view of Taipei from Tianshang Shan
Take the MRT to Yongning Station. This is the last station on the blue line. Go to exit number 2. From the exit you can walk for about fifteen minutes straight along Chengtian Road (乘天路). This will take you to the beginning of the trail that initially leads to Chengtian Temple. If you don't like walking on the road you can take bus blue 44 (藍44) to the Deng Shan Kou stop (登山口). Or you could take a taxi for about NT$70-80.
There is a wide, paved walking trail that takes you up to Chengtian Temple. The hike from the beginning of the trail to the temple only takes about 15 minutes, but the temple is a good point to take a break, refill your water bottle and enjoy the view before you head up further.
Chengtian Chan Temple
Walk around the temple and go through the car park and out the gate at the back. Walk along the road past the small restaurants. Only a couple of restaurants are open during the week, but there are more open on the weekend. You can buy something to drink here. A little way along the road you will come to a sign in Chinese and English that says, "Chengtian Tung Flower & Firefly Trail (B)" (承天寺賞桐賞螢步道B線). This trail will take you up some steps alongside a small stream. There is some quite beautiful forest and many butterflies in this area.
When you reach the top of this trail you will get to a road. Go to the left and follow the road. Around the corner there is a boardwalk beside the road. When you get to the end of the boardwalk follow the steps leading up on the right. You will reach a small platform with chairs where you can take a break. From there it is only about 400 metres to the summit of Tianshang Shan. Take some time to appreciate the view.
David on Tianshang Shan
If you have time also visit Riyue Dong (日月洞). It is a small Buddhist Temple built in a cave. The cave is really not much more than an overhanging rock, but it is a nice place. From the resting platform noted above follow the steps down the opposite side of the mountain. It takes about ten minutes to reach the temple.
There are many other trails in this area. If you have time you can also visit Shanxi Temple (善息寺) and De'an Temple (得安宮). The trails are well signposted but most of the signs are only in Chinese.