The word Alishan surely rings a bell to tea lovers. After all, it’s the mountain where some of Taiwan’s most exquisite tea leaves are grown and processed. But if you’re not an avid tea drinker, there are still lots of good reasons why you should check out this beautiful—and we mean beautiful—spot in Taiwan:
Easy To Reach
Going to Alishan, specifically Alishan National Forest Recreation Area, is fairly easy, and you have at least two simple options to get there:
Taiwan High-Speed Rail (THSR)
Among the easiest ways to reach Chiayi, the county where Alishan National Forest Recreation Area is located, is by taking the THSR, which operates in multiple locations across Taiwan. Chiayi has its own HSR station, so take note of how many stops it will take to get there from your boarding point.
Taking the TRA (Taiwan Railways Administration) is another simple way to get to Chiayi, which has its own stop along the railway line. Make sure to take the Zhiqian and Puyuma trains, and book your tickets in advance if you want to secure a seat for your trip.
From the Chiayi train station, you may take the Alishan Forest Train (more on this later!), a taxi, or a public bus (Alishan Route A/B no. 7329/7322C) traveling to Alishan National Forest Recreation Area.
Alternatively, if you’re coming from Taichung, you may book a day tour with KKday for a hassle-free trip!
Scenic Train Ride
Alishan’s scenic train ride is perhaps among the most sought-after experiences in Chiayi. While tickets are extremely difficult to acquire, your efforts will be rewarded with an unforgettable journey through Alishan’s forest and a stunning view of the sunrise.
Secure your train ticket (and tour) here at least two weeks before your trip.
The sunrise in Alishan is unparalleled. Picture awe-inspiring hues painting the early morning sky as the sun rises above a sea of clouds. There’s nothing quite like it in this world, really, and it’s definitely not to be missed if you’re visiting the area.
To catch Alishan’s famous sunrise, board the sunrise train and alight at Zhushan Station. Two of the best spots to view the natural spectacle are Zhushan Sunrise Observation Deck and Xiaoliyuanshan Lookout, which is about a 10-minute walk away from the station.
Despite the monsoon rains and frequent showers, Alishan looks postcard-perfect all year round. However, if you’ll time your trip well, you might be able to catch seasonal treats to the eyes like cherry blossoms in spring and fiery foliage in autumn.
Lush Tea Plantations
Now, what’s a trip to Alishan without visiting the rolling plantations of oolong tea? The mesmerizingly verdant landscape is a healing sight to see, even more so if you enjoy a warm cuppa at a nearby teahouse.