Transportation Between Taipei And Hualien (Taroko)

2013年4月27日 星期六

        It is also asked about the transportation between Taipei and Hualien. For sure, railway is the most common transportation.But there are some useful tips and alternatives.


 Puyuma Express (left), and Taroko Express (right)


  • By Train
        Tze-Chiang Limited Express is the fastest class. However, there are some different types of Tze-Chiang Limited Express.Taroko Express and Puyuma Express, which are both Tze-Chiang Limited Express, are tilt train and takes about 2 hours to transport between Taipei and Hualien and costs NTD 440. Because Taroko Express and Puyuman Express will tilt in moving, you should book a seat in advance. But Taroko Express and Puyuman Express are the only choices if you want to take the train? For more introduction about the train type of Taiwan Railway Administration(TRA) , please refer to Booking Train Tickets.

  • By Combo Transportation
        Since it is difficult to book the train between Taipei and Hualien for most of time, there is another alternative which you don't need to worry about the tickets. If you check google maps, you will find the railway goes through the north east corner of Taiwan. But there is a freeway providing a short cut. The length of railway is 40 KM more than the freeway alternative!!. And most important of all, there is no local train between Taipei and Hualien but you can take local train by this alternative. Another advantage for the combination is that the local train stop at Xincheng (Taroko) Raiway Station and you can take the bus the Taroko Gorge directly.


View Taipei Hualien Transportation in a larger map

        Taiwan Railways Administration and Bus companies provide the combo ticket. The combo ticket combines shuttle bus, between Taipei and Luodong, and train, between Luodong and Hualien. The fare is about 50% off comparing to Tze-Chiang Limited Express, and is about 2 and half an hour including the waiting time in Luodong.
Combo Ticket. 
Upper:From Hualien to Luodong by train(Left Part) and Luodong to Taipei by Kamalan Bus (Right Part)
Lower:  Upgrade to Tze-chang Express with fare difference NTD 73
        The combo ticket is sold at the station you go aboard, including Taipei Bus Station, Taipei City Hall Bus Station, Xincheng(Taroko) Railway Station, and Hualien Railway Station. The ticket from Taipei Bus Station is sold at Kamalan Bus and the ticket from Taipei City Hall Bus Stations is sold at Capital Bus . Taipei City Hall Bus Station and MRT Taipei City Hall Station are in the same building. Therefore, it is suggested to take Capital Bus in the Taipei City Hall Station. The terminal of both shuttle bus lines is Luodong Bus Station, which is about 30 m from rear station of Luodong Railway Station.
      The fare for the combo ticket is 222, in which the train fare is sold at NTD 100 for original price NTD 130 and the bus fare is sold at 122 for original price of NTD 135. You can upgrade to other class of train if available. The discount of train part is for local train only and you just need to pay the fare difference between local train and the train you choice. For example, the train fare after discount is 100 and the fare difference between local train and Tze-Chiang is 73. Therefore the train fare is 100+73=173 and the total fare, including shuttle bus is 173+122=295.
        The process of the combo transportation is describe as bellow. Please remind the ticket officer that you want to buy a combo ticket:

<From Hualien or Xincheng(Taroko) to Taipei>
        Buy the combo ticket at the railway station counter and choice your terminal(Taipei Bus Station or Taipei City Hall Station). You can also decide to take the train of other class.
Go to Luodong Bus Station and reserve a seat at the bus ticket window.

<From Taipei to Hualien or Xincheng(Taroko)>
        Buy the combo ticket at Taipei Bus Station or Taipei City Hall Station and reserve your bus seat.
        Go to Luodong Railway Station. If you want to upgrade to another class, please exchange your ticket at the ticket window. If you want to take the local train, just go to the platform. You can check the time table of the train at the hall of the railway station.


Ordinary Train from Luodong to Hualine in the weekend
Free WiFi in Kamalan Bus
        Taroko & Puyuma do not stop at Xincheng(Taorko) Station, 20KM north of Hualien Station. You have take train or bus back to Taroko Gorge if you want to visit Taroko Gorge. It means you waste more than 1 hour in the 40KM, including waiting time. If you use the combo ticket, you can get off or get on at Xincheng(Taorko) Station and take Taiwan Tourist Shuttle to the Gorge. In fact, it is not rush at all to visit Taroko Gorge within one day from Taipei by the Combo Ticket.



Further Information:
<About the combo ticket>
Train:        
        Please choice Hualien area if you want to check the time table of Xincheng(Taroko) Railway Station in the railway website. Luodong is in the area of Yilan.
Bus:
        The shuttle bus between Taipei and Luodong is about one hour if the traffic condition is good. Pleas choice the direct bus.

<About the shuttle bus in Taroko>
      Hualien Bus provide the service between Hualien Station and Tienxiang. The following is the time table of the shuttle bus. You can make a phone call  (03)8338146 to confirm whether the shuttle bus (Hualien Bus)is available since there could be traffic condition. In additional to pay cash or by easycard every time when bording, you can  purchase a one-day ticket(NTD 250) or 2-day Ticket(NTD 400) at the start point- Hulaien train station or from the bus driver (Only Hualien Bus sells the ticket). 
      Be noted that Taroko Bus has stopped service. If you read the information about Taroko Bus, it is out of date.
Hualien Bus Timetable

Itinerary Tips
      If you want to use combo ticket and Hualien Bus that go through Taroko Gorge, please arrive MRT Taipei City Hall Station/ Taipei Bus Station before 8am. The itinerary can be planed,as below :    
Taroko Itinerary Examples

        You can leave your luggage at Xincheng(Taorko) Station or Hualien Station. The railway stations provide the luggage storage serviceIt costs of one day storage is around NTD 70~30.   Be noted that the timetable of train and shuttle may change. Please confirm the timetable again when planning your itinerary.

Don't worry about the bus
      Some may wonder if they can book the combo ticket in advance. Being a backpacker, I know all travelers want to minimize the uncertainty in their trip. Although the combo ticket is sold on spot only, there any problem to book the bus seat for some
Jimmy Theme Park, in front of Yi-Lian Railway Station
reasons. There are 4 bus companies, including Capital Bus and Kamalan Bus, provide the transportation between Taipei and Yilan/Luodng with about 800 shuttle buses, about 24,000 seats, in one way per day. The bus interval is about 10~15 minutes. When there are too people waiting in line, the bus companies will increase the bus frequency, which won't shown in the table list. 
       Because of the high frequency, in my experience, the waiting time ranges from 5~45 minutes. The That's why I estimate 3 hour from Taipei to Hualine, including waiting time. The rush hour from Taipei to Yilan/Luodong is Friday evening. And the rush hour from Yilan/Luodong is Sunday evening.You can go to the bus office(ground floor in MRT Taipei City Hall Station and 3rd floor in Taipei Bus Station) first, and then go to toilet or convenient store.



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217 則留言 :

  1. Looking for a way to travel from Taipei to visit Taroko Gorge for a day trip... Your blog is really very helpful. Hope everything is still valid as I am departing next week.

    Thank you very much!!

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  2. Hi Sullivan, thank you for this great post! I have two questions I was hoping you could help answer:

    1) Do I understand correctly that the Taroko Express train doesn't actually stop at Xincheng station?

    2) I want to travel from Taipei airport to a hotel near Xincheng station. What would the most convenient way be to do this?

    Thanks again :)
    Nayoung

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    1. 作者已經移除這則留言。

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    2. 1. You are Right
      Xincheng (Taroko) Station is a small station .
      Taroko Express & Puyuma Express do not stop Xincheng(Taroko)Station

      2.
      There are 2 airports in Taipei area. Taipei(Songshang) Airport is located in the metropolitian are. You can go to Taipei City Hall Station by MRT(You need to transfer between 2 MRT lines).

      Another is Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport. Take the bus to Taipei.
      There are too many bus lines from Taipei. Ask the bus officers in the airport directly which line is the next one to any Taipei MRT station.

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  3. Hi Sullivan,

    Am I right to say you can board any train at Luodong station to Hualien or Taipei? Is it possible that the train could be full so you may have to wait for many trains at Luodong?


    Thanks..
    azzurri

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  4. All trains between Taipei and Hualien stop at Luodong.
    There are 3 types of train
    (1)You can not board Taroko Express and Puyuma Express without ticket. All tickets reserve seats. That's why it is hard to book in advance.
    (2)Other express train provide reserved and non-reserved tickets.
    Non-reserved tickets is unlimited
    (3)Ordinary trains provide only non-served tickets.
    --
    In my experience, other express trains and ordinary trains are seldom to be full.
    Maybe crowded in Sunday evening. But there is always space to move in.

