Chinglong Waterfall (青龍瀑布 [Qīnglóng Pùbù])

Shanlinhsi ("Sun Link Sea") Nature Park and Resort; Xitou, Nantou County, Taiwan

About Chinglong Waterfall (青龍瀑布 [Qīnglóng Pùbù])

Hiking Distance: 5km round trip
Suggested Time: 2 hours

Date first visited: 2016-11-01
Date last visited: 2016-11-01

Waterfall Latitude: 23.63743
Waterfall Longitude: 120.7869

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The Chinglong Waterfall (青龍瀑布 [Qīnglóng Pùbù]; meaning “Green Dragon Waterfall”) was perhaps the waterfalling highlight of our short but very sweet visit to the Shanlinhsi (杉林溪 [Shānlínxī]) Nature Park. This towering waterfall was where the Jiazouliao Stream (加走寮溪 [Jiāzǒuliáo Xī]) plunged some 116m. Its grandeur took Mom and I by surprise as we were expecting something similar to the nearby Songlong Rock Waterfall (which was also in the same park) but the Chinglong Falls turned out to be far taller and more precipitous. The signs here suggested that this was the prettiest waterfall in Shanlinhsi (that seemed like a no-brainer), but it also suggested that it was the most beautiful waterfall in Central Taiwan, and that would be hard to dispute. Moreover, this waterfalling experience also featured a bit of variety as our visit took in rock formations, panoramic views above the inversion layer, and even a second waterfall.

We began our visit from the Theme Hall parking lot as we would hike in a counterclockwise direction on this semi-looping hike. Since we did this trail first thing in the morning before breakfast, we started off by hiking 400m along the road towards the tollbooth or entrance gate, where there was also the Sun Link Sea Land God’s Temple. From there, we then hiked on the 400m Shyrjing Trail (石井磯 [Shíjǐngjī]), which followed the northern banks of the Jiazouliao Stream. We actually continued past a suspension bridge with the number 88 on it (there was some kind of rock resembling a baby elephant here) and made it a short distance further to a dead-end where we could see the Shyring ji – an interesting series of potholes in the stream.

Shanlinhsi_040_10302016 - Mom on the Chunlin Trail en route to the Songlong Rock Waterfall
Mom on the Chunlin Trail en route to the Songlong Rock Waterfall

Back at the suspension bridge, we then crossed to the other side, where we went up some steps before picking up the Chinglong Fern Trail just downstream from the junction with the Yueling Trail (which we didn’t take). The trail then skirted the deep gorge where we started to get profile views of the impressive Chinglong Waterfall. The trail continued to descend gently towards overlooks providing a more frontal view before we reached four-way junction. We kept right to take the descending trail towards the base of the Chinglong Waterfall. Early in the descent, we passed by a strangely tilted “Energy House”, which used to be a restroom facility before an earthquake tilted its foundation. The result was a pretty trippy and disorienting experience inside the building, which felt as if the building could slide further downslope at any minute.

The descending path provided more glimpses of the inversion layer as we were still above the clouds and the steam looking more in the direction of Western Taiwan. Eventually, the trail terminated at an elongated lookout deck with shelter where we got the closest views of the Chinglong Waterfall that we were going to get. The trail wouldn’t let us get any closer to the falls so it was pretty much a look-but-don’t-touch waterfall.

After having our fill of this experience, we then hiked back up to the four-way junction where I then explored the last path to the right. This 200m or so spur trail led down to the second Chinglong Waterfall (the signs and literature called this the “Chinglong 2th Waterfall”). Unlike the main Chinglong Falls, this one was significantly thinner and shorter. Given its more diminished flow, I’d imagine that this was really more of a seasonal or temporary waterfall. Still, it offered a nice precipitous view towards the inversion layer downslope.

When we had our fill of this spot, we then returned via the 1.6km Chinglong Fern Trail. It was a pleasant trail following along the southern banks of the Jiazouliao Stream amidst more tall trees. At the end of this trail, we’d then cross over a solid footbridge spanning the stream before returning to the Theme Hall part of the Shanlinhsi complex. So when all was said and done, we had hiked roughly 3.5-4km in total, which took us about 2 hours to complete.

