While spending a couple days in Taipei eating and shopping is a guaranteed good time, there are also a handful of areas just outside of the city center that are well worth a visit. One of my favourites is Wulai. Located about an hour or so south of Taipei, Wulai is a small Aboriginal town home to the Atayal’s and famous for its hot springs. If you’re wondering whether it’s worth your time to visit this beautiful area, I’m sure these 5 things to do in Wulai will convince you to check it out!
1. Relax at Wulai’s Natural Hot Springs
Most people who visit Wulai come here for the hot springs; either the numerous hot springs available at guest houses or at the free, natural hot springs located along the river (as seen above). I would definitely recommend the natural hot springs – there are a number of different hot springs you can sit in and they offer stunning views of the surrounding area. For more information about Wulai’s natural hot springs, check out my previous article.
2. Head to the Wulai Waterfall
Only a 20 minute walk from Wulai’s natural hot springs is the well-known Wulai Waterfall. Though not as impressive as many larger waterfalls, it’s located in a tranquil setting (when there’s not a tonne of tourists around) and is quite beautiful. There are benches scattered across from the waterfall, so grab a drink, take a seat, and enjoy the view.
3. Walk through Wulai Old Street and eat all the food
Taipei is known as a foodie-haven, so it’s no surprise that Wulai also offers visitors an abundance of delicious street food. Aside from a variety of typical Taipei delights, you can sample a few items that are only found in Wulai, the most popular of which is Wild Boar Sausage. For more insight on what food you can expect, check out my last article on what to eat in Wulai.
4. Explore the Aboriginal (Atayal) souvenir shops
Originally home to the Atayal People, Wulai still maintains much of its Aboriginal heritage. After walking across the main bridge (just after Wulai Old Street) turn left and follow the path down for about 20 minutes until you reach a little stretch of local shops and cafes on your right and the Wulai Waterfall on your left. The shops sell a number of locally made souvenirs at reasonable prices.
5. Hike around Wulai
There are a number of hiking trails around Wulai; both easy and challenging. Unfortunately, since we were only there for the day and the weather wasn’t cooperating, we didn’t end up going on a hike. That being said, I had done a bit of research ahead of time and found some helpful guides here, here, and here.
*Note: We had read about a gondola ride taking you over the river and above the Wulai Waterfall to an amusement park, however, it wasn’t in service and we weren’t sure if it was open only on weekends or if it was permanently closed. If anyone has any information on the gondola, or if you have any other things to do in Wulai that I missed, comment below!
For a guide on how to get to Wulai from Taipei, click here.