How to get to Kenting National Park from 3 Major Cities in Taiwan!

How to get to Kenting National Park from 3 Major Cities in Taiwan?

kenting taiwan how to get there

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Having travelled to Taipei several times, it still gets me excited about going back there, simply because Taiwan is so diverse and there so many different experiences you can have. One such experience is in Kenting National Park, located at the southernmost tip of the island of Taiwan. Not many foreign visitors come here, but it doesn’t need to be the case.

Kenting National Park is an amazing place to visit, thanks to its gorgeous beaches, rugged mountainscape and its wonderful year-round weather. 

The sunsets are gorgeous. You can just sit at a quiet corner and contemplate life or whatever is on your mind. We were reminded of these wonderful quotes about sunsets while we watched the sun disappear below the horizon. 

Party lovers descend here during spring time too, for the Scream Spring (春吶) music festival. That can be worth checking out too, if that rocks your boat.

In this post, let’s explore the best ways to get to Kenting from Taipei, Kaohsiung and Taichung, 3 of the most popular cities in Taiwan. 

Let’s Zip Up & Go!

Overview of How to get to Kenting

PUBLIC NOTICE: 

You will notice that using the Kenting Express Bus/Kenting Shuttle Bus is commonly mentioned, as that is the main public transport mode to get to and around Kenting. You can buy it at the booth, but consider using Klook to get a discount. I have seen prices going for up to half price, but frankly, any discount would be welcome. 

Likewise, taking the High Speed Rail can be very pricey, so you really should get this 3 day unlimited pass to get your money’s worth.

FromMethodTime takenPrice
Taipei Main StationHigh Speed Rail and Kenting Express BusUp to 4h 45mNT$1891 per ticket, one way
Taipei Taoyuan AirportMetro, High Speed Rail and Kenting Express BusUp to 4h 40mNT$1766 per ticket, one way
Kaohsiung Zuoying HSR StationKenting Express BusUp to 2h 30mNT400 per ticket, one way
Kaohsiung AirportBus 91172h 30mNT$250 per ticket, one way
Taichung HSR StationHigh Speed Rail and Kenting Express BusUp to 3h 30mNT$1191 per ticket, one way

How to get from Taipei to Kenting?

Taipei is located in the northern part of Taiwan, which means the journey to Kenting will be the furthest. In total, the distance between the two cities is roughly 450 kilometres.

By Taiwan High Speed Rail (THSR) and Shuttle Bus

Taipei Main Station

Make your way to Taipei Main Station, which is the transport hub in the capital city. You can find here various types of transport to get around the country such as coaches, metro as well as the HSR. 

Get yourself a ticket to Zuoying, which is the last stop on the HSR. Zuoying is a district in Kaohsiung City, and this train journey takes you 1.5 hours to 2 hours, depending on which train you take. 

  • Time taken: Between 1h 30m and 2h 15m
  • Ticket price: NT$1490 per ticket (one way)

Upon arriving at Zuoying HSR Station, you can now transfer to a bus. Use Exit 2 to locate the Kenting Express Bus booth, which operates the shuttle bus service 9189 that takes you to Kenting.

  • Time taken: Between 2h and 2h 30m, depending on traffic conditions
  • Ticket price: NT$401 one way, NT$600 return, per ticket

You will alight at the last stop, which is Xiaowan (小灣)

Note: There is an option to take the regular train from Taipei Main Station to Fangshan Station in Pingtung County, from which you can take a bus. However, this method takes an extra 2 to 3 hours longer, so I will not be covering it here. 


Get discounted bus tickets here


kenting-express-bus

By Car

We love road trips, and would always consider using a rental car whenever possible. It gives the ultimate freedom to explore and get lost, see sights you would normally miss, and travel at your own pace. 

If you are keen to drive from Taipei to Kenting, here’s what you should know:

  • Distance: 450 km
  • Time taken: around 6 hours with a couple of short breaks in between

Another option you can consider is renting a car in Kaohsiung instead. There are a few car rental companies when you exit the station and turn right along Gaotie Road. 

Having a car is an excellent option as you can then explore as much of Kenting National Park as you wish without having to bother about transport.

You can check out the rates at RentalCars, which is our preferred booking platform thanks to its attractive rates and comprehensive insurance. 

  • Distance: 120 km
  • Time taken: around 2 hours

How do I get from Taoyuan Airport to Kenting?

Assuming you are heading straight to Kenting right after your arrival in Taipei Taoyuan Airport, you only need to make a slight adjustment from the directions above. 

Instead of heading directly to Taipei Main Station, you can take the airport metro (MRT) to Taoyuan HSR Station. 

This leg will take approximately 15 t0 18 minutes. 