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    1. Hi Sullivan,

      Thanks for the info. Very informative article indeed although I've to read a few times plus some information gathering (as I'm not familiar with the various train types and features) to fully understand the advantages and limitation of this method.

      BTW, you mentioned the price of upgrading to Express train is $395 but I think it should be $295 is that right ($222 + $73)? Got a bit loss on this as I think I'm better off taking the full flight on express train. So the cost saving is a real nice advantage too.

      Have a good weekend.


      Best Regards
      azzurri..

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  5. hi Sullivan
    If I buy the combo ticket (Hualien to Taipei), I can take the nornal TzeChiang trains from HL to TP ? If there are no seats on the TC trains, we are allowed to stand ?
    At the point of buying the ticket, must I specify which train I want to take or can take any train that is available o that day (except Taroko & Puyuma express) ?

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    1. 1.Combo ticket provides bus ticket(Taipei to Yilian City or Luodong) and train ticket( Yilian City or Luodong to Hualien). You must transfer at Yilian City or Luodong.

      2.There are 3 types of trains, according to reserved and non-reserved tickets:
      Reserved Tickets only: Taroko & Puyuma express
      Reserved and non-reserved tickets: other express
      Non-reserved tickets:ordinary train
      You are allowed to stand(non-reserved ticket) at any train except Taroko & Puyuma express. But believe me, you don't want to stand in a crowded train with your luggage for about 3 hours.

      3.If you buy combo ticket, you can take any train between Hualien & Yilian City or Luodong except Taroko & Puyuma Express. But you have to pay the price difference if you take express train. If it is rush to transfer, you can pay to train conductor or at the terminal train station, no penalty.

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  6. 作者已經移除這則留言。

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  7. Hi Sullivan
    If i want to travel from Hualien railway station to taipei, will i be able to get the combo ticket at hualien railway station?ie the NT 222 combo tickets mention above. With this combi ticket, do i still have to get any separate bus ticket at luodong to taipei? May i just check what do you mean by reserving a seat at bus ticket window?
    Can this combi ticket be booked online in advance? As i will be traveling from hualien to taipei on the 10Oct, which is also their national day,so am quite worried i will not be able to purchase a ticket to taipei from hualien.
    Hope to hear from you soon.
    Thanks!

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    1. The combo ticket is sold at Hualien & Xincheng(Taroko) Station.
      When you arrive Luoding bus station, go to the ticket office with the combo ticket.
      The bus staff will give u a bus ticket with a seat number.
      The ticket is only sold on spot with unlimited issues.
      It is highly flexible and u can take any bus and train(except Taroko & Puyuma express)
      If the ticket can be book in advance, your time will be constrained.

      10 Oct is just an one-day holiday. Don't worry about it.
      ---
      The most serious situation: stand one hour from Hualien to Luodong...
      It is not a big deal and it almost happens in the Sunday evening.

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    2. Hi Sullivan
      Thanks for useful info!
      As we will be leaving hualien to taipei first thing early in the morning, think it will not be an issue to be constrained by the time, will you be able to advice how can i book this combo ticket or check the departure time online?

      Understand that there is Tze Chaing , Chu Kuang and Fu Xing train from hualien to luodong, which train would you recommend?

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    3. 1. Combo ticket is a special design and you have to buy the ticket in train/bus station and book the train/bus at the same time. You can check the train schedule if you want to take the train from Hualine. But I don't think you need the bus schedule in advance cause the frequency is high.
      2. Choose the most convenient train for u. For example, if there is an ordinary train in 10 min latter, would you take the Tze Chaing in 1 hour latter but 15 min faster in traveling time?

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  8. 作者已經移除這則留言。

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  9. Hi, can i check if i can carry my big luggage along to take the train? My plan is to stay a night at luo dong before proceeding to hualien and then from hualien, take the train to kenting.

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  10. Hi Sullivan, can we take the train from other stations to Hualien instead of Taipei Main Station? Because I will be in Shifen on that day. Thanks in advance and hope to get your reply.

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    1. Combo tickets is just an alternative, although you can not use it if you go from Shifen.
      You have to take train to Hualien and there are lots combinations.Two alternatives is much easier for you to understand:

      1.If you can book the train ticket between Ruifang & Hualine,
      Shifen-> Ruifang->Hualien

      2.If you cannot book, take ordinary train to Yilan City and transfer to another train(including ordinary or express) to Hualien
      Shifen-> Houtoung station->Yilan City->Hualien

      You and your child can have some fun when wating the trains in Houtoung & Yilian City.

      Cat Village,Houtoung:http://goo.gl/ofaJ5J
      Jimmy Park, Yilan City http://goo.gl/dJzOwD
      ----
      The alternatives mention is a general suggestion.
      You can ask customerized solution from the railway staff.

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    2. Thanks Sullivan. I asked because I wanted to buy the tickets online in advanced. Since I heard that tickets are sold out easily.

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    3. You are right, the tickets are sold out quickly. Being a backpacker, I know u wish to confirm the ticket and minmize the uncertainty.
      Since the there are over 200 stations and lots train types in Taiwan, the train ticket system is complex. The ticket is not available between TPE & HUL doesnt means the ticket is not available between Ruifang & HUL.
      Therefore, I try to simplify my suggestions. Try to book the ticket between Ruifang & HUL first. If fail, try my second suggestion or ask for consult from the railway staff. Wish u have a nice trip in Taiwan

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  11. the bus awesome! they hv wifi
    -make sure you check the train time,so you dont nd to wait for train for long (may train coming after 40min wait)
    -take a note on the shuttle bus its not so frequent (i did wait for another 40min for the bus)
    in sum up,try to leave taipe as early as possible.eg 6/7am.
    by the time you arrive xicheng it will be 10/11am
    then the shuttle bus in taroko only operate till 5pm,so it is quite rush if you arrive xicheng in the late afternoon.

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    1. Thanks for your feedback.I will update this blog according your traveling experience.

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  12. Hi Thanks so much for sharing. I have a family of 2 adults and 3 kids, I see that shuttle bus service at Sin Cheng railway goes to the places that I like to bring my family to. But not sure if taking the shuttle bus with kids is feasible. We are going to a CJ Minsu that evening after the day trip in Taroko. Is there any taxi bringing us to the Minsu Taroko? roughly how much would it cost? Thanks again.

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    1. If you have tried to bring your family by bus, I don't think is there any problem with it.
      I think the problem is the taxi. The passenger limit of most taxi is 5, including the driver. The only choice is Toyoto Wish. You can find more taxi information in tripadvisor.

      I have heard that some backpackers hired a taxi, from Taroko to CJ, with about NTD 5,000.
      But I am not sure it was only for transportation or it included all touring in Taroko & Hehuansan.
      Since all taxi will return to Hualine City, it is difficult to order a taxi in Tienxiang.

      Therefore, you can quote the price of 2 packages in tripadvisor
      1.Touring package, including Taroko and transportation to CJ
      2.Only transportation from Tienxiang to CJ
      (You can require Toyoto wish, should be no extra charge)

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  13. Thanks Sullivan!. My bf and I traveled succesfully to Taroko w ur help, despite having made no online booking of the train and whatnot. Great post.

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  14. When I go to the Ticket counter do I just say "combo" ticket to taipei?

    I don't even know how to say combo in Mandarin :(

    Do you think I would be cutting it close if I use this ticket on a Wednesday 1/22/14 morning since my plane flies out at 6:10pm

    I want to spend 2 days in Taroko, but not sure if I should just head back to taipei for the night to be safe.

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  15. You can say the key words as " Train", "Bus","Luodong", "Hualien" with your body languae. The staff can understand what you need.
    Or another easier solution: download the picture of combo ticket.
    Not as difficult as you think.

    Wednesday is not a busy day. You can try to buy the train ticket first. If not available, try combo ticket. Come back in the Wednesday morning is easy to catch the plane.

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  16. Hi Sullivan, I tried to book 6 tickets from hualien to ruifang on train no. 207 (puyuma express) but the website states no tickets available.
    However, when i tried to book tickets from hualien to taipei on train no. 207, there are tickets available on the same scheduled train.

