Kaohsiung Attractions

What to See in Kaohsiung

Located in Southwestern Taiwan, Kaohsiung is divided into 11 districts in all and opens onto the Taiwan Strait on its west coast. Being the most densely populated and the second largest city of Taiwan, Kaohsiung is one of the major centres of attraction in the Pan-Asia region.

The city has a vivid past and was founded at a time in history when the Ming Dynasty was nearing its end.

Originally the region was called Makatao – meaning the bamboo forest. The city opened its doors to the west when the Dutch invaded it in the 17th century. With the establishment of Fort Zeelandia, the region was renamed Tancoia. Over a number of years, the area was flooded with people from all over mainland China but the western influence is still prominently visible. In 1945, the control of Kaohsiung was handed over to the Republic of China. The city has a number of attractions to its name and paying it a visit is definitely worth every penny spent.

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Ape Hill

Also known as Shoushan in the local dialect, Ape Hill is one of the many natural attractions in Kaohsiung. Located to the North of the main entrance of the city (from Kaohsiung Harbour), Ape Hill was so named because of the number of monkeys on the hill. The name was coined by the Dutch in the 18th century and has been a popular tag ever since. There are a number of small hillocks in the region, each having its own name and its own significance. The mountain is composed primarily of two peaks – Snake Hill towards the northern part and the Long Life Peak towards its southern end. The whole region has now been converted to a nature park that boasts a large number of plant and animal species. This region is a must-visit for nature and adventure enthusiasts.

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Cijin-Goushan Ferry

Cijin is a popular island and one of the 11 districts of Kaohsiung. The Cijin-Goushan Ferry is popular with tourists planning to visit Cijin Island. The ferry ride in itself costs about 15 NTD and it takes pnly a few minutes to cross but those who like to smoke should resist the temptation of doing so as they may be heavily fined.

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Cijin Island

Cijin Island in itself is a major tourist attraction amongst locals and international tourists alike. The island boasts a number of seafood restaurants and great beaches and is easily accessible via the Cijin-Goushan ferry. Cijin Island, unlike other places in Republic of China, has signs in English as well as local languages. In our opinion, Cijin is a must-visit for those who are looking to get away from hectic city life and to recharge themselves in the lap of nature.

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Kaohsiung National Stadium

Being the largest stadium in Taiwan, the Kaohsiung National Stadium attracts a considerable number of visitors all year round. The stadium is recognised around the world as one of the most energy efficient and was built primarily to host the main field events of the World Games. Currently it can host 55,000 people and local Taiwan football matches are played there. Designed by a Japanese architect, it represents Taiwan’s ever-changing face. The stadium is powered by huge solar panels and the power generated is also saved and redistributed through different channels.

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Lotus Lake

Located on the eastern side of Tsoying District, Lotus Lake is a manmade structure that also happens to be one of the most popular tourist attractions here. The lake is known for two major things; the numerous varieties of Lotus that grow in the lake and the number of temples located along its banks. The most famous temples here are the Confucian Temple, Dragon and Tiger Pagodas and the Spring and Autumn Pavilions. The lake was also home to a number of water sporting events in the World Games, 2009.

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Love River

Often termed as ‘The Thames of Kaohsiung’, Love River is one of the major attractions of Kaohsiung. Winding about 12 kilometres through the city before emptying itself into Kaohsiung Harbour, this river plays an important role in tourism and the economy of the city. There is a night market that operates along one of its banks river as well as regular ferry trips up and down the river and the presence of a couple of great outdoor riverside cafes makes the Kaohsiung experience a truly memorable one. Most of the city's cultural events and live music events are held riverside, making it the heartbeat of Kaohsiung.

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Museum of Fine Arts

Kaohsiung is known as a centre of cultural excellence and historical significance for Taiwan and the Kaohsiung Museum of Fine Arts is a shining testimony to this fact. Located in the Gushan District, the Museum of Fine Arts is administered by the Bureau of Cultural Affairs. It is the third most significant museum of fine arts in Taiwan and those having a voracious cultural appetite are bound to be enthralled with it. The museum is a part of the Neiweipi Cultural Park that has an ecology park, a sculpture park and an entrance plaza. In all, this complete area spanning more than 40 acres is a treat for the eyes.

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The Liuhe Night Market

One of the most famous spots in Taiwan, the Liuhe Night Market offers an enthralling overall experience. Famous for its open air eating joints, at night one can see a number of tourists and local shopkeepers, hawkers and passersby bartering over and for shopping items. Items for sale here include handicrafts, electronic gadgetry, seafood, knives and even monkeys! This is an unusual market in that you can barter item for item. You can find regular shops here as well, but the real fun of coming to Liuhe is in bartering your used stuff for something you might actually need and use for a long time to come.

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Tuntex Sky Tower

Also known as the T n C tower or Tower 85, the Tuntex Sky Tower is the tallest structure in Kaohsiung. In fact, the T n C was the tallest structure in all of Taiwan until the Taipei 101 was completed. The tower has a total of 85 floors and is mainly home to offices but the higher floors are occupied by the Kaohsiung Splendor – a luxury hotel. The main attraction of this building is at the 75th floor where there is an observational deck from where one can have a bird's eye view of Kaohsiung city, Kaohsiung Harbour and Love River.

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If you are in the mood to have a tryst with history, then there is no place better than the Old City of Zuoying. Laden with culture and tradition, Zuoying offers a peek into the many facets of the traditional oriental way of life. Located in the Tsoying District, Zuoying was the first ever city in Taiwan to be built with fortified walls. It is a completely walled city and is also known as the Old City of the Fengshan District or simply, The Old City. The city is surrounded by the Turtle and Snake mountains that form a natural barrier around it – thus giving it a strategic advantage over the enemy. This is a must for history lovers and followers of the art and strategy of war making.

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