Shanlinhsi_268_10312016 - Looking downstream from the bridge near the Theme Hall
Shanlinhsi_274_10312016 - Looking upstream from the bridge towards some parked tour buses
Shanlinhsi_275_10312016 - Walking along the road towards the Shanlinhsi entrance
Shanlinhsi_276_10312016 - Looking upstream from the road towards the Theme Hall area of Shanlinhsi
Shanlinhsi_280_10312016 - Context of the entrance gate and temple
Shanlinhsi_285_10312016 - This was the Sun Link Sea Land God Temple near the entrance
Shanlinhsi_290_10312016 - Starting to hike the Shyring Trail
Shanlinhsi_294_10312016 - Looking downstream along the Jiazouliao Stream
Shanlinhsi_295_10312016 - A man-made dam contraption along the Shyring Trail
Shanlinhsi_304_10312016 - Looking ahead towards a suspension bridge
Shanlinhsi_312_10312016 - Checking out the pothole formations of the Shyring ji
Shanlinhsi_314_10312016 - Another look at the Shyring ji
Shanlinhsi_318_10312016 - Crossing over the suspension bridge with 88 written on it
Shanlinhsi_324_10312016 - Looking back at the suspension bridge as we were climbing up to the Chinglong Fern Trail
Shanlinhsi_340_10312016 - The trail started to reveal the deep gorge that contained the Chinglong Waterfall
Shanlinhsi_338_10312016 - Looking downslope towards the inversion layer as we were still above the steam and clouds
Shanlinhsi_349_10312016 - Our first look at the Chinglong Waterfall
Shanlinhsi_358_10312016 - Mom checking out the Chinglong Falls from one of the lookout platforms
Shanlinhsi_366_10312016 - Direct look at the Chinglong Waterfall before making the final descent to its lower lookout
Shanlinhsi_373_10312016 - Mom hiking down the trail for the bottom of the Chinglong Falls
Shanlinhsi_375_10312016 - This was the kind of scenery we got to enjoy while making the final descent to the bottom of Chinglong Falls
Shanlinhsi_376_10312016 - This was the eccentric and disorienting 'Energy House'
Shanlinhsi_381_10312016 - Mom continuing to make her way to the base of Chinglong Falls
Shanlinhsi_383_10312016 - Mom continuing to descend steps to the bottom of the Chinglong Falls
Shanlinhsi_388_10312016 - Our first look from near the bottom of the Chinglong Waterfall
Shanlinhsi_406_10312016 - Context of the Chinglong Falls and the last stretch of trail to its end
Shanlinhsi_409_10312016 - Context of the bottom lookout of the Chinglong Falls
Shanlinhsi_436_10312016 - Direct frontal look of the Chinglong Waterfall from near its bottom
Shanlinhsi_440_10312016 - Mom checking out the Chinglong Waterfall from the lower lookout
Shanlinhsi_449_10312016 - After visiting the last of the main lookouts for Chinglong Waterfall, I took this detour to check out the second waterfall
Shanlinhsi_457_10312016 - The Chinglong 2th Waterfall
Shanlinhsi_466_10312016 - While hiking back to the trailhead, we couldn't help but wonder to which town or village did these buildings belong to?
Shanlinhsi_469_10312016 - Taking the Chinglong Fern Trail all the way back to the Theme Hall
Shanlinhsi_477_10312016 - Still following the Chinglong Fern Trail back
Shanlinhsi_501_10312016 - Mom continuing along the developed Chinglong Fern Trail
Shanlinhsi_502_10312016 - Finally starting to see the Theme Hall complex again
Shanlinhsi_506_10312016 - Approaching the bridge leading us back to the Theme Hall


Being in the Shanlinhsi Nature Park, the Chinglong Waterfall excursion shares the same general directions and car park as that of the Songlong Rock Waterfall. So see that page’s write-up for specific directions on getting here from either Chiayi (嘉義 [Jiāyì]) to the south or Taichung (台中 [Táizhōng]) to the north.

360 degree sweep from a viewpoint providing us with a direct look at the impressive Chinglong Waterfall

Sweep of the impressive falls from the end of the trail at a sheltered viewing deck

Sweep checking out the second Chinglong Waterfall with some views towards the steamy basin in the distance

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Tagged with: chinglong, green dragon, shanlinhsi, shanlinxi, sun link sea, nature park, resort, nantou, taiwan, waterfall

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