Ruisui (also spelt Rueisuei), is a town in Hualien County, Eastern Taiwan. It sits on Highway 9, and is a popular stop for cyclists who are making the trip from Hualien to Taitung. However, if you don’t plan on making the whole trip from Hualien to Taitung, you can easily take the train to Ruisui, and rent a bicycle for a day.
There’s plenty of places around Ruisui that you can ride to – Ruisui Pastures, hot springs (at Ruisui, or even Antong if you’re up for a longer ride), or a ride to the Tropic of Capricorn marker.
For me, however, I decided to ride through the countryside, along County Road 193. My intention was to ride to Fuyuan Butterfly Valley (entry NT$100) but I never ended up making it that far. That said, I didn’t mind. Riding out of Ruisui you have two options, taking the major Highway 9 (which has a dedicated bike/scooter lane, but does have a steady stream of traffic) or take one of the County Roads. If you opt to take the County Roads, be sure to come well supplied, as there’s not many places where you can stop & pick up refreshments along the way. The roads have very slight undulations, and aren’t a challenge for even a casual bicyclist.
Riding along the County Roads is an excellent way to see the true beauty of the Hualien countryside, and you’ll be sure to have folks along the way lean out of their cars, or houses & shout out “加油!” (jia you! Come on!!).
If you do want to ride along Highway 9, a better option (which can take you to Fuyuan too!) is to take the Ruisui bike path. The path starts close to the station, and for the most part runs parallel to Highway 9, and the train line. It’s a very nice, flat path, and a good option if you just want a casual ride without straying too far into the unknown.
- Bike Rental: NT$350/day (Giant Bicycle shop – closes @ 5pm)
- The Giant Bicycle shop doesn’t have a map. You can pick one up from the Tourist Information next door.
- Train from Hualien to Ruisui, frequent, travel time ~1hour 20minutes.