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5D4N Scenic Taiwan Road Trip Itinerary, With National Parks & Hot Springs Unlocked With A Car

 Taipei & Taichung 5D4N itinerary

For those not in the know, they’d think all there is to Taipei are its bustling night markets and shopping districts. Scaling Taipei 101 for the first time is awe-inspiring, but there’s so much more to see and do in Taiwan’s capital and beyond, so, off the beaten path you should venture. 

We’re talking hikes across dormant volcanoes, off-road ATV rides, and tranquil strolls in flower fields. You don’t even have to journey for hours on end to catch a glimpse of these undisturbed vistas – if you’ve got a car, that is. Here’s a mix of attractions to hit on this 5D4N Taipei and Taichung itinerary, made all the more accessible with a rented vehicle. 

– Day 1 –

Rent a car straight from the airport

First things first – acquiring your getaway vehicle. Thankfully, Klook makes securing one hassle-free with its car rental services. In fact, you can pick up your rented car right when you touch down, as there are pick-up points conveniently located at various airports around Taiwan, such as the Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport.

Driving Around With Friends
You can also enjoy perks like flexible return locations, so you can drop off your car at Taichung International Airport, even if you picked it up at Taipei.

There’s a whole fleet of vehicles you can choose from: their 9-seater Volkswagen Caravelle (S$190.61/day) can sit the whole kampung, or opt for the compact Toyota Vios (S$57.49/day) if you’ve got only your besties in tow. 

Do note that you’ve got to submit a couple of documents, such as a driver’s licence, a valid credit card, and photo ID as well as a printed copy of the rental voucher before they hand you the keys to the vehicle. They’ll also accept Singapore-issued driving licences; on the basis that they’ve been held for at least 1 or 2 years, depending on the rental company.

Check into a hot spring resort overlooking mountains

Yangmingshan Tien-Lai Resort & Spa Hot Spring
Image credit: Klook

You’ll want to sort out your accommodation sitch ASAP so you can sink right into king-size beds after landing in Taipei. After a 1.5-hour drive from the airport, the Yangmingshan Tien-Lai Resort & Spa does you one better, by allowing you to soothe weary bones in the comfort of their hot springs. 

Individual Hot Spring Cottage At Yangmingshan Tien-Lai Resort And Spa
Image credit: @demanchiu via Instagram

It’s nestled in the plateau of Yangmingshan National Park’s mountains, so you’ll be able to gaze at the neighbouring alps from the resort’s toasty, 46°C open-air hot springs. For an added layer of serenity, book an individual hot spring cottage (TWD500/pax, ~S$21.27) to get this intimate view all for yourself. 

Yangmingshan Tien-Lai Resort And Spa Themed RoomsImage credit: 陽明山天籟渡假酒店

The resort also offers quirky themed rooms for their guests. The Superior Treehouse Room (from TWD28,000, ~S$1,191.88) boasts a “treehouse” for the kids to hole up in, while the Superior Boathouse Room (from TWD21,000, ~S$893.81) is adorned with nautical touch-ups that mimic a ship’s living quarters.

In case you’re travelling on a tighter budget, they’ve got Triple and Quadruple Rooms available too at TWD7,288 (~S$309.35) and TWD8,382 (~S$355.76) respectively. These economically-priced rooms don’t skimp on comfort as you can opt for extra queen beds, plus you still get access to the aforementioned decadent hot springs. 

Book a stay at Yangmingshan Tien Lai Resort & Spa

Yangmingshan Tien Lai Resort & Spa
Rates: From TWD6,196/night (~S$262.96)
Address: No. 1-7, Mingliu Road, Jinshan District, New Taipei City, Taiwan
Contact: +886 2 2408 0000 | Yangmingshan Tien Lai Resort & Spa website

Hike across volcanoes at Yangmingshan National Park

Yangmingshan National Park
Among this group of mountains lies the 1,120m-tall Qixing Mountain, the tallest dormant volcano in Taiwan.
Image credit: via Instagram

It goes without saying that you’ve got to swing by Yangmingshan National Park for a hike; after all, it’s located a mere 2-minute drive, or 11-minute walk from Yangmingshan Tien-Lai Resort & Spa. 

Here, several dormant volcanoes beckon experienced hikers who want a step-up from the hiking trails in Singapore. The trails here take around 2-3 hours to conquer, which give you plenty of opportunities to catch Mother Nature at work. Keep an eye out for the fumaroles, which expel gases and vapours from the heart of the surrounding volcanoes.

