Road bike rental in Taichung

Hey guys,

my boyfriend and I are planning going to Taiwan at the end of November.
We already found out some places for renting road bikes in Taipeh, but we also want to go south for some days. In Taichung there seems to be a lot of bike shops but we couldn’t see any road bikes for rent.

Can anyone help?

(OT: Is there any possibility visiting the Giant factory in Taichung?)

Greetings from Germany

If you can find road bike rentals in Taipei, transporting the bike via train, high speed rail or bus, from Taipei to Taichung is not rocket science. If you have compact bike bags that you can fold up and put into your backpack, bring those. All you need to transport via mass transport is your bike (with wheels taken off) in a bag! Sometimes the train and bus require you to buy a ticket for the bike (which is half the price of your ticket)

I think you can visit a showroom in the Giant factory, but not sure if you can go any futher. Try contacting them:

Give them an inquiry: https://www.giantcyclingworld.com/travel/contact.php

Or try calling (+886) 04-4055-9555 or (+886) 04-2681-4771

I cannot guarantee the person at the other end of the line will speak English or if the automated system is in English. I had a few friends speak to English proficient customer service reps from Giant Taiwan, but that was because they had inquries with their bikes.

If you run out of luck with the above two options. Try asking when you get on the ground in Taipei. The Giant Nanjing Store, 台北市松山區南京東路三段278號, +886 2 8771 4045, has English proficient staff at all times. You can ask them who to ask about a tour.

Hey,

Thanks for
your quick answer. We’ll try to connect the named Giant store, maybe we are
lucky ones :wink:

I hope,
bringing bikes from Taipeh to Taichung will be our – or at least mine – last
option. Our luggage (packed for two weeks and real trunks) will be heavy
anyway, with two additional bikes I cannot imagine how to handle. Is in a big
city like Taichung really no store who also rents road bikes?

But I’ll
keep it in mind, guess getting some boxes will be possible in every biking
store?

We also
suggested renting a car and getting the bikes in it, but were extremly
surprised how much it would be for even one week.

Greetings

If your last resort is to rent in Taipei and bring it down to Taichung, you can speak with the hotel/Bnb/hostel that you’re staying at and request to leave a piece of luggage there and travel light to Taichung.

Honestly, boxes would be much much more of a hassle than a bike bag. Sometimes the bike shops even charge you to use their empty boxes. It doesn’t make sense, but there hasn’t been one shop that I have asked that hasn’t asked for a few hundred NTD to take a box that they will not ever use again. Keep in mind, the boxes are not easy to carry and are much larger than your bike in a bag. If you can find one for cheap online before you arrive, I would go that route. If not, Giant’s cheapest bike carrying bag is around 600-700NT

It’s tough to think that there’s no store in Taichung that wouldn’t have road bike rentals, but my knowledge of road bike rentals does not go any further than Taipei. :frowning2: You can try asking the Giant Nanjing store if they suggest any stores in Taichung. Here’s their FB page, shoot them a message and see if you can get a response https://www.facebook.com/giant.taipei.Nanjing/

Of course, you can always ride from Taipei to Taizhong! You don’t have to worry about transporting the bikes and there’s a flat western highway that you can take from Taipei to Taizhong!

Renting a car should not even be considered! If the bikes get screwed up while packed in the trunk, you pay a fine. If the bikes screw up the car, you also pay a fine. The fines on top of the rental fees make it not worth!

Feel free to ask any other questions you may have. I’ll be happy to help!

::EDIT::
Added link

Thanks for your tips, that helps to find a decision.
We now tend to bring our own bikes with us, as we won’t have the problems for rental service. Are those big trunks allowed in MRT and this high-speed trains? We read some confusing things about transportating bikes in trains (not carried in a box), some say it’s limited other say youn cannot without making a complicated reservation (in chinese characters only), then others write it’s easy by knowing some basic stuff…so we know as much as before.

We really underestimated about preparation I have to admit, now its just two weeks ahead and we don’t have any plan how to get from A to B. Seems to be more complicated then we guessed.
My boyfriend also wants to reach the 3,000m mountain in Hualin (?) and is still not sure how to get there.

But looking forward to visiting your beautiful island :slight_smile:

Edit: yes, I read the post taking bikes to trains and still more confused - so there can be good or bad luck …? :wink:

On the MRT, your bike must be bagged on weekdays, no extra fees. If it’s the weekend or a holiday, you can keep the bike un-bagged, but must pay 80NT for a ticket (for the bike).

