Many people use the phrase "extraordinary creations built by nature" when describing the landscape of Ta-roko.
To be thoroughly acquainted with Ta-roko, the best way is to walk straight into the wonders by hiking the trails.
The trails in Ta-roko are different from those in Yangmingshan and He-huan Mountain.
Tarako trails pass through rock formations and allow you to travel through mountain paths, rock walls and cliffs.
Be sure to pay attention to safety due to fragile land structures and listen to directions given by the national park. Avoid strolling the area right after an earthquake or heavy rain.
There are approximately 30 trails inside Ta-roko National Park, categorized by 3 types: Landscape, Hiking and Mountain Climbing, and Adventure.
There are many trail entrances and exits in the vicinity of Tai 8 Central Cross-Island Highway, making them easily accessible.
Of all the trails that we are about to mention, only Zhui-lu Historical Trail requires an application, and most of them are the landscape type that's easy to walk through, making them suitable for children. The trails also allow you to taste the surprising beauty of Ta-roko in no time.
我們這裡介紹的步道，除了錐麓古道要事先申請, 大多是景觀型, 很好走, 大人小朋友都很適合，也很快就可以領略到太魯閣驚奇之美。
You can start out with a trail at a higher elevation such as Bai-yang Trail.
There is a parking lot by the trail. You will need to walk through a small portion of the Rock Shed in order to get to the entrance. Pay attention to the incoming traffic.
Due to the road collapse after a typhoon, only the first scenic overlook is open to the public. To ensure travel safety, pay attention to the up-to-date indication sign placed by the park management.
There are many tunnels along the way. After you exit the first tunnel, there is an explanation board.
Central Cross-Island Highway was built upon the old He-huan Historical Trail established during the Japanese colonial era. You can still see remnants of the historical trail along the way.
For instance, there is a small portion of the remnants very close to the community and situated between Silks Place Ta-roko Hotel and Wen Tian-xiang Park.
Some are located at a more remote area. Take Lu-shui Trail as an example, the entrance is situated next to Lu-shui Geological Exhibition Hall.
The back of the trail connects to Industrial Road, which eventually returns to Central Cross-Island Highway from the vicinity of He-liu Campground.
The pathway is about 2 meters wide, which is pretty consistent with the width of historical trails established during the Japanese colonial era. The entire route is sloped gently, making it suitable for the young and old.
Standing atop the cliff, you can check out Li-wu Valley and Lu-shui river terraces from afar.
There are various lithophytes on rock walls. Among them is Ta-roko Oak, which is a precious plant in Taiwan.
Yue Fei Pavilion
There is a trail by Yue Fei Pavilion on the other side, about 500 meters east of Lu-shui Trail.
The pavilion by the Li-wu River stream is called "Yue Fei Pavilion." There is a waterfall across from the river running straight down into Li-wu River.
The suspension bridge crosses Li-wu River and gives you direct access to Yan Hai Forest Road, which was the passageway for personnel logging in the early days.
Zhui-lu Historical Trail
Continue going east, and there is the entrance to Zhui-lu Historical Trail by Swallow Grotto Trail.
Zhui-lu Historical Trail is the segment with the longest remnants of He-huan Historical Trail, spanning 10 kilometers long. It will take you a full day to travel on foot.
Some sections of the trail with a width of only 30 centimeters are on the cliff, making them extremely dangerous. There is staff guarding the entrance. You can't get in without an application.
Sha Ka-dang Trail and Little Zhui-lu Trail
There are also Sha Ka-dang Trail and Little Zhui-lu Trail. These two trails are near Ta-roko National Park Headquarters, making them very easy to find. You can get to them effortlessly after going through the tunnel.
Sha Ka-dang Trail was originally named Mysterious Valley Trail. It has an approximated overall length of 4.1 kilometers. As a result of being washed out by clear water, various sizes of marble on the stream bed bear a resemblance to a series of abstract murals.
Little Zhui-lu Trail entrance is situated east of Sha Ka-dang Tunnel. Tourists can get there by walking on the left tunnel sidewalk for about 330 meters. The whole journey takes about 20 minutes.
Upon entering the trail, you'll see a very steep marble cliff on the left side that earned the trail its name "Little Zhui-lu Trail."