Pingxi Station
Pingxi Station
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The area
Neighbourhood: Pingxi District
The formerly prosperous mining industry of Pingxi District has presently bid its time of black gold farewell, washing off its glories and returning to simplicity, it attracts travelers to stay by picking up a downshifting pace. If you like the mountains and water, come seek out the secluded Wanggu Waterfall and the majestic Shifen Waterfall; if you are a railroad scene enthusiast, there is no harm in taking the train along the Pingxi rail branch line and making random stops in the unique surrounding stations. Quaint Jingtong Station and Serene Wanggu Station calm the mind for relaxation. Shifen Station and Shifen Old Street with its distinct scene of “a train passing through the front doors” and nostalgic old street makes every corner worthy of savoring. You must experience releasing sky lanterns when visiting Pingxi. Write down your wishes and let the sky lantern bring them slowly to the sky. There is also the one and only “Sky Lantern Police Station”, not only with daily dazzling light shows but also offering customized “Police Wishing Sky Lantern” so tourists can hand draw images or writings and display them on LED sky lanterns.
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Most Recent: Reviews ordered by most recent publish date in descending order.

Detailed Reviews: Reviews ordered by recency and descriptiveness of user-identified themes such as waiting time, length of visit, general tips, and location information.


4.0
4.0 of 5 bubbles66 reviews
Excellent
19
Very good
35
Average
10
Poor
0
Terrible
2

donavan94563
Orinda, CA210 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Jul 2017 • Family
Pingxi is a popular stop along the Pingxi Branch Line (train). The railway was originally built to transport coals but as the coal business dwindled over the years, this place has gradually evolved into a popular tourist spots – for one to discover the coal-mining history of Taiwan and to experience the lighting of sky lanterns (天燈).

Upon arrival, you will immediately noticed the railway track that was built alongside the street. Completed in 1921, the 12.9 km long single-track Pingxi Line 平溪线 was originally built for transporting coal and runs through Ruifang 瑞芳 and Pingxi District in New Taipei City.

Releasing the sky lantern 放天灯 is on the list of must-do items when you visit the Pingxi. The Pingxi area is the only place in Taiwan where sky lanterns are allowed to be released due to its sparse population and high altitude.

Many of the tourist go to Shifen to release the lanterns as it is closer to Chiufen, however we choose to go a few stations further south to Pingxi to release the lanterns since this is the home of the original Pingxi Sky Lantern Festival.

Pingxi Sky Lantern Festival 平溪天灯节 is held annually. The annual Pingxi Sky Lantern Festival has always been the main highlight of Lunar New Year's activities in New Taipei City. Hundred thousands of people flock to the area for the Festival every year.

In the past, the festival is always held on the 15th day of the Lunar New Year to celebrate the first full moon. However, two more sky lantern release events have since be added due to its increased popularity.

During the festival, thousands of sky lanterns with prayers will be released into the air. It is an enchanting sight to see the night sky illuminated with countless floating lanterns.

Pingxi Sky Lantern Festival is elected as the world's second largest festival at night by Discovery Channel. CNN Travel has named the festival as one of the 52 things to do in 2013 and fodor's Travel Guides named it one of the 14 festival a person must see in their lifetime.

Visitors can purchase miniature sky lanterns, postcards and other interesting souvenirs to bring home for friends and family. These little gifts are just perfect if you are buying for a large group of friends.

Visitors walk freely on the railway track, releasing brightly colored lanterns into the sky.

The sky lanterns are traditionally made from cotton paper on a bamboo frame. There is an opening at the bottom of the lantern where a small fire is suspended on a base framework containing an ignition source. All the material used to construct the lantern were decomposable that can be burnt completely before falling to the ground. However, the making of such traditional lanterns require specific techniques. With sky lanterns getting increasingly popular, it is hard for local manufactures to produce enough to meet the growing demand.

In order to speed up the manufacturing process, local lantern manufacturers have replaced the bamboo with magnetic wire and cotton paper with painted colored paper. To make the lanterns more visually appealing, manufacturers have also made them much bigger than before. However, the bigger size have made the lanterns harder to burn completely, which resulted in serious environmental problems. However, this unique age old practice has become a source of income. Suppressing or banning this practice is definitely not easy. Thus, it is necessary regulate the activity. We were told the lanterns are collected on a regular basis and recycled.

Partaking in the Sky Lantern experience was truly a "Tangled" moving moment!

Shifen Old Street, Shifen Waterfall, Pingxi, and Chiufen can all be done in one day
Written 4 August 2017
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

binhvee
16 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Nov 2018
You can release balloons here too, and it's a quieter alternative to Shifen Old Street - less tourists. Small and quirky shops.
Written 13 October 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

paulcN8197IN
Osaka, Japan137 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Aug 2019 • Family
Chose Pingxi station rather than Shifen, and pleased we did as all the Chinese tour buses stop at Shifen meaning it is really busy, where we had the station and lantern shops to ourselves
Written 22 August 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

joshuamazing
Las Pinas, Philippines46 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Nov 2018
...this is what this place has been known for. Single-colored lanterns are 150 NTD and the multi-colored ones are 200.

Each color and its meaning:

Red - health, peace
Yellow - money, wealth
Blue - career, promotion
Purple - study, test
White - future, brightness
Orange - love, marriage
Green - vigour, success
Magenta - attraction, popularity
Pink - bliss, joy

...and we all agreed to light up the yellow lantern. LOL.
Written 26 November 2018
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

neilhassall
London, UK898 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Feb 2019 • Couples
We got the train back to Ruifang from Pingxi - the reason why I particularly enjoyed this station is that is was the base for letting off lanterns during CNY so it was a real sight to behold!
Written 8 February 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

entropy5016
Manila, Philippines58 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Jun 2018 • Family
We went to Pingxi after going to Jiufen Old Street, and with the intention of flying a sky lantern. It was not very crowded, we went inside this shop with lots of space inside. 1 lantern was 100 and if coloured it was 150. They have us black paint and when we are done they assisted us in flying the lantern (which was to be done in the middle of the rail road) and even took our photos and one final video in flying! While waiting for our train, we walked a little inside the ping district and bought wrapped ice cream with nuts. I would call it an experience.
Written 1 February 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

helenk705
Singapore13 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Nov 2017 • Family
It's been more than 7 years that I visit this place..
It just that last time was with tour now is on myself.. It's a good place for sight seeing as the air is very fresh compare to town.. actually is very fresh air.. just need take 1hr bus to go all the way up by myself. Not much change also..
Written 18 November 2017
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

janice j
Metro Manila, Philippines35 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Jul 2017 • Family
Visited this place with my family and when we got here, there were a lot of tourists. We were given a lantern and were able to write our wishes on every sides of the lantern. Once done, you'll take a picture with your lantern before letting it go. The place is full of tourist shops and can buy anything from souvenirs to snacks.

Our guide informed us that they recycle the ring of the lantern. Once the paper lantern is burned. The locals pick the rings, gather them and use them again. Although, they won't be able to locate or retrieve all of it but at least most of the rings get to recycled.

It would probably make a difference or at least the view if you go here before or after sunset.
Written 20 July 2017
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

miamifly
miami27 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Apr 2017 • Friends
Contrary to a previous review, we LOVED the lantern release. The lanterns are made of paper, not plastic. You spend as long as you need writing (actually painting with a paintbrush) on them - dreams and wishes or goals- anything one wishes to offer up "to the heavens." Our group drew on 8 lanterns and released simultaneously. It was beautiful and uplifting. Truly one of the highlights of our trip to Taiwan.

Pingxi station has a number of small shops and restaurants geared toward tourists. A cute souvenir is a small handpainted lantern for about US $1.50. The lantern release is right on the tracks so when the trains come through (every 20 minutes) whistles are blown to warn folks off the rails.

If you go for the lanterns wait until the sun sets for maximum visibility. Beautiful!
Written 28 April 2017
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

A L
Hk13 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Apr 2017 • Friends
Went to Pingxi. Small cosy little place with just one key alley to walk around but for an hour's stay before the hourly train arrived it was perfect. A few interesting but touristy shops. Many were closed. Not sure if it's because it was a Monday?

Quite a few people were busy writing and drawing on the sky lanterns. The material seemed to be light weight plastic or at least waxed paper. To release a lantern on the rail road track was really a sweet idea however, I strongly encourage others not to do it. I wanted to do it before I arrived in Taipei but on the train ride to Pingxi, I saw many lanterns lying on streams, fields, roads and trees. These would be where your lantern would end up and it's damaging to the natural beauty of this place so please resist or force the shops to provide biodegradable alternatives. We did not fly any and felt good not participating. Lantern costs TWN$150 each.
Written 24 April 2017
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

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