Submarine canyons are the principal conduits for turbidity currents transporting sediments to the deep sea. Thus, turbidites, as sedimentary products of turbidity currents, can be used to trace sediment sources and transport processes and to reconstruct mechanisms of turbidity currents in submarine canyons during the geological past. Herein, clay mineral assemblage of late Holocene turbidites at Core MD18–3565 in the Gaoping Submarine Canyon is investigated to reveal the triggering mechanisms of turbidity currents. High-resolution grain-size analysis of typical coarse-grained layers characterized by basal erosion surface and fining-upward sequence in the core verifies their turbidity current origin. A total number of 318 such turbidite layers, covering ∼30% of the total thickness (19.68 m) of the core, are recognized in the late Holocene sediments (33–3954 cal yr BP). Clay mineral assemblage of the turbidites is composed mainly of illite (52–60%) and chlorite (35–45%), with small quantities of smectite (0–5%) and kaolinite (0–4%), while clay mineral assemblage of the non-turbidite sediments (hemipelagites) is composed of approximately the same contents of illite (51–62%) and chlorite (34–43%), but with slightly higher smectite (0–10%) and kaolinite (1–6%). Despite the small differences in smectite and kaolinite contents, the provenance analysis identifies the Gaoping river as the predominant source of sediments in the turbidite layers, while the hemipelagite layers receive small amounts of sediments from the neighboring Erhjen, Tsengwen, and Pachang rivers besides the Gaoping river in southwest Taiwan. In combination with clay mineral compositions of surface sediments in the adjacent continental shelf and slope, as well as in-situ observational results by subaqueous moorings, we believe that the turbidity currents, in which the Gaoping river directly supplied clay minerals to the submarine canyon to form the turbidites, have been triggered mainly by typhoons passing through Taiwan. The frequency of turbidites generally keeps pace with long-term variations of El Niño-Southern Oscillation (ENSO) events, implying the potential modulation of ENSO on occurrences of late Holocene typhoon activities in the Western Pacific.