Route 1: Tienmu to Nangang (Easy – YouBike Friendly)
Cutting right through the bustling city, this trail takes you on a city tour from the small uptown Taipei creeks to the wide Keelung River. You can see the whole of Taipei as you start at Tienmu, and follow the stream out to the river where you head towards Yuanshan area, famous for the Taipei Fine Arts Museum and the Taipei Expo Park. The Dazhi Bridge zooms past as you head towards Neihu, leading you towards Nangang, the final destination. It is also worth mentioning that you will pass by a night market. When you finally arrive at Nangang, you can park your YouBike at the Nangang Software Park Metro Station. This path is a long one so feel free to turn around and head home if you feel tired.
This trail heads towards Danshui, where the river meets the ocean. This trail is roughly the same distance as route 1 but instead of a city view, you enjoy the view of rural Taipei and nature parks. You pass by Guandu, Danshui, and eventually end up at Shalun Beach. Shalun Beach is not open on certain days, so make sure you check before you depart. If you don’t want to head all the way out to the ocean, staying at Danshui is also a good idea as the market there is really vibrant and the metro is available to take you and your YouBike home if you’re feeling exhausted. Note that there aren’t any YouBike stations in New Taipei City. You will have to either ride back or bring your bike with you on the Metro at Hongshulin Station.
This path is great for those interested in mountain biking. It is a good way to practice your endurance as you head up the hills. YouBikes are not recommended for this route as they are heavy and not ideal for climbing. Note that you will be riding on the road shared with cars, though there isn’t a lot of traffic. The road is pretty straight forward and easy to follow so you (probably) won’t get lost. If you are riding in the dark, there are street lights but remember – a head and tail light should still be used. The final destination is the Miramar Entertainment Park, where you can take a break before heading home through the tunnel.
This route is next on my to-do list. You start at the Palace Museum but instead of taking a right at the first intersection you continue up the hill. You will be biking the same mountain as route 3 but taking a higher road, which means more climbing and more descending. When you reach the other side of the mountain you will find yourself at Neihu metro station. Sadly the brown metro line does not allow bikes on the trains so you will have to bike home via the tunnel.
Route 5: National Palace Museum to Dahu Lake (Crazy Hard – Definitely not YouBike Friendly – a lot of Mountains)
I have not done this route yet. Good luck trying it out as it sounds pretty brutal. If you’ve done it you should comment below!