The Full Chiayi-to-Alishan Bus Schedule and Passenger Guide

The side of a tour bus that says "Alishan Shuttle Bus" on the side and is painted with a cartoon figure of an old Asian woman and tea fields

Welcome to the only webpage on the Internet which shows a complete timetable of every bus from Chiayi to Alishan, Taiwan’s most famous mountain resort! I’ve also written the only English guide to booking Alishan bus tickets online – a must if you want guaranteed seats!

In my older guide to getting to Alishan, I realize the various options and details can be overwhelming. If all you want is the bus times from Chiayi to Alishan (or Alishan back to Chiayi), you’ll find both schedules below.

I’ve compiled the times for all the different buses going from Chiayi to Alishan (and Alishan to Chiayi) from various sources in English and Mandarin. I’ve also included three popular stops along the way: Xiding (for Eryanping Trail), Shizhuo (for tea plantation hikes or staying on a tea farm), and Fenqihu (for connecting to the Alishan Forest Railway).

At the end, I’ve also answered several FAQs about riding the bus from Chiayi to Alishan.

Chiayi to Alishan Bus Timetable

BusChiayi StationChiayi HSRXidingShizhuoFenqihuAlishan
73145:57 (weekdays)7:127:27
731411:09 (Sat/Sun)12:2712:40

Alishan to Chiayi Bus Timetable

BusAlishanFenqihuShizhuoXidingChiayi HSRChiayi Station
73148:24 (weekdays)8:3610:04
731414:34 (Sat/Sun)14:4616:13

If you’re wondering what’s up with all the different bus route numbers, here’s a simple breakdown:

Taiwan Tourist Shuttle Alishan Route A (Bus 7329) = Chiayi HSR Station to Alishan. 7329 is the normal route and 7329A indicates the one which will include a stop at Fenqihu. I’ve found these times here.

Taiwan Tourist Shuttle Alishan Route B (Bus 7322) = Chiayi Train Station to Alishan. 7322C is the normal route and 7322D indicates the one which will include a stop at Fenqihu. I’ve found these times here.

Buses 7302 and 7314 don’t go all the way to Alishan, but I’ve included them because they go to other popular stops along the same route. I’ve found these times on Mandarin sites.

You can reserve seats for all of these buses online. I highly recommend doing so on weekends, holidays, and especially for cherry blossom season at Alishan (March to April).

FAQs about Taking the Bus from Chiayi to Alishan

A large white statue of a bear wearing a mask that has a Taiwanese flag on it, with more Taiwanese flags on poles and present boxes around him, and Chiayi train station in the background
Catch the bus here in front of Chiayi Station

Now that we’ve got the bus times sorted, there’s a good chance you still have some questions about taking the bus from Chiayi to Alishan.

I know this because people ask these questions all the time in my Taiwan Travel Planning group! For many visitors, transportation to Alishan is the most complicated part of their trip.

Where are the Bus Stops?

At Chiayi High Speed Rail station, catch the bus from the bus station at Exit 2 of the ground floor – go to platform 7. Here’s a station map. See my guide to booking HSR tickets.

At Chiayi train station, the bus stop is right in front of the station. In the above photo, the bear is facing the Alishan bus stop. See my guide to booking train tickets in Taiwan.

Note: there’s a free shuttle bus from Chiayi HSR to Chiayi train station if you have a ticket for any HSR that day. The times are here (scroll down and switch to bus “7212 THSR Chiayi Stn to TRA Chiayi Rear Stn”.

Because buses from Chiayi HSR to Alishan are limited, some people arrive by HSR but then travel to Chiayi Station in the city center, which has more departure times.

A small bus stop beside a small road, with no one or no cars in the scene
Anding bus stop at Eryanping Trail

If you want to do Eryanping trail, get off at Anding stop. For Tea Mist Trail (connected to Eryanping trail), get off at Lincuo stop. The time in my table is for the next stop, Xiding, so subtract 2 minutes for Licuo stop and 4 minutes for Anding stop. I use the time for Xiding because that’s the one listed on the official schedule.

In Shizhuo (incorrectly spelled “Shizhao” on GoogleMaps), the bus stops here in front of 7-Eleven and HiLife.