From Taoyuan HSR Station, take the high speed rail to Zuoying Station in Kaohsiung (same as above)

  • Time taken: 18m + 1h 35m = 1h 53m (excluding waiting and transfer times)
  • Ticket price: NT$35 + NT$1330 = NT$1365 per ticket (one way)

Just as the step above, take the shuttle bus from Zuoying to reach Kenting.

Of course, you can opt to rent a car at the airport, which makes perfect sense if you have a small group with light luggage. Check out the rates at RentalCars.

How to get to Kenting from Kaoshiung?

Kaohsiung is a major city in the southern part of Taiwan, and is closest to Kenting National Park among the 3 cities in this article today. This busy port city is home to massive skyscrapers mixed in with lots of green spaces as well as a thriving bicycle culture. 

If you are staying here and want to make a day trip to Kenting National Park, you can use take the Kenting Express Bus from Zuoying HSR Station to get there. The method is as described above.

night-market-in-kaohsiung
Night market in Kaohsiung

How to get to Kenting from Kaohsiung Airport?

Kaohsiung is the second busiest airport in Taiwan, playing host to several international flights such as Philippines Airlines, Japan Airlines and AirAsia. Hong Kong, Tokyo and Macau flies direct here.

It also serves as a domestic airport, but it does not have direct flights from Taipei though. Penghu and Kinmen are the only other domestic destinations. 

From here, you can take bus service 9117 at the airport to get to Xiaowan, which is the main spot in Kenting. 

  • Time taken: 2h 30m
  • Ticket price: NT$250 per ticket (one way)

Another way, you should guess by now, is the drive! Rent a car, pick it up from the airport and head straight to your destination.

  • Distance: 104 km
  • Time taken: 2 hours, depending on traffic conditions

And finally, you can consider hailing a taxi or using Tripool to book a ride. This is somewhat more cost effective than renting a car, but will cost more than public transport.

Fare with Tripool: NT$3000 per car, up to 3 persons

sunset-in-kenting
Sunset in Kenting

How to get to Kenting from Taichung

You might not know this, but Taichung is actually the preferred city of Taiwanese to live in, compared to Taipei. This city is accessible, friendly and has a casual vibe that attracts people naturally. On a side note, here’s how you can get from Taipei Airport to Taichung city.

It is also perfect to make day trips to Sun Moon Lake, Gaomei Wetlands, and Wuqi Fisherman’s Wharf, not to mention an outing to Kenting. 

The steps to get from Taichung to Kenting is something that you should be pretty familiar by now, as Taichung lies on the route from Taipei to Kenting. 

Here are the steps:

Take the HSR from Taichung to Zuoying HSR Station

  • Time taken: 45m to 1h
  • Ticket price: NT$790 per ticket (one way)

Upon arriving at Zuoying HSR Station, you can now transfer to a bus. Use Exit 2 to locate the Kenting Express Bus booth, which operates the shuttle bus service 9189 that takes you to Xiaowan in Kenting.

  • Time taken: Between 2h and 2h 30m, depending on traffic conditions
  • Ticket price: NT$401 one way, NT$600 return, per ticket
wuling-farm-taichung-taiwan
Wuling Farm in Taichung

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Can I take a plane to Kenting?

Not exactly, but you should know that the nearest airport is Hengchun. As of now, it seems to be only open for charter flights only.

Is there a train to Kenting?

No. The nearest High Speed Rail is in Zuoying, Kaohsiung, while the nearest regular train is in Fangshan. 

Should I stay overnight in Kenting?

I would highly recommend doing that as the journey from the 3 major cities are pretty long. While day trips are possible, there are many things worth checking out in Kenting, especially if you are driving or if you rent a scooter. A minimum of 1 night would be ideal.

Logistics before visiting Kenting Taiwan

Find cheap flights.
Air tickets are usually the bulk of your expenses. Set up an alert and snag cheap fares with Skyscanner.

Find the best accommodation.
Book a place ahead of time to get good rates. Booking.com has transparent fees and excellent rates. 

Handy travel guide.
For the old school kid in you, get a travel guide book and get lost exploring the city.

Photos.
Your mobile phone can do a pretty good job, but if you need an upgrade, we recommend the Sony A6000 (US) (International)

Travel insurance.
You don’t need us to teach you to be a responsible adult, do you? Get a quote here.

Planned for you activities in Taiwan.
Need a guide to show you and your group around? Lots of operators here to choose from here. You know who they are and how they are reviewed. 

More resources to help you.
What other useful travel resources we use when we book our trips.

Get to Kenting National Park from 3 Citites in Taiwan pin 2
Get to Kenting National Park from 3 Citites in Taiwan pin 1

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