    Can i book the tickets from hualien to taipei and alight at ruifang? Sorry for the weird qn as other time slots tickets are all sold out. :(

    I will await your reply. thanks! :)

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  17. Yes, you can! Although you have to pay NTD 76(440-364) more for each ticket
    You are so smart to find the solution
    Since TRA has to reserve some tickets for all combination between all combination according to the need, most tickets are reserve between Taipei, Shonsan, Yilan, Loudong & Haulien and few left for Ruifang.
    You can also try other express train if you want to save NTD 76 for each ticket. But if you only want to confirm your itinerary ASAP, book Puyuma between Hualine & Taipei

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  18. thank you so much!!! you have been a greatttt help :D

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  19. Hi! What is the most direct way from Taoyuan airport to Hualien? And also from Hualien back to Taipei?
    First time travelling on this route and need a way that is most straightforward so that we will not lose our way.

    Thank you!

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  20. (1)Most direct way from Taoyuan Airport to Hualien
    Taoyuan Airport->(Shuttle Bus)Taipei Train Station->(Train)Hualinen Train Station
    (2)Hualien->Taipei
    Hualinen Train Station->(Train))Taipei Train Station
    ---
    What mentioned above is under the assumption that the train tickets between Taipei & Hualien are available, and that's this article talks about.

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  21. Please help how to get from taoyuan airport to yilan and also yilan to cinging then cingjing to taipei. 3 of us. What is the cheapest suggestion?

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  22. Hi, Stella
    If your sequence is Taoyuna->Yilan->Cingjin:
    Taoyuna->(Kuokuang Bus 1819)Kuakuan Bus Station->(Walk)Taipei Bus Station->(Kamalan 1916) Yilan->(Kamalan 1916) Taipei Bus Station->(UBus 1619)Taichung Railway Station->(Walk)Taichung Gancheng Station->Cingjin

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  23. Hi , I have 5 adults travelling on 1st january . is it possible to use the combo ticket? any idea how the traffic will be?

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  24. Hi, Owner:
    Sorry for replying your question late. It is possible to use combo ticket.The traffic would be busy since it is the first day of 4-day holiday in Taiwan. But combo tickets won't be busy since most people prefer standing in the train instead transferring at Yilan/Luodong. In fact the combo ticket is a good choice for group since all of you can sit next to each other.

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  25. Hi! Thank you for the detailed information! I'm trying to online book two express train tickets for Friday morning, January 2nd from Taipei to Hualien - but nothing is available. Is it possible to go to Taipei main station in person and purchase two express train tickets, but the standing option? I don't mind standing, but need to know if I can get the tickets even if it says it's unavailable. Thank you!

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  26. Hi, Kristina:
    Except for Taroko/Puyuma express, the standing tickets is unlimited issued.
    But I should remind you that 1st Jan~ 4th Jan is a 4-day holiday in Taiwan. You may stand more than 3 hours in the crowded narrow aisle

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  27. 作者已經移除這則留言。

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  28. Please help...arriving at taoyuan airport and travelling to hualien. Is there a simplest way and if travelling at night?

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  29. Hi, Grace:
    The bus between Taipei & Luoding, the bus between airport & Taipei are 24h. The first train fro Luodong is 5:45am.
    If you arrive Taoyuan in the midnight, as my estimate, you will arrive Luodong around the time of first train to Hualine.

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  30. Hi Sullivan

    Thanks for the information.

    I will be arriving in Taoyuan airport at 5.30am this Saturday and will head to Hualien straight to spend the night.

    I have "accidentally" booked the following train tickets:
    "Chu-Kuang Express 74 - Shulin→Hualien 07:08 10:03 2h 55m".

    In the detail of my booking, the departure station is "Taipei". Does it mean I should board the train to Hualien from Taipei Main Station? I am confused. Appreciate your advice!

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  31. Hi, Peizhi:
    As explained by the 2nd pic in this blog, Sulin is the 1st station if Chu-Kuang Express 74 and Taipei Main Station is the 3rd. You should board at Taipei Main Station.
    But you have only 1.5h. 1 hour to Taipei and about 15 minutes to train station from bus station in Taipei, it is high possibility that you will miss the train.

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  32. Hi Sullivan,

    I want to take the combo ticket depart at around 2pm on 26th Feb, arrive at Taipei around 4-5pm. Is there train available at Xincheng station for this? Do you have a website so I can check? When should I be at the station to have enough time to buy ticket?

    Thank you.

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  33. Hi, Tue Duong:
    You can check the timetable in the following link
    http://twtraffic.tra.gov.tw/twrail/English/e_index.aspx
    From: Hualine/Xincheng
    To: Yilan/Luodong
    Train Types: All type
    ----------------
    Xincheng Luodong Train-NO Train-Type
    13:13 14:09 4027 Fast Local Train
    13:30 14:49 4187 Local Train
    14:31 15:11 223 Puyuma
    15:00 15:50 177 Tze-Chiang Limited Express
    15:19 16:37 651 Chu-Kuang Express
    16:00 17:17 4207 Local Train
    16:36 17:58 4033 Fast Local Train
    16:53 17:38 181 Tze-Chiang Limited Express

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  34. Hi, Tue Duong
    Since you cannot copy the link at blogger, you can serch"TRA timetable website" in this post and you will find the link

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  35. Hi Sullivan, may I know if the Taroko shuttle bus from Hualien station is a service provided daily everyday?

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    1. Hi, Yun Zhang:
      Yes, the bus service is provided everyday.

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  36. Hi Sullivan, may I know if the Taroko shuttle bus from Hualien station is a service provided daily everyday?

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  37. Hi

    Can I ask for the combo tickets; can I take the bus from taipei to luodong (mon) and train from luodong to hualien (wed)?

    thanks!

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  38. Hi

    Can I ask for the combo tickets; can I take the bus from taipei to luodong (mon) and train from luodong to hualien (wed)?

    thanks!

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    1. Hi, Gina:
      According to the rules, you can only use the train and bus ticket at the same day you purchase the combo ticket.

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  39. Hi Sullivan,
    Thanks for the advise of combo tickets. However, if I alight at Xincheng (nearer to Taroko), I can't buy the 1-day pass taroko tour bus since the pass is only sold at Hualien and could't be bought on the bus itself. So I will have to board local bus to Taroko, and to travel point to point within Taroko, I will have to buy several single-trip tickets which might add up more expensive than the 1-day pass. Should I go all the way to Hualien to buy the 1-day pass then? Thanks in advance!

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    1. 作者已經移除這則留言。

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    2. Hi, Elise :
      You can buy the 1-day pass from the bus driver.Please google "Taroko Route Easy Go Shuttle Bus". As the footnote of the timetable said:
      " Please purchurse a ticket at the start point- Hulaien train station or from the Hualien Bus Company's bus driver."

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  40. Hi

    I chance upon your website after failing to secure online train tickets from Taipei to hualien. I understand that I could only purchase the combo ticket on the spot. However, the above seems to mention Capital Bus and Kamalan Bus offer the combo ticket option. Does that mean for the other 2 bus companies, I would need to get the bus and train tickets separately? Im pretty concerned as I will be travelling from Taipei to Hualien on Saturday. im worried that I might not be able to secure the combo tickets on that day :(

    at the same time, is Taipei main station the same as Taipei bus station?

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    1. There are 4 bused company that provide transportation service between Taipei & Yilan/Luodong. All co-work with TRA to provide combo tickets:
      1.Kamalan(Taipei Bus Station)
      2.Capital (MRT Taipei City Hall Station)
      3.Kuokong (MRT Yuanshan Station)
      4.Capital Star, Metropolitan (MRT Dapinlin Station)
      -----------------------------
      You don't need to worry the combo ticket. They print the ticket when you buy it The tickets are unlimited issued.

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  41. Thanks for your quick revert!

    If I plan to travel to hualien on the day I arrive at Taipei, could we buy the combo tickets at the bus counter at the taoyuan airport instead?

    Meanwhile, apart from taking train from hualien to Taichung, would you be able to share on other modes I could take to reach taichung? I could not get hold of train ticket via online booking too.. Oh dear... :((

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    1. No, the ticket counters at the airport only sell tickets for bus departing from the airport. The ticket counters doesn't sell tickets for all transportation in Taiwan.
      For the transportation between Hualine & Taichung, please refer to my another blogger: "Bus Trip Between Cinjing and Hualien"
      http://taiwan-itinerary.blogspot.tw/2013/11/CinjingTarokoBusLine.html

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  42. Hi Sullivan,

    Thank you for your recommendation here. Really a life saver as all tickets to Hualien from Taipei are sold out on 3rd April 2015.

    Does the train which you recommend above end at Hualien station? Also, does the trains between Luodong and Hualien have a fixed number of frequency. Am afraid of missing because I probably will need to figure my way around this combo transport method.

