20121229-233830.jpgPicturesque beauty overlooking Taipei is the national mountain park, Yangmingshan. Less than an hour journey by bus from the Shilin or Jiantan MRT station, the mountain area is just enough wilderness for a great day excursion.

We arrived in late afternoon to the Lengshuikeng visitor center by bus xiao(mini)15. The visitor center has beautiful grounds and a great picnic area. There are multilingual signs and explanations about the area. The nearest trail head is right across the road.





20121229-234617.jpgWe were too late to make the one hour trek up to the highest peak in Taipei, Qingxingshan (seven star mountain) so made it to a half way lookout point to watch the sunset. The lighting was gorgeous!






20121229-234810.jpgIt’s a perfect place to watch the lights of the city come on!

After a trek, make your way to the FREE natural hot springs! The springs are just up the road from the visitor center, follow the smell of your nose.

20121229-235511.jpgThe sulfur smell is fairly strong from the outside, but not inside. The baths are male and female separate and nude. You’ll need to bring your own towel, swim cap and soap and not be self conscious. They are open until 21:00, close from 12:30-14:00 for cleaning and are closed the last Monday of each month. Make sure if you stay late to have your own transportation down the mountain. The bus signage is misleading and the last bus leaves at 17:30. We found this out the hard way, luckily some nice security guards gave us a ride down to the closest bus station where we took the red, 紅5 back to Jiantan MRT station.
Take a day to escape the city and soak in all the ambiance of Yangmingshan, Taipei!