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“Nice. Cape cod style house in the country” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Taroko Lodge

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Taroko Lodge
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No.35-5 Minzhi, Xiulin Township, Hualien 97252, Taiwan   |  
Hotel amenities
Victoria
Top Contributor
173 reviews 173 reviews
96 hotel reviews
Reviews in 82 cities Reviews in 82 cities
115 helpful votes 115 helpful votes
“Nice. Cape cod style house in the country”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 23, 2014 via mobile

We stayed here in our tents for 500 taiwan dollars a night each. We were allowed use of wifi, showers, toilets and power to charge up our electricals and this included breakfast. We also had him take us to the top of the gorge and cycle down. We left at 7.40am to do this to beat the crowds and the heat. I am no keen cyclist, but this is an easy ride back had to hardly even change gears. We did most of the walks and were finished by 2.00pm and that was taking our time. Rihang was incredbly helpful. His english is good and he tries hard. Make sure you wear repellant lots of midgies are tiny sized biting insects. It was quiet sleeping outside in the tent. Local transport is free. Bathrooms are fine and the water i hard to control but in june who needs a hot shower anyway.

Stayed June 2014, traveled as a couple
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37 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 stars
  • Service
    5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (11)
Date | Rating
  • Chinese (Simplified) first
  • English first
  • German first
  • Any
English first
Hong Kong, China
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
3 of 5 stars Reviewed June 13, 2014

All the positive reviews here are a testament to Rihang's hospitality and concern for his guests, however, after a recent stay here, I found the accommodations poor value for the price, though my perspective regarding value may differ from others since my travels have largely been in Asia (big cities, countryside, and everything in between).

The rooms are all rather basic. In the main house, the two guestrooms on the ground floor seem better furnished and have en-suite bathrooms. These are on located on either side of the living room, however, so noise from other guests may be an issue. There are a couple of rooms upstairs that share an outdoor bathroom on the same floor; one is large but sparsely furnished with neither desk nor chairs, only a mattress atop box spring on the floor and a tiny vanity table--also, one window in this room has no curtains so expect to be woken up early by sunlight. The two smaller rooms on this floor are tiny and do not have windows to the outside, rather they open to the interior hallway and staircase. There is also a separate cabin with futons on the floor and a small en-suite bathroom. Bathrooms are rudimentary and ours felt like it was housed in a metal shack attached to the house. All the bathrooms are wet-room style and do not have enclosed shower stalls, this is fairly common in some Asian countries.

The air conditioning in the living room was never on and it was very hot. The water temperature of the shower was uncontrollable and oscillated between hot and cold, never warm, no matter how you tried to adjust it. I gave up and resigned myself to taking cool showers. Cleanliness was an issue. The floor of our room had seemingly not been swept in a while and was scattered with many long hairs from previous guests(s). There were readily-visible large dead bugs on the stairs and on our bathroom floor when we arrived, and were still there when we left.

Breakfast was very simple and bordering paltry. It was the same every morning: 1 fried egg, 3 extremely thin slices each of tomato and apple, several slices of banana, toast, and drip coffee. It may sound like an okay amount of food, but the portions were seriously small. Offering 2 eggs, whole pieces of fruit, or even some protein would make it a more adequate breakfast. There were family-sized boxes of American cereal in the kitchen, but these were never offered to the guests, so I assume they are Rihang's or his son's private stash. There is no dining room so breakfast is served outside on the open porch, where the mosquitoes and midges will feast on you. The midges are some of the nastiest buggers I've encountered.

Normally one-day tours of Taroko Gorge from Hualien with driver/guide cost 2,500-3,000 (if not visiting Qingshui Cliff). Rihang offers this service for 3,500, which would have been fine if it were in fact a private tour. He stopped along the way to pick up new guests from the train station. And for the first few stops in Taroko National Park, we were with other guests who rented bikes from him as they were being driven to the top for their ride down. When he dropped us off at a point of interest that would occupy us for a few hours, he would then leave and drive elsewhere, maybe back to the Lodge or the train station, tending to other customers. So while he acted as the driver, it was hardly a private tour, and he did not offer guide services.

Rihang is a nice fellow and clearly means well, but he needs to hire a helper and not spread himself so thin. He always seems to be in a rush and somewhat frazzled with the shuttling of guests to and fro, with all the different arrival and departures times and scheduled activities to contend with. Everything is handled by either him or his son, and maintenance, comfort and quality clearly suffer because of this. He definitely needs a housekeeper and perhaps somebody who can prepare dinner (for a fee) for guests since dining options in the vicinity are limited. Previous reviews mention Rihang's wife, but she was not present on our visit which may have been a crucial factor.