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    1. 1. Hualien is the end for local trains. But some express train will go further to Taitung or Kaohuiung
      2.There are 50 runs of train between Luodong & Haulien everyday, and 10 of them are local trains, Missing a train is never been a problem for Combo ticket. The next train may be 10~20 minutes latter only.

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  43. Hi Sullivan, may I check with you if it is easy to rent a motorbike in Hualien/Taitung, if I do not have a license but knows and have experience in riding a bike? Also, if I plan to start my bicycle trail around Taitung loop from Taitung station instead of the old Guanshan station, will there be bicycle rental booths available there?

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  44. Hello Sullivan! First of all, MANY THANKS for this very helpful post! You've helped many travelers and I just wish you many blessings! Really, thank you!

    As for my question: I will purchase the combo ticket from Taipei to Xincheng Railway Station for June 21 (Sunday). I want to avail of the "Taroko Shuttle Bus" which is a hop on/hop off bus worth 250 NTD. But, I am confused as to how I can purchase this 1 day Taroko Shuttle Bus ticket. As you said in this blog, I checked the Taroko Shuttle Bus timetable and at the footnote, it said that I can buy the tickets either in Hualien Railway Station OR directly at the bus operator. Since I don't want to travel all the way to Hualien Station, am I correct to assume that I can just wait for this Taroko Shuttle bus in Xincheng Station? And then I will just pay the driver 250 NTD for the 1 day pass?

    I am confused because I saw this post in Tripadvisor (http://www.tripadvisor.com.ph/ShowTopic-g297907-i10340-k7059292-Taroko_tourist_shuttle_bus-Hualien.html) where the person asked if he can purchase the 1 day Shuttle pass in Xincheng Station and I saw your reply which said that this pass is "ONLY" sold in Hualien Station. Can you clarify this for me? I plan to follow the 1-day suggested itinerary from the taroko.gov.tw website (http://www.taroko.gov.tw/English/?mm=5&sm=2&page=1#up). Thank you so much! :)

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    1. Yes, you are correct.
      You can buy the one-day pass when you take the shuttle bus from Xincheng Railway Station. The policy is changed for a few months.
      Taroko Shuttle Bus also accepts easycard. If you just start and finish your trip at Xincheng, easycard may be cheaper than the one-day pass.

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  45. Hi, thanks for your great post, I would like to know what time does the ticketing counter close?
    I would like to purchase the combo ticket, and start my journey from Taipei bus station to Xin Cheng at 6.15a.m. I.E. take the Kamalan bus at 6.15a.m.
    So.. my query is, is it possible to purchase at such an early timing?? From their ticketing machine/ counter/ from bus driver?

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    1. Here is the time table of Kamalan Bus. The bus schedule and ticket counter is almost 24H.
      http://www.kamalan.com.tw/run_5.php

      You can also catch the Capital Bus from MRT Taipei City Hall Station.
      http://www.capital-bus.com.tw/3.php

      Their first buses are both earlier than 6:15am. You should worry can you catch the bus by MRT

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  46. Hi Sullivan! First of all, thanks for the great post and effort to share this valuable info with all of us.

    Secondly, I am planning to use the combo ticket to head from Hualien to Taipei on 13 July at night (Monday). I estimated I should reach Hualien station latest at 7.45pm to ensure I can catch all the transport between transfers to reach Taipei on 13 July at night. Reaching 7.45pm at Hualien station should be enough time to buy my ticket and start on my journey to Taipei, am I right?

    Thank you!~

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    1. After 8 pm, there are 4 train to Taipei via Luodong. All of these train will arrive Taipei before 11:15 pm. I think you can get the train ticket easily in Monday evening. You can sleep all the way to Taipei
      Take combo ticket as your backup plan.

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    2. Ok, just to confirm, by back up plan do you mean I should take direct train from hualien to Taipei as first choice instead? As I would like to try local train (plus it's cheaper) therefore I considered combo ticket as first choice.

      Thank you!!

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  47. So am I correct to say that from taoyuan airport, I take bus to taipei bus station then I buy the combo ticket then I take bus 1917 to luodong station, take train to xincheng railway station?
    Should I upgrade at luodong station from normal train? What is the difference?
    How do I get to taroko from xincheng railway station? Cause http://www.taroko.gov.tw/zhTW/Content.aspx?tm=1&mm=2&sm=2&page=4 only shows shuttle bus from hualien station to taroko

    Thanks!!

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    1. You are correct.
      The difference is speed. From Ludong to Xincheng, It take about 1 hours(some express train may not stop at Xincheng) by express train and 1.5 h by local train.
      My suggestion is that take the next train when you arrive Luodong, The point I mentioned upgrade is that you can take not only local train but all train (but you need to upgrade if you take express)
      Here is the original information of shuttle bus to Taroko from Hualien/Xincheng
      http://www.taiwantrip.com.tw/Besttour/Info/?id=19
      ---------------------------
      I would like to remind you that if you go to Taroko from Taoyuan airport directly, you won't have enough time to have a great tour there. I would suggest that stay overnight at Hualien city and visit Taorko the next day

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    2. So it's recommended for me to upgrade so I can take the next train that comes is it? (Do I have to upgrade when I first buy it or at Luodong?)
      We will be reaching taoyuan at about 6am in the morning so I suppose time will not be an issue right? However, we're more concerned with our luggage that we have with us if we go straight from the airport. (Also, do you know if there are any phone shops near xincheng station so we can buy sim card/data plan? Cause I heard the one at airport only opens at 8am)

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    3. 1.Local/Express?
      The real situation:if there is a local train 5 minutes and a express train in 1 hour when you arrive Luodong, will you upgrade?
      Upgrade or not is not the point.
      2.Rough Estimation
      Arrive 6am->Luggage Claim 7 am->Taipei 8:30 am->(about 1 hour)Luodong (10:10 or 10:37 Tze-Chang Express)->(11:04 or 11:47) Xincheng (12:00 Taroko Shuttle Bus )->Taroko
      Xincheng(Taroko) Station provide luggage storage service. Only NTD 30~70 for 24h
      http://taiwan-itinerary.blogspot.tw/2014/01/baggage-storage.html
      3.SIM
      Buy a sim card at convenient store in the airport directly.

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    4. Thank you so much! Sorry I have another question, may I know how to check the train timings? (from luodong to xincheng and also back?)

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    5. Book at the official website:
      http://twtraffic.tra.gov.tw/twrail/English/e_index.aspx

      1.Luodong: in the Area of "Yilan"
      2.Train Types: choose "All Types"

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    6. Hi, I'm intending to travel from shilin (hotel near shilin train station night before) to yangmingshan to yehliu then to keelung night market (hotel near keelung night market). What do you suggest about our luggage?

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    7. I would recommend that leave your luggage @ Shilin and bring only one day clothes only.

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  48. sullivan thank u for ur blog. very helpful.

    i am planning to travel on August 4 (tuesday) from taipei to hualien back to taipei on the same day.

    so i just wanna make a summary of what i need to do bcoz i am a bit worry to miss the bus/train back to taipei.

    1. go to taipei main bus station, buy combo taipei-luodong-hualien (at 5 AM)

    2. have fun in hualien

    3. go to hualien station at 7Pm, buy ticket combo hualien luodong taipei.

    do u think i will be okay to do that?

    can i buy the whole tickets all together in taipei main bus station at 5 am?

    what is the earliest departure time from taipei to hualien and the latest departure from hualien to taipei?

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    1. I would suggest that you check the google map in this blog first and figure the location of Hualien and Taroko.
      I don't sugget go to Taipei Main Bus Station at 5 AM
      (1) Although the first bus to Yilan is 4:55, but the bus is not direct bus (Yilan Terminal) and will takes 30 minutes more. The first direct bus to Luoding is 5:55am
      (2)You don't need to go to Hualien, 20KM south of Taroko,
      Morning:Taipei->Yilan/Luodong->Xincheng(Taroko) Station->Taroko
      (3)You can follow the 2 itinerary examples.
      The first train from Taipei to Hualien is 06:10. But the train won't stop at Xincheng(Taroko) Station. You need to waste more than one hour back to Taroko from Hualien.,

      The last train from Xingcheng(Taroko) to Luodong 21:23 and the last train from Hualien to Luoding is 22:10. But I don't think you will stay there so late. Just take to next train to Luodong when you arrive Xincheng(Taroko) train station.

