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【Fun Hualien NO.45】Hi ! Come travel in Hualien》Capture Splendid Hualien Blues in Summer – Travel the Hualien Coastline with Less Carbon Footprint

  • PostDate:2023-07-11

The resplendent summer sun turns the Hualien coastline even more blue and mesmerizing! The blue of the Pacific Ocean, the blue of the clear sky above the soaring mountains, the waves of rice paddies, caves and tides of Hualien’s mountains and seaside create a unique and cooling blue. Take a ride on the Hualien Hi Bus – Hualien East Coast Route, hopping on and off along the route and holding up your camera to capture the dreamy Hualien blue!


Text/ Chen, Pei-Yin
Image/ Editorial Office


A hidden gem to watch the sea after the bendBaqi Gazebo

The Baqi Gazebo is located at the highest point along Taiwan Provincial Highway No.11. You can reach it by boarding the 304 bus of the Hualien East Coast Route at Hualien Bus Station. Taking the bus instead of driving can reduce carbon footprint by nearly 2.5 kg CO2e per person on this journey. As the bus snakes along the hairpin bend on the road, the scenery suddenly opens up to reveal lush green mountains and the vast Pacific Ocean with towering coastal mountains. This place is aptly referred to as the “Turning Point” and is considered one of the most beautiful spots in Hualien.


Looking east from the Baqi Gazebo, one is offered an unparalleled sea view of azure blue, shimmering waters in the ocean breeze; looking south, you can see the waves of Jiqi Bay, glimmering under the resplendent sun. Rather than exalting its beauty, you will discover that silence speaks louder than words. Let your ears immerse in the melodic dance of the waves, and feel the powerful pulsation of the ocean. Underneath the gazebo, there is a wooden boardwalk that stretches for approximately 100 meters. Walk in a leisurely pace under the shade of olive trees, accompanied by the chirping of insects and birds. Here you can gaze afar at the magnificent mountains and sea and let the refreshing blue surroundings sweep away the heat of summer. In addition, a rest area can be found where a variety of hot and cold beverages, light meals, braised snacks, and coffee are sold. Paired with the stunning scenery, the place provides the ultimate enjoyment.


INFO|Baqi Rest Stop
Address: 31.5KM along Taiwan Provincial Highway No.11, Jiqi Village, Fengbin Township, Hualien County
Telephone: 0911-011819
Business hours: 09:00-17:00(Mondays)、10:00-16:00(Tuesday to Sundays)
Hualien Bus: Get off at Baqi Gazebo bus stop:304


Rice paddies the sway with the ocean breezeXinshe Terrace Paddies

Have you ever watched the sea from a rice paddy? One would assume farmland to be crisscrossed with small agricultural roads and maybe mountains in the distance. The Xinshe Terrace Paddies along Taiwan Provincial Highway No.11 is a place that can truly shatter your preconceived notions of farmland. With its unique geographical location, Xinshe Terrace Paddies offers a breathtaking view where visitors can immerse themselves in the embrace of the sea and mountains. Here, you can fully indulge in the tranquil beauty of a wonderful summer in the countryside.


Take the Bus No.304 of the Hualien East Coast Route from Hualien and get off at Xinshe Terrace Paddies bus stop. This bus service not only offers a convenient way to reach the destination but also reduces carbon emissions by approximately 0.8 kg CO2e per person. As you arrive, you’ll be greeted by a mesmerizing sight: wave after wave of rice paddies extending all the way to the coast, where they meet the crashing white waves. Alongside the fields, you’ll also find a seafront swing and various art installations, adding a lively touch to the serene beauty of the terraced rice paddy fields. Xinshe Tribe (Kavalan name: Paterongan), located in Fengbin Township, was originally founded by the Kavalan people who migrated south from Yilan. Due to their traditional food culture centered around rice, they began cultivating terraced fields and growing rice on the coastal plains. This has given rise to the enchanting scenery we see today, where the rice paddies seem to seamlessly blend with the sea. The terraced rice paddies offer different sceneries as the seasons change, and the scenery before the June harvest are the most popular among tourists. As the rice ears gradually turn golden and sway in the wind, accompanied by the humid breeze carrying the essence of the water, it feels as if both humans and rice ears are nourished by the blessings bestowed by bounty of the ocean.


