Hike around Sanxiantai Island

1.2 miles 252.6 ft gain  - Loop Trail

Added by Joshua and Macayla Fryc

Be part of the 5% who turn a photo-op tourist stop into a morning exploring an island's caves, waves, and peaks.

The Sanxiantai bridge is the most famous landmark on the East Coast of Taiwan. There are literally busloads of tourists depending on the time you visit. But don't let that dissuade you! Astonishingly, 95% of tourists don't go any farther than a photo-op at the front of the bridge. Continue over the 8-arched footbridge to a gorgeous island with caves, crashing waves, a lighthouse, and spectacular views, begging you to explore. You'll practically have the place to yourself aside from the local fishermen. 

The island's three massive rocks spawned legends of three Chineese saints who came to rest on the rocky island. Because of the strong weathering, what was once a part of mainland, rapidly became an island, and could only be reached at low tide. In the 80's the bridge was built, symbolizing a sea dragon to connect mainland to the folklore island.


1) If leaving from the Taitung Bus Station, your stop is approx. a 2 hour ride on the East Coast bus line. Please check the bus time tables and fares with the station attendants, as bus numbers are apt to change. Once on the bus, mention "Sanxiatai" to the driver. He'll know exactly what you mean. 

2) If you are catching the bus from any alternate pick up location on the East Coast seaside road, be aware that buses only stop if passengers are visibly waiting, and they do not adhere to the timetable. You may need to flag down a bus whenever the next one passes. Buses run loosely every 30 minutes. Once on the East Coast, there is only one bus line, so don't worry about catching the wrong one, just be on the correct side of the road.  

3) If traveling by scooter or car, Sanxiantai has road signs directing your way. The visitor center is visible from the road on the ocean-facing side of the road. Follow the map and keep an eye out for signs. 

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Just be aware that buses don’t run very late, and you can always hitchhike. However, I would recommend spending the time walking around to the back of this island. Even more brilliant, and better suited for photos.

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