For a real cycling adventure, head out to narrow, snaking Hwy 14, cut into the marble walls of the Mugua River Gorge , which is a chasm as dramatic in appearance as Taroko Gorge but far more raw To get to Hwy 14 head north along Hwy 9 from Liyu Lake. Cross the bridge heading back to Hualien and then turn left to follow the river upstream (now on the left bank).
The carbonated Ruisui hot springs were first opened by the Japanese in 1919 reportedly as a rehab centre for injured soldiers. The water boasts a temperature of 48°C and is rich in iron, giving it a pale-brown colour and a slightly salty, rusty flavour (so we've heard).
Set in a 100-year-old former police station, this teahouse offers simple meals and drinks with very friendly service. To reach the shop, head straight out from the train station and turn left on Zhongshan Rd.