Taiwan's northern coast is an amazing, beautiful area with unique geology and rocks, lots of sandy beaches, amazing mountain views and hikes, old streets, night markets, historical sites, and much more to discover. Don't not come here.
Here is a map of the locations we will cover in this blog:
Kuolai Old Trail was a major intersection along the Danlan Old Trail that connects Keelung to Yilan through the mountains of New Taipei. There are three pedestrian bridges, multiple camping locations, lots of swimming spots, and beautiful views of the surrounding mountains. Also, there are some great hiking trails along multiple sections of the original Danlan Old Trail to discover.
Kuolai was originally a small village create in the late Qing Dynasty. In the early days during the Qing Dynasty, the Han Chinese settlers here mainly grew tea and leeks. During the Qing Dynasty, Kuolai was an important stop along the Danlan Old Trail (淡蘭古道 which means the road between Tamsui and Yilan), which was split into three paths, and Kuolai was on the middle path. The middle path winded from Nuannuan to Shifen, then to Kuolai, and then finally over the mountains to Wai'ao in Yilan. Part of section connecting Kuolai to Wai'ao through Wantan is known as the Wantan Old Trail.
Kuolai also intersects with the Beishi River Old Trail which connects Shuangxi to Pinglin.
During the Japanese Era until the 1980s, the major industry in the area besides tea growing was coal mining, The coal mining industry winded down in the 1980s and 90s in Taiwan.
Currently Kuolai is a popular stop near National Highway 5 in northern Pinglin. Besides the history, there is also some great hiking trails and scenery nearby.
About 8 AM to 5 PM.
How to get there:
By Car: Go east on National Freeway 5, then get off at the Pinglin interchange. Continue north east on Pingshuang Road, which follows the Beishi River Old Trail. You can find the many suspension bridges on the side of the road.
By Scooter: From Taipei, take highway 106 east from Shenkeng toward Shiding, pass over the mountain to Pinglin, then once in Pinglin continue north east on Pingshuang Road, which follows the Beishi River Old Trail. You can find the many suspension bridges on the side of the road.
By Bus: From Taipei City Call MRT station, you can take bus 912 to Bafenliao Station, the switch to bus 923 to Pinglin Station. The ride should take about 2 hours. From Pinglin, you can take the F721 bus up along the Beishi River Old Trail. This will take up a lot of time.
Please see below.
We are US Expats that have extensive experience living, working, and travelling in Taiwan. In our day, we had to learn many things about Taiwan the hard way. But we have come to learn that Taiwan is one of the best places in the world for Foreigners to live. Our blog does not represent the opinions of every foreigner in Taiwan. We are just trying to help others learn more about this beautiful country.