Bitoujiao Cape Hike

Bitoujiao is a scenic cape with a lighthouse and towering cliffs on the tip of the northeast coast. There's a popular hiking trail here that's often quite busy. There are also some lesser known trails which hug the side of the steep cliffs. While openly accessible from the coast these are a little hard to find and are technically closed. You should be cautious too, they are closed for a reason. Certain areas are in a bad condition with steep drops and a likelihood of rockfall. Avoid coming here when there is a typhoon out to sea as rogue waves have killed people walking on the coastal rock shelf. As long as you're careful and have a good head for heights this trail is dramatic and enjoyable.

The start from either end of this hike is the coastal rock shelf. From the north side there's a rickety ladder up the cliffs and from the south side a weathered wooden stair. I'm wary ever since The Wormhole of publishing really exact directions. It's probably easiest to start out on the north side as there's less downhill on ropes but I did this from the south and will describe it as such.

Heading up the broken stairs from the coastal shelf the trail joins with a trail leading to the lighthouse. The way from the main trail is blocked by a gate. Despite the official closure of this trail it was quite busy with day trippers. This section is easy and aside from a warped boardwalk felt quite safe.

At the end of the point is a small lighthouse and a stunning view of the northern cliffs. It's possible to climb up onto the small domed peak above the lighthouse for a 360 degree view of the point. There's a rough dirt trail to the top but there aren't many places to grip.

From the dome rock

After the lighthouse the trail gets really adventurous. A narrow ribbon of dirt snakes around the cliffs high above the sea until it reaches a small military installation. The condition of the trail is not bad but the proximity to certain death meant the walk was accompanied with survival instinct jitters. This is some of the most dramatic coastline I've seen in Taiwan. The cliffs are gnarled and battered into all sorts of strange shapes. The same rock that gives Yehliu its weird formations is present.

There is a path there somewhere

After reaching the army base there's a climb down to a small bay with a rock shaped like a bird.

The rockpools here are warm and clear. On a calm day this may be a nice place to swim from though I've no idea what the currents are like.

Continuing along the trail is fairly easy going though a section passes under a very crumbly section of cliff. A few small stones fell as I was passing. Descend a ladder and you'll be back among the coastal boulders. It was disheartening to see so much plastic garbage along here despite the ground gained from beach cleanups in recent years. Passing by a couple of narrow caves and wave defenses you'll arrive at a small fishing village with many dive shops and crowds. The area just offshore seems to be a popular snorkeling area. See the Hidden Taiwan Map for the rough locations.