The Best Things To Do In Hualien

Our Favorite Hualien Attractions

Island Life Taiwan is your #1 resource for all things Hualien! Our blog is loaded with informative articles by locals and our unique tours and experiences are top rated in the area. Check out all we have on offer!

Basecamp Hualien City

One of the most scenic and naturally beautiful areas in Taiwan, Hualien County sits like a green jewel nestled between the Pacific Ocean and the grandiose Central Mountain Range. Home to some of the most stunning locations in Taiwan with a rich, unique combination of traditional cultures, Hualien has become a must visit region for travelers looking to get away from the urban centers while in Taiwan.

From dramatic marble gorges and towering green mountains, to idyllic sandy beaches and turquoise waterfalls and swimming holes, there are countless Hualien attractions worth exploring. It’s sure to take your breath away… likely more than once. Searching for what to do in Hualien? Here are the best things to do in Hualien, Taiwan.

The 5 Best Hualien Beach Spots!

Your Hualien Beach Guide

From the mountains to the sea, Hualien is a spectacularly beautiful region with plenty to explore. Looking for a place to gaze out at the ocean or maybe take a dip? Here are the 5 best Hualien Beaches!

1. Qixingtan Beach

Qishingtan Beach Hualien chishingtan beach

The most stunning beach area in the immediate Hualien City area, Qixingtan Beach is a sprawling stone covered beach with sweeping views galore. A common stop at the end of Taroko Gorge Tours, Qixingtan Recreation Area can have a small crowd in the late afternoon/evening. Thankfully, the beach and adjoining parks are so massive that it’s easy to get away and find your own quiet place to relax.

Swimming is NOT ALLOWED at Qixingtan, as the current is very strong here, but many people dip their feet in the cool, clean waters.

This is also a great place to ride a bicycle as there are many bicycle rental shops and paths throughout the abutting grassy park and bluffs. In addition, there are bathroom facilities, food vendors (think street snacks) and even showers to rinse the saltwater off your feet.

2. Jici Beach

One of Many things to do in hualien, a Taroko Gorge Tour in Hualien, Hualien Tour of Taroko Gorge National Park

There is a reason Coastal Highway 11 is so often listed as a one of the best stretches of road in all of Taiwan. About 30 minutes south of Hualien City is the best swimming beach in the Hualien Area. Jici Beach! Great for swimming in the summer time and surfing in the winter, Jici is one of only a handful of sand beaches along the central East Coast. Bathrooms, showers, changing rooms, snacks and drinks are all available at Jici. If a lifeguard is on duty, expect to pay a 100 TWD entrance fee.

To spend a killer day checking out some awesome stuff on the East Coast, we highly recommend this  Epic East Coast Explorer Tour which visits Jici beach and other amazing places along the stunning Highway 11.

3. Niushan Huting (Cow Mountain) Beach

What to do in hualien. East Coast Hualien tour Shihtiping on east coast tour

Niushan Huting or “Cow Mountain” sits hidden in a cove off Coastal Highway 11. The winding road down into the valley brings you to a hidden beach oasis surrounded by green mountains on all sides. A real “secret cove”.

An eclectic aboriginal B&B by the beach hosts a small cafe, bathrooms and an amazing collection of outdoor sculptures. Well worth the 50 TWD entrance fee. Enjoy an ocean swim (weather permitting) or take a lazy walk in the sand with your feet in the water. Lay out on the grassy hillside for a picnic or a little sunshine. One can easily spend hours relaxing in this stunning locale.

Cow Mountain beach is also visited on this East Coast Explorer Tour.

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So Much More To Discover in Hualien!

4. Chongde Beach

One of Many things to do in hualien, a Taroko Gorge Tour in Hualien, Hualien Tour of Taroko Gorge National Park ATVs

Just north of the entrance to Taroko Gorge National Park lies this wide swath of beach leading right up to the towering Qingshui Cliffs. The best way to visit this Hualien beach is with Island Life Taiwan’s exclusive ATV add on to all Taroko Gorge area tours. No bathrooms, no facilities. Just EPIC views.

5. Beibin & Nanbin Beaches

These two recreation areas are directly across the road from the Hualien Nightmarket in downtown Hualien City. Pressed for time? Rent a bike and explore these lovely parks and stone beach areas with views of the Hualien port and beautiful sunrises. Swimming is not permitted as there is a steep drop off just a few feet into the water.

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About Island Life Taiwan

Based in Hualien, Taiwan (adjacent to Taroko Gorge National Park), Island Life Taiwan designs all of our unique daily itineraries to help you discover the rich natural beauty and culture of Taiwan, in the most enjoyable, and most immersive way possible. We’re dedicated to showing you the most amazing locations in eastern Taiwan, while having the most fun and avoiding the crowds. More than just a tour operator and adventure outfitter, our team truly loves showing this awe-inspiring part of the world to our guests, and when you love what you do, it shows.