      I have sum up bus/train time table and all itinery information. And

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    2. You cannot and you don't need to buy all combo ticket at Taipei Bus Station. You need to buy combo ticket at Hualien or Xincheng(Taroko) Station when you come back to Taipei
      In fact, I don't recommend Taipei bus Statio since the infrustration is so big and the shuttle bus will go throung the metropolitan area.

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  49. Hi Sullivan,
    The train seems to change schedule, the arrival at Xinzheng will be 11.04hr if i start my journey at 0800hr. So can only catch the bus at 1200hr instead of 1050hr.
    Is there anyway to reach earlier o I miss out anything?

    Thank you.

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    1. You can take any one of the following train
      Train Luodong Xincheng
      616 01:30 02:36
      4102 05:45 06:54
      4108 06:22 07:31
      4124 07:50 08:59
      4144 09:46 11:09
      208 10:19 11:04
      416 10:47 11:47
      4018 11:15 12:10
      218 11:45 12:24
      654 12:24 13:30
      684 13:38 15:03
      4032 14:41 15:37
      232 15:45 16:24
      4184 15:48 16:57
      604 16:43 17:58
      4206 18:06 19:15
      4042 18:39 19:45
      436 18:54 19:50
      4228 19:52 21:12
      246 20:27 21:32
      552 21:31 22:48
      252 22:00 22:39
      554 23:04 00:28
      --
      ps 218,232,252 are Puyuma and Taroko. You need to upgrade at the ticket window to confirm that you have a reserserved ticket.

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  50. Hi Sullivan,
    If I take the combo ticket can I get off at Taroko then get on the train again from Taroko to Hualien using the same combo ticket that I bought? Thanks.

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    1. 作者已經移除這則留言。

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    2. Yes, according to the rules of TRA tickets, you have one chance to get off at one station for a while and take another train to your destiny.

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  51. Hi,

    Thank you for your post. It is very helpful indeed but I am still rather confused. I am interested in taking the Tze-Chiang Limited Express train from Taipei to Hualien. Would you be able to advise if I am able to board this train in Taipei Main Station itself? I can't seem to find information on that. Otherwise, where should I board the Tze-Chiang Limited Express train in Taipei to go to Hualien? And what is the Taipei station for the departure times stated to Hualien?

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    1. Please refer to another blog : Booking Train Tickets
      You can find the information about how to checking the timetable and how to book train ticket.

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  52. Thanks for your prompt reply. One last question, I hope. When they say Taipei station, are they referring to the Taipei Main Station?

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    1. Yes. Taipei (Main) Station is a station with train, HSR, Metro in side and Taipei Bus Station is in the next block

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  53. Hi, would like to ask if i opt to travel from luodong to ruifang, do i need to pre-book the train tickets online or can i just purchase on the spot? are the train tickets as hot as from hualien to ruifang? i'm asking because i was not able to purchase the train tickets from hualien to ruifang as they were sold out :(
    Also, how long is the train ride from hualien to luodong? is it 1.5hr?

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    1. You can use easycard and take any train except Puyuman & Taroko Express.
      There will be seats available if you take local train from Luodong to Ruifang
      From Hualien to Ludong, Puyuman & Taroko Express takes about 50 minutes and Local train takes 1.5h.
      For more information about train ticket, please refer to another blog.
      "Bookins Train Tickets"

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    2. Appreciate your reply =) Can i also check how long is the journey from Luodong to Ruifang?

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    3. It also depends on the train types.
      Fastest less than 50 minutes
      Local train 1.5h
      you can check the time table from the official website
      http://www.railway.gov.tw

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  54. Hi, I will arrive at Taoyuan airport at 5pm on 24 oct sat. Assuming I take the 6pm bus to Taipei main station n reach at 7.30pm latest, what is the next earliest bus I can take to luodong? Where do I buy the combo tic at Taipei bus station?

    If I hv the easy card, can I use it for the bus n train ride or do I still need to buy combo tic?

    Then if I reach luodong at 9pm (1hr bus ride), will I be in time to take the next train? What is the last train I can take to reach xincheng?

    Sorry for all the questions, cos I arriving late in Taoyuan, so duno if I can catch all the necessary bus n train timing.

    Plan to stay overnight at xincheng n head out early to taroko next morning.

    Where do I check the timing for bus departing from Taipei bus station for luodong n train departure time from luodong to xincheng?

    Any budget hotel near xincheng station tat u can recommend?

    I also plan to stay one more night in xincheng to visit carp lake or qi xing tan. I understand there are buses fr hualien station to these 2 places. Would there be buses tat I can take from xincheng station directly to these places? If not, how do I get to hualien station fr xincheng?

    Appreciate your advice.

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    1. The schedule Kamalan Bus direct bus to Luodong (1917) after 7pm 19:05 19:25 19:45...until 23:25
      There are 3 runs in each hour.
      http://www.kamalan.com.tw/run_5.php
      There are 5 train from Luodong to Hualien after 9 pm and 4 of them are Puyuma, The next train from Luodong to Hualien is 22:08, Puyuma 252.
      You need to book Puyuma in advance.
      --
      You can use easycard to Luodong, but you need to take a number ticket at the bus entrance gate. You also need to take a number ticket if you buy combo ticket
      --

      --
      For the train timetable, you can search "Booking Train Tickets". There you will find all ticket information about Train.
      In a short..it is very rush and difficult to go to Xincheng on 24 Oct. There are no B&B or hotel near Xincheng. Xincheng(Taroko) is located at remote area and dont expect that you can find train, bus or hotel easily after sunset. That's why you didn't see any plan like yours here.

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  55. 作者已經移除這則留言。

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  56. Thanks for the info. Does it mean it is better if I stay in Taipei for the night on 24 oct n then go luodong n xincheng next morning?

    Then where do u recommend to stay on 25 oct night if I wanna go to carp lake n qi xing tan on 26 oct morning n then return to Taipei same day.

    Hv another question regarding the easy card. U said I could use the easy card for the bus to luodong. But could I use the card for the train portion from luodong to xincheng? Would this be cheaper or is the combo ticket a better deal?

    You mentioned in one of the blog posts the following:

    "In fact, I don't recommend Taipei bus Station since the infrustration is so big and the shuttle bus will go throng the metropolitan area.

    What do you mean by this? Is it a faster ride to take the bus from Taipei city hall bus station? I am planning to take the bus from Taipei main station. What is the duration of the bus travel if I take from Taipei bus station to luodong instead of from Taipei city hall bus station?

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    1. You could follow the itinerary examples between Taipei & Taroko. Go to Taroko first and go to Qixingtan in the afternoon. Since MRT is convenient, you can stay at hotels near MRT.
      You could not use easycard between Luodong & Xincheng. Combo ticket is the cheapest option. That's why the major topic in this blog is combo ticket, not easycard.
      The duration is about 70 minutes. But it is easy to get lost between MRT Taipei Main Station & Taipei Bus Station. It increase the uncertainty of your trip. If you miss one bus, the next bus is 20 minutes and the next train may be up to 2 hours late.

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  57. Hi, I will be following your guide to travel from Taipei to Hualien using the combo tickets. For return from HuaLien, would like to take a train to Ruifang and head to Jiufen. Was wondering if there are local train (no seats issue) from Hualien to Ruifang? And if the tickets are available at the haulien train station. Thank you.

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    1. It is out service range of local train(120km). You may:
      1.Take a express train to Ruifang directly
      2.Take local/express train to Luodong/Golan and take another train to Ruifang

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  58. Hi Sullivan,
    We are planning a holiday in Taiwan for 7 days from Kaosiung - Taitung -Hualian -Taroko -Jiufen -Taipei and back to Kaosiung. ( 10/3 - 16/3/2016 )
    We have some question as bellows:-
    1) What mode of transport is more scenic .By bus or train?
    2) Can we cover the above places in 7 days?
    3) Do we need to book the ticket in advance? Is our traveling date during peak season?
    4) Is there any discount travel pass for foreign tourist?
    5) What is the better route to start our journey from Kaoshiung. ? Clockwise or anticlockwise?
    We shall be much appreciate if you could provide more information and advice.
    Thank you.

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    1. 1) It depends on your itinerary. You can search another blog "Taiwan Itinerary Examples" and you can know more about the public transportation
      2)You can cover these places in 7 days.
      3) It is not peak season. But try to book in advance
      4) Discount applies to all people. For example, you can book HSR earlier and enjoy better discount
      5)Anticlockwise is much better since there are more transportation choice when you come back to KS from Taipei.

