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Forest

Nowadays Primary Forests and ancient trees are rare. There are still spectacular forests with a huge biodiversity or ancient trees to discover.

Where there is rainforest, there is rain. The New England Gondwana rainforest is worth to visit throughout the year. Hiking and camping in such ancient Antartic beech forest is something very special and sensational. It may be 35°C hot at the Ebor Falls just 30 km north of the New England National Park, but in the forest, it’s cool with temps often around 16°C during spring and summer. Nights get pretty chilly. It’s a perfect example to experience the positive impact of forests for our environmental and against climate change. 

Weather New England National Park

First of all, precipitation can happen in abundant, and tents get flooded. On the other hand, dry and warm days can occur as well. Most important be prepared and check the weather forecast before visiting the park.

  • Rainy Season
    New England Rainforest Trail


    It frequently rains from November to March. Temps can be high on average 25°C and even more around 30°C is possible on a clear sunny day. If it’s misty and cloudy temps are on average around 15°C. Check the forecast before pitching your tent. The campground got already flooded a couple of times.
     
  • Drier Season
    Gondwana Rainforest during the drier and colder season


    In April the rain decreases and May to October are drier. May to August are the coldest months day temps on average are below 20° and nights temps are around 7°C.  However, be prepared if you plan to camp nights temps can drop to 0°C with occasional snowfall. 
Crowds

If you like to experience nature without the crowds and awesome day hikes this is one of the rare places. The secluded Thungutti campground is very seldom fully booked. Usually, there are just four or five sites occupied. While hiking, we just met one family the entire day.

Where to Stay

Campground in the New England National Park

If you plan to visit the New England National Park make a stop at Dorrigo and its visitor center first. You can’t camp in Dorrigo, but there is one small campground called Thungutti at the entrance of the New England National Park. Just 20 sites are available, basic facilities and a picnic area with gas BBQ.

Thungutti Camp Kitchen

If you like to get close to mother nature and a digital detox this is the right place for you. Sugar gliders visit the campground during the night, and you can hear them in the kitchen/BBQ area searching for leftovers. The fee for two adults is $12 for one night. Nowadays booking online is essential. Map and campsite booking 

There are three cabins to rent inside the National Park in the middle of the awesome rainforest. That's more comfortable during rain. Toms Cabin is equipped with an oven, basic kitchen, and four bunk beds. Booking Toms Cabin and Booking the Chalet with an included balcony and The Residence for up to 10 people.

Toms Cabin in the NEw England National Park

AU Australia

The park is open year-round and activities are available every season. The Humboldt Redwood State Park is busier during summer. Sweet spot months regarding the weather and the crowds are April, May, September and the beginning of October. Continue reading to get more detailed information for this ancient trees and get the most out of your visit.

Weather

Oceanic influences ensure fairly stable and mild year-round temperatures. The park receives an average of 60 - 80 inches of rain each year with the majority of rainfall from late October through April. From mid-May until September it's usually dry and mild. But still, be prepared for sudden rain and bring the right gear. Sturdy walking shoes or hiking boots with non-slip soles are a must since the moist rainforest can be slippery. Even in summer, dress in layers or bring an extra jacket: Expect a maximum of 30 degree temperature difference between the north end of the park, close to the ocean, and the southern end of the park, only 30 miles away. Winters are slightly cooler with the mentioned rainfall. Temperatures: Summer: Highs in the 70s to 90s, lows in the 50s. Winter: Highs in the 50s to 60s, lows in the 20s to 30s.

Tourist Crowds

It's never heavily crowded like Muir Woods or other parks. However, July and August are the months with the highest visitation. For a quieter experience, avoid weekends and arrive early if you visit during those peak times. Sweet spot months with fewer visitors usually mild and dry climate are April, May, September (after Labor Day), and early October.

US United States

Muir Woods is situated close to San Francisco therefore pretty popular. One well-maintained boardwalk and paved trail are leading through the park. The path is suitable for the entire family with pushchair and wheelchair as well. The magical times to be there are early morning and late in the day to avoid the crowds and to enjoy the unique atmosphere. The light filtering down into the valley through the enormous trees is utterly delightful.

Muir Woods Trees

Avoiding Crowds 

It’s a magical place, but it’s also heavily crowded. Due to the close location of the urban area, only 12 miles from the Golden Gate Bridge the park is overrun from spring to fall. First of all, avoid weekends and go mid-week if possible. Rainy, foggy or cold days are less crowded as well. To avoid the crowds during the day get there very early. The park is open from 8 a.m. until sunset. Be there at about 7:30. The visitor center opens at 9 a.m. You could also park on Muir Woods Road in the early morning. If you go in summer, we recommend taking the Muir Woods Shuttle. Quote from a Park Ranger: "It takes away all the worries and headaches of driving and parking." Shuttle information

Fully Parking Lots at Muir Woods

In September and October, many school classes visit the National Monument. Winter is less busy but consider it’s the wet season with most of the annual 40 inches / 1016 mm of precipitation.

