North of Dakeng Scenic Area, in the hilly area between Tanzih and Fengyuan, you can find more hiking trails. Some of them are very beautiful and interesting. They are well maintained by the local people.
Here you will find definitively less people than in Dakeng, that on Sundays can be really crowded.
In this area we know two trails. We used to often return here to walk, actually more often that in the Scenic Area.
Xin Tian Trail
We believe Xin Tian (Hsin Tien) is one of the best trails in all Dakeng and Tanzi area.
It is an interesting and varied trail yet not too difficult, mostly shaded, so not too hot even in summer.
It is easier than Dakeng Trails 1-5 but still very interesting.
A true hidden gem … try it!
Xin Tian means “New Rice Field” but my wife and I call it “The Spiders Trail” because of the number of huge spiders that you can see here at the end of the summer, between September and October.
Xintian trail starts at the parking (see map below). You follow a steep farm road, keeping on the right, until the road ends. From here the trail climbs along a ridge, with great views over Taichung plain. At the summit you will see on the right a pavilion.
You can have a rest and a chat at the pavilion, anyway the best route is to turn on the left of the ascending trail and follow the ridge. To go down, back to the parking lot, you can follow the first or the second trail you will see on the left.
Michael Turton has interesting pictures about Hsin Tien.
Ridge Mountain Villa
This easy trail climbs along farm roads in the midst of orange and pomelo orchards. In summer the fragrance of betel nut flowers is intoxicating.
On weekends is easy to hear, in the distance, groups of people having good time singing at “open air” karaokes.
Once you are on the ridge you can turn on the left (follow the signs) to the restaurant “Ridge Mountain Villa”.
This restaurant unfortunately seems out of business now. The restaurant is in a park in a superb position, overlooking Taichung on the west and Dakeng on the east.