INFO|Xinshe Terrace Paddies
Address: 43.5KM along Taiwan Provincial Highway No.11, Xinshe Tribe, Fengbin Township, Hualien County
Business hours: Open all day
Hualien Bus: Get off at Xinshe Terrace Paddies bus stop:304、1145


A Place of Energy on the Hualien coastShimen Ban Shao Jiao

Catch Bus No.304 along the Hualien East Coast Route and continue on your journey along the coastal highway. In a short while, the bus will reach the next destination Shimen Ban Shao Jiao. Taking a bus along this leg of the journey will generate 1.2 kg less CO2e compared to self-driving. As you gaze out from the intersection, your view extends straight to the vast blue sea, with the sound of waves brushing past your ears, instantly relieving you of the unbearable summer heat. As you venture further, the blue sky, white clouds, vast ocean, and lush green grass unfold before your eyes, resembling a picturesque picture postcard. Under the warm and vibrant summer sunlight, these elements come together to create a multi-layered and captivating scenery.


In the past, Shimen Ban Shao Jiao was renowned for its “Double Heart Rocks.” However, due to earthquakes, the romantic double heart shape no longer exists. Today, it greets travelers with its new identity as a “Place of Energy.” In earlier times, this place served as a resting spot for the indigenous Amis people who traveled north on foot. They would take a break here, rejuvenate themselves with the sea breeze, and continue their journey. However, even in this modern era of convenient transportation, passersby are still captivated by the mesmerizing azure blue scenery. The vast ocean heals the weariness of the journey, replenishing all who pass by with abundant energy before setting off again. About 500 meters away from here is the Shimen Recreation Area, renowned for its unique landscape formed by years of erosion from the waves crashing against the rocky shores. Among the must-visit popular spots is the famous “Shimen Cave,” named after its resemblance to the shape of a “Nissan March” car. The splendid natural beauty of the sea and sky seen from outside the cave is also a stunning sight to behold.


INFO|Shimen Ban Shao Jiao
Address: 60.5KM along Taiwan Provincial Highway No.11, Fengbin Township, Hualien County
Telephone: 03-8671326
Business hours: Open all day
Hualien Bus: Get off at Shimen Ban Shao Jiao bus stop:304

INFO|Shimen Recreation Area
Address: 60KM along Taiwan Provincial Highway No.11, Fengbin Township, Hualien County
Telephone: 03-8671326
Business hours: Open all day
Hualien Bus: Get off at Shimen Recreation Area bus stop:11401140A、1145、8119
※Please pay attention to the tide of the sea water and go ashore as soon as you find any abnormalities.


Watching the sea and listening to the waves on the cuestaShitiping

Situated at the southern end of Shiti Bay in Fengbin Township, Shitiping can be reached by Bus No. 304 of the Hualien East Coast Route. Taking the bus can reduce carbon footprint by 0.26 kg CO2e per person. Due to the constant pounding of the waves, the erosion over millennia has created impressive geological formations at Shitiping. When viewed from a distance, it resembles a staircase extending into the sea, leaving people in awe of nature’s masterpiece. Among them, the “giant’s kettle” landscape stands out and is hailed as Taiwan’s top example of such geological formations. Therefore, Shitiping is renowned as a “world-class outdoor geological classroom.”


The ebb and flow of the tides and the movement of tectonic plates has allowed the reefs to emerge above the sea surface. The cliffs above the stone steps are covered with white tuff and volcanic breccia, forming the 17-meter high cuesta terrain. Standing at the summit and gazing into the distance, one can witness the vastness of the open sea. Walking down into the intertidal zone, one can carefully observe the tide pools formed by the giant’s kettle, which is teeming with various types of seaweed, fish, shrimp, and shellfish. The Shitiping coast harbors rich coral reefs and tropical fish, showcasing the abundant ecology and the infinite vitality of the ocean to travelers. In addition, Shitiping is also the birthplace of whale-watching in Taiwan. Every summer, there is a group of visitors in the open sea – the whales and dolphins (cetaceans) leaping out of the water, capturing the attention of onlookers chasing after their graceful figures. Shitiping Recreation Area also features a camping area, allowing travelers to set up campfires and enjoy the sight and sound of the waves on long summer nights.


Address: No. 52, Shitiping, Fengbin Township, Hualien County
Telephone: 03-8781452
Business hours: Open all day
Hualien Bus: Get off at Shitiping:304、309、 1140、1140A、1145、8119