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Lushui Heliu Trail An experience of the beauty of ecology and humanity

Lushui Heliu Trail  An experience of the beauty of ecology and humanity 1
  • Address:172 kilometers from Zhongheng Highway, Xiulin Township, Hualien County
  • Contact Number:03-8691466
  • Trail Tour
    Splendid Hualien
    Xiulin Township

Lushui Heliu Trail  An experience of the beauty of ecology and humanity 1

In a primitive look and with rich landscapes and ecological views, the Lushui Heliu Trail is gentle and easy to walk, suitable for visitors of all ages.

“Heliu” was an early timber distribution center. The national government cut down trees, transported lumber to Heliu via cables, and then shipped them off to different locations by the Central Cross Island Highway. After logging stopped, the area was developed into the Heliu Camping Ground.

Lushui Heliu Trail is within the Tianxiang Rest Area of the Taroko National Park. It’s a combination of two trails, “Lushui Trail” and “Heliu Trail.” The entrance of the Lushui Trail is next to Lushui Geological Exhibition Hall, which displays the themes of earth evolution and geomorphological evolution. Before hiking on the trail, you can take a trip to the exhibition hall, which gives you a deep insight into the geology of Taroko.

Lushui Heliu Trail  An experience of the beauty of ecology and humanity 2

Ecological Classroom for Walking into Nature


The trail previously part of the Hehuan Traversing Trail built for governing the Truku tribe by the police during Japanese colonization. After the Truku Battle in 1914, it was renovated, expanded, and extended. When the Taroko National Park Ws established in 1986, the ancient trail between Lushui and Heliu was combined to the exiting trail, and most sections were the traces of the ancient surviving from Japanese colonization.


Along the trail there are forests, cliffs, gorges, historical traces, and rich fauna and flora. The camphor trees grown on both sides in the 1950s disseminate the fragrance, and there are also lithophytes and the oak of Taroko. Visiting here in the fall and winter, the green maple and Formosan sweet gum turn yellow or red to make the mountain forest more colorful. Medium-altitude mountain birds such as the yellow-throated minivet and Taiwan yuhina also migrate to here from a higher altitude to team up with the warbling white-eye, Taiwan barbet, and Styan’s bulbul for visitors to hear the sound of joyful mountain birds.


Walking along, visitors will pass by the shallow but clear-water tributary of the Liwu River, occasionally hear the Swinhoe’s brown frog croaking, and see dragonflies hovering over the water. In the water, there are more aquatic insects hiding.

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A Passage to the Beauty of Lushui

Keep walking, there is a cave of about 30m long ahead. Walking through, suddenly a beautiful spacious scene appears. The trail suddenly turns into a cliff footpath, with the cliff on the right. Looking down, there are the Lushui fluvial terrace and Liwi River Valley and the Central Cross Highway zigzagging across the mountain and valley. Suddenly, panicking visitors will be pacified by the splendid view in front of them.


Near the end of the trail stands a memorial to the Japanese officials who died while on duty here. There are a number of similar monuments along the Hehuan Cross Mountain Trail, but most of them have been destroyed over the years. This memorial showing condolences is one of the better-preserved ones.


The entire Lushui Heliu Trail is about 2km long. It takes about one hour for visitors to start from Lushui and leave from Heliu. The trail’s condition is fine, the view and ecology along are comprehensive, and the gradient is gentle. Overall, it is sightseeing trail for all ages.