I never thought that traveling from Taipei to Yeliu could be this easy, as all we need is just to get to Taipei Main Station. Thank goodness, we didn’t hire a taxi and waste money unnecessarily!
Reasons to go Yeliu?
For all the days we were in Taipei, the name of Yeliu Geopark kept ringing in our ears, even the hotel staff strongly recommended it to us, so we thought it must be good. Thus, Yeliu Geopark joins Jiufen and Shifen as the top 3 priorities on our itinerary.
After touring Taipei twice in 4 months, and visited these 3 places twice, I still rated them highly! You had better go take a look!
Yeliu, located on the northern coast of Taiwan is best known for its rock formations stretching as far as 1.7km, all naturally shaped through thousand years of wind and sea erosion. All in all, more than 200 pieces of rocks created by the artistic Mother Nature are opened for your eyes only.
A natural world of this magnitude certainly warrants a visit. You have to come, so long as you’re visiting Taiwan!
How to go to Yeliu from Taipei?
Of course the simplest way is to take a taxi, it cost TWD$1,000 or USD$30.00. But we decided to go there by bus, as it is much more economical, anyway, travelling through taxi only gets you there 15 minutes faster.
Firstly, we need go to Taipei West Bus Station to board the bus. The bus station ( indicated with the red arrow on left hand side of the following picture) is just a mere 5 minutes walk from Taipei Main Station.
For double assurance, I took another shot on Taipei Main Station and its surrounding location:
So we went to Taipei Main Station, exit through ‘M5’ :
Taipei West Bus Station is just a minute walk or 70 meters from the ‘M5’ exit.
Here we are at Taipei West Bus Station, that’s how near the place is from Taipei Main Station. And now, we are ready for Yeliu!
But before that, do not be ‘fished’ away by the many taxi drivers crowding outside the bus station. They would shout to you the price of going Yeliu, which is TWD$1,000 or USD$29.80 for 4 passengers.
As the station is rather small, it’s not difficult to find that Guo Kuang counter. Guo Kuang is also the only bus company here to bring you to Taoyuan International Airport ( Do follow my other post on Taipei Travel Guide).
We thought the ticket to Yeliu would be expensive but were shocked to pay just TWD$96 or USD$3.50 per person. Compare that to the price of taking a taxi, now you know how much you can save!
As the bus comes every 15 minutes, the queue is generally short.
The bus service number to Yeliu is 1815.
The journey to Yeliu starts, as you can see from the following bus route, it passes by many bus stops before it reaches Yeliu. Do not worry that you do not know where to alight, as the bus captain would make announcement loudly. There is also a recorded announcement in both Chinese and English to announce the bus stop name upon arrival. Anyway, 80% of the passengers alight here, so just follow the crowd.
50 minutes later, we arrived at Yeliu…… alighting at a bus stop which doesnt looks like a major attraction…..Upon returing to Taipei, simply take the same bus service 1815 opposite the road.
The town appeared to be very quiet and calm despite us coming on Sunday.
But wait, we merely arrived at the ‘front gate’ of Yeliu, there was still a 10 minutes walk to it. We went past a lively fishing port with beautiful scenery and activities, too bad it was not the main itinerary of this trip.
Finally, we arrived at Yeliu GeoPark! The place is easily identified by the countless tourist buses around it.
The park operating hours is 7.30am to 5pm daily. Ticket cost is TWD$80 or USD$3.00.
Some of the highlighted attractions in the park which all visitors should not be missed:
Then there is a Tourists Information Centre if you want to get more details about the place.
Wait, before you even get into Yeliu Geopark, allow me to warn you: the place is terribly hot, in the 1-3 hrs tour, there is no trees nor shelter to allow anyone to sit and rest, the scorching heat is punishing, it would have you crying for water. Take note, washroom is only available at its entrance.
This is the path to the park, and is the last time you could see trees before going further, having an umbrella in the tour of Yeliu Geopark is a luxury indeed!
Still 30-40 meters away, we were already amazed when we first saw the rocks from far! We already have the urge to run towards it and hug it!
Got near to it, it seems so unreal that Mother Nature was actually the artist that shaped all these rocks into the shape of humans and animals. The most common one is the Mushrooms Rocks. To me, it looks more like someone had actually carved it. The superpower of Mother Nature is simply unbelievable!
In the arms of Mother Nature!
The ‘Ginger rocks'(Above picture).
The Statue Of Lin Tien Chen who lost his life while trying to save a visitor.
Many of the paths are rather narrow, some are steep, while others are very near the cliff or slope. There are Safety Officers around reminding visitors not to cross into danger area though.
The description of the rock formation being look like whatsoever thing might not fit your imagination, but an appreciation of how it has been transformed into is probably what makes this place great!
The main show of Yeliu GeoPark is certainly this rock formation which looks like England Queen’s Head.
We didn’t even know that it was so famous and a must-see for visitors until we got curious about the large crowd and the long queue.
On my second trip to Yeliu, as it was a rainy day, even though the queue was long, I found it alright to join the fun.
Just when most were frustrated with the long queue and unable to have a picture with the Queen’s Head, suddenly another Queen’s head appeared near the exit of the park……
Oh no, it was a replica to appease those who could not join the queue of the original one.
That’s me, paying respect to Mother’s Nature!
Before exiting the park, a long row of shop awaits your patronage. Most shops are retailing dried seafood. But the most sellable is still drinks, yes, a bottle of icy cold drink is what all needed in this humid weather.
All said, it takes about 2 hour to tour the whole park.
Few months later, I visited the park again, still I find it jusst as interesting as the first time I came, in fact more enjoying, it was drizzling then and the weather was conducive for a stroll in the park. My kids who studied geography were here to do all the explanations to me. With more details about the rock formations, I’m closer to nature now.
Taxi Fare To Jiufen and Shifen from Yeliu
Yeliu Geopark is just about an hour bus journey from Jiufen and Shifen, don’t ever missed these top 3 attractions of Taipei!
By the way, taking a taxi from Yeliu to Jiufen cost TWD$1,000 or USD$29.80, travel time is about 30 minutes. From Yeliu to Shifen is TWD$1,500, travel time is about 60 minutes.
When you first approach the taxi captain, they would eagerly show you a nicely laminated price list of the destination, probably to show that they are not touts who quote you according to how they judge your appearance, since the list is regulated and approved by the Tourism Promotion Board. But once you rejected that stated price, the taxi captain is sure to quote a lower price for you.
Next must-go destination: Jiufen and Shifen
Go Shifen to make a promise and make a vow by releasing the Sky Lantern.
Go Jiufen Old Street to enjoy the many street food and collect tons of souvenirs!
Go Jiufen Old Street also to enjoy the tea at that famous Ah Mei Tea House!