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  59. Hi sullivan, your blog is very helpful. I want to ask about when i arrive in the xincheng(taroko) railway station where i can find taroko bus 302 to taroko gorge?

    is the bus 302 directly to taroko gorge visitor centre(where i can find shuttle bus to round trip in taroko gorge) thank you

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    1. The 302 bus stop is in front of Xincheng(Taroko) Train station.
      The visitor centre is at the headquarter of Taroko National Park, where is on the route of bus 302.

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  60. Hi, Sullivan

    If I am taking the train from Taipei to Ruifang, stay one night, and go to Ludong, stay one night before heading to Hualien, should I just buy the ticket as I go along. Or you have better suggestions?

    I initially planned to do a loop in Taiwan. However, after Hualien, I still thinking if I should go to Taitung (27th Dec). It seems like not much to do there? Also, since this is the raining reason and Kenting is not as convenient to go to on a public transport, besides the Kenting night market, what do you recommend us to see and do there?

    If not, from Hualien, where do you suggest we should head next? (We start at Taipei - Ruifang - Ludong -Hualien)

    Thanks in advance

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    1. It is the season of Rape flower in the east valley(you can google"rape flower east rift valley"). You can go to Chishang and rent a bike or enjoy hot spring at Ruisui.
      In fact, I like taking train along the East rift Valley (search my another blog "Public transportation between Kenting & Hualien)
      You don't need to book the train between Luodong & Xincheng(Taroko) train station since there are many local trains.

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  61. hi sullivan,thank for the blog, can i buy one day tour taroko (nt 250) ticket in xincheng railway station? because i read, we can buy the ticket only on hualien railway station?is it true?thank you

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    1. Where did you get the information?
      Xincheng and Hualien train stations are both located within Hualien County and you can buy combo tickets at both station. In fact,you can buy combo tickets at 5 train stations within Hualien Country.

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  62. Where did you get the information?
    Xincheng and Hualien train stations are both located within Hualien County and you can buy combo tickets at both station. In fact,you can buy combo tickets at 5 train stations within Hualien Country.

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  63. Hi, if I want to purchase TRA ticket from hualien to Taipei, I should board at hualien station and alight at which stop in Taipei? I will be staying in ximending area... any advice, thank you :)

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    1. Alight at Taipei Railway Station(B2), and take Metro(B3) to Ximending Station

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  64. Hi thank you for the very informative guide!!

    I got confused at some point when you said "Suggestion is to take Kamalan in Taipei City Hall Station". Before that you said that Kamalan was in Taipei Bus Station (I think they are not in TCityHall station).

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    1. You are right. Thanks for your notice.
      I have corrected the error.

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  65. How many hours did u spend at Taroko ?

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    1. I have been to Taroko Gorge for many times. Each time I visited different attractions.
      Since I don't know where do you stay overnight nor your traveling preference, I couldn't give you a proper estimation.
      For your itinerary, I woul give you some reference information:
      1. Leave Taroko Before 5pm(winter)
      2. 2~3 hour for each place of interest
      3. Take a picture of bus schedule at the bus stop.
      4. If you don't ride a bike oftern or don't have the experience riding a bike and climb over 300m, don't try to ride a bike a Taroko Gorge.

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  66. Hi Sullivan,

    I am glad that I found you here since tripadvisor somehow won't let me post. Anyway, I think we are going to Taroko Gorge using the combo tickets and you've suggested. We are also be staying at the Silk Palace Hotel also suggested by you in other post. Can you please help me out here if you think it doesn't make sense to you?

    1) We go to Taipei city hall and broad either the Capital bus or Kamalan bus to Luodong

    2) Alright at Luodong station and take ( Ordinary Train= Local Train)to Xincheng? How long is the train ride and is there a express train here to Xincheng? Also, how do I reserve seats for the ride? In addition, since we are statying at the Silk Palace hotel, how far is the station to the hotel? According to the hotel website, they do provide shuttle from Hualien and I was wondering if we go directly from Luodong to Xincheng, do you also have shuttle bus there to the hotel? Btw, we plan to arrive on Sunday in March and leave Taroko on Tuesday and we are very flexible, on the return trip to Taipei, do we still do the combo or you think we can take the express train from either Xincheng or Hualien back to Taipei?

    I know I have a lot questions and really appreciated all your help.

    Thanks.

    Tony

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    1. The shuttle bus of Silk Palace hotel is not free(NTD 250 for one way) and you need to book 3 days in advance. If the shuttle bus is more convenient to you, go to Hualien and take the shuttle bus.
      -----------
      Combo ticket is not substitute of Express Train. Combo ticket is a backup option.

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  67. Hi Sullivan,

    I have another question regarding train to Hualien, do you know if it's easier to get the express train tickets from Taichung to Hualien? My plan is after visiting Sun moon Lake, we'll be staying in Taichung for 1 night and then from there to Hualien instead of going back to Taipei then to Hualien.

    Thanks.

    Tony

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    1. The ticket of express train from Taichung to Hualien is is more difficult than Taipei->Hualien
      You need to take take HSR/Train/Bus to Taipei and transfer to Hualien

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  68. Got it. Thanks. We've booked the 3 days 2 nights all in one package so the shuttle bus is free from the hotel if we decided to alright in Hualien. I think we are going to do the combo from Taipei and take the local train from Luadong to Xincheng if we can do the express (upgrade) from Luadong. My question is how far is the Xincheng station to Silks Place hotel since I am not sure if the hotel shuttle will pick us up from Xincheng. If we train to Hualien then of course we'll take the free shuttle to hotel. Thanks.

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  69. One more question, how hard is it to get the express train from Hualien to Taipei or do we have to do the combo back to Taipei? Thanks.

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    1. You can try to book the express train first.
      Combo ticket is a backup plan, not a substitute plan.

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  70. Hi Sullivan,

    When I put in Xincheng Railway Station to Silks Place Hotel on google map, it said takes 2 hours and 37 minutes to get to the hotel. I thought the Xincheng Railway Station to the Silks Place hotel is only 10 minutes away. What did I do wrong here. Here is the link for the map:

    https://www.google.com/maps/dir/%E5%A4%AA%E9%AD%AF%E9%96%A3%E6%99%B6%E8%8B%B1%E9%85%92%E5%BA%97+Silks+Place+Taroko+972,+Taiwan,+Hualien+County,+Xiulin+Township,+%E5%A4%A9%E7%A5%A5%E8%B7%AF18%E8%99%9F/971%E8%8A%B1%E8%93%AE%E7%B8%A3%E6%96%B0%E5%9F%8E%E9%84%89%E8%8A%B1%E8%93%AE%E7%B8%A3%E6%96%B0%E5%9F%8E%E9%84%89%E6%96%B0%E8%88%88%E8%B7%AF30-1%E8%99%9F+Xincheng+(Taroko)+Station/@24.1550072,121.4998675,12z/am=t/data=!4m14!4m13!1m5!1m1!1s0x346884e329e800d3:0x3ccb1daf5ae0ef4b!2m2!1d121.494185!2d24.182008!1m5!1m1!1s0x3466281170cdc881:0xfeb930c1efb260a0!2m2!1d121.6408721!2d24.1275453!5i1

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    1. Hualien->(18KM) Xincheng->(22KM) Silks Palace Hotel. The 22KM takes about 1 hour.
      The time estimation of public transportation in Google Maps may change since it provides the next bus, according to the time you query.
      The time you query is the bus line that lies out side of Xincheng Train Station.

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  71. Ok. Thanks. I think my best option is go to Hualien and take the free hotel shuttle bus to the hotel.

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  72. Hi Sullivan,

    On my return trip from Sun Moon Lake we plan to spend the night in Taichung and travel to Lukang. At what train station should we broad the Zhong-LU express bus to Lukang? Also, do they sell the Sun Moon Lake pass at the Taichung HSR station or what station do they sell it before we head off to SML? Thanks.

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    1. You can buy the ticket to SML & Lukang @ the round floor of HSR Taichung Station. HSR Taichung Station is in the same building of Xinwuri Train Station

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  73. Okay, great! Thanks a lot for your help. Really looking forward to visit Taiwan by the end of month.

