Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Trip To Taiwan 台湾: Yilan 宜兰 - Nanfangao Observation Deck 南方澳观景台

Photo By: Elin Chow 
Address: 108K, Suhua Highway, Provincial Highway No. 9 台9县苏花公路108公里处

Leaving Qingshui Cliff  清水断崖, we continued our journey north along Suhua Highway 苏花公路 from Hualien 花莲 to Su-ao Township 苏澳市, Yilan Country 宜兰县 with a brief stop at Nanfangao Observation Deck 南方澳观景台.

Nanfang'ao Observation Deck 南方澳观景台

Located at the 108 km mark of the Suhua Highway, you will find the Nanfangao Observation Deck. Formerly just a large parking lot, the area has been transformed into a viewing platform offering a wonderful panoramic view over Su-ao Township in Yilan Country, Taiwan.

Due to its remote location, Nanfang'ao Observation Deck is not accessible to public transport. Thus, hiring a car is perhaps the best way to get to the observation deck via the Suhua Highway. You can either choose to rent a car for self drive or engage a local driver to drive you to the attraction. However, please note that most of the roads are narrow and winding with many blind curves. So, make sure you drive slowly and look out for oncoming vehicles at all times.

Parking spaces were a little limited, but was not difficult to find a spot. On alighting from the car, we walked down a wooden boardwalk leading to the observation deck.

The boardwalk is flanked by lush greenery and cascading hills and mountains on one side and steep rocky cliffs on the another.

The view from the observation deck was magnificent, offering a spectacular bird eye view over Nanfang'ao Fishing Harbor 南方澳渔港, Neipi Fishing Harbor 内埤渔港, Su-ao Fishing Harbor, Neipi Beach 内埤海滩 and Tofu (Bean Curd) Cape 豆腐岬.

Surrounded by lush green mountains on three sides, Suao Port is the biggest fishing port in Taiwan. The port composed of three sub ports - Beifangao 北方澳, Su-ao 苏澳 and Nanfangao 南方澳. Nanfangao Fishing Harbor is a major base for coastal fishing. It is also one of the three largest fishing towns on the island due to its abundant fish catches.

Nanfangao Fishing Harbor is connected to Su-ao Fishing Harbor, which services cargo ships and the navy. In the distance, you would be able to see the Nanfangao Bridge 南方澳大桥, which connect Nanfangao Fishing Harbor and Su-ao Fishing Harbor.

Located next to Su-ao port is Neipi Fishing Port. Outside the port, you will see the crescent shaped Neipi Beach (also known as Yilan Lover's Bay or Daxi Honeymoon Bay 蜜月湾) , which separates the port from the Pacific Ocean. The 500 m long Neipi Beach is the only bay with a sand beach in the north of Taiwan. Backed by lush green mountains and facing the pacific Ocean, the scenery is exceptionally beautiful and serene.

The northern and southern side of the bay composed mainly of fine sandstone and gravels while there is a beach in between covered with dark gray fine sands. Thus, walking barefoot down the beach is not recommended as there are lots of sharp gravels around.

Neipi Beach is an excellent and popular spot for watching sunrise and sunset over the Pacific Ocean. It is an ideal place for families and couples to spend their leisure time at. Due to uneven seabed, swimming is prohibited at the beach due to strong undercurrents and high waves. However, the high waves actually makes the beach an excellent place for surfing. Neipi Beach is known as one of the most popular surfing sites in northern Taiwan where surfing competitions are often held.

The Observation Deck was surprisingly crowded with tourists eager to take photos of the scenery. It was difficult to take a photo without any other strangers in it.

The expansive ocean view and clear blue sky offers ample of spectacular photo opportunities. We spent about 15 minutes taking photos and admiring scenic view of the ocean against the azure blue sky. The scenery was stunning, especially on a bright sunny day. Standing silently on the observation deck, we enjoyed the warm breeze and sunshine. It was just the ideal place to relax and take in the clean mountain air.

Nanfang'ao Observation Deck is an excellent place to take a break after a long and tiring drive.The view was absolutely breathtaking, you will want to have your camera ready. So, make sure you bring along your camera, or you may regret.

If you are interested to know more about our trip, you may want to check out our 11D10N round island tour itinerary for the list of attractions that we had visited during our 11 days in Taiwan. Be sure to follow me on Facebook or Twitter  for the latest updates on my 11 days adventures in Taiwan! You might also want to check My Wanderlust page for some of my other travel adventures.

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