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Travel Guide of Sun Moon Lake in Taiwan by Influencers and Travelers

Sun Moon Lake is a lake in Yuchi Township, Nantou County, Taiwan. It is the largest body of water in Taiwan. The area around the lake is home to the Thao tribe, one of aboriginal tribes of Taiwan. Sun Moon Lake surrounds a tiny island called Lalu.

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How to visit Sun Moon Lake ?

Sun Moon Lake, located in the heart of Taiwan, is the largest freshwater lake in the country, surrounded by picturesque mountains and lush forests. Traveling to Sun Moon Lake is worth it because of its breathtaking natural beauty, serene environment, and a wide variety of activities to enjoy, including hiking, cycling, boating, and visiting aboriginal cultural villages.

To get to Sun Moon Lake, you can take a High-Speed Rail (HSR) from Taipei to Taichung, which takes about an hour. From Taichung, you can either take a bus (Nantou Bus) or arrange for a private transfer directly to Sun Moon Lake. The bus ride takes approximately 1.5 to 2 hours.

It is recommended to book your accommodation and any guided tours in advance, especially during peak travel seasons. If you plan on taking a boat tour, which is highly recommended, it's a good idea to book your tickets in advance to avoid long queues.

The costs of visiting Sun Moon Lake will vary depending on your preferences. On average, expect to spend around $100 to $150 per day for accommodation, meals, and activities. Boat tour prices range from $10 to $15 per person.

The best things to do at Sun Moon Lake include a leisurely boat tour around the lake, visiting the picturesque Wenwu Temple and Ci'en Pagoda, taking a walk on the Xuanguang Temple pier, and exploring the nearby Formosan Aboriginal Culture Village. For outdoor enthusiasts, the Sun Moon Lake Ropeway offers breathtaking views of the lake and its surroundings, while the numerous hiking and biking trails provide a great way to explore the area.

For dining options, you can try out the local delicacies at the Shuishe Village or Ita Thao Village. Some popular eateries include the Sun Moon Lake Rice Dumpling Restaurant for traditional Taiwanese rice dumplings, and the Sun Moon Lake Tasting Tea Garden for an authentic tea-drinking experience.

Accommodation options at Sun Moon Lake range from budget-friendly homestays to luxurious hotels. Some top suggestions include The Lalu Sun Moon Lake, a luxurious hotel with stunning views and excellent facilities; Sun Moon Lake Fuli Hot Spring Resort, which offers relaxing hot spring facilities and comfortable rooms; and Sun Moon Lake Love Home Garden Inn, a budget-friendly option with cozy rooms and friendly hosts.

Off the beaten path:

For an unusual travel experience at Sun Moon Lake, consider visiting the nearby Checheng Village. This hidden gem is a well-preserved traditional Taiwanese village with wooden houses, old streets, and an old railway station. The village offers a glimpse into Taiwan's past and provides a serene environment for a leisurely stroll. Also, take some time to visit the nearby Xiangshan Visitor Center, an architectural marvel with a stunning view of the lake, perfect for photography enthusiasts.

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  🌊‍ Ocean spots     🏞️ Waterway spots     🗼 Landmark spots     🏞️ Reservoir spots     🏰 Temple spots     ⛰️ Highland spots     🏘️ Town spots     🏰 Historic site spots     🏞️ Lake spots     🏖️ Coast spots  

Learn More about Sun Moon Lake

The Sun Moon Lake is the largest body of water in Taiwan, but also an important tourist spot classified as a National Scenic Area. The east side of the lake resembles the sun and the west side resembles the moon, hence its name. The Sun Moon Lake is located 2400 feet (748 meters) above sea level. It has a depth of 88 feet (27 meters) and an area of about 3 square miles (7.93 km2). The area around the Sun Moon Lake is the home of the Thao tribe, one of the indigenous tribes of Taiwan. In the middle of the lake is a small island named Lalu, it is all that remains today of the sacred territory of these Aborigines. Tourists are not permitted to go there, it is a forbidden territory. Although swimming in the lake is not usually allowed, every year an emblematic 1.8 miles (3 km) race is held, it is the only time when we are able to swim in the lake. Sun Moon Lake is surrounded by mountains and vegetation, making it one of the most charming places in Taiwan. In addition to the incredible nature it offers, it is the perfect place to enjoy outdoor activities, such as hiking or biking, and relax during your trip to Taiwan and get away from the busy cities. Climbing to the top of the pagoda Ci'en is the most impressive view of the landscape with its nine floors to climb, it requires ambition, but the view is worth it. There is a bike path all around the island, so you can have a nice bike ride, or you can walk if you prefer to take your time. There is a ferry boat between the three docks of the lake: Shuishe, Ita Thao, Xuanguan. You can take it at will during one day by buying a pass. It will be the occasion to pass near the famous Lalu Island. The Wenwu Temple is probably the most emblematic place of the lake to visit, an architecture worthy of Taiwan. There are many activities to discover the lake and its surroundings, including ferries, walks, cycling and cable cars. If you don't feel like it, you can visit the temples and the many buildings of the island.

Frequently Asked Questions by Travelers planning a trip to Sun Moon Lake

Can we swim in Sun Moon Lake?

Swimming is strictly forbidden at Sun Moon Lake. However, the authorities do not follow this rule once a year during a 1.8 miles (3 km) swimming competition at the Swimming Carnival of Sun Moon Lake. 

Sun Moon Lake has for main tourist activity its lake and the temples which surround it and the mountains, therefore it is an ideal place for a walk.

Sun Moon Lake is located in the city center of Taiwan. There is no train available to Sun Moon Lake directly, the closest station to the lake is Taichung, from there you can take a bus which will lead you to your destination.

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