Taiwan’s Top Travel Spots: Sun Moon Lake (VIDEO)

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Time for Taiwan

If you are looking for an authentic experience on your next vacation destination then look no further! Our trip to Taiwan continues and this time we are setting sail for Sun Moon Lake. Sun Moon Lake is one of Taiwan’s Top Travel Spots. Crowned as one of the Eight Wonders of Taiwan, the Sun Moon Lake Scenic Area attracts more than six million visits each year. Taiwan might be the heart of Asia but Sun Moon Lake is the heart of Taiwan, literally. The Sun Moon Lake, located in the middle of Taiwan is the only natural big lake in Taiwan. Divided by Lalu Island, the Sun Moon Lake scenic area got its name from the unique terrains that look like the sun on one side and moon on the other. While swimming in Sun Moon Lake is not permitted, unless you are there in the fall for the annual 3-km race Swimming Carnival of Sun Moon Lake, the area is famous for boating, hiking and biking.

The Sun Moon Lake sits within Nantou County. If the central region is the heartland of Taiwan, Nantou is Taiwan’s heart: it is the only landlocked county on the island! Nantou is farm country with its economy heavily dependent on it. Rustic areas and an abundance of agricultural products are a large draw for visitors. There are dozens of recreational farm areas to visit, if you are looking for a romantic or family trip to the countryside.

If you travel about 30 minutes away from Sun Moon Lake you will find the Nantou County urban township of Puli. In 1999, Puli was damaged by the 921 earthquake. Hardest his was a small rural village inside Puli called Taomi Village.10 years after the devastating earthquake Puli re-invented itself to be the pride of Taiwan’s eco-tourism industry. Puli might be known for its tourism, but it’s famous for four things: water, weather, women and wine! In addition to the Puli Wine Factory there is also a nationally owned brewery in the township of Puli.

In our first video, we showed you the east and parts of the southern region of Taiwan, now we are diving in head first and headed straight for the center of the island. In this travel video, Wine Oh TV’s Monique Soltani partnered up with the Taiwan Tourism Bureau to bring you 10 days in Taiwan. Tune in as we show you Sun Moon Lake like it’s never been seen before, and find out how to eat, drink, and even dance like the locals.

Biking

Sun Moon Lake features the only full-range 3D tours (lake, sky and land) in Taiwan. The lake cycling trail has been dubbed by CNN as one of the most beautiful cycling trails in the world.

Cycling craze hit Taiwan in 2007 and has been going full speed ahead ever since! Cycling around Sun Moon Lake is an experience that can’t be missed. You can locate a variety of bikes at the Giant bicycle shop right below the Visitor Information Center.

The route around the largest lake in Taiwan is a three-hour ride, where visitors can enjoy lake scenery, experience Thao aboriginal culture and learn about the local ecology in the Nantou County. If you arrive in early spring, you can even catch the cherry blossoms near this mirror-like lake.

Boating

Boat tours are a great way to take in the sights and sounds of Sun Moon Lake. They run every 30 minutes between 9am and 6pm. You can also take bikes on the boats. Most of the local hotels will sell you a boat ticket without charging an extra fee or you can just pick one up at any pier. You can also rent a private boat should you feel so inclined, they are available at the Shueishe Pier and Itashao Pier.

Hotels

Hotel Del Lago Sun Moon Lake: dellago.com.tw

Address: No. 101 Zhōngshān Rd, Yuchi Township Nantou County, Taiwan 555

Hotel ONE Taichung: taichung.hotelone.com.tw

Address: 532 Ying-tsai Road, West District, Taichung, 403 Taiwan

Restaurants

Cedar Tea House: Shuili Township, Nantou County, Taiwan

Sun Moon Restaurant: Nantou County the Township, Shueishe CunJhong 125

Full House Resort Hotel Restaurant: 8 Shuixiu street, Nantou, Taiwan

5 Dime Restaurant: #6, Fu-Hue E Street, Shi Tun Area, Taichung

Activities

Ita Thao: Ita Thao is called Barawbaw in thao language. The Han people call it North Cave. It was named Te Hua village after the restoration of Taiwan, and is under the administration of Yuchi. Barawbaw is the last residence of the thao people at Sun Moon Lake. On account of the continuous stream of tourists, many Han people moved here to go into trade. Therefore, Ita Thao becomes the most populous area around the Sun Moon Lake. There are stores, restaurants, and hotels in the village. Also the thao people establishes the “thao Cultural Village” for tourists to appreciate the traditional culture, songs, and dancing of the thao tribe. Barawbaw (Ita Thao) is the entrance to the Shuishe Mountain.

Address: Sun Moon Village, Yuchi Township, Nantou County

Sun Moon Lake Cable Car: The gondola connects the lake with the Formosan Aboriginal Culture Village in the mountains above. It starts near the Ita Thao Village on the south shore. The 1.2 mile long gondola ride is very popular and very crowded, so be prepared to wait in line.

Address:No.599, Jhongshan Rd., Yuchih Township, Nantou County

Wenwu Temple: It was built in 1938. People worried the water of Sun Moon Lake might cover Longfeng Temple and Ihuatang of Shuishotsun, they built Wenwu Temple. The Wenwu Temple is 2 (Longfeng Temple and Ihuatang) in 1. It was rebuilt in 1969. Its gate is face to the north. People pray the Civil Saint of Confucius, the Military Saint of Guangong, and the Established God of two temples at the Wenwu Temple.

Address: No.63, Zhongshan Rd., Yuchi Township, Nantou County

DIY Paper Making: Guang Hong Xing Co is a producer of handmade paper, the production of handmade paper requires the water quality and weather conditions to be just right, in order to preserve the paper over long periods of time. In addition, producing traditional handmade paper, they also teach paper making, calligraphy and printing courses. Guang Hong Xing is the only handmade paper factory that is open for visit and teaching experience.

Address: No. 310, Tieshan Rd., Tieshan Li, Puli Town, Nantou County.

Shuili Snake Kiln: Here you will find the oldest tradition of kiln-making. It’s even home to the biggest kiln work which is in the Guinness Book of Records! If you travel here you will also find a 921 Earthquake Memorial, Guinness Book of Records-pottery information center, coffee shop, multi-media center, the mold room, the art room, and the pottery room.

Address: No.41, Dingkan Lane, Dingkan Village, Shuili Township, Nantou County

Want some tips planning your trip to Taiwan? Check out the Taiwan Tourism Bureau for more information!

Taiwan’s Top Travel Spots:Taroko National Park & Tainan

To watch our first travel video from Taiwan: Click Here!

We discovered the hidden treasures of Taroko National Park,Taiwan’s top tourist destination. Then we take off to Tainan and show you how Taiwan’s oldest city is keeping up with the times, from culture to cuisine the Heart of Asia has it all.

Monique Soltani

Monique is the Founder and Host of Wine Oh TV and has a certification from the Court of Master Sommeliers. Monique is an experienced broadcast journalist and has worked at various television stations across the country and most recently at KPIX-TV/CBS 5 and KSEE-TV/NBC 24

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