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“Beautiful view but risky” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Su-Hua Highway

Su-Hua Highway
Hualien, Taiwan
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Ranked #10 of 182 Attractions in Hualien
Type: Scenic Drives
Attraction Details
Singapore
Senior Contributor
26 reviews 26 reviews
6 attraction reviews
Reviews in 14 cities Reviews in 14 cities
29 helpful votes 29 helpful votes
“Beautiful view but risky”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed December 10, 2012

It took about 2 hours drive from Yilan to Hualien via Su Hua Highway. The road was very winding and it's quite dangerous if you are not familiar with the roads in Taiwan. But, overall, it's a good experience to drive along this highway

Visited November 2012
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18 reviews from our community

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Date | Rating
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English first
Prague, Czech Republic
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
3 attraction reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
“The road most exposed to typhoons, with magnificent views over the Pacific”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 31, 2012

Every year, this winding road along the steep East coast of Taiwan gets its numerous challenges, due to its inevitable exposure to elements, mostly typhoons and torrential rains.
Landslides and rockslides cause closures several times a year, but the essential repairs are done very fast, as it is the vital road connection for the Southeast with the capital of Taiwan - Taipei.
In early August, it was closed for a whole week after another typhoon. I drove the first night since reopening, it took me almost 3 hours to get from SuAo to Hualien - and i was actually fortunate, not to see all the damage done (on the way back, i went at daytime).
The drivers and crew are rewarded by several well recommendable look-out spots with parkings, a welcome break in the usually very slow drive, with all its curves and tunnels, partial closures due to ongoing repairs - and, along with so many trucks, going so slowly up the hill, but dangerously fast downhill.
Villagers closer to Hualien belong to the aboriginal Pacific tribe of the Amis, very friendly and welcoming people. Villages offer their tasty traditional food specialties and souvenirs like big (and even bigger) knives in wooden capsules. They paint them with beautiful ornaments, based on the skin pattern of the most feared deadly snake of Taiwan and maybe even Southeast Asia - of the "hundred-pace snake" (yes, after a bite, you walk no further...) - don´t miss the full story at: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Deinagkistrodon
Beware of another danger: from the parkings, you can walk down to the rocky coast, but access to water is not allowed, as the unexpectedly strong sudden undercurrent causes frequent drownings of those, who disobey.
You can also decide to make the route faster, by taking train, but a big part of the journey is in tunnels. On the other hand, the car driver is not exhausted and you can go for the option of renting the car in Hualien to drive around. You can also fly, at clear weather worth having the window seat (ask beforehand, which side to take, to enjoy the views).
In SuAo port, you can visit the fish market and with a bit of luck, witness unloading big catch from the frequently coming fishing vessels of all sizes. The city also offers very special shallow cold springs, in summer refreshingly cool and popular.
Shortly before Hualien, tourist buses turn right to the famous Taroko gorge, but you can choose from many other natural sights in the area, to avoid crowds and almost always totally full parkings.
All i can say to wrap up, i´m looking forward to my next drive along this unique road along the "Pacific Ring of Fire".

Visited August 2012
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Taipei, Taiwan
Senior Contributor
25 reviews 25 reviews
16 attraction reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
14 helpful votes 14 helpful votes
“A slow drive.”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 3, 2012

Stick to the speed limits and stop often to enjoy the view :) If you get car-sick, I recommend that you prepare for that in advance.

Visited July 2012
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Calgary, Canada
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
“Gorgeous Seaside Drive with Breathtaking Views”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 30, 2012

The Su-Hua Highway was one of the highlights of my recent trip to Hualien and Taroko Gorge. We drove our rented car along a stretch of Su-Hua (Highway 9) which is easy to access from Taroko Gorge or the north of Hualien. I highly recommend going during the week when the traffic is lighter.

There are plenty of places to pull to the side and take photos or explore established trails that lead to further look-outs or down to rocky beaches. Also, notably, many of these rest-stops have public bathrooms. There are also places to stop for a snack or for some souvenirs along the way, and plenty of excellent opportunities for landscape photography. I highly recommend this drive if you're looking for a relaxing and scenic way to spend an afternoon.

Visited July 2012
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Brisbane, Australia
Senior Contributor
29 reviews 29 reviews
18 attraction reviews
Reviews in 16 cities Reviews in 16 cities
36 helpful votes 36 helpful votes
“You got to experience this...”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed June 5, 2012

The Suhua highway is probably the most under rated attraction of Taiwan's east coast. Once rather dangerous to navigate, it is nowadays relatively much safer provided you also do your part by driving responsibly and defensively. You will be rewarded by unforgettable views of the Pacific ocean, as well as natural and unpoluted beaches. By all means take a breather at some of the rest stops and take some photos. You will not be disappointed. However beware of landslides during heavy wet weather or typhoons. The experience of driving on this highway is a reward in itself.

Visited April 2012
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