So what are you waiting for? Contact us and let us help you pick the tour or adventure that’s right for you!

We’d Love to Help You Plan the Perfect Hualien Visit!  

Download Your Free 2019 Hualien Visitors Guide Here

 

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Cow Mountain

The Hidden Cove Of Niushan Huting

There are few places in the world like Niushan Huting. This hidden beach cove and recreational area along Taiwan’s scenic East Coast could be one of the more memorable things you can experience during your visit to Hualien County. If you appreciate the little charms in life and enjoy getting off the beaten path, Niushan Huting just might be one of  your favorite things to do in Taiwan.

So come, answer the call of the wind and sea. Surround yourself with natural beauty and rustic simplicity. Peace and tranquility will never be a stranger when you take a visit to Niushan Huting

History of Niushan Huting

“Niushan Huting,” translates to cow mountain, a rather odd name for a beach one would think. Yet long ago, before this area was on the map, the rolling green hills surrounding this small bay were a place for local aboriginal tribespeople to graze their cows and other livestock. Then, in the mid 20th century, an outpost for the Taiwanese military was constructed here in the hidden cove, before eventually being destroyed by a typhoon. It wasn’t long before nature reclaimed the land, sweeping away the remains of the base to leave the beautiful rural area we can all now enjoy.

Niushan huting on an east coast explorer tour from hualien

Today, nestled on the property is a rustic bed and breakfast built by aboriginals from the area. Formed as a small group of cabins along the hillside and adorned with driftwood art, it is a perfect escape into the rural world of Taiwan. In fact, Martin Scorsese even filmed scenes here in 2016 for his film Silence, the rustic structures of Niushan Huting on the picturesque cove serving as a stand-in for 17th century Japan!

Don’t Forget the Camera!

Known for its stunning views, one can gaze out at the endless blue expanse of the Pacific Ocean, or turn your chair the other way and marvel at the grandiosity of the Coastal Mountain Range. Niushan Huting offers endless photo ops, and is a great place for travel bloggers and avid Intagrammers. You’ll also love photographing all the quirky corners of this beautiful place. Everything is made of driftwood, from the cabins to the décor. It’s outdated in the best way—cozy and comfortable, while maintaining a quaint antique feel. You won’t find silk sheets and a spa tub here, but you will find the whispers of the wind in a still rural setting and a certain feel of communing with nature. There is also a sprawling hillside lawn with aboriginal wood carvings to explore.

Go Off the Beaten Path

You’ll also have plenty of space to take it all in at Niushan Huting, as you’re not likely to run into anybody who will disturb your reveries while you are here. Not many tourists, especially foreigners, know about this place, and the steep cracked winding road down from Highway 11 is certainly not tour bus friendly. Niushan Huting is truly a rustic paradise nestled into the beautiful lush greenery of the Eastern Taiwan coastline you just can’t miss!

Where is Niushan Huting?

Niushan Huting is located at the edge of the Pacific Ocean off Taiwan’s famed scenic Highway 11. Here, you can enter the recreational area for just 50 NT Dollars. This price is well worth it for the private beach and grounds alone, but you can also redeem it at the eclectic café for food and beverages. Sipping a coffee while out for a stroll on the gold-sand beach is the perfect way to while away a relaxing morning!

How to Get There

Niushan Huting is a about 40 minutes from Hualien City in a rural area or Hualien County. You can take a day trip here as part of Island Life Taiwan’s East Coast Explorer Tour while visiting Hualien, or make a whole weekend out of a visit to this place. Whichever you decide, just be sure to visit! You’ll never again find a place quite like Niushan Huting.

More From Our

Hualien Travel Blog

Discover So Much More in Hualien!

Download Your Free 2018 Hualien Visitors Guide Here

 

things to do in hualien

About Island Life Taiwan

Based in Hualien, Taiwan (adjacent to Taroko Gorge National Park), Island Life Taiwan designs all of our unique daily itineraries to help you discover the rich natural beauty and culture of Taiwan, in the most enjoyable, and most immersive way possible. We’re dedicated to showing you the most amazing locations in eastern Taiwan, while having the most fun and avoiding the crowds. More than just a tour operator and adventure outfitter, our team truly loves showing this awe-inspiring part of the world to our guests, and when you love what you do, it shows.

So what are you waiting for? Contact us and let us help you pick the tour or adventure that’s right for you!

We Hope You Enjoy Your Visit!