Calla Lilies At Yangmingshan National Park
Image credit: @taipeitravel via Instagram

Imposing volcanoes aren’t all you can see at Yangmingshan National Park. A well-timed trip will net you magnificent views of the seasonal flora; visit during March to May and you’ll spot rows of white calla lilies in full bloom.

Book a Yangmingshan hiking tour

Admission: Free
Address: No. 1-20, Zhuzihu Road, Beitou District, Yangmingshan, Taipei City 11292, Taiwan
Opening hours: 8.30am-4.30pm, Daily
Contact: +886 2 2861 3601 | Yangmingshan National Park website

– Day 2 –

Pose alongside peculiar rock formations at Yehliu Geopark

Yehliu Geopark Rock Formations
Image credit: @tattooist.ef via Instagram

Once you’ve had your fair share frolicking in the hot springs of Yangmingshan, trade in the soaring mountaintops for the martian-like landscape of Yehliu Geopark. It’s situated on a northeast cape of Taiwan just a 20-minute drive from Yangmingshan National Park, and features several compelling rock formations to frame your IG snaps with. 

Yehliu Geopark Heart-Shaped Rock
Image credit: @nyongxxi via Instagram

The odd structures were formed through thousands of years of erosion from the winds and seawater. Notable formations include the “Queen’s Head”, which resembles the head of a figure wearing a high ponytail, as well as this heart-shaped rock that has won over the fancy of couples and singles alike. 

Book admission tickets to Yehliu Geopark

Admission: From TWD120/pax (~S$5.11)
Address: No. 167-1, Gangdong Road, Wanli District, New Taipei City, Taiwan
Opening hours: 8am-5pm, Daily (September – June)| 9am-6pm, Daily (July – August)
Contact: +886 2 2492 2016 | Yehliu Geopark website

Canoe through lush paddyfields at Yilan

Paddy Field CanoeingImage credit: Shen Hommer 張鴻 via Facebook & Klook

The next stop on your road trip is a small detour to the northernmost county of Taiwan. After a 1.5-hour drive from Yehliu Geopark, you’ll be greeted by the verdant paddyfields of Yilan. A canal snakes through the knee-high crops, and you’ll be able to rent a canoe to traverse this winding channel of water. 

Non-swimmers and those new to canoeing can rest easy; there’ll be life jackets and friendly tour guides who will teach you how to canoe with the right techniques so you can manoeuvre the boat as efficiently as possible. They’ll even double as competent photographers, so just focus on paddling off into the orange sunset. 

Book a Paddy Field Canoe Experience

Rates: TWD500/pax (~S$21.29)
Address: No. 530, Xiesong Road, Dongshan Township, Yilan County, Taiwan

Ride on ATVs & race your friends down the beach

Off Road ATV Riding With Friends
Be sure to grab a friend along for the ride, as each vehicle can sit up to 2.
Image credit: Klook

For a switch of pace, head down to the beaches of Yilan to race your friends across its shoals while riding ATVs. You don’t even need a driving licence to pilot these vehicles, as there’ll be instructors to teach you the ins and outs of how to operate one. 

Off Road ATV Tour
Image credit: Klook

True to their name, these All Terrain Vehicles will really put you into the thick of it; you’ll find yourself splashing in streams and zooming across unmarked dirt paths. However, don’t forget to scan your surroundings from time to time, as the oceanic atoll is also a sight to behold. 

Book an Off Road ATV Tour

Rates: TWD540/vehicle (~S$23)
Address: No. 5, Suhua Road, Nan’ao Township, Yilan County, Taiwan

Whet your appetite with Michelin-recommended street food

Raohe Night Market Entrance
Image credit: @al.aaan via instagram

Of course, you can’t really say you’ve been to Taiwan if you’ve not dropped by any of their world-renowned night markets. For that quintessential street food taste, we’re hitting up Raohe Night Market, as it has racked up quite a number of Michelin Bib Gourmand-winning bites over the years. 

Raohe Night MarketImage credit: @greedynomz & @inch_2.54_eat via Instagram

Some of the must-eats include the Fuzhou Pepper Cake (TWD60, ~S$2.55); you’ll understand the hype for it as you break into its paper-thin crust to reveal the sinful pork filling. We also recommend having a piping hot bowl of Chen Tung Pork Ribs Medicinal Herbs Soup (TWD120, ~S$5.11) that’s said to be quite rejuvenating because of the herbs used.

