Taipei’s Bailingzuo’an Riverside Park Early Morning Workout

Taipei's Bailingzuo'an Riverside Park

Taipei’s Bailingzuo’an Riverside Park

This would be my third long stay in Taiwan, and one of the countless visits to Taipei.

Yet Taipei, the capital of Taiwan, at first glance can be a difficult place for someone looking to improve their fitness outdoors.

In and around Taipei many of the inner city parks, such as Daan Park, are small and can get packed with walkers and fellow runners. When training on busy weekends it can become hard to enjoy the workout.

The crowded streets, crazy scooter riders, and few green areas can leave a traveller staying in the city for a few days to believe it’s better not to bother. Did I just hear myself press the snooze button on the alarm again?

Yet there’s a plus, Taipei’s subtropical climate is perfect for running all year round. Ok, maybe once you get used to the humidity and odd bit of rain.

In my past visits, temperatures on runs in the city have ranged from a slightly cool 14 degrees in late December, through to the regular early 30’s in July. Just the way I like it.

With summer sun and humidity beating down on your back in hotter months, it makes sense to time your outdoor workout in Taipei for the early morning or later afternoon. In fact, getting out early is certainly the best option for me. I prefer to train before any of the other roles or responsibilities of the day ahead distracts me.

Normally I will only spend a few days in Taipei before moving on to the south of the county. Yet I still like to get out and explore Taipei city during the short stays. Always finding time to check out a new part of the city.

After staying in a wide selection hotels, hostels & Airbnb apartments over the past few years, this time a great deal guided me to holding up at the Lucky One Hostel in the Datong Area.

The great thing about the Datong area is the location in relation to the river. Certainly much closer than other areas of Taipei I have stayed in the past.

Not many would consider the distance of the river is when choosing a place to stay. But with Taipei being Asia, generally means they have a custom of constructing handy walking and cycling paths along the banks of the city rivers.

Parks are good to mix a run-up, they equal all the basics needed for an outdoor workout – pull up, dip bars and sit up benches.

Arriving at the river on foot, the run was surprisingly peaceful at 7 am in the morning. Only a few city folk were out and about taking their morning strolls, with one adventures lady walking her dog, just via her scooter!

City parks are great, convenient, a cheap way to work out, and take up a large portion of my travel training. Yet after continuous loop after loop after loop, it was simply nice to just run along the river and not have to worry about seeing the same thing over and over again.

Eventually, my early morning workout lead me to Bailingzuo’an Riverside Park. Arriving at the park, there weren’t any of the usual loops I’m familiar of seeing. It possible to just keeping running along the river until there was no steam remaining in the engine.

Even though it was slightly damp and lightly rained for a brief period, after a refreshing run I managed to fit in a few chin ups, dips, sit ups, before then running back to the hostel.

Early morning workout around Taipei completed, then breakfast, showered, and off out again to meet an old friend. All before anyone else in my hostel dorm had woken up.

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Bailingzuo’an Riverside Park, Taipei City, Taiwan 111

Things to Do in Taipei

Looking for thing’s to do? Some places to visit around Taipei are:

Nangang District Hiking Trail – For one of the best views of Taipei City make a hike to the top of Elephant Mountain

Lungshan Temple – Many festivals and celebrations are held in Lungsha

Yangmingshan National Park – Embrace nature and flower gardens with a picnic or leisurely hike up the rolling hillsides of Yangmingshan

National Palace Museum – This extraordinary collection of historic art treasures, fascinating for its depth and breadth, has miraculously escaped destruction over hundreds of years

Taipei 101 – The tower is reminiscent of a pagoda or a stalk of bamboo and designed to withstand typhoons and earthquakes common in Taiwan

Taipei’s Bailingzuo’an Riverside Park Early Morning Workout images created by Tools of Travel

Barry Sproston

Barry is a traveller and expat who spends most of his time between Asia and Australia. He has spent 12 months training at a Gung Fu school learning Wing Chun. Explored the island of Taiwan by scooter more than once. Been tricked into eating raw horse meat sushi in Japan. Even tried to overcome the fear of heights by bungee jumping in Thailand. One day he plans to open a guesthouse.

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