Train travel is not only a transportation choice, but also a kind of travel. In Taiwan, train travel is cheap and convenient. There are more attractiveness in train travel in additional to the view out side the window.
|A sincere smile in railway travel,|
Shiliu Train Station, Yunlin
I started to enjoy train travel in 2011, although train has played an important role in my life. There was a railway line from my hometown to the city in my childhood. In my memory, that was a line to prosperous city that attracted a child so much. The railway line was dismantled in 1988 due to the construction of metro system.
Everyone can has his/her own travel purposes and there are always somethings new in train travel. I enjoy not only the destiny, but also the process in train travel. There are some features that make the railway travel in Taiwan so fantastic. The most important feature is the cheap fare. The fare of local train is about 1 NTD per kilometer and there are various discounts. Another feature, for sure, is the view out side the window. The view rolls on like a movie and changes every minute. I am specially fascinated with the view of iron bridge, green field, blue sky, golden sunshine and grand mount in the East Rift Valley.
The railway travel in Taiwan could be simple because of the accessibility. The accessibility means train frequency, station location, round-island and extended routes, cheap fare, and etc. These advantages make railway travel so easy. I usually don't have precise plan for my railway travel. Sometimes I suddenly have a weekend travel plan in the Friday evening. Although I have a rough schedule for each of my train travel before the journey, nevertheless, the schedule is for reference only. Maybe an old railway station, maybe a gorgeous view, I am always changing my schedule because of surprise. Don't worry about your ticket. You can get on the next train if you buy the non-reserved ticket. No extra fee will be charged and you can stop for a while at any midway station before your destiny. The only thing you should keep in mind is the time for the next train.
|A small and old railway in the South Taiwan|
The official information and most guide books introduces that there are Express Trains(Tze-Chiang, Fu-Shing, Chu-Juang Trains) and Ordinary Train(including Ordinary and Local Trains). Although I enjoy train travel in Taiwan so much, I always confuse. Maybe the speed is one of the standard, however, the standard is not always works. I use another easy rules to identify these trains.
Most foreigners will ask how to book the trains tickets. Booking implies booking reserved tickets with seats number. But you can also take train with non-reserved tickets which you can buy at the ticket vending machine or ticket office in the railway stations. The following are some rules for the reserved and non-reserved tickets.
|Identify Puyuma and Taroko by the signs|
- Taroko and Puyuma are tiling trains. For safety reason, passengers cannot Taroko & Puyuma without booking in advance.
- You can use the seats if not occupied when you use the non-reserved tickets in the express classes. Yields the seat when other passengers claim their right.
In additional to Pinxi line, the following list are some train routes I enjoy very much.
|Kuang Hua Train, Hualine->Yuli and Yuli->Taitung|
|Kuang Hua Train, Taitung->Yuli and Hualien->Taitung|
Jiji line is a branch line that extend to Checheng Station of Nantou. Jiji line was built for logging and there is a logging museum near by Checheng Station.
Taiwan Tourist Shuttle Service provide a package ticket that provides the transportation connecting the Jiji line and Sun Moon Lake. The package ticket cost NTD 600, about 50% off comparing to the original price.The ticket includes:
- One-Day JiJi Line Train Ticket: Taichung Railway/HSR Station to Checheng Station
- Shuttle Bus: Shueili<－> Sun Moon Lake
- Shuttle Bus:Sun Moon Lake<－> Taichung Railway/HSR Station
- Boat Ticket:Sun Moon Lake
- Cable Car Round Ticket: Sun Moon Lake <－> Formosan Aboriginal Culture Village
- One-Day Sun Moon Lake round lake bus ticket
- Bus ticket: Sun Moon Lake<－> Xiangshan Visitor Center
|Logging Museun, Checheng|
You can also go to Cinjing when you from Puli, a transportation near Sun Moon Lake. Because the bus ticket between Taichung & Sun Moon Lake cannot be separated, you should buy the ticket between Puli & Sun Moon Lake.
View Larger MapsSML &Jiji Package Ticket