Bitou Cape Trail on Taiwan’s Northeast Coast offers stunning views

The one big reason why it is a super trip has everything to do with the unparalleled scenery along the trail.

The one big reason why it is a super trip has everything to do with the unparalleled scenery along the trail.

TAIPEI (Taiwan News)--I went hiking on the Bitou Cap Trail (鼻頭角步道) yesterday (Sept. 9) and enjoyed the satisfaction the trip gave me from the beginning till the end despite the sultry weather that left me drenched in sweat. The one big reason why it is a super trip has everything to do with the unparalleled scenery along the trail.

I drove along Taiwan’s Northeast Coast, which is full of stunning landscapes, on Provincial Highway No. 2 in the afternoon, and arrived at Bitou Fishing Port around 2:30 p.m. I started hiking on the trail, which is a perfect circular route, from the entrance beside the fishing port. Many people start hiking from the Bitou Elementary School entrance.

The stone-paved trail is about 2 km long and takes about two hours to complete, including time out for photo taking and resting.

Bitou Cape is one of the three major capes in northern Taiwan, with the other two being Fuguei Cape to the west and Sandiao Cape to the east. As Bitou Cape protrudes into the sea, many spots along the trail, especially the part on the top of the cape, offers expansive views of the vast East Sea.

The first four hundred meters up the top of the cape is an uphill climb through a small seaside forest. The climb certainly provides a good chance of getting exercise for all hikers who start from the fishing port entrance.

When reaching the top of the trail, visitors are recommended to turn left and take a rest at the pavilion that sits atop a cliff, where visitors can see magnificent coastal views including the endless sea, Hoping Island, Keelung Island and Keelung Mountain.

After taking in enough of the breath-taking views, I started walking along the undulating trail on top of the cape. The route will take visitors to the front gate of a military barrack situated on another crest of the cape, but the barrack is off limits to visitors.

Coming down the trail from the hilltop to the other side of the cape, visitors will come across the juncture where the trail to the Bitou Lighthouse meets the circular Bitou Cape Trail. However, the trail to the lighthouse has been closed for years as it passes through an area considered to be prone to rock falling.

From here on, the trail is flat but also offers stunning views of the ocean. Visitors should not miss the Moon-Looking Hillside (望月坡), which is located on top of a high cliff at the side of the trail and is the best place for resting and viewing the scenery.

The Moon-Looking Hillside

The Moon-Looking Hillside sits atop high cliffs.

Farther ahead beside a pavilion is the entrance to the coastal trail that runs along the seashore and connects with Longdong Geopark. The trail allows visitors to see plentiful sea cliffs and rich coastal landforms. However, the entrance to the coastal trail at the side of the Bitou Cape Trail is also closed for safety reasons.   

I reached the other entrance near the Bitou Elementary School after two hours and took a rest at the school and a small coffee shop in front of the school. 

A coffee shop near an entrance of the trail. 

Besides driving, Bitou Cape Trail is also accessible by Bus No. 791, 856 (Golden Fulong Shuttle Bus), 886, F805, 1811 and 1812.