly smooth rock overlooking the sea below.
So naturally, it was time for a lot of photos! We spent quite a long time here trading off taking pictures for each other in dumb poses.
Okay so I actually thought this part was Yeiliu Geopark at first. But nope, walk a little bit further and we were there. We could tell by the parking lot full of tour buses.
But first, we took a stroll through the small indoor market right next door. Since this is a coastal city, you can expect a lot of seafood. And since this is Asia, you can expect it to be done in some weird ways.
After a quick wander through the market and accepting some offerings of dried fish and herbal tea and other local delicacies, we headed to the park’s entrance. The tickets cost 80 NT, or less than $3 US.
So now, after all that ramble, we’re finally at the main event!
Yehliu Geopark is famous for its strange rock formations caused by sea erosion. The first area we came upon was this containing large rocks that have slowly corroded away in such a fashion to resemble mushrooms, ginger, and honeycombs!
From this section, you can walk all the way down to the end of the cape on wave-cut cliffs.
At this end section, you can find the most famous rock of all: the Queen’s Head, the official symbol of Yehliu. I didn’t get a photo as you actually had to line up to take a picture of/with it and I couldn’t be bothered to do so. But here’s one I stole (and you can see why it’s named so):
Yes, it looks majestic in the photo. But in actuality, this piece of rock was quite underwhelming. It’s a lot lot smaller than pictures make it look. In fact, I wouldn’t even have picked it out as something of interest if not for the line.
I honestly didn’t find this section too interesting. I think by then, I had enough of looking at rocks.
We walked around the park on our own and usually I like it that way, but I think in this case, maybe a guided tour would have been helpful. It would have given a lot more insight into what we’re looking at. I also found out that I missed a lot of the famous formations, such as a rock that looks exactly like a leopard! Grrrr…..
I think Yehliu makes a decent day trip if you are visiting Taipei and have a few days to spare (or if you just happen to really really love nature and rocks). It’s easy to visit and you get to spend a day by the coast. However, if you only have ONE day to spare for a day trip and want a more unique experience, I would recommend you make it Juifen with no hesitation. I have yet to write about it, but check out Jamie’s post in the meantime!
I would recommend that you pair your trip to Yehliu with other sights in the area. We paired it with a visit to Jinshan Old Street, where we gorged on the local delicacies. (Unfortunately, this post is already getting a bit long, so I’ll save that for next time.) Many people also hit up Keelung Night Market, or even Jiufen is doable as well on the same day (though it’d be a shame to rush it).
To get there: we took the direct long-distance bus #1068 by Gongguan MRT Station (green line). From the station, follow signs to NTU and you will reach the university’s main entrance. Cross the main street and continue up half a block or so. Google Map will be your best friend to find the station location. The bus ride is about 1.5 hour and costs about 95NT (or US $3) each direction. Can be paid in cash or on your Easy Card.
Have you been to Yehliu or anywhere like this? Are you a rocks person?
Happy Travel Tuesday! Next week’s link-up will be themed! In honor of Christy (Swags), a traveling athlete, becoming co-host, the theme is going to be a sporty adventure. This could be anything from a hike to camping to horseback riding to ziplining to even a long walk around town (if you’re unsporty like me)!
Also, we’d like to give a shout out to these posts from last week!
- Palau de la Musica Catalana in Barcelona by Tanama Tales
- Eating Gluten-Free in Florence by Adelante
- Visiting Hamburg // Everything You Need to Know by Snow in Tromso
- Where and What to Eat in Madrid by Lauren on Location
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