🌄{Hiking} Taiwan Travel — ELEPHANT MOUNTAIN in Taipei (臺北象山)

One of the most popular hikes in Taipei City. Easy access, great views of the city with Taipei 101 smack in the middle.

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Also watch the latest video on this channel: “{Trip} LALASHAN on the Northern Cross-Island Highway (北橫拉拉山)”

From Travel in Taiwan (7/8, 2016) article:

By Richard Saunders

Elephant Mountain is one of the four “beasts” of Four Beasts Mountain, a cluster of wooded peaks (nine in total, actually) on a low but scenic ridge immediately south of Taipei 101. The beasts (Elephant, Lion, Panther, and Tiger) are a quartet of compact but steep spurs emerging from the higher main ridge behind, and viewed from some angles, the peaks that jut out of the ridge do, with a bit of imagination, bring to mind the forms of crouching animals. The ridge behind the beasts is somewhat higher, with a sequence of peaks, including Mt. Muzhi (Thumb Mountain), 95 Peak, and Mt. Nangang, all connected by a network of mostly surfaced trails which can be strung together in a variety of ways for a whole range of hikes.
Not surprisingly, the peaks are a favorite destination for local residents and hikers from all over the Taipei area, and while the opportunity to snap the famous view from Elephant Mountain draws many foreign tourists, there are enough natural and cultural attractions to combine with this scenic draw to make a fine half-day hike that is an easy and very convenient short escape from the urban jungle.
Most people’s introduction to Four Beasts Mountain is through the direct trail to the top of Elephant Mountain, but although very convenient to access (from MRT Xiangshan Station, on the Taipei Metro’s Red Line) and very popular, it’s a long, steep climb, and a sometimes hot and humid introduction to the area’s delights during the summer months. For an easier (and more interesting) introduction, take the Blue Line to MRT Houshanpi Station (two stops east of Taipei City Hall Station), leave by Exit 2, and walk south down Zhongpo South Road.
Then take the second turn on the right (Lane 221), and, a short distance along this lane, pass through a large and imposing temple gate on the right, and move up the steps and into the main courtyard of Songshan Fengtian Temple. The trail starts as a rather steep-looking flight of steps at the rear right corner of the temple compound. It’s certainly a strenuous start to the hike, but after just a couple of minutes the steps emerge onto a lane next to a tiny temple that has been built inside an old air-raid shelter cut out of the solid rock on the lower slopes of Tiger Mountain. A door at the back of the little shrine connects with the other half of the shelter, which has found a new use among locals as a karaoke parlor.
Take the trail that begins beside the entrance to the cave karaoke parlor, and climb steadily along the narrow ridge that is reached, stopping to admire the great views over Taipei 101 and the city beyond from a couple of flat, rocky promontories to the right of the path. From this point it’s just a short walk to the viewing platform at the top of Tiger Mountain – follow the signs – which commands the best city panorama enjoyed to this point.
Keep walking straight ahead along the ridge, and in a couple of minutes the trail joins a narrow road climbing higher into the hills. Turn right and walk along this road, then in a minute or so left onto another signposted trail that climbs steeply onto the slopes of Mt. Nangang, which rises behind. After a short ascent the trail veers left and evens out, contouring the wooded hillside for some distance. Then, after a brief descent, a junction is met.
Turn left here to head back down into the city, beside the lovely Tiger Mountain Stream, a cool and shady walk in the heat of summer. This path descends back to Fude Street a block or two east of Fengtian Temple. To conquer the main peaks of the ridge, on the other hand, turn right at the junction, heading up stone-faced steps that gain the wooded ridge without too much effort. The trail passes 95 Peak first, topped with a large boulder that commands a magnificent view, and a few minutes further Mt. Nangang itself, offering more great vistas.

Elephant Mountain 象山
Four Beasts Mountain 四獸山
Lion Mountain 獅子山
Mt. Muzhi 拇指山
Mt. Nangang 南港山
Panther Mountain 豹山
Six Giant Stones 六巨石
Tiger Mountain 虎山

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2 Replies to “🌄{Hiking} Taiwan Travel — ELEPHANT MOUNTAIN in Taipei (臺北象山)”

  1. Jeff Fu

    Very nice in-depth mountain trail video! I really enjoy all those fun videos when you and your friends traveling around the country. Look forward for more videos~

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