For the high speed rail, the bike must be bagged or in a box. No exceptions.

For the train, it is very confusing because it’s a different experience every time because it depends on the person at the counter or conductor on the train. So the thread is informational, but also very confusing. Bottom line for trains, bag your bike. If you so happen to get lucky and get an express train with a cart that can park bikes, unbag the bikes and park the bikes!

My suggestions for traveling from Taipei to Taizhong, is to leave any unnecessary belongings at the hotel and travel light. Probably easier since you need to lug around bikes too! To save time, take the high speed rail. It’s about 1.5 hours from Taipei to Taizhong.

That is He Huan Shan aka Wuling Peak. From Taipei, you have to take the train to Hualien (Xin Cheng Station). FYI train is your ONLY option. There’s a few bnbs near the station and you’re about 5km from the mouth of the Taroko gorge that leads up to Wuling peak.

The route is approximately 90km with 3200m elevation gain. It’s a very easy and low gradient ride for the first 70km, but once you hit the last 10-15k, average gradient hits the double digits. Keep in mind that once you get up there, you’re still at 3200m above sea level and need to get down! Make sure you think of that before cycling up there! You can descend west towards Puli, but it is a 55km descent!

If you’re using Strava here’s the segment: https://www.strava.com/segments/2713347

Speaking of Puli, you can also get to Wuling Peak via Puli, which is just east of Taizhong. You can take a bus from the HSR station to Puli or you can take a bus straight from Taipei Main Station to Puli. The route up to Wuling Peak is shorter than the Hualien side, but much more difficult. You are starting at 600m above sea level in Puli, but the average gradient is higher.

Here’s the Strava segment: https://www.strava.com/segments/2965631

Keep in mind that weather at 3200m is very very unpredictable. At this time of year, it can be well below 5C if there’s no sun. Please be prepared!

Sorry that was a lot of info, but hope it was helpful!

Yeah, I was going to suggest just taking the bus from Taipei directly to Puli, which would let you avoid the hassle of going to Taizhong (Taichung). If you really want to visit Taizhong, then there will be a way to do it, and you’re getting some good advice above. However, if your main goal is just to climb the famous 3275m peak on Hehuanshan (aka the Wuling peak), then you could skip Taizhong altogether and go to Puli or Hualian.

Apparently some Giant stores around Taiwan offer bike rental, and you can return the bike at similar stores elsewhere in the country. I don’t know if it’s just touring bikes, or if you can actually get road bikes. You can send the shop in the town/city you want to rent a bike, and order a bike beforehand.

I tried renting one today in Taitung (not to be confused with Taichung), but it turned out the Giant shop is closed on Thursdays. I don’t know if that is the case elsewhere. I was planning to ride the city loop, a nice scenic bike path that goes around Taitung (around 21km), but wound of walking half of it instead. :slight_smile:

Hey guys,

Thanks for your replies, you brought some light in our dark.
We’ll nearly decided now for renting a car and putting our bikes in it so we can have a round trip Taipeh-Taichung-Puli-Hualien-Taipeh and are independent from any public transportation. Guess the traffic is horrible in Taiwans big cities so we’ll try to stay in some quieter surroundings. Can you take the west-east-connection from Taichung to Hualien by car? Maps said it’ll take about 5.5 hours to get there but it seems to be possible.

Also tried to find some information about how much it is storing our luggage at the airport for two weeks but couldn’t find some proper information about this (one website said it’s abut 300NTD / each day and person but I’m not sure how new this information is)

Cheers

Yes, that’s if your starting point is in Puli, NOT Taizhong. Two different places :wink: It’s about 1-2 hours from Puli to Wuling Peak and 2-3 hours from Wuling Peak to Hualien.

If you or the bf plan to cycle up to Wuling Peak from Hualien, do be very careful on the descent there’s lots of blind corners!

Unfortunately, no prices for the second option, however, you can try to give them a call to inquire.

Yes, that’s if your starting point is in Puli, NOT Taizhong.

And how to we get from Taichung to Puli? It’s just 55km away, why we won’t able driving?

Sorry, I may have read your post incorrectly!

You are right, it is about 5-6 hours from center of Taizhong to center of Hualien via car.

You guys planning on driving it instead of riding it?

Yes, our plan is driving to Puli, maybe staying there one or two nights and riding from there as a day trip. The same in Hualien.
We still have some luggage with us and don’t want to take it with us while riding and we also are more flexible staying as long as we want if we like it in one area.

