We often have busy days that don’t leave too much for fun or exploration. That’s why sometimes the best spots are those that are convenient to get to and offer a really nice view with little effort. Yinhedong 銀河洞 is a short hike that offers decent views and the perfect spot to take a picture for the gram.
First, how do we get to Yinhedong. The easiest way to get there is to first take the green line all the way down to Xindian. The hiking trail is relatively remote and free from public transport. Therefore, your best bet is to take a cab from Xindian to the trailhead entrance. Or, you can do what we did and take a scooter. If you have a standard driver’s license (or know a friend), you can register for WeMo scooters. You need a scooter license to sign up for other services like Gogoro. If you’re already registered, you can look for a WeMo scooter by the train station, rent it on your phone, and be on your way. Whatever method you choose, the trailhead isn’t too far from the station by car/scooter.
Once you get to the entrance, you should be able to see the sign. The only thing left is to just climb up. Its a really quick climb, probably less than half an hour to get to the top. It’s straight stair climbing all the way to the top, so it may be hard if you’re a little out of shape (or if you hate cardio like I do). As you climb, you’re basically surrounded by trees and nature. You’ll also come across little clearings. Finally, you’ll see the temple or “cave” peaking out the top. You’ll also arrive at the eponymous Yinhedong waterfall. It’s not a very impressive waterfall but I could still appreciate it.
As you walk around, feel free to admire the architecture. However, make sure you keep your volume down to remain respectful. The main allure of this hike is the aesthetic it offers your photographs. There are many interesting angles you can capture portraits from. Many Taiwanese people enjoy coming to take pictures for Instagram. Above are two pictures I took around the inside of the temple. In my opinion, the best time to come is before sunset. That way, you can admire the sunset, take advantage of the excellent lighting, and still have time to use the light of the setting sun to climb down. Don’t stay too long past sunset as I did, otherwise, you’ll be using the flashlight on your phone to guide yourself down. Finally, enjoy the picture of the sunset I took.