DAY 2 in Alishan to Taichung
1. Take ‘Sunrise Train’ to watch sunrise & sea of cloud
It takes around half an hour on the “train in the forest” 森林鐵路 from Alishan station to arrive at Chushan station. We then took a short hike to Xiaoliyuanshan Lookout 小笠原山觀景台 for a less-crowded sunrise view compared to Zhushan Sunrise Observation Deck 阿里山祝山觀日平臺. Due to the weather, we didn’t get to the sea of cloud but a misty sunrise.
Return to the observation deck, we spent some times admiring the cherry blossom trees there. We didn’t take the return-way train as we went straight to the Alishan National Scenic Area for hiking. As the sun rises up, you probably able to admire the beautiful scenery of cherry blossom along the train journey.
2. Hiking at the Alishan National Scenic area 阿里山國家風景區
I strongly recommend you to go hiking in this magnificent forest. The air we breathe in here like it is the freshest on earth and the easy trail we walk through as if lead to nature’s heaven! Great place for those who seek an escape from the city! From Zhaoping Park 沼平公園, we slowly hike through the photogenic forest to all the scenic areas for about 3 hours plus. Those include the peaceful Jiemei (Sister) Lake 姊妹潭 with still and clear water, the natural sculpture of old cypresses tree – 永結同心, the forest-hidden temple –Alishan Shouzhen Temple 受鎮宮, the trail to view some featured majestic ancient trees – Giant Tree Cluster Trail 巨木群棧道, and last but not least the beautiful cherry blossoms park – Sakura Park 櫻王. If you come to Alishan at the cherry blossom’s blooming time, you will get to see cherry blossoms at other places like the sakura trail and along the railway.
3. Leaving Alishan to Taichung
The famous local Zhushan Zinan Temple 竹山紫南宮 is our rest stop while on the way to Taichung. This temple is quite busy and crowded with local people who usually come here to pray for luck and wealth. Due to the crowd, many shops or stalls selling souvenirs and food can be found nearby. Even the public toilets here are very unique lol. After praying at the temple, we bought some snacks at the food stall to fill our stomach.
4. Late lunch at Taichung 台中眷村古早味面食
This is one of the typical street vendors at downtown, selling some delicious and authentic local delights. Their dry noodle with their very own special aromatic sauce is simply delicious. It tastes so good when you eat it together with their braised-food 滷味. Thanks to our driver, treated us to this yummy welcome meal.
Note: 滷味 is one of the Taiwan local delight that comes with wide ingredients like – boiled egg, intestine, pork neck, chicken wings, tofu, preserved egg, duck and many more, all braised in special soup.
5. Dinner at the biggest night market Taichung Fengjia 台中逢甲夜市
After checked-in at Le Parker Hotel 黎客商旅, we went to Fengjia night market which is just a walking distance away. This night market is really big! Rows and rows of food stalls and shops around this area are crowded with people hunting for street food and things. It looks like this place has gathered all the Taiwanese street food in one place. Highly recommend you to come here with an empty stomach, so you can eat like a foodie. It can be very subjective in terms of taste. But, I often find Taiwan’s night markets are filled with interesting food and things, which less likely can be found in other countries. Stinky tofu is a must-try snack, whenever I visit Taiwan.
Check out other posts about Taiwan:
Taiwan 10D9N Travel Guides & Itinerary
Taichung Sun Moon Lake 1 Day Travel Guide