“The Harbor City”
Kaohsiung, The Harbor City , is a coastal, modern, industrial and vibrant city. Also the center of southern Taiwan.
Kaohsiung has grown from a small trading village into the political and economic center of southern Taiwan, with key industries such as steel-making, oil refining, freight transport and naval architecture(shipbuilding), The Port of Kaohsiung is the largest and busiest harbor in Taiwan, also Kaohsiung International Airport is the second busiest airport in number of passengers. Kaohsiung have been aimed at growing the tourism and culture industries of the city because of public works such as Pier-2 Art Center, National Kaohsiung Center for the Arts and Kaohsiung Music Center .
Shoushan National Nature Park
Shoushan (also commonly known in English as Monkey Mountain) is a mountain in Gushan District, Kaohsiung, north of the main entrance to Kaohsiung Harbor. It was named Ape Hill by the Dutch in the 17th century to describe many monkeys on this mountain. In some old maps, the peak of the hill is called Saracen’s Head. Now it is a nature park where biological diversity can be seen. The park spans across the Gushan District, Zuoying District, Qijin District and Nanzi District of Kaohsiung City.
Love River originates in Renwu District and flows 12 kilometers to Kaohsiung Harbor. Love River is the spine of Kaohsiung. It is of great cultural significance to the people of Kaohsiung and plays an important role in its economy and tourism. The Love River Park runs along the riverbank in downtown Kaohsiung City. A night market operates in the park, and there are three outdoor cafes, often with live bands. Boats which hold about fifteen people take tourists up and down the river. The scenery is enhanced by attractive city structures near the river, such as the Holy Rosary Cathedral and Kaohsiung Bridge. Cultural events such as concerts and the Lantern Festival are often held by the river.
The Love River was once heavily polluted, when raw sewage and industrial waste water flowed untreated into the river. Recent efforts by the city government to divert the waste water to the treatment plant in Cijin District has resulted in significantly improved water quality. Love River is now used for sightseeing, and there are duck boats, love boats and gondola rides for tourists to enjoy the city view.
Cijin Island was once connected to the mainland at the southern tip, but in 1967, this link was severed to create a second entry point to the Port of Kaohsiung.
Cijin forms the original core of the Kaohsiung, which was established by the fisherman in the mid-17th century. He realized the attractiveness of the location when he was forced to seek shelter from a typhoon in the Taiwan Strait and returned with settlers from the Hung, Wang, Cai, Li, Bