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6-Day Lake and Mountain Tour Itinerary
Day 1 – Taipei to Hsinchu to Sun Moon Lake
- Pick up at 9:00 from your accommodation. First stop is at Hsinchu Oriental Beauty Tea Farm to experience some Hakka culture and some of the finest teas in the world. Learn how the tea is made.
- Next, we will visit the Sanyi Wood Sculpture Museum, this part of Taiwan should be on every visitor’s itinerary. In the hills above Sanyi, the little settlement of Shengxing is appealingly quaint. A short distance away, Longteng Broken Bridge stands as a photogenic reminder of a disastrous 1935 earthquake. Lunch at a local Haka restaurant.
- Depart for Puli to visit the paper factory for DIY your own style paper and experiencing how paper is made. Dinner at Jindu restaurant where you can enjoy fresh mountain vegetables and produce in a restaurant that is popular with former presidents and other dignitaries. It is famous because the food is so fresh and tasty.
Day 2 – Sun Moon Lake
- At 10.00am we’ll begin with a lake cruise. From the boat, you’ll gain a fresh appreciation of the lake’s magnificent surroundings. Back on dry land, we’ll head up to Cien Pagoda (built on the orders of Chiang Kai-shek to honor his late mother), from which the view is often excellent.
- Lunch will be more local goodness lakeside. After the feast, you’ll probably want to stretch your legs, so we’ll bring you to the Antique Assam Tea Farm, a restored Japanese-era tea plantation which is as educational as it is scenic.
- We should have you back at your hotel around 4pm, leaving you time for a walk or to kick back. For dinner, we will suggest restaurants or if you prefer you can walk the night market like streets of Ita Tha and sample local treats and snacks.
Day 3 – Sun Moon Lake to Alishan
- The drive from Sun Moon Lake to the stunning Alishan National Park is a beauty. The mountain road climbs up and over the clouds so that you are either driving through clouds or looking down at the ‘sea of clouds’. On the way, you will see tea plantations as well as locally grown grapes and other fruits and vegetables.
- If we’re lucky we can get the see the Monkey King and his tribe who reside at the top of the mountains. If the weather is clear this drive also offers views of the highest peak in Taiwan Jade Mountain.
- We will arrive at Alishan National Park in time for a late lunch. You can then check in and freshen up before taking an afternoon hike in this ancient and pristine forest sitting on top of the world. Dinner at the hotel.
Day 4 – Alishan National Park to Tainan
- Alishan is famous for its spectacular sunrises. So, don’t be surprised when a lot of people are up at 4am to get up the mountain to see the sunrise. If you are an early riser you can join. Today we will take the old Japanese built lumber train down to Fenchihu a beautiful old hill station.
- The area has a lot of stunning tea gardens and the old station is full of character. There are several very nice hiking trails around the station.
- After lunch and a hike, we have the option of taking the train down to the flatlands where we will continue the adventure to Tainan – the ancient capital of Taiwan.
Day 5 – Tainan Heritage Tour
- Tainan is famous for its temples and its food. The Taiwanese see Tainan as the food capital of the island and people flock to Tainan for its world-famous street food. So after breakfast, we will start with the oldest area of Tainan which is An Ping.
- The main attraction in Anping is Fort Zeelandia, the stronghold built by the Dutch East India Company in the early 1630s. It’s perhaps the best place to learn about the Netherlands’ brief but historically critical occupation of the Tainan area.
- For people who love to wander through narrow side-streets and characterful neighborhoods, Anping has a lot to offer. Tainan also has some endearing relics of the Japanese colonial period, among them Hayashi Hyakkaten, often called the Old Lin Department Store.
- It doesn’t matter if you want to linger a good while at any of these places – the Confucius Temple and several other places of interest in the old heart of Tainan are open until late in the evening and especially atmospheric after dark.
Day 6 – Tainan to Taipei
- Walking or cycling tour of Tainan in the morning. We can go to food markets, parks and coffee houses to see how people in Tainan spent their time. Tainan is a very slow-paced city and you get a lot of value from just walking around and soaking up the local culture.
- After checking out from the hotel in the afternoon you will make your way back up to Taipei via the impressive High-Speed Rail. You can also go on the High-Speed Rail directly to the airport if you prefer.