Commercial energy, colonial influences, and a cool urban atmosphere
Located on the southern tip of Taiwan lies the country’s second-largest city—Kaohsiung. Throughout its storied past, Kaohsiung has been controlled by the Dutch, Japanese, and Chinese, making for a culturally diverse and dynamic city. Honoring its history while looking to the future, recent urban renewal has transformed Kaohsiung into one of Taiwan’s top destinations.
For such a large city, Kaohsiung’s must-see attractions are easily reachable by foot or ferry. Regarded as a place of rejuvenation and relaxation by locals, explore the most historic areas of the city along Love River and stop for a coffee at an airy outdoor café. To see even more of the city, take a romantic river cruise in a future-forward solar-powered yacht and watch as the setting sun glints off towering modern skyscrapers.
The tranquil and serene Lotus Lake seamlessly blends the old world with the new. Colorful temples and shrines are perched at the water’s edge as wakeboarders speed past. Be rewarded after a hike up Monkey Mountain with sweeping views of the city below, the ocean beyond, and a refreshing drink of tea. This peak comes by its name honestly—it’s home to thousands of rare Formosan rock macaques that don’t always shy away from visitors!
Experience more of Kaohsiung with a visit to a lively night market. Sample Taiwanese delicacies #AzaLocal, and put your bargaining powers to the test shopping for authentic treasures to take home.
Renowned for its high quality and wide variety of seafood, Cijin Island is just a short ferry ride from the city center. Get enlightened at Kaohsiung’s oldest shrine at Matsu Temple, take in the city skyline from the island’s lighthouse, or visit the nearby beach.
Discover the largest Buddhist monastery in Taiwan at Foguangshan. Reminiscent of Beijing’s Forbidden City, this palatial mountaintop retreat is crowned by a 131-foot golden Buddha statue as well as 14,000 other Buddha depictions.
Dome of Light
Dome of Light
Though it’s located in the city’s busiest subway station, this breathtaking art installation projects all the reverence of a cathedral. At 98 feet in diameter and made up of 4,500 panels, Italian artist Narcissus Quagliata’s Dome of Light is the world’s largest work of stained glass.
Kaohsiung, Taiwan At a glance