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  74. Hi Sullivan,

    Most people said it's hard to book the express train to Hualien and you must book the train two weeks in advance to secure the seat and many tried and failed. However, I am looking at the express train right now and its allowing me to book for these express trains: Example: I put in the search for departure date: Train(s) 2016/02/09 Tuesday From Taipei To Hualien ,departing from 00:00 To 23:59

    and these are available for booking:

    Puyuma
    202 - Shulin→Hualien 06:10 08:16 02h 06m
    Accessible Car.Puyuma.
    $ 440

    Taroko
    402 - Shulin→Zhiben 06:20 08:20 02h 00m
    Accessible Car.Taroko.
    $ 440

    Puyuma
    408 - Shulin→Taitung 07:40 09:40 02h 00m
    Accessible Car.Puyuma.
    $ 440

    There many more express trains are available on the schedule and I was wondering if the departure date is Tuesday which is only 3 days from now showing so many available trains, why do people say they are so hard to book the express train? Am I looking at the wrong train timetable information? Looks like there are plenty express trains available for booking because I did try and play with the booking by input the passport number and etc...I can get as far as the credit page but I did not book it since I don't need the train tickets until second week of March. Any reason why so many express trains available for booking? This is the link that I see many express trains.

    http://twtraffic.tra.gov.tw/twrail/English/e_index.aspx

    Thanks.

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    1. No express train ticket available on 2016/02/09. The link you provide is for timetable only, not for ticket available. You can try to book and you will find the message "Order Ticket Fail:No seat available in this journey."
      Try the link "Booking Train Tickets" to find tickets left.

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  75. Hi Sullivan,

    How difficult is from Alishan to Taroko Gorge? Any transportation or do we have to go back to Taipei before travelling to Taroko Gorge? We plan to visit Alishan after Sun Moon Lake and from Alishan to Taroko Gorge?

    Thanks.

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    1. Very difficult.
      The trip(public transportation)Alisan->Sun Moon Lake->Cingjin->Taroko take 3 days.
      Read another post "Bus Trip Between Cinjing and Taroko". That's the most difficult part of the public transportation trip.

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  76. Ok. I guess I'll skip Alisan for now. Can you please respond to my post prior to this one about the availability of the express train? I just find it hard to believe with so many available express trains with such a short notice. Perhaps now is slow season to Hualien? Thanks.

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    1. The link in your prior post is for timetable, not for the availability. The tickets were sold out quickly, especially in CNY(6 Feb~12 Feb 2016).
      You should check another link to check the availability:
      http://www.railway.gov.tw/tw/ ->booking online

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  77. Ok. I think I kinda got it. I played with the booking website and got as far as this one below. Would you say this is the right express train if I were actually book it? This is a 2 hours and 10 minutes ride from Taipei to Hualien. Thanks.

    Book one-way ticket by train number

    Booking successfully

    Passport number: 123456789 Booking code: 912211
    Train number: 280 Train type: Tze-Chiang Limited Express

    Departing time: 2016/02/19 09:40

    Departure station: Taipei Arrival station: Hualien

    Number of passengers: 02

    Ticket-taking due time: 2016/02/11 00:00



    Online Payment "Online Credit Card Payment for Ticket Purchase"

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    1. Yes. This is the booking information.
      Remember keeping the booking code. You need it when you pay or collect the tickets.

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  78. Great! Looks like not all express trains are sold out as soon as they become available as some fear. I guess if you book in advance or being flexible then you should be able to get the express train tickets. Thanks.

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  79. Hi Sullivan,

    Do you get always get reserved seats on the Tse- Chiang Limited Express when you buy the tickets? If not, how do you go by to get the seats reserved? Thanks.

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    1. No... Most of time I use combo ticket unless I need to take midnight train to Taitung.
      When I buy combo ticket, I will also ask whether Express train available.
      For other destinations, I will take HSR or bus instead.

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  80. Hi Sullivan,

    is it the fastest to Lukang from Taichung is to take the HSR from Taichung to Changhua then bus or cab to Lukang? How many train station in Changhua because people keep saying if I take the HSR to Changhua then I need to transfer to the Changhua main station then take the bus to Lukang. The HSR from Taichung to Changhua is only 15 minutes, is there another station in Changhua for different train? Thanks.

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    1. HSR Taichung Station(Xinwuri Train Station) is about 15 minutes to Changhua Train Station.
      About 8 train stations in Changhua county. However,when people say Changhua Station, they mean Changhua train station.

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  81. Hi Sullivan,

    First of all, tks so much for ur great info

    I will arrive at Taoyuan Airport at 5am and have a plan to direct from airport to Taroko (one day trip visiting Taroko)

    As your example initery of combo ticket, I have to take the bus from Taipei City Hall Station at 6:25am to Luodong Railway Station at 7:30am. I'm afraid that I cannot move from airport to Taipei City Hall within this time (5:00am - 6:25am)

    Is there any departure time that is later than 6:25am? Tks for ur help

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    1. The bus interval is about 10 minutes. Not difficult to catch a bus to Luodong.
      http://www.taiwanbus.tw/information.aspx?Line=3383&Lang=En

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  82. This is a serious life saver! Thanks sooo much!

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  83. nice express train... i think Indonesia need that train, the express train :D

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  84. Hi Sullivan (the great Taiwan traveller),
    I read through the information and some of the questions here. I will be in Taipeh this weekend and plan to do a day trip from Taipeh to Taroko (planning on Sunday). My plan based on the information

    Take the 08.15 bus (Capital) but + Train combo.
    Arrive Xincheng station at 11.13 and board the Tourist Shuttle to Taroko - arrive around noon.
    - what happens if I miss one of the connections due to circumstances?
    - How long should I spend in Taroko?
    - What time should I plan to leave to avoid any weekend rush hour traffic?
    - For the return I should get the combo ticket from Xincheng station?

    Thanks in advance!
    Cheers!

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    1. Forgot to add - is there any later combination which still gives me enough time to enjoy the area?

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    2. 1.5H is enough for Capital Bus to Luodong in the morning. The next train after 9: 46 are 10:19 10:46
      6~8 hours,including transportation time, is a rough estimation basing physical strength and the day time. It is enough for 2~4 attractions.If you enjoy trekking, allocate 2h for one trail(searching another post "One-Day Hiking in Taroko").
      If you want to avoid the weekend rush, avoid visiting Taroko on Sunday. The rush hour starts since around 3pm. Local train is less crowded.
      You can only buy combo ticket at Xincheng Station(or Hualien Station). If your plan is one-day trip, you can buy the ticket when you arrive Xincheng in case that there are lots people waiting in the queue line in the evening.
      The combination is flexible. Because the interval of Capital is 10~15 minutes, and you should arrive Luodong no later than 10:46(the next trains are 11:46,12:27), you should arrive MRT Taipei City Hall Station before 9am

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    3. Hi Sullivan,

      I used your advice to go to Taroko a few days ago. Everything was easy!

      One update: if you catch the 5:55 bus from Taipei City Hall, there is a quick transfer in Luodong which allows you to get to Xincheng at 8:20ish to catch the second bus of the day. Might be useful to people wanting to do longer hikes.

      Also, from Xincheng, I found using easy card better than getting an all day pass.
      Mike

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  85. Hi Sullivan,
    Thanks so much for your very helpful post. Didn't see it until I arrived at Hualien after 2 hours standing on the train :( now I'm trying to find a way to get to Taichung from Hualien. Is the combo ticket available to other destination also or it's only between Hualien and Taipei?

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    1. The combo ticket is only available between Taipei & Hualien because of limited transportation choices. You can take bus/train/HSR to Taichung at Taipei Main Station.

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  86. Hi Sullivan,
    For the combo ticket, will the local train (Loudong Train) allow me to bring my bicycle on board ? Or I will still need to get on the express trains that allow bikes - if yes, that means I have to stop at Hualien and then get the shuttle bus from Hualien to Xincheng ?

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    1. You can take the following local train from Xincheng to Luodong with your bike. The fare is 50% of regular ticket for your bike.
      4102 05:44 06:54
      4124 07:49 08:59
      4628 09:46 11:09
      4032 14:41 15:38
      4184 15:39 16:57
      4042 18:36 19:34
      4228 19:52 21:12
      1552 21:15 22:17

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  87. Hi Sullivan, thanks for the detailed itinerary. My friend and I intend to visit the Taroko Gorge. I would like to find out if it is easy to navigate in the area? If lost will we be able to easily find help from the people there? We will be day for the day and intend to leave for Taichung if the convenience allows. Is there a route (via public transport) we can take to Taichung?

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  88. Only one major road at Taroko. Lots tourists there.
    You need to go to Taichung via Taichung
    Although there is tourist bus, it is expensive and you need to stop at Cingjing.
    http://taiwan-itinerary.blogspot.tw/2013/11/CinjingTarokoBusLine.html

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    1. Another question! Is it advised to still make a visit to Taroko especially when minor earthquakes are happening?