For any bus that goes to Fenqihu, this will be a 20-minute (return) detour from the highway right after Shizhuo bus stop. The Fenqihu bus stop is here.

A green bus stops at the side of the road to let on some passengers, with two 7-Eleven signs and some shops behind it
Bus stop in Shizhuo

At Alishan, the buses arrive and depart from Alishan Bus Station, which is connected to a 7-Eleven.

From there, you’ll walk through the Alishan National Scenic Area Entrance gate (show your bus ticket to get a 50% discount on the Alishan entrance fee – TWD 150 instead of 300).

Follow the road to Alishan Train Station (10 min) for riding the train to the scenic spots in the park or to the hotels in Alishan tourist village (15 min).

How Much Does the Bus to Alishan Cost?

A one-way bus ride from Chiayi Train Station in the city center to Alishan costs TWD 240. From Chiayi HSR station to Alishan, the ticket price is TWD 278.

If you’re only riding from Chiayi Trail Station to Xiding, Shizhuo, or Fenqihu, the price will be TWD 132, 158, or 175, respectively.

From Chiayi HSR station to Xiding, Shizhuo, or Fenqihu, that will cost TWD 173, 196, or 229, respectively.

What about Kids and Seniors?

Like most public transportation in Taiwan, kids under 6 (age 0-5) ride free – maximum two free kids per one paying adult. Technically, your kid doesn’t get a seat, so if the bus gets full, they’ll have to sit on your lap.

Children aged 6-12 qualify for a 50% discount but only if you pay for the ride in cash and show ID, or if you purchase your tickests online or at FamilyMart.

If you plan to swipe EasyCard for the ride (which is the easiest way), non-local children and seniors can swipe a Concessionaire EasyCard if you have one, but this gives little or no discount compared to adult rates.

In other words, children won’t get the 50% off deal if they swipe with their EasyCard. Only students of schools in Taiwan can get Student EasyCards with reduced fares. Similarly, only local seniors can get senior cards. Learn more in my EasyCard guide.

How Do I Pay for the Bus?

A hand holding up an EasyCard with images of Taipei on it
My Taipei-themed EasyCard purchased at Taoyuan Airport

At non-peak times, most passengers swipe EasyCard to ride the bus between Chiayi and Alishan. At busier times, most people reserve seats (see next section).

Like most bus rides, you’ll need to swipe the card when you get on and again when you get off the bus. The card must have a positive balance before your first swipe (it can go into the negatives after swiping, but you’ll need to reload before your next ride). Make sure to load your card with enough money before boarding. You can do this at any convenience store.

You can also purchase round-trip tickets from Chiayi to Alishan online on Klook. This deal includes two rides on Route A (Chiayi HSR to Alishan) or Route B (Chiayi Station to Alishan).

With the Klook deal, you can get on or off anywhere you want along either route, but only two rides total (ignore the bad English on Klook about 4 times – that means you swipe your card when you get on and off, times two rides, equals 4 times. You’ll get a QR code to swipe.

It’s also possible to pay for the bus with cash, but this is not convenient. You must pay in exact change – the driver is not guaranteed to have change, and will probably get very annoyed if you ask for it.

Can I Reserve Seats on the Bus?

Yes, you can buy Chiayi to Alishan bus tickets from the FamiPort machine in any FamilyMart convenience store in Taiwan, up to 31 days in advance. The machine interface is in Mandarin only – use a translation app or ask the clerk for assistance.

There are instructions for using the machine here, but also in Mandarin. You’ll need to choose or tell/show the clerk the following info: your date of travel, number or seats, and 台灣好行 (Taiwan Tourist Shuttle) from 嘉義車站 (Chiayi Station, bus 7322) or 嘉義高鐵站 (Chiayi HSR station, bus 7329) to 阿里山 (Alishan).

You can also book tickets on FamiTicket, the online version of the machine (again, Mandarin only). After booking online, you’ll need to pick up the tickets at FamilyMart I’ve typed up this step-by-step guide to signing up for and using this site to reserve your tickets. I highly recommend doing it for any weekend, holiday, or cherry blossom season rides.

There is a TWD 10 surcharge per ride for any tickets bought or picked up at FamilyMart. If you miss the bus time that you booked, you can take any other one that day, but you won’t have a guaranteed/reserved seat. Tickets which are torn or stained will not be accepted.