All in all, for the price paid I wasn't very satisfied. Everything about the experience just felt too basic and lacking comfort and charm. There are better-appointed guesthouses in the area charging about 200NTD more per night that I would recommend looking into.

Room Tip: Choose the room to the left of the living room, though you may get some noise from other guests if t...
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  • Stayed May 2014, traveled with friends
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 2 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Rihang, 業者 at Taroko Lodge, responded to this review, June 17, 2014
Thank you for your criticism,

1 I remember I gave you more space (6 person room is favorable to you)
Every night Price: TWD:.. 2000 in this area is on the low side (you can then query ....)

2. (You are mistaken, it is the guests private .....)
There were family-sized boxes of American cereal in the kitchen, but these were never offered to the guests, so I assume they are Rihang's or his son's private stash.

3 I should not occupy or waste your time travel, I pay great attention to every guest!
When he dropped us off at a point of interest that would occupy us for a few hours, he would then leave and drive elsewhere, maybe back to the Lodge or the train station, tending to other customers.

4 (if only a matter of quantity, I hope you can tell me in advance .....)
It was the same every morning: 1 fried egg, 3 extremely thin slices each of tomato and apple, several slices of banana, toast, and drip coffee.

5. (Lodge is located in the mountains, mosquitoes and insects in this season may be a little more, please forgive me.)
There is no dining room so breakfast is served outside on the open porch, where the mosquitoes and midges will feast on you.

6 (the day was full of the state, in the use of hot water will indeed unstable, I will work to improve.)
The water temperature of the shower was uncontrollable and oscillated between hot and cold, never warm, no matter how you tried to adjust it.

Finally thank you so much criticism, I hope I can do it with your request, to achieve a more comfortable and more valuable.
Thank you very much!

Cheers,
Rihang
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sydney, Australia
Top Contributor
109 reviews 109 reviews
17 hotel reviews
Reviews in 46 cities Reviews in 46 cities
42 helpful votes 42 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 3, 2014

If you want to stay within the beautiful Taroko Gorge National Park, Taroko Lodge is the best place to stay. We stayed there for 3 nights from the beginning and skipped Hualien entirely. We met many other guests who stayed at Hualien first and they commented that they wasted their time in Hualien. Having said that, early booking is necessary especially on weekends.

Now about the lodge, Rihang and his family were very welcoming and their dogs were friendly too. The lodge was in beautiful area, about 10-min drive from Xincheng station. Everything was made out of wood giving you the feeling that it is an eco-lodge. Indeed, it was an ecolodge as the owner did extensive work to filter the spring water.

Rihang did his best to make sure our stay memorable and pleasant. On the first day he drove us to Tianxiang and we went back to the lodge with the rental bikes. He bought us rice dumplings which were very yummy! At night he took us to dinner at a local restaurant and we had the best hot and sour seafood soup! The following day we went hiking at Jhuilu trail and at night he took us to dinner at a different local restaurant. Again the dinner was superb.

On the last day he drove us to Shakadang trail and Qingshui cliffs and he helped us to get the train tickets. He drove us to Hualien to ensure we did not have to wait for 2+ hours to get a train back to

I highly recommend a visit to Taroko National Park if you are in Taiwan, and stay at Taroko Lodge. It was the best B&B stay I have ever had in the 15+ years of traveling.

Send me an email if you want Rihang's contact details.

Room Tip: Book early to secure your room.
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  • Stayed April 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Hong Kong
Top Contributor
64 reviews 64 reviews
24 hotel reviews
Reviews in 24 cities Reviews in 24 cities
55 helpful votes 55 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed April 23, 2014

we've a nice stay at this good place, Rihang is very accomodating and helpful, and can manage some English, and an expert in helping with places to visit nearby. Excellent if you're on a biking trip as he can take you to the best spots to start you day's visit. Place is located near entrance to Taroko National Park

  • Stayed April 2014
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Kaohsiung, Taiwan
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
14 helpful votes 14 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 4, 2014

My boyfriend and I stayed at Rihang's lodge for 3 nights. We were picked up at the Xincheng Train Station, even after I changed the time an hour prior due to a mistake of my own. Our first day, we opted to take a ride to the top of the gorge in the van and ride bicycles down, which was truly amazing. That evening Rihang drove us, and 2 other couples who were staying as well, to the Hualien Night Market. We didn't have anything planned for a second full day, so Rihang recommended the Shakadong trail and drove us to the start point. We were very pleased with the views, and thrilled we decided to stay an extra day. I was amazed throughout our stay at the hospitality of Rihang, his wife, and his son. We goofed on purchasing train tickets from Xincheng back to Kaohsiung, so Rihang stopped at the train station on our 3rd night and sorted the situation, then drove us to the Hualien station at 5:15 the next morning. We were so thankful for this, as it saved us a huge headache and probably a missed day of work. They were all very helpful and seem to care a great deal about their guests. I don't think we'd been able to experience as much of the local area, Taroko and Hualien, had we stayed anywhere else. If we were to return to Taroko, we'd choose to stay here without question.