Address: Raohe Street, Songshan District, Taipei City, Taiwan
Opening hours: 5pm-11pm, Daily
Contact: +886 2 2766 8876

– Day 3 –

Marvel at Carton King Creative Park’s huge cardboard sculptures

And we’re off to Taichung for day 3 of the itinerary. The trip should take under 2 hours if you’re travelling from Taipei, but no drive is too monotonous when you’re holding impromptu karaoke sessions with the squad along the way.

Carton King Creative Park Leaning Tower Of Pisa
Image credit: @dodo0511 via Instagram

Our first stop in Taichung brings us to Carton King Creative Park. Feast your eyes on cardboard renditions of famous monuments from around the world. Some of the more impressive ones include the Leaning Tower of Pisa, complete with its iconic 4-degree tilt, as well as an imposing replica of Rome’s Colosseum – all made with corrugated cardboard and glue.

Carton King Creative Park Miss Cafe
Image credit: via Instagram

Don’t forget to grab your caffeine fix at Miss Cafe, which is tucked away within the museum. However, a dilemma arises with each dainty dessert (from TWD108, ~S$4.59) ordered, as they come presented on an intricate dish fashioned from cardboard that’s too pretty to bin.

Admission: From TWD120/pax (~S$5.11)
Address: No. 171, Renhe Road, Ren’ai Township, Nantou County, Taiwan
Opening hours: Sun-Thu 9am-8pm | Fri-Sat 9am-9pm
Contact: +886 4 9280 3828 | Carton King Creative Park website

Step into a  “fairy tale” at Xinshe Castle

Castle At Xinshe Castle
Image credit: @arielwxoxo via Instagram

Xinshe Castle is another picturesque spot to update the IG feed with. The vibe here is ostensibly European, but it’s located just a 40-minute drive from the Taichung city centre. Although the castle bears no EU affiliation and was instead built up by the locals, the scenery here looks like it has been ripped from the stills of a Disney live action. 

XinShe Castle Maple Tree Forest
Image credit: @kitkatmalachi via Instagram

Besides hanging around the mediaeval-like towers and arches, you can take a stroll through a flower garden on the banks of the pond, or kick up the autumn foliage in the nearby Maple Tree Forest.

Buildings at Xinshe CastleImage credit: via Instagram

Before you leave, be sure to visit the Wine Chateau Restaurant – it’s the biggest building on the castle grounds. Even though they don’t quite have a vineyard to produce wine, they do whip up delightful Western cuisine from TWD400 (S$17), so that’s lunch settled. 

Admission: TWD350/adult (~S$14.88), TWD250/child (~S$10.63)
Address: No. 23, Xiezhong Street, Xinshe District, Taichung City, Taiwan
Opening hours: Mon-Fri 9am-6pm | Sat-Sun 8am-6pm
Contact: +886 4 2582 5628 | Xinshe Castle website

Live off the beaten track & go glamping

Slowly Sunet Glamping - Taipei & Taichung Itinerary
Image credit: @slowlysunsetglamp via Instagram

Staying true to the road trip experience, we’re eschewing a conventional stay at a hotel for a night of glamping. This outdoor living experience by Chansuo: Slowly Sunset promises tents fitted with spacious beds so you can sleep like royalty even in the wilderness. 

Slowly Sunset Glamping Buffet And Room - Taipei & Taichung ItineraryImage adapted from: Klook

As far as dining options go, there’ll be afternoon high tea pastries and for dinner, you’ll get to gorge yourself with a generous buffet. It’ll feature dishes inspired from the neighbouring wetlands, so expect morsels of shellfish and exotic vegetables to be on the menu. At night, tag along for an ecological tour, where you’ll get to see armies of mudflat crabs skittle about. 

Book a glamping experience in Taichung

Rates: From TWD5,200/night (~S$221.14)
Address: No. 8, Meidi Street, Qingshui District, Taichung City, Taiwan
Contact: +886 04 3702 2557 | Chansuo: Slowly Sunset website

La Vida Hotel Double Deluxe Room
La Vida Hotel’s Double Deluxe Room (S$131.98/night).
Image credit: Klook

For those who would not give up the luxuries of a hotel for the world, we wouldn’t fault you for wanting to lock in a good night’s rest after soldiering through all that driving. Our recommendations include Holiday Inn Express Taichung Park and La Vida Hotel – both of them are smack dab in the city for maximum convenience.