Best Accommodations Close to Muir Woods

There are some hotels and lodges around to explore the Bay Area. It's quieter to stay here than in San Francisco, and it doesn't take long to reach the Golden Gate Bridge. Our first choice is the charming boutique hotel Mill Valley Inn. It is just a 3 miles drive to Muir Woods and 5 minutes walk to shops ansd restaurants. What we loved most there are already redwoods in their garden.

US United States

The Guanwu National Forest Recreation Area is always worth to visit but try to avoid the typhoon season which is most likely to happen from July to September. Guanwu is famous for incredibly beautiful sunrises and sunsets at the end of the Leshan Forest Road close to the parking of the second trail entrance to the giant Formosan Trees. The other popular spot is on the top of the Jehnshan Trail. The views are spectacular on clear days. The very best time for it is the equinox in spring on March 21st and autumn on September 23rd. Anyhow, the sunlight has a minimal variation from summer to winter; rising from 5.06 to 6.42 am and setting between 5.09 to 6.48 pm.

Check out complete Taiwan Guide from 2019 – Must know destinations and tips

Seasonal Highlights

  • Spring
    In March the almost 100 years old Wushe Cherry Tree is white blooming. From April to June the whole area is covered in blooming rhododendrons, azaleas as well as red Taiwan Cherries. This is an outstanding time for a visit.
    blooming bush in the Guanwu Recreational Area
  • Summer
    Rare flowers are in bloom at this time of the year. You may spot the rare Broad-tailed Swallowtail Butterfly in June. Anyhow, bear in mind from July to September typhoons can occur and it rains frequently.
    Guanwu; rare broad-tailed swallowtail butterfly
  • Autumn
    The foliage of the maple trees is fiery red. 
  • Winter 
    The mountain ridge called Holly Ridge is often covered in snow in January and February. These are the driest months of the year. 
    Holly Ridge in winter seen from Guanwu
     
Weather

Taiwan's climate is subtropical usually with wet and humid summers. Snow is common during winter mostly in January and February. Most precipitation from April to July. There is less rain from August to November and the driest months are December until March. Anyhow, even in the driest season, you can expect rain. During summer it's refreshing cool on 2000 up to 2.500 meters elevation. Guanwu is located in the mid-altitude fog belt; it’s often misty. Frequently clouds and fog roll in in the afternoon.

TW Taiwan

The Xitou Bamboo Forest is one of the most popular parks in Taiwan. To experience the beautiful landscape of the park with fewer people you have to hike. Another important fact is the weather and the clouds as well which roll in around midday. Continue reading to get all the information for this stunning circular hike to the top of Xitou. 

Clouds roll in around midday in the Xitou Bamboo Forest, Taiwan

Avoiding Crowds

This is something which is almost impossible in Xitou. On weekdays it is a very popular place for the retired Taiwanese people, and they come here by bus for hiking. The first buses arrive around 8 am and from 9 onwards the park fills up soon. Around 3 pm the first buses leave the area, and from 4 onwards the park and the skywalk are less busy. We arrived midweek, and there were roughly several hundred busses. We got told by a hotel manager that it's always crowded like that. On weekends it's very popular for families especially in summer they come here to escape the heat.

Lots of buses come to the Xitou Bamboo Forest each day

In our opinion, the best option to enjoy this incredible beautiful nature is this loop trail which ends on the highest level of Xitou Nature Education Area. It took us 4 hours due to the long descent through the whole Xitou Park. The trail is 12 to 14 km long depending on the paths you chose on the way back through the park. The trail is almost not marked. Nevertheless, you don't get lost. Just follow other hikers or ask them how to continue.

Start the hike early morning; often clouds roll in around midday and spoil the incredible view of the mountains and the sea of clouds. 

Opening Hours Xitou

Xitou is open from 7 am to 5 pm.

Weather

Due to the higher elevation, the air is cooler, and it often gets foggy. The wettest months are during spring and summer from April/May until August. 

Check out complete Taiwan Guide from 2019 – Must know destinations and tips

TW Taiwan

The trail is open all year around, but it's not recommended from November to April. Avoid hiking the trail on windy days. Starting the Beautiful Bay Trail in the afternoon gives you an incredible experience. The sun will find its way occasionally through the old grown forest. You will find plenty of moss coped branches, walk over tree trunks, fallen trees, and find different kinds of mushrooms.

The campground is serviced during summer only.

CA Canada