Zhishan Cultural & Ecological Gardens
Take in the stunning natural landscape at this Taipei park.
Taipei has no shortage of parks, and you'll have no problem locating more well known ones like Da'An (which is as close to a "Central Park" as Taipei gets). But if you want to take a trek just a bit out of the city center, head up to Tienmu's Zhishan MRT station and walk east a few blocks. It's here that you'll find Zhishan Cultural and Ecological Gardens, a jungle-filled mountain park overlooking the Shuangxi River.
As you walk (or jog) along the wood and stone paths, you'll pass numerous gardens and shrines. Make your way to the top of the mountain and be rewarded with a sweeping panoramic view of the city below from the courtyard of a Chinese temple dedicated to revered Chinese General Chen Yuan Kwang. It is surrounded by carved stone representations of characters from the classic text "Romance of the Three Kingdoms." Also here is a green house filled with native plants, an aquarium and an archaeological exploration classroom.
Hours of operation are Tuesday to Sunday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. (ticket sales stop at 4:30 p.m.). The establishment is closed every Monday and Chinese Lunar New Year holiday.