Book a stay at Holiday Inn Express Taichung Park or La Vida Hotel.

Holiday Inn Express Taichung Park
Rates: From TWD2,736/night (~S$116.13)
Address: No.94 Tze Yu Road Section 2, Central District, Taichung City, Taiwan
Contact: +886 4 3505 9898 | Holiday Inn Express Taichung Park website

La Vida Hotel
Rates: From TWD2,736/night (~S$116.13)
Address: No. 275-2, Xitun Road Section 2,, Xitun District, Taichung City, Taiwan
Contact: +886 4 2451 7722 | La Vida Hotel website

– Day 4 –

Prance amidst sprawling flower fields at Zhong She Flower Market

Zhong She Flower Market Windmill - Taipei & Taichung Itinerary

We hope you’ve brought an extra memory card, because you’ll find yourself at the mercy of IG-worthy backdrops once again. At Zhong She Flower Market, a sea of flowers awaits. The flowers you’ll see here rotate based on the seasons; expect rows of lavenders, lilies, and sunflowers just to name a few. You can even check the Zhong She Flower Market website to see what’s in bloom.

Zhong She Flower Market - Taipei & Taichung Itinerary

For those with a case of awkward hands, there are various flora-related installations scattered around the flower fields to pose with for your photos. Choose between a pastel pink piano, or a huge windmill to complement your pics.

Admission fee: TWD150, ~S$6.38 (January-March) | NT$120, ~S$5.10 (April-December)
Address: No.469-13, Sanfeng Road, Houli District, Taichung City 421, Taiwan
Opening hours: 8am-6pm, Daily
Contact: +886 4 2557 6926 | Zhong She Flower Market website

Catch the sunset at Gaomei Wetlands

Gaomei Wetlands Sunset - Taipei & Taichung Itinerary
Image credit: @shoney_a__a via Instagram

If you can’t get enough trudging through our very own Sungei Buloh Wetland Reserve, you’ll be able to wander about Taichung’s very own Gaomei Wetlands. Locals and tourists alike flock here to observe the orange sunset, as do migratory birds which decide to call the wetlands their home for the winter. 

Ducks At Gaomei Wetlands - Taipei & Taichung Itinerary
Image credit: @thecameradiary_click via Instagram

Speaking of which, you might want to pack a pair of binoculars when you visit Gaomei Wetlands, as its unique geographical features make it a hotspot teeming with wildlife. The eagle-eyed will be able to spot ducks, spoonbills, mudskippers, and crabs.

Gaomei Wetlands Visitor Centre - Taipei & Taichung Itinerary
Image credit:

Should you not want to wade in the muddy flats, saunter down the 800m-long boardwalk and pay a visit to the decommissioned Gaomei Lighthouse. The Gaomei Wetlands Visitor Centre is also nearby, which houses a 360-degree amphitheatre that depicts the beautiful scenery at the wetlands, as well as interactive projections that kids can mess around with.

Gaomei Wetlands
Admission fee: Free
Address: Qingshui District, Taichung City, Taiwan
Opening hours: 24 hours, Daily
Contact: Gaomei Wetlands website

Gaomei Wetlands Visitor Centre
Admission fee: TWD100 (~S$4.26)
Address: No. 8, Meidi Street, Qingshui District, Taichung City, Taiwan
Opening hours: 9am-6pm, Daily
Contact: +886 4 2611 1566 | Gaomei Wetlands Visitor Centre website

– Day 5 –

Trek through a dreamy forest at Xitou Nature Education Area

Xitou Nature Education Area Bridge - Taipei & Taichung Itinerary
Image credit: @33__tuzi via Instagram

Hiking enthusiasts will rejoice, as we’re hitting the trails for our final day in Taichung. The first will take us through the Xitou Nature Education Area, where you’ll be able to take in the sights of a dreamy forest. But before you head into the woods, make sure to stop by the bamboo bridge; it looks especially ethereal on misty mornings. 

Xitou Nature Education Area Forest - Taipei & Taichung ItineraryThere’s even a treetop walk here that gives the one at MacRitchie Reservoir a run for its money.
Image adapted from: @clare81clare via Instagram

Afterwards, a circular hiking trail will have you craning your neck to find the tops of colossal Taiwan Red Cypress trees which can grow up to 60m in height. The forest here is studied by the National Taiwan University for research purposes, so you can be sure it has been well-preserved for your eyes only. 

