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Taipei Mayor Ko Wen-je Hosts Screening of National Geographic Channel’s “Inside: Taipei Grand Trail”

Hot New Bucket List Item: The Taipei Grand Trail

The first screening of the “Inside: Taipei Grand Trail” show was held today in Taipei, Taiwan. A collaboration between the Taipei City Government and the National Geographic, the one-hour program was directed by Golden Bell award winner Yang Shou Yi. Mayor Ko Wen-je hosted the screening and invited publics to rediscover Taipei by hiking the trail.
The 92-kilometer Taipei Grand Trail has been a point of promotion of the city government since 2018. The trail is divided into 7 sections, allowing hikers to tackle one section at a time, one day at a time if they wished to do so. The trail starts at MRT Guandu Station and leads hikers through Yangmingshan National park, where one-third of the hike takes place. Along the way are majestic views of the mountains of Taipei including the Datun Volcano Group and Mount Qixing, whose peak is the highest in Taipei at 1,120 meters. Other points of interests include a valley of hydrangeas at Zhuzihu, a natural trail maintained by volunteers using traditional methods in Shuangxigou, Bishan Campgrounds, strawberry picking farms in Neihu, a spot for watching planes take off and land near Yuanshan, tea tasting in Maokong, and a million dollar night view of Taipei 101 from Sishou Mountain. The Taipei Grand Trail brings and joins the elements of fitness, challenge, confidence-building, convenient access to creature comforts and delicious cuisine in the city.
“After finishing the twin tower ride, I challenged myself to the Taipei Grand Trail. It was more than a test of physical endurance. It was an opportunity to see Taipei from a different perspective. It was glorious. Hike the trail and you will fall in love with it,” said Mayor Ke Wen-je. “But don’t just stop at the end of the 92km hike, there’s a 130km riverside bike trail that connects the MRT Taipei Zoo and Guandu Stations, completing the circuit. And whichever section of the trail you choose to hike and from whatever direction, public transportation is available - MRT, buses, ubikes, the Maokong Gondola, etc. It’s really convenient in the city. You can go anytime,” he added.
To “Inside: Taipei Grand Trail” presenters Benjamin Wang and his wife Cindy Chen, helping with trail maintenance was especially memorable. “It was the first time for us to see how natural trails are maintained. Feeling the earth between our hands, how ancient it is, how we’re helping with building a trail for people to safely walk on, it was really special. And climbing Datun Mountain was pretty impressed too. It was not easy! We had to keep pep talking each other and keep taking breaks to get through it. And when we finally made it to the top, it felt great! All the fatigue instantly disappeared…until it was time to go back down again. The hike is also really nice if you’re looking for spiritual growth, or to get back in touch with your inner self. We really recommend it,” the couple said.
“Every year our graduating class climbs the peak of Mount Qixing,” said Hutian Elementary School dean of academic affairs Li Bi-man. “It’s a long, tough hike that helps kids exercise their will power and build resilience. Mountain climbing helps them get to know the land, themselves, and know that they can accomplish what they set out to do. With training and experiences like this, taking on new challenges in the future will get easier and easier,” she added. Mayor Ko agreed, “strong and healthy kids will make our country more competitive. I hope to see more schools organize graduation hiking challenges to the peak of Mt. Qixing.” “This is great for adults as well - the Taipei Grand Trail is an excellent training ground for tackling higher mountains,” he added.
“Inside: Taipei Grand Trail” will premier on December 12th at 10 p.m. on the National Geographic Channel, where it will be broadcasted simultaneously in 30 countries around the world. Those who missed it can tune into Fox Sports the following day for the rerun.
“The Taipei Grand Trail is a rewarding hike in so many ways, great for beginners and experienced mountain climbers alike. It should be on your bucket list,” said the presenters.