Ever imagine witnessing a spectacular view of Taipei City- that as if you were on the heavens looking below the city and getting a whole perspective of it? How breathtaking that feeling is?! Well, let me tell you this: it is possible. And guess what? The experience is all for FREE.
Located a few minutes away from the famous Xinyi Shopping District and MRT Xiangshan station (象山), Elephant Mountain or also called Xiangshan (象山) is worth the visit for if you’re exploring Taipei! Believe me, the experience of reaching the peak of the mountain is surreal.
Elephant Mountain is known for offering the best view of Taipei City. It doesn’t just provide you a plain view of the city, but an awe-inspiring one, especially that you can witness a perfect sight of Taipei 101, once the tallest building in the world.
PRE TRAVEL GUIDE
How to get to Taiwan?
My forever go to platforms on finding the cheapest flight is Skyscanner. They can already take care a lot of legwork for you especially on obtaining the cheap flight you need considering the airlines/ travel agency you prefer.
Do we need Taiwan Visa?
Several foreign passport holders have a benefit of a visa free entry to Taiwan for a duration of 90 days. These countries include UK, USA, Japan, Republic of Korea, etc.
As for Philippine passport holders, we have to apply for a Taiwan Visa 😦 However, there are exceptions: How to successfully secure a Taiwan Visa in the Philippines
How to get to Elephant Mountain/ Xiangshan (象山)?
Address: Alley 342, Lane 150, Section 5, Xinyi Rd, Xinyi District, Taipei City, Taiwan 110
From Taipei Main Station:
- Take a train from Taipei main station to Xiangshan Station (16 minutes travel time)
- From Xiangshan Station, walk 10-15 minutes going to the Elephant Mountain Trail.
- Entrance fee: NONE
- Transportation Expense: 25 TWD (One way MRT fare)
Once you arrive the MRT Xiangshan station (象山), you have to walk at around 10-15 minutes going to the Elephant Mountain’s Hiking Trail, passing by Zhongqiang Park. There are helpful signs that will lead you to the right way towards Elephant Mountain. so don’t worry, you won’t get lost. From there, the hike to the peak begins.
The trail to the peak of the Elephant Mountain involves a series of steps –like oa. And don’t take that forgranted, my friend. These steps are steep and it’s really (really really really) tiring. It requires 15-20 minutes of your time before reaching the peak. But all the tiredness is totally worth it. Every sweat is nothing compared to the reward you will be witnessing once you reach the peak. IT WAS BEYOND AMAZING.
ELEPHANT MOUNTAIN PEAK
I told you, it’s worth it! Seeing this instantaneous panoramic view of the city is unexplainably amazing. It was so breathtaking. I couldn’t help myself but be awed on how beautiful Taipei City is, especially seeing the full view of Taipei 101 ! I could stay here forever.
The only bête noire that I think I found from hiking this mountain is that it was too crowded. There were so many people at the peak and it was hard for me to get a good shot. Well the place was still amazing though 🙂
- I personally advice you to visit Elephant Mountain the earliest possible time to avoid the crowd. The weather is also not that hot by that time comparing it to hiking during the late afternoon. You can also catch the sunrise!
- Wear comfortable clothes & shoes
- Bring water
- If you want a quality time on top of the peak, there are a few spots you can find perfect for chilling. Bring snacks!
SIDETRIP: SONGSHAN FENGTIAN TEMPLE (松山奉天宮)
You can drop by this small temple just along the end of the trail of the Elephant Mountain.
More Taiwan Travel Guide to be posted THIS WEEK