Admission fee: TWD220 (~S$9.37)
Address: No. 9, Senlin Lane, Lugu Township, Nantou County, Taichung City, Taiwan
Opening hours: 7am-5pm, Daily
Contact: +886 49 2612111 | Xitou Nature Education Area website

Discover one of Taiwan’s most beautiful waterfalls

Our next destination is just as mystical as the last, and it’s just a 40-minute joyride away. Nestled within the Shanlinxi Forest Recreation Area lies one of Taiwan’s most gorgeous natural formations, Songlong Rock Waterfall.

Songlong Rock Waterfall Alcove - Taipei & Taichung Itinerary
Image credit: @fickyfreaky via Instagram

The trail leading to the waterfall brings visitors into the shade of a moss-covered alcove and it is here where you can observe the roaring might of the waterfall up close. Overhead, you’ll be able to spot swarms of swallows; there are quite a number of them nesting in the uneven ceiling that make for quite the spectacle. 

Pools At Songlong Rock Waterfall - Taipei & Taichung Itinerary
Image credit: @yishan1128 via Instagram

If you’d like, you can even make your way down to the pools of water down below to soak your fatigued soles. Then, follow the forest path and you’ll eventually come face-to-face with the 4,000-year old Ancient Red Cypress. Only a hollow trunk remains, but one can only imagine the sheer scale of the tree back in its heyday.

Ancient Red Cypress At Songlong Rock Waterfall - Taipei & Taichung Itinerary
Image credit: World of Waterfalls

Admission: TWD250/pax, ~S$10.63
Address: No. 6, Xishan Road., Zhushan Township, Nantou County, Taichung City, Taiwan
Opening hours: 7am-9pm, Daily
Contact: +886 49 2611217 | Shanlinxi Forest Recreation Area website

Explore Taiwan with Klook

Although the holiday season is already reaching a fever pitch, it’s not too late to start planning your next getaway with your best mates in Taiwan.

Fo Guang Shan Buddha Memorial Centre
Fo Guang Shan Buddha Memorial Centre in Kaohsiung.

Apart from Taipei and Taichung, the rest of Taiwan’s worth a visit too. Kaohsiung’s a laidback seaside city which can now be directly flown to from Singapore, while Tainan is lauded as the country’s ancient capital home to historic buildings built in the 17th and 18th centuries. It’ll even be hosting the 2024 Taiwan Lantern Festival in February.

Taipei Zookeeper At Taipei Zoo
If you’ve got time to spare, swing by the Taipei Zoo – it’s one of the listed attractions in Klook’s Taipei Attractions Pass.
Image credit: @rhino_olie via Instagram

With so many destinations to choose from, you can trust Klook with picking out the best attractions to fill out your days abroad. Simply purchase the Klook Passes to get access to 2-5 curated attractions throughout your travels. Moreover, you can lay your accommodation-related worries to rest with their ongoing Discover Taiwan promotion.

Backed by the Taiwan Tourism Administration, Klook is giving away TWD5,000 (~S$2,128.91) worth of hotel vouchers to Taiwan-bound travellers, including some of the ones listed here like Holiday Inn Express Taichung Park and La Vida Hotel.

All you’ve got to do is to complete a simple What Do You Know About Taiwan questionnaire and cross your fingers. They’ll notify winners via email on a weekly basis from now till 31st December 2023

Holiday Inn Express Taichung Park
Holiday Inn Express Taichung Park.
Image credit: IHG

Winners will then be able to use these vouchers to pay for stays across popular spots in Taiwan, such as Taipei, Taichung, Kaohsiung, Hualien, and Yilan. In fact, all hotels and resorts mentioned in the itinerary are on the list of accommodations you can pick from. 

Taiwan High Speed Rail
To enjoy a Buy-1-Get-1 Free deal, be sure to use promo code
<GO2TAIWAN> when purchasing passes for the Taiwan High Speed Rail on Klook, subject to availability.
Image credit: Klook

Even if you’re not road-tripping across Taiwan, there are other Klook-powered options to help you get to where you need to be. There’s the Taiwan High Speed Rail that rivals Japan’s Shinkansen, as well as private charter vehicles if you’d prefer a more personalised travelling experience.

Learn more about Klook’s Discover Taiwan campaign


Cover image adapted from: @slowlysunsetglamp & @arielwxoxo via Instagram