I can’t find the info on the place I stayed in Puli, but this place in Xin Chen, Hualien, which is right outside of the Taroko Gorge was a nice stay.

Just a suggestion if you guys haven’t booked your lodgings yet!

Thank you guys for all your answers.
I made lots of photos of your links and feel now more prepared to travel.
Looking forward feeling the Taiwanese sun, the more as our temperature were about -5°C last week :scream:

Good luck and do share some thoughts about your trip here if you can!

If you’re flying in next week, I hope your itinerary is flexible because Taipei seems like it will rain all week next week! Hurry south if you can!

Hey guys,

Leaving Taipeh today after 1.5 days. Totally enough. We we’re strongly reminded to Bangkok after all. Loud, crowded, terrible traffic and thick air. Trying to escape the rain und hurried to Taichung. Maybe going more south if the weather will be like in the forecast.
But very friendly people, very helpful. Looking forward to get some fresh air. I’ll report.

Cheers

How’d it go? You got pretty gloomy weather in Taipei in the first week of your visit.

Hey,

sorry for my late reply. We went back 7 days ago and I got a little busy cos’ of work, but I’ll write a little summary the next days if you like.

Just some words - it was so amazing. Never seen such a green, beautiful island with such lovely people before :heart_eyes: Really didn’t want to go back :slight_smile:

1 Like

Hey guys,

ok, little summary (I’ll be sorry in advance for any writing mistakes regarding names and places :wink: )

When we stepped out at at Taoying Airport (Nov,19th), we felt like being dropped into a sauna.
Finding a bus was very easy, 2 hours later we fell into our (windowless!!! noone told us I’m sure) bed.
Our quarter in Taipeh was - I guess - “old” Taipeh, 2km North from Longshan temple, very busy and a lot of this cookshops (?) outside. I’m honest, my proper German stomach cannot be used to these terrible chinese smells, I tried but always had the feeling of nausea in Taipeh. Being a vegetarian didn’t make it better…so I’m ashamed to tell but I needed a Subway.
We visited Longshan and Taipeh 101 (great view, no fog) and then time to leave.
(Little nice experience, we tried to rent some Youbikes but couldn’t handle with our credit Cards, just 5 minutes and first guy who saw us and wanted to help - in the end it didn’t work cos’ we couldn’t understand that we needed Easy Cards (no Youbike-Cards))

Next stop was Taichung, we stayed with a friend there and just walked one day through the City. Taipeh in smaller version. Even a real asian city. Still not ours.

After that we got with our rental car to Kenting. Got a small Hotel at Sheding Park, 5 km away from the beach and Kenting street. Of course, 4 stars - don’t lets talk about that, but staff was really nice and our view was wonderful. The weather was really likeable (Taipeh and Taichung was just rain at that time), but so stormy. We are from Hamburg, so we are used to wind, but this was … omg . My hopes, having a nice day at a beach, come to an end here. My friend got cycling nevertheless, I went to Kenting Park. And it was so beautiful. I am not the persons who likes to walk for hours and hours but this was fascinating. Maybe because of the storm it was quite epmty on this day and so quite…just amazing. So wonderful. So green. And I’ve been seen apes :slight_smile:

Kenting was touristic area…lots of Chinese and even two German tourists. And I got my Pad Thai :wink: first asian Food in Taiwan I could eat. We loved the silence at Sheding, calming down after Taipeh and Taichung.

4th stop Sun-Moon-Lake. Tao whatever. Aboriginal village. 8 pm and noone at the street. What we really missed were the bars where you can sit outside. Sun-Moon-Lake is so beautiful, why are there no bars?? We found one in Shueishe, but not at the sea. Is it not common to sit outside, enjoy a drink, feeling the warmth? We missed that in whole Taiwan, wherever we got.
Nevertheless a wonderful place to enjoy. Not so many tourists because of off Season.

We went over Hueheshan (?) to Hualien (my boyfriend got to the top by bike :wink: ) and this was real lovely. Thats a real nice City, we loved the night market and to cycle (I got a Giant by rent), not too big city, our B&B was great and we both enjoyed our time there.
Our route back we saw some of Taroko and this was so amazing. Taiwan is really the most beautiful Island I’ve ever seen. People are not able to speak English (but in Hualien, we were surprised), I didn’t expected that, but they were so helpful, even without English Knowledge. Lovely.

Hope, we will come back.

Cheers Nell