Hiking in Taiwan is a remarkable experience and Taiwan’s Xiao Bai Yue (小百岳) is a great place to start. Taiwan’s Xiao Bai Yue is a perfect list of 100 suburban mountain peaks suitable for hikers of all skill levels.
The Xiao Bai Yue is 100 mountain climbs oriented towards sub-urban destinations and routes suitable for novice hikers. These include beginner routes like Dawulun Mountain, novice routes like Dongyanshan National Forest and some that are more challenging, like Jialishan.
About Shibajianshan (十八尖山)
Shibajianshan (十八尖山) is listed at #026 of the Xiao Bai Yue (小百岳). Located in East District (東區) in Hsinchu County (新竹市), Shibajianshan is a short hike that is very accessible for young families. This easy hike is located right within the suburbs of Hsinchu and offers a seemingly countless number of side trails that can offer hikers a chance to get off the main trail and explore the quieter side of this area.
Shibajianshan means “18 Peaks Mountain” and was opened as a forest park during the beginning of the Japanese occupation era. The actual park itself stretches for about 7 or 8 kilometers and is surrounded by the suburbs of Hsinchu City. There are actually some interesting experiences around Shibajianshan worth exploring when you’re in the area including the Gaofeng Botanical Gardens 高峰植物園.
Hiking Shibajianshan (十八尖山)
Hiking Shibajianshan is a fun and easy day out. This is a very accessible hiking trail located right in the city of Hsinchu. Reaching an elevation of only 123 meters, this is the second lowest peak in Taiwan’s Xiao Bai Yue.
The trail starts from the small red gazebo located directly off Bo’Ai Road. This trail is very well maintained and is primarily man-made. The first section of this hike is on a cement staircase that begins on the far side of the gazebo seen in the image below.
The climbing continues for around 200m with a few benches along the way for resting or enjoy the shaded trail and forest. The trail is neither steep or poorly constructed. It is an easy ascent up to the Shibajianshan Viewing Platform (十八尖山幸福亭) with views west over the plains towards the Taiwan Strait. Continue a short distance and you’ll see a second structure with a staircase up to a second viewing platform and gazebo.
Take the path to the right of this second structure and follow an even path along to another Gazebo and the triangulation point for the peak of Shibajianshan. Head over to the abandoned military bunker to find the mountain sign. On the far side of this, the trail descends a short distance before you reach a trail junction. Go left towards the Plum Pavilion, a red and white elevated viewing deck. From here, hikers walk south to a trail and turn left.
This will bring hikers back to a larger paved stone pathway. Turn right and head towards the trailside washrooms that are about 200 meter down the path. Here you can follow the trail that weaves all the way down to the end of the park area. There are a seemingly endless number of side trails in the , but you’ll be staying on the main path if you follow the GPX route provided below.
On the way down you’ll pass a few old bomb shelters put in place during and after Japanese occupation of Taiwan. You can hike this route in reverse if you’d like and this means that the descent is coming down the stairs, which some people like and some people hate. The choice is yours!
What to Bring
When hiking in Taiwan consider your capabilities before heading out. We hope this helps provide insight into the level of difficulty. When it comes to the kinds of equipment or resources one should bring when hiking this trail in Taiwan, we’ve provided a list below:
- Water – About 1L of fresh drinking water. There are several water refill stations on trail.
- Food – There are some services at the trailhead including vendors and some simple restaurants. Buy or bring lunch or snacks.
- Washrooms – Available at restaurants prior to starting climb and just past the Plum Pavilion about 1.5km into this hike.
- Sunscreen – Almost the entire trail shaded, with about 10% unshaded.
- Camera/Phone – Reception is available along the entire trail.
How to Get to Shibajianshan (十八尖山)
Driving to Shibajianshan (十八尖山): If you are driving, you can set this as your location – HERE. Note the drive here is very easy and there are several parking options. The location provided charges roughly $30NTD/vehicle/hr.
Taking public transportation to Shibajianshan (十八尖山): Public transportation is relatively easy when getting to Shibajianshan. There are a few options for those coming from out of town.
- Travel to North Hsinchu TRA Train Station – From the train station it is a 20 minute walk to the trailhead located at the Lion Pavilion 十八尖山獅子亭.
- Travel to Hsinchu High Speed Station – From the train station, take bus 182 from the bus terminal at the station. Stay on this bus for 14 stops to Mackay Memorial Hospital. From there it is a 10 minute walk to the trailhead for Shibajianshan (十八尖山) at the Lion Pavilion 十八尖山獅子亭. here is also a YouBike Station located at the end of Bo’Ai Road.