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    2. There are minor earthquakes in Taiwan everyday.

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  89. Hello! You said that all trains between Taipei and Hualien stop at Luodong, is that right? So can I take a train from Taipei to Luodong and then another train from Luodong to Xincheng? Is that possible?

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    1. The key issue is: Is there any ticket available?
      That's the purpose of this blog.
      The risk of your plan is you can book Luodong to Xincheng but cannot book Taipei to Luodong, which is also hard to book.

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  90. How do I get back to Taipei from Xincheng? Do I also buy a combo ticket? Can I buy tickets in advance? What time is the last train trip from Xincheng to Luodong and also the last bus trip from Luodong to Taipei?

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    1. You can only buy combo ticket on spot at Xincheng Station. Booking combo ticket is redundant since combo ticket is unlimited issued and you cannot reserve a seat.
      The last train from Xincheng to Luoding is 21:23 and arrive around 22:15

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  91. Hi, may I know if I want to travel to taroko from Taipei within a day using the combo tickets will be too hectic?

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    1. If you fallow the itinerary examples, you will have 8 hours in Taroko Park before sunset and back to Taipei around 9:30pm

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  92. Hi sullivan,
    where to buy taroko shuttle bus ticket (from taroko bus company not hualien bus company) ? can we get it at hualien train station or we have to travel to xingcheng station to get it ?

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    1. The service of Taroko Bus 302(Xincheng<->Tianxiang) is stop since 8th Apr 2016.

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    2. so the only bus company still operated this route now is hualien bus ?

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  93. Hi Sullivan!

    Do you know how to go from Kaohsiung to Hualien and Taroko gorge park? is the transport easy?

    Moreover, is one-day trip enough to visit Taroko gorge in Hualien and heading back to Taipei at night?

    Do you have any recommendation about what is good to see in Hualien other than Taroko?

    I was thinking to go from Kaohsiung - Hualien in the early morning and going back to Taipei at night if possible (one-day trip). Thanks ya :)

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    1. (1) You can take railway from Kaohsiung to Hualien. The fastest train takes about 5 hours. Check the ticket availability first.
      (2) One full day is enough to visit Taroko and back to Taipei. But if you go to Hualien from Kaohsiung, time is not enough(about 520KM)
      (3) You can refer to the information provided by Hualien Government
      http://tour-hualien.hl.gov.tw/en/Attraction/AttractionMap.aspx

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    2. Hello, thanks for the informative website. I want to buy an express train from Taipei to Hualien on 30 Oct morning but it's sold out. So your alternative way is good for me. But since I will stay in Hualien for 3 days, I would like to drop my luggage at the place I will stay in Hualien City. If I take the train then bus, I will get off at Taroko Station. How do I go from Taroko Station to Hualien City? How far is it? Do I have to take a taxi? Thanks!

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    3. You can take bus or train between Xincheng(Taroko) Train Station and Hualien Train Station. It takes 30 minutes by bus and takes 15 minutes by train. You can check the timetable of train and bus in the train station and choose the most convenient solution.

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  94. have anyone tried heading back to Taipei on Sunday evening?

    Is the rush hour really bad?

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    1. I have tried a few times. The train is crowded and you have to wait in the queue for the bus. The freeway back to Taipei is also jammed.

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    2. Is the jam very bad? Like stuck in hours back?

      Or the journey time is still under 3 hours?

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    3. I have experience that I have waited in the queue for more than one hour and jammed in the expressway for another 2 hours.

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  95. Hi sullivan,
    We, a group of 8 family members, will visit taipei nxt yr on march 14-18, we plan to use the combo tickets in visiting taroko gorge, which weekday s better for us to make the trip so it wont be too crowded and we will all have the chance to be seated?
    Thank you

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    1. All weekdays are easy to be seated. It is also likely to book the weekday train tickets in advance.

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  96. Thank you so much! This was entirely perfect for helping plan my trip there!

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  97. Many thanks for the helpful information! I was wondering if it is possible to buy a 2-day bus pass for Taroko at the bus station of Xincheng? Online I keep reading that you can only buy a 2-day pass at Hualien Station. Thank you!

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    1. I'm afraid that you can buy the 2-day pass at Hualien Station.
      http://en.taiwantrip.com.tw/line/19?x=4&y=1
      A solution is buy 1-day pass at 7-11/family and use easycard if you don't have time to go to Hualien Station.

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  98. Hi Sullivan,
    If my family of 6 intend to travel
    1) Taipei Main Station to Luodong on 22 Dec (Kamalan bus)
    2) Luodong to Hualien on 24 Dec (TRA)
    3) Hualien back to Taipei on 26 Dec (combo ticket TRA and Kamalan bus)

    Do I need to book the Kamalan bus and TRA tickets in advance? Is it safe to book them on the day of travel itself?

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    1. You cannot book Kamalan Bus. Since 26th Dec 2016 is a weekday, there are still train tickets available back to Taipei from Hualien on 26th, but I cannot tel whether it is safe or not if you book the train on the day. You can try and take the combo tickets as a backup solution.
      Another blogger introduce how to book the train tickets
      http://taiwan-itinerary.blogspot.tw/2015/08/traintickets.html

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  99. Hi can I check with you is there any way I am able to reach Xincheng station by 830am?

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    1. No.
      Taroko Express 402 arrive Hualien @8:20 am. You also need to take shuttle bus back to Taroko. It is the same the itinerary example.

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    2. So the earliest I can reach is probably 9am? I check the kamalan bus website the earliest bus they have is 435am to Luodong station so does this bus stop directly at Luodong station? I also checked the Chu Kang Express train from Xincheng it takes about 3 hours to reach Taipei station. Will it be faster if I opt for the combo ticket to reach Taipei?

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    3. A possible solution:
      Taipei Bus Station(Kamalan Bus 4:35am)->(Around 6am)Luodong Station(6:21am) (07:31am)Xingcheng Station(7:33am)->Taroko
      According to my my experience, the duration combo ticket is about 2.5h. But the advantage of train is that you can sleep all the way to Taipei. I suggest that taking combo ticket as the backup plan if the train tickets are not available.

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    4. I checked the TRA timetable but the earliest train from Luodong Station to Xincheng station is 10:47am

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    5. Sorry for reply late because of trip.
      I think you choose express train, not local train when you check the web timetable.
      Follow the tips here
      http://taiwan-itinerary.blogspot.tw/2015/08/traintickets.html

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  100. Chen,
    Is there public transportation between Hualien and Sun Moon Lake? I want to avoid going back through Taipei. Also, I don't want to spend a whole day making the trip.

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    1. No train between Hualien and SML. No train to SML either.A mountain range over 10,000 feet high between Hualien and SML. That's why Taroko is gorgeous.
      There is a tour bus between Hualien and Cingjing. However, it cost around NTD 1500 and takes one day.
      If you only travel to Taroko in east Taiwan, day trip to Taroko from Taipei is a choice.

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    2. Thanks Chen. Very helpful. I'll enjoy the east coast part of the Taiwan during my stay.

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  101. Hi Sullivan,

    Thanks for the informative write-up.

    I am intending to do a 1 day tour at Taroko. However, I am still a little confused on the combo portion and will like to further clarify on the following:

    Taipei to Xincheng:
    1) Is it safe to say I can use the combo method so I can alight at Xincheng station instead of Hualien?
    2) For the combo method, I believe the mode of travel is by bus from Taipei Cityhall station to Luodong, and then by train from Luodong to Xincheng?
    3) For the combo method, do I just say this to the counter staffs at Taipei Cityhall: "I need a combo ticket to Hualien"?
    4) Does the last train/bus service departs at Taipei Cityhall by 0800hrs?

    Xincheng to Taipei:
    1) Do I also purchase combo ticket to return back Taipei?
    2) For the combo method, we will travel by train from Xincheng to Luodong, and then by bus from Luodong to Taipei Cityhalll also?
    3) What is the latest time must we depart from Xincheng?

    Thank you

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    1. Taipei ->Xincheng
      1) Yes.
      2) Yes
      3) Yes. They are experienced.
      4) Bus from Taipei City Hall station to Luodong is 05:45~22:30
      Xincheng->Taipei
      1)Combo ticket is a backup plan. Maybe there are tickets of direct train available.
      2)The same as above
      3)The last train to Luodong and Taipei is 21:23
      You can know how to check train timetable from the link
      http://taiwan-itinerary.blogspot.tw/2015/08/traintickets.html

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