travel

Yehliu Geopark: Taiwan’s wonderful geological formations (TW Day 2)

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November 25, 2019 — I opened the window of our hotel room at 7 in the morning. There it was, fine weather — cloudy but not sunny. There was a forecast that it might rain today, but the skies were bright. The sound of the shower water ran in the background — my mom was already prepping for today’s activities. I grabbed my phone from the bedside table and checked the photos we took yesterday. Airport. Train. Maokong Gondola. Right, today is our second day in Taiwan. We’re going to Yehliu Geopark.

The soft echo of the water’s pitter-patter stopped, and that was my cue to get up.

If this was a local tour back in the Philippines, by this time I would’ve been busy contacting tricycle drivers or van operators, coordinating the pick-up point, and telling the time food should arrive, et cetera. You see, I usually organize my own travel itinerary, but my first trip abroad cannot have that same treatment. So, Klook!

It was the first time that my mom and I joined a tour in a foreign country so we made sure to go to the meet-up point earlier than scheduled. Much to our surprise, there was a thick crowd lined up in different queues, and everyone was a part of a Klook tour! We were so overwhelmed with how disorganized the scene looked. After going back and forth, finally, we found our designated bus and tour guide.

Our tour guide, Norman, seemed very humble and gentle. He always call his guests “tour family” which was really endearing. As the tour went on, he was able to establish strictness when leaving instructions, yet very warm when he starts to tell stories about his country. There were lots of games and activities on the bus, too. At first, I thought it would be annoying but actually, the interaction turned out to be enjoyable.

After an hour of travel, we arrived at our first destination, Yehliu Geopark. It is a cape, 1.7 kilometer long, located on the north coast of Taiwan, and is famous for its landscape of uniquely shaped rocks which were formed due to erosion by the sea.

 

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The scenery a few minutes before we arrived at the entrance.

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A glimpse of the north coast.

 

Upon arriving, the registration went smoothly for us since we already bought the passes via Klook. We just had to secure the round orange stickers with the Klook label and voila, we were able to skip the long lines. Once inside, Norman explained to us the attractions of this geopark and eventually went separately.

 

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Entrance.

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My mom in the information area.

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The pathway leading to a concrete park.

 

Yehliu Geopark is one of the awe-inspiring natural wonders of Taiwan, made obvious by the volume of people that visits the site on a weekday. For a Monday, the place was packed with local and foreign tourists alike. We roamed around the manmade park first but upon realizing that our time was short, we rushed to the seaside.

 

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The geological formations were named according to their shape. There’s one called Candle Rock, Ice Cream Rock, Mushroom Rock, Carp Rock, Cute Princess among others. The most known among the must-see rocks is called The Queen’s Head. It’s shaped like the head of a queen viewed from the side, with its hair tied up in a bun. (Too many people were around The Queen’s Head so I weren’t able to snap a photo of it!)

Reports say that the iconic Queen’s Head would soon be cracked at the base (neck) due to the continuous erosion.

 

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Mushroom rocks filled most of the land.

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A hill covered in lush.

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Weathered rocks.

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Carp Rock.

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A sleeping brown dog camouflages with the rocks.

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A woman with child enjoying the sight.

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Mazu Cave.

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Mazu Cave.

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Author at the site near the Carp Rock.

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People flocked the area.

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Strong waves resulting in different textures of rocks.

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People flocked the area.

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A crowd of tourists.

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A crowd of tourists.

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Tourists resting at the viewing deck.

 

Unfortunately, an hour visit to this scenic place was not enough to fully grasp the beauty of the various formations. We hurriedly walked back to the bus in fear of being abandoned by our group. Ironically, we were the first to get back so we had time to enjoy the market near the parking lot.

 

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They sold a wide selection of snacks to-go, mostly fruits.

 

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Vendors waiting for customers.

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Pineapple industry is big in Taiwan.

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The view from the bus as we leave.

 

If I had a choice, I’d rather have a local to guide me around the area. Nonetheless, it all still felt magical.

 

Guide to Yehliu Geopark

    • Don’t get a Klook package for this particular place. It’s a waste to come here and spend a very short time.
    • Bring a jacket, the wind is very strong in this area.
    • Wear shoes fit for long walks.
    • It’s rare to catch a spot without a person taking a photo near it. Always be on alert with your camera and poses so you could have a money shot to bring home.

 

Itinerary and Budget

Day 2
8:15 AM Meetup at GaKuden Bakery nearby Ximen Station 4
8:30 AM Start tour, ETD to Yehliu Geopark ₱ 1,010/head (daytour package from Klook, with Yehliu Entrance Ticket)
9:30 AM ETA Yehliu Geopark, free time
10:40 AM ETD to Ying Yang Sea, and 13 Layers Remains
11:25 AM Ying Yang Sea + 13 Layer Remains
11:40 AM ETD to Golden Waterfall NTD 75/person
11:50 AM ETA at Golden Waterfall
12:00 PM ETD to Jiufen
12:10 PM ETA at Jiufen, free time
2:10 PM ETD to Shifen Waterfall
2:50 PM ETA at Shifen Waterfall, tour
3:40 PM ETD to Shifen Old Street
3:50 PM ETA at Shifen Old Street, free time
5:00 PM ETD to Ximen Exit 4
6:15 PM ETA at Ximen Exit 4
6:20 PM Back to Hotel, washup
6:50 PM ETD to Shihlin Night Market, via MRT
7:10 PM ETA at Shihlin Night Market
9:00 PM ETD to Hotel, via MRT

 

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