Maokong(猫空) is located in the Southeast corner of Taipei City. The name actually means “cat’s hollows”, but ironically has nothing to do with an actual cat. The boulders and stones in the stream bed are made of rock of varying hardness, and over time the stream’s waters have carved potholes in them. “猫空” is used in reference to the stream’s rocks.
In 1980, the district was classified as a tourist tea plantation area. Ever since, Taipei’s residents and tourists alike have flocked there for tea drinking, hiking, and just simply taking in the lovely sights and natural scenery.
– taken from the tourist brochures of 猫空
As mentioned in our Taipei Zoo post, you can head for the Mao kong Gondola shuttle bus station inside the zoo near the Birds’ World enclosure for the gondola up to 猫空.
Gondola shuttle bus: 9am to 4.40pm
*** Not operated on Mondays!! S0 try not to go on Mondays.
Shuttle bus fee: 5 NT per pax
Gondola up to 猫空: 40 NT per ticket (you can pay by your EasyCard to avoid the cash queue)
猫空 –> Taipei zoo station: 50 NT per ticket
Hello Kitty fanatics will definitely love this place as Hello Kitty is plastered everywhere here. From the wall decor to the gondolas to the “neoprint” photo-taking station on the ground level.
There are 2 kinds of gondolas – crystal cabins or the regular ones. The only difference is only that crystal cabins have a clear floor. So you can actually feel like you’re flying (or sitting) on glass.
The waiting time for crystal cabins varies but we would recommend that you take the crystal cabin at least once (on the way up or down). Because of the novelty! Plus it really is more thrilling. If you’d followed our journey to enter the zoo first and exit via the north exit of the zoo to hop on the bus towards taipei zoo south station, you won’t be able to board the crystal cabins here. That’s because crystal cabins only move from the 1st station to the 4th, and vice versa, without stopping. This photo will explain more clearly.
If you enter via the zoo, you’ll be at “Taipei Zoo South Station”, which is the 2nd stop. So make sure you take the crystal cabins on the way down, back to Taipei zoo station!
There were many cafes along the way which were all very interesting. Wish we had time to visit all!
There’s a cafe by the side of the road which allowed patrons to see the beautiful sloped scenery. However, they did not serve 猫空‘s famous tea, so we had to move on.
We finally found a cafe that served “tie guan yin” (300 NT) – 猫空’s famous tea!
How to use a Yixing Zisha teapot:
1. Pour hot water over and in the teapot to warm it up, then pour water out.
2. Place 7 grams of leaf in the teapot.
3. Pour in boiling water (95 deg C) in circular fashion along the rim of the pot’s mouth.
4. Place lid on pot and steep 40 seconds. Tea is now ready to serve!
If you decided to go opposite direction from us (Mao kong –> Gondolas –> Taipei Zoo), just work your way from the end of this post up!
猫空 has many sights and delicacies to offer; we only wish we had more time to stay and appreciate its beauty. Go and see for yourself, it’s a stop not to be missed.