If you have done a few walks in Taipei you will have noticed the Taiwanese desire for constructing paths that take the shortest route up a mountain. Zhinan Temple Trail (指南宮步道) is no exception. The trail is short (roughly 1.5km) but has around 1,200 stone steps . Obviously this walk can be done in both directions but walking up seems more fun.
Getting here: If walking uphill take bus BR 15 from the Taipei Metro Taipei Zoo Station to the start of walk OR take any bus to NCCU (政大) stop then walk along Zhinan Road Section 2 for a little over 500 metres and follow signs to the start of the walk (shown on map below). After the walk take the Maokong Gondola back to Taipei Zoo Station. Do this in reverse if going downhill.