Last Chance To See The Queen’s Head At Yehliu Geopark In Taiwan

Mars-like Yehliu Geopark
Mars-like Yehliu Geopark

Why Should I Visit Yehliu Geopark

Have you ever dreamed of walking on Mars? You can feel the place like Mars in Yehliu Geopark.
It is one of the most famous natural wonders in the world and takes only an hour from Taipei to the unusual geological park on the northern coast of Taiwan.

Do you know that there is an iconic mushroom rock, the Queen’s Head is over 4000 years old, and will soon give way? It is expected that its neck will rupture before 2025. Moreover, if an earthquake occurs above level 3, it will rupture at any time. What you see today, it will become history of tomorrow.

Yehliu Geopark’s Unique Geological Formation

Giant Mushroom Jungle in Yehliu Geopark – Mushroom Rocks
Giant Mushroom Jungle in Yehliu Geopark – Mushroom Rocks

Let’s start a geography lesson of Yehliu Geopark. If you don’t like, you can click the above table of content to know why the Queen’s head is dying.

Yehliu is a cape of about 1700 meters long and 250 meters wide, stretching far out from Datun Mountain into the East China Sea.

The Yehliu Geopark’s stratum is mainly composed of thick sandstones generated from 10 million to 25 million years ago. The colors are mostly blue-gray or yellow-gray.

Why is this beautiful place not formed elsewhere? Because the Yehliu Geopark used to be a shallow sea area, it is about tens of meters deep and has many creatures. After these creatures die, their shells with full of calcium formed rich calcium nodules in this layer of sandstone.

These nodules are resistant to erosion and weathering. But the part of the underground is relatively soft and easily eroded. After thousands of years, wave-eroded, northeast monsoon and crust movement have gradually formed natural rock formations of various shapes.

The scenery was awesome! You can see the photos in this post, although I took them by phone, the rock formations were so beautiful and lovely. And we will definitely go back here with our camera and arrange to come early to explore.

What To See In Yehliu Geopark

Mushroom rocks, candlestick rocks, ginger rocks, bee have rocks, bean curd rocks and sea urchin fossils, together constitute the Yehliu Geologic Park, like a wonderful natural stone carving exhibition hall. The most celebrated rocks are:

Yehliu Geopark – Directional Sign
Things to see in Yehliu Geopark – Directional Sign

1. Queen’s Head

Yehliu Geopark has over 180 mushroom-like rocks. You can see the different stages of the mushroom rocks. The prettiest rock in this giant mushroom forest is the Queen’s Head, which resembles Queen Elizabeth. Also, it is the iconic of Yehliu Geopark, where millions of visitors come to see. Be sure to take a photo with the precious Queen’s Head. There is a saying that if you’ve not seen the Queen’s Head, you’ve not been to Taiwan.

2. Sea Candles

Candle Stick Rock considered as the world-class erosion landscape, only in Yehliu Geopark. The formation of Candlestick Rocks has harsh conditions. It required the nodules can’t be too big, it must be round, two kinds of rocks in the sandstone are cracked at right angles and appropriate density.

Now, you can still see the Candlesticks Rocks with nodules, which are quite rare.

3. Fairy’s Shoe

A Fairy’s shoe made from ginger rocks. The hard-calcareous rocks were being washed away by seawater for a long time and staggered crack in terrain extrusion, gradually formed the shape of the shoe.

The Fairy Shoe has a legend. A fairy who accidentally left a shoe in the human world when she captured the monster in Yehliu.

4. Other Rocks

Use magic sword to cleave the Mars! Cracked Tofu Rock

The surface of ginger rocks is irregularly cracked and rough, which are cracks caused by the crustal extrusion. Due to the rough surface and the color of the stone is yellow-gray which looks as same as ginger, so it is called Ginger Rock.

Ginger Rocks in Yehliu Geopark
Ginger Rocks in Yehliu Geopark

Children will be happy to see this yummy ice cream-look rock. The Ice Cream Rock is formed as a result of differential erosion. The principle of weathering is the same as the Queen Head but the internal structure of the rock is different. In the hot weather, come and take a photo to cool your body.

