Thursday, 4 April 2013

Taiwan Travels: Cycling the Taroko Gorge

Taiwan is perhaps not one of the first places that comes to mind when thinking of an awesome holiday destination, but from big city bells and whistles to the majesty of the Taroko Gorge just outside the small town of Hualien - few destinations compare.

Borrowing a Tern Link P9 and a Tern Link P24h we headed down to Hualien on the East Coast of Taiwan. We stayed at the Formosa Backpackers Hostel (which is run by some of the nicest, most generous people) and on day two found a shuttle bus which took us, and our two bikes, up to the very top of the Taroko Gorge. Why slog the way up when you can throw your bikes into the boot of a van and get a free ride up.
The gorge itself is a 25km long pass through the Taroko National Park, which tracks the river that over millions of years has cut a dramatic canyon into the marble mountain.  With our bikes at the top, we had 25kms of pure downhill bliss to the bottom.

There are countless tunnels to enjoy, dramatic views at ever turn of the gorge to stare at and smooth tar roads all the way to the end.