  • Stayed February 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Shanghai, China
1 review
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 9, 2014

To start off, I'm a review free-loader; I read them for movies, restaurants, especially hotels, but have never once felt the obligation to write one. Now, I feel obligated...

Taroko gorge is an incredible piece of nature, and I can't imagine a more authentic way to experience it than to stay at Taroko Lodge. Just a 2min drive/bikeride from Xincheng station and town, the homey Taroko Lodge sits on a forgiving area of well-gardened property between the backdrop of towering mountains and the ocean view from the porch (though not exactly walking distance to either). The rooms are quite large with traditional decoration, and the house itself is like a old countryside summer home, lots of character and charm.
The lodge is run by a father, mother, and their son, who all go out of their way to please at every turn. They were great to advise good daily itineraries, and will take you anywhere on the mountain; I was dropped at the top with a very nice mntbike and rode the brakes downhill for miles and miles of fantastic scenery, stopping for 3 hikes along the way. In the evenings I was invited to join a large Taiwan family's gathering for tea and snacks who were also staying there, and the following morning had an authentic taiwaneese-style home-cooked breakfast. The fact that this lodge is more like a 'homestay' allows you to retreat to an authentic cultural experience after a day in picturesque nature. You can find cheaper at a hostel, but considering the hospitality, location, local knowledge and tourism abilities that Taroko lodge provides, it's a wise investment to pay a little more. It would also suit the higher-end client.

Having spent years in the travel industry, visiting some of the most extreme destinations on the planet, and staying at everything from 6star resort to 0star tent, I have to say that as long as you aren't closeminded, Taroko lodge will boost your experience of the Gorge, and has great potential to forge your "trip of a lifetime".

Room Tip: There are several rooms in the house, or for a little more privacy there is a cabin adjacent to the...
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  • Stayed February 2014, traveled solo
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sydney, New South Wales, Australia
Senior Contributor
23 reviews 23 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 14 cities Reviews in 14 cities
11 helpful votes 11 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 19, 2013

I really don't know where to start in saying how grateful we are to have stayed here, from the very first moment we called the owner last minute to let him know we would like to stay with him we were treated like part of the family. Rhiang picked us up from the train station and drove us 20 minutes out of town to get some food as it was late and everything was shut, quick note, if he recommends a place to get dumplings just go.

The most important thing about staying here is that you basically get accommodation, a local guide, push bike hire and cheap transport wherever you want to go all in one. On our first day we decided to go visit the taroko gorge, we were given bikes and a lift to the top of the trail, which we then rode down. Riding past all the other tourists walking up the hill made it clear that riding down is by far the best way to see it.

We also opted to take up the offer for the owner to drive us through the gorge to sun moon lake, which was also well worth it. As appose to getting buses and trains to Taipei and back down the west coast.

The rooms are spacious and cosy, the beds are very comfortable and the living space is also huge. The internet is good and these guys have a couple of really nice small dogs they keep in there house but will bring them out if you are like us and want to play with them :)

Again could not recommend this place more highly, if you re looking to really experience this area of Taiwan and do activities then this is the place for you.

  • Stayed December 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Taroko Lodge

Address: No.35-5 Minzhi, Xiulin Township, Hualien 97252, Taiwan
Location: Taiwan > Hualien
Amenities:
Business Center with Internet Access Restaurant
Hotel Style:
Ranked #7 of 87 Specialty Lodging in Hualien
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Welcome to Taroko Lodge .Services and price :RoomOne room / night accommodation 1~2 people prices TWD: 2000. ( Including breakfast )One room / night accommodation 3~4 people prices TWD: 3500. ( Including breakfast )BikeA .Rental bike Price TWD: 350 ( Each )B. Take you and Bike to Peak (Tianxiang) Price TWD: 700.( Each ) Hiking Application mountaineering permit (Jhuilu Trail), require your name / ID / birthdayEach is TWD: 500.Jhuilu Trail transfers Each is TWD: 500. Please take the train arrived at the Xincheng train station,I'll pick you up, do not worry.To E-mail me the time of arrival.My English not good , Sorry .Thank you ! Cheers,Rihang ... more   less 

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