You can look for the sea urchin fossils with your friends. It might be some where around you.
It is worthwhile to look for it, because these sea urchins lived in this shallow sea 20 million years ago!

Elephant Rocks in Yehliu Geopark
Elephant Rocks in Yehliu Geopark

5. Birding Location

In the Taiwanese bird watching community, this area is known as the “migration hotspot”. Like most immigrant locations in the world, the weather plays an important role. Overcast, wet and windy conditions are ideal.

We’re not bird lovers, but some tourists say that they can see several famous migratory birds such as Japanese Pale, Red-flanked Bluetail and Grey-Headed Thrushes.

Why Queen’s Head Taiwan At Risk and Might Be Gone Forever

Queen’s Head
Now is the most beautiful look of precious Queen’s Head

A Queen’s Head takes more than 4000 years to form. What you see now is exactly the appearance of a queen.

If you came to see it 100 to 200 years ago, it had not yet formed a head shape. But, if you come a few years later, it might not have a head anymore! It has been weathered at a rate of 0.2 to 0.5 cm per year. As can be seen from the photo below, the neck of the Queen’s Head is getting thinner and thinner. In 2008, the length of the neck was 136 cm, but now is 125 cm.

Queen's Head Erosion effect
Queen’s Head will be gone soon and gone forever. 1969, 1980, 1990, 2010 original link

Although experts have used smear Nano-coatings, it turns out that they are non-resistant to natural weathering and heavy rain. And it is expected that in the next few years, its neck will be broken. Moreover, if an earthquake occurs above level 3, it will rupture at any time. So bear in mind, please love it, don’t try to touch it.

If you are a nature lover, Taiwan will be your next destination for travel. Come and see its last beauty!

The successor of the Queen’s Head – Princess’s Head
The successor of the Queen’s Head – Princess’s Head

Who Will Be The Successor of The Queen’s Head- Princess’ Head?

At the beginning of 2010, there was a mushroom rock collapsed in Yehliu Geopark. Due to the fall of part of the rock, it was found to be similar to the queen’s head. So Yehliu Geopark held a naming campaign for this new queen’s head in Taiwan. The name is Cute Princess, also called Princess’ Head.

The successor is chosen to distract the attention of the Queen’s Head and prevent the Queen’s Head from being touched by tourists and accelerate the damage.

Since the Queen’s Head is fragile, it has been protected by a stone necklace to prevent visitors from approaching the touch. But for this Cute Princess Rock, you can watch it up close.

What Is The Best Time To Visit Yehliu Geopark

crowded Yehliu Geopark
Although there are many people, it is worth seeing Yehliu Geopark during sunset

From the online search results, you will find the best time to visit Yehliu Geopark is sunset and between May and September.

You come earlier if you are a nature lover and photographer. You may need 4 hours or more because there are many things waiting for you to discover!

We went to Yehliu Taiwan in December. At that time, we arrived at 4 pm and had enjoyed the view of the Yehliu Geopark shined by the beautiful sunset. However, it was not enough despite we stayed there for 1 hour. As we thought it was just a usual park which would make us bored, so we didn’t plan to come earlier. But no! There was more! We wish we had 3 to 4 hours to explore everything and find a place to relax and talk. But if you want to have a look and go, then one to two hours is enough.

From the above photo you can see that the peak hours are crowded with people. If you want to avoid the crowd, we recommend that you do not come here between January and August, which is what the locals call the peak season. We usually visit a country in the off-peak season, so we can stay in cheaper hotels and enjoy our view.

Visitor Center at Yehliu Geopark

Yehliu Geopark Entrance
Yehliu Geopark is just around one hour out from Taipei Ximen

Yehliu Geopark Entrance Fee

The admission fee for Yehliu Geopark is NT$80 for adult visitors. It’s just around USD2.60 for you to visit one of the natural wonders in the world!

– Free admission for the disabled and children aged 0-5 with a height of 115cm and below
– If you buy 30 or more tickets at a time, you can get a 20 percent discount on group ticket.
– Check the latest Yehliu geopark Entrance Fee.

Yehliu Geopark opening hours are from 8 am to 5 pm daily.

Details of Yehliu Geopark Visitor Center

Yehliu Geopark visitor center is located next to the entrance. You can get a guidebook at there. The services and facilities provided are as follows.

Free Travelling Information:
Audiovisual room: Play videos in four languages: Chinese, English, Japanese and Korean will give you a better understanding of Yehliu Geopark
Personal Tour Guide Software: Solo traveler could scan QR code over there and you will get a talking map in four languages, Chinese English, Japanese and Korean.

Facilities:
Breastfeeding room
Stroller and Wheelchair for temporary use
Nursing Station
Free Wifi service
Souvenir shop
Dining
Recharging of electronic devices
Locker room: free for tourists. Each locker is 45x45x45cm.

Services:
Send a Postcard
Call a taxi
Bicycle service station

Address of Yehliu Geopark visitor center:
No.167-1, Kantung Rd., Yehliu Village, Wanli District, New Taipei City 20744, Taiwan, R.O.C.
Operating hours: 08:00 – 17:00
Tel: +886-2-24922016
Email: info@ylgeopark.org.tw

Important Notes:
Please take good care of nature. Smoking, touching, climbing, biking, wading, swimming, fishing, littering, flying of drone or model aircraft at Yehliu Geopark is prohibited.

For your safety, please do not cross the red warning line.

How To Go To Yehliu Geopark

Yehliu Geopark coastline
Mind for the red warning line for your safety

Transportation to Yehliu Geopark is not a problem. In Taiwan, all the buses we took have an electronic display board that tells you the name of the next stop in English. You don’t have to worry about transportation.

But the bus stop in Taiwan is not obvious because it has no roof or seats. There is a small sign indicating the bus number that will arrive here. 

By Shuttle Bus:

From Taipei Station

At the Taipei station, exit from K11, go in the back direction, you will the Taipei West Bus Station A. 

Take Kuo-Kuang Bus (no.1815) at Taipei West Bus Station A. The journey takes around 1 hour 20 minutes. – The details of this bus. The word “Yeliu” is the same as Yehliu.
The bus will drop you on the main road. Walk down the lane on the left side to the park entrance.

From Tamsui Station or Keelung Station

Take the North Coast Shuttle Bus NT$200 all-day unlimited rides from either MRT Tamsui Station or Keelung Railway Station. Here are the details about where to take the bus, the timetables and bus stops.

From Other Place To Yehliu Geopark
Here’s the website of Taiwan bus.

What To Do In Yehliu

Yehliu Geopark - the bridge
We will definitely back to this unusual place to explore more
You can’t miss Jiufen, Shifen and Jilong night market if you come to the north of Taipei. 1) Yehliu to Jiufen
  • Eat your way through Jiufen with delicious street foods such as A-Zhu Peanut Ice Cream Roll, Ah Gan Taro balls, etc.
  • Enter the real scene of Japanese animated film- Spirited Away and explore Taiwan’s most popular attractions
2) Yehliu to Shifen
  • Make a wish and set off your Chinese sky lantern. Discovery Channel has highly praised the Taiwan Lantern Festival as one of the best festivals in the world.
  • Visit the quaint village of Shifen. Wander along the old train tracks and winding lanes.
3) Yehliu to Keelung MiaoKou night market Take a bus 790 on the opposite side. The journey takes around 40 minutes until the last stop Keelung station and walks 10 minutes to Keelung night market to look for a great dinner. Address of Keelung night market: No. 20, Aisi Road, Ren’ai District, Keelung City, Taiwan 200

Travel Tips In Yehliu Geopark

  • Visit in off-peak season
  • Many tour packages arrange to visit Yehliu Geopark in the morning. Since there is no pergola in the rock viewing area, we recommend that you visit between 3 pm and 4 pm to avoid excessive sun exposure.
  • Prepare sunscreen, umbrella, and water

After traveling around Taiwan, we can say this is one of the top places to visit in Taiwan. It is not only for people who are interested in photography or nature, but this marvelous spectacle should also be an eye-opening experience to all.

THANKS FOR READING!

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