Huisun Forest Recreation Area is located in Nantou County, in the central part of Taiwan. It’s not a super popular destination with international tourists, and this might just be the reason why you’d want to get there.
I first visited Huisun Forest in 2010. A friend of mine who was doing his PhD in entomology (study of insects) had told me that Huisun was one of the most pristine, untouched forests in all of Asia. The forest is actually managed by Chung Hsing University (NCHU) and it attracts researchers, botanists, and entomologists from around the world.
Hiking in Huisun Forest
But you don’t have to be a botanist or bug-lover to make it to Huisun. The area is home to about a dozen easy to moderate hiking trails. Most trails around the Visitor Center be completed within 2 hours. Longer treks can take you deep into the backcountry, as far as Qingjing Farm or even Guguan. Those expeditions should only be undertaken by experienced hikers, as the remote parts of Taiwan’s Central Mountain Range is a treacherous environment.
For hiking information, your best bet is the excellent website All Trails. For maps, I recommend the app Maps.me, as Google Maps only shows the main road.
- Check my Hiking in Taiwan guide!
- Read about Hehuanshan, one of the prime hiking destinations in Taiwan!
Kids Friendly Environment
Huisun is really popular with families and children, as there are vast flat and grassy areas nearby facilities such as easy parking, restaurant, cafe, toilets, a jungle gym, swings, picnic tables… Also, as I mentioned earlier, Huisun is a bug paradise, and most of the plants, trees, and flowers are labeled. So it’s kind of like a gigantic botanical garden / park where kids are free to discover all sorts of things about nature.
Most coffee trees planted around Taiwan come from Huisun. The park was the earliest coffee tree test-site on the island. There’s a coffee shop right after main gate, on your right. The coffee I had was absolutely fantastic. It was not really strong, but the flavors were there and I could tell those beans had been roasted to perfection.