Taiwan's East Rift Valley has some of the most breathtaking scenery in Taiwan. It has towering mountains and vast tracks of flat rice fields. There are also amazing rivers, canyons, and waterfalls to explore. It is also home to Taiwan's International Balloon Festival. There is something for everyone in this area of Taiwan.
When to visit?
The East Rift Valley is great year round, but it can get a little hot in the summer, and Typhoon season and heavy rain season last from about May to October. If you are afraid of the heat and rain then you can visit during winter when the temperatures are mild and the climate is usually dryer.
Where to stay?
Most of the accommodation you will find is near the city centers. If you only want to visit Hualien City or Taitung City, you can consider booking a hotel near downtown, walking or cycling around the city, and taking a bus to sites further away.
We have stayed at and recommend Dream Taiwan Homestay (Agoda / Booking.com / Expedia / Hotels.com), a high quality hostel for the money in downtown Hualien, Farglory Hotel (Agoda / Booking.com / Expedia / Hotels.com), right next to Farglory Ocean Park with amazing views of Hualien, and Goldenflower B&B (Agoda / Booking.com) in Yuli right next to Sixty Stone Mountain.
In Taitung have stayed at and recommend the Papago International Resort in Chishang, which is a five star hotel with private villas with pools for each room, and Mountain and Ocean B & B in Taimali, which is a quiet and affordable B&B right next to the beach.
You can find out where to stay in our Taiwan hotels guide or search for the best hotel deals in Taiwan here.
How to get to the East Rift Valley?
You can book tickets to travel to the East Rift Valley via inter-city bus on Klook here.
Book tickets via the normal train (TRA) on Klook here.
Need travel insurance? Compare prices on Insubuy here.
How to get around the East Rift Valley:
As always, we recommend renting a scooter as the best way to see Taiwan. However, you can also a great deal of Tainan by taking the train, inter-city bus, local bus, biking, or just walking. Getting around in a car is also a convenient option as there is plenty of parking pretty much everywhere in this less crowded county.
Scooter Rental: Looking for a scooter rental in Hualien or Taitung? You can search KKday here or Klook here to look for options.
You can also check out our scooter rental guide here.
Car Rental: If you are looking for car rentals in Hualien or Taitung, you can also search Klook here or KKDay here.
You can also check out our car rental guide here.
You can find more tours and activities in Hualien such as Surfing, Paragliding, SUP / Paddle Boarding, Kayaking, Canoeing, River Tracing, River Rafting, Whale Watching, Snorkeling, Diving, ATV / 4-wheeling, Paintballing, Farm Dream Estates Zoo, Water Biking, Oyster Harvesting, Shrimp Harvesting, Indigenous Experience, Glamping, Cycling, Ziplining and much more on Klook here or KKday here.
You can also book Wifi and SIM cards for Taiwan on Gigago here.
Just to let you know, if you book using the links above, we get some commission at no cost to you, and you can help support our blog.
You can click here to receive $5 USD on your first Klook purchase.
Taiwan's East Coast has the most beautiful scenery in Taiwan. From the deepest marble gorge in the world to outer islands, mountains, rivers, and huge sea cliffs, there are unmissable natural wonders for you to explore. In addition, there are endless outdoor activities and water sports that you can take part in here.
Check out our full guide to Taiwan's East Coast here.
Taroko National Park 太魯閣國家公園
If you only have a few days in Taiwan and you want to go somewhere outside of Taipei, you should definitely go to Taroko National Park. On an island full of mountains, rain forests, beaches, and abounding natural beauty, Taroko might just take the top spot as the most beautiful scenic area in Taiwan.
You can check out our full guide to Taroko National Park here.
Hualien is the largest county in Taiwan and is considered by many to be the most beautiful. It includes a breathtaking coastline along the Pacific Ocean, including cliffs thousands of meters high, marble gorges, fertile valleys, and a large section of Taiwan's central mountain range. Hualien is simply a must-stop location on your trip to Taiwan.
Check out our full guide to Hualien here.
Taroko Gorge 太魯閣
If you only have a few days in Taiwan and you want to go somewhere outside of Taipei, you should definitely go to Taroko Gorge. On an island full of mountains, rain forests, beaches, and abounding natural beauty, Taroko Gorge might just take the top spot as the most beautiful scenic area in Taiwan.
Check out our full guide to Taroko Gorge here.
Taitung has some of the most beautiful scenery in Taiwan, two amazing offshore islands, a striking coastline, deep mountains, and most of all it is bursting with unique aboriginal culture, with indigenous people making up over one-third of the population. It is an unmissable stop on your next trip to Taiwan. Here we have compiled our full guide to Taitung County.
Check out our full guide to Taitung here.
Green Island 綠島
Green Island is a paradise off the southeastern coast of Taiwan. Once a prison for political enemies of the KMT, it is now a tourist hot spot. It is one of the best places to snorkel and dive in Taiwan, one of only three salt water hot springs in the world, and it also includes amazing volcanic rock formations and scenery all around the island...(read more)
Orchid Island (Lanyu) 蘭嶼
Orchid Island (not to be confused with the Fijian Island of the same name), known in the the local Tao language as Ponso No Tao (Island of the people), and in Chinese as Lanyu (蘭嶼) is a secret indigenous people's paradise off the southeastern coast of Taiwan. It is different than any other place in Taiwan, and has the best preserved indigenous culture anywhere in the country. If Taiwan's best tourist activity is experiencing the culture of Taiwan's indigenous peoples, then Lanyu has the best tourist experience anywhere in Taiwan...(read more)
This blog is still a work in progress. Check for the most recent blogs on the East Rift Valley by clicking on the category tab here.
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.