You can even buy partial route tickets, like Chiayi or Alishan to Xiding, Shizhuo, or Fenqihu. You’ll have to start from Alishan or Chiayi, though. You can’t reserve a ticket which involves getting on at a smaller stop.

Who Gets Priority for Bus Seats?

A green Taiwan tourist shuttle bus parked at a station, shot looking at front of the bus, with a line of people preparing to board to the left, and driver in a yellow shirt helping people put luggage under the bus
A line of passengers loading luggage and boarding the bus to Alishan

Only those who book their tickets online and/or pick them up at FamilyMart will have actual reserved seats on the bus.

Everyone else (including those who pay by cash, EasyCard, or Klook QR code) will need to line up and board the bus, first-come-first-served.

Usually, when there’s a long line, the driver will first ask everyone with booked seats to come forward. After that, everyone else in the line will start to board. If the bus gets full before you board, you’ll have to wait for the next one.

When Are the Buses Usually Full?

Alishan is a very popular destination year-round. It is especially popular among foreign tourists, so any day of the week or year can be very busy.

Weekends are especially busy. Long weekends (3 or 4 day weekends), Lunar New Year, and cherry blossom season (March to early April) are crazy busy.

For your best chance to get on the bus without a reserved seat (i.e. paying by EasyCard), I highly recommend that you avoid weekends and holidays, take one of the earliest buses of the day, and/or line up at least 30 minutes before the scheduled departure time.

Can I Bring Luggage on the Bus?

This is a super common question. But the answer is not surprising – since Alishan is a tourist destination, so many people going there are carrying luggage with them. So yes, you can take luggage on the bus.

At major stops, the driver will open the storage compartment under the bus for passengers to place their luggage. However, if you plan to get on or off at a smaller stop, it might be a good idea to just bring your luggage on board, as long as its not too large.

Taiwanese bus drivers are not always the friendliest or most accommodating people – it’s best to be ready for anything.

Can I Store My Luggage Somewhere Before Riding the Bus?

A row of white luggage storage lockers in a train station
Luggage lockers in Chiayi station

You bet! Make your Alishan trip easier by storing your luggage in a locker at Chiayi HSR station (maximum 3 days or 72 hours), Chiayi Train Station (maximum 24 hours), or at a hotel in Chiayi city. See my recommended Chiayi hotels here.

There are no luggage storage lockers at Xiding or Shizhuo, but there are some at Fenqihu (in the train station) and Alishan (in the 7-11 at the bus station, at the back near the restrooms).

Find out how to use these lockers in my guide to using Taiwan’s luggage storage lockers.

Is the Bus Ride Very Winding?

Yes, the road to Alishan is very winding. It’s very normal for passengers to experience carsickness or even vomit on the ride. Many even bring plastic bags for this just in case.

If you or your kids tend to get carsick, I recommend purchasing some carsickness medication (暈車藥) from any pharmacy in Taiwan – it’s very cheap and always works for my kids.

You may also consider to break up the ride by stopping or spending the night in Xiding, Fenqihu, or Shizhuo. Even if you don’t get sick, I totally recommend this to all visitors to the area just because I love those areas!

Are the Buses Always on Time?

As I mentioned above, bus drivers in Taiwan are not always the most courteous. While the schedules are generally reliable, some drivers may race ahead a little so they can have a longer break somewhere else.

For this reason, I recommend always going to smaller bus stops around 10 minutes early or even longer at major stops to get a good spot in line.

Also, just standing at the stop doesn’t guarantee that the driver will stop. Extend your arm and wave it up and down to indicate you want to get on.

Is there a Toilet on the Bus?

Nope. The buses will sometimes back a brief stop at Shizhuo, where you can run into 7-Eleven or HiLife to use the restroom.

3 thoughts on “The Full Chiayi-to-Alishan Bus Schedule and Passenger Guide”

  1. Wow that’s sooo helpfull! We are actually planning to go to Alishan tomorrow, jan, 26th!

    Thanks a lot!

    Alain et Olivier, Montréal

  2. Yes, if you log in to the website, click your profile at the top right, and it should show your booking, with the option to cancel. If you want to reschedule, you may have to cancel first then rebook a new one.

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