Kenting National Park is one of the most beautiful natural areas in Taiwan. Lying on the southern peninsula of Taiwan, it features natural scenery from beaches, coral reefs, waterfalls, grasslands, tropical forests, sand dunes, mountains, and more. Popular activities include hiking, cycling, swimming, snorkeling, surfing, and any other water sport you can think of. Also it has year round warm tropical temperatures and sunny weather, making it an ideal vacation destination.
Kenting was first settled by Chinese during the Qing Dynasty. The word Kenting comes from twp words that mean cultivate (ken3 墾) and strong man (丁 ding1). During that time, a group of strong men (or Zhuang Ding 壯丁) came from Guangdong, who were basically Chinese pionners of the area to cultivate the land, hence the area was named Kenting for them.
The area was considered to be made into a park during the Japanese occupation due to it being the only tropical location in the Japanese Empire, but was never officially created.
Kenting National Park was established in 1984 as the first national park in Taiwan after WWII.
Kenting became a major vacation spot, becoming a center for hostels and hotels for travelers.
Kenting is considered by many to have the best beaches in Taiwan. This is because of its fine white sand and year-round warm temperatures and sunshine (it is in the tropical part of Taiwan after all).
Price: Free entrance into the park, however certain sections require an entrance fee:
Gueishan 龜山: 60 NT per person
Eluanbi Park 鵝鑾鼻公園: 60 NT per person
Maobitou Park 貓鼻頭公園: 30 NT per person
Kenting Forest Recreation Area 墾丁國家森林遊樂區: 150 NT per person
Jialeshui Scenic Area 佳樂水風景區: 100 NT per person
Kenting Youth Activity Center 墾丁青年活動中心: 50 NT per person
Sheding Park 社頂自然公園: Free
Longluan Lake 龍鑾潭: Free
South Bay Recreation Area 南灣遊憩區: Free
Little Bay 小灣海灘: Free
When to go:
Summer! It's when the water is warmest and the sun is hottest. However there will be more people in summer, and there could be Typhoons.
Spring and Fall are also good times to go, as there will be less visitors and cooler temperatures.
Winter is an okay time to go as well, it will be warmer than the rest of Taiwan and the water will still be warm enough to swim in.
How to get there:
By Car/Scooter: Take provincial highway 1 south to the bottom of Taiwan until it becomes provincial highway 26. After that keep going past Hengchun into Kenting National Park.
By Bus: Busses leave daily to Kenting from Zuoying HSR station, Kaohsiung Station, and Pingtung.
By Plane: There are direct shuttle busses to Kenting from Kaohsing's Xiaogang (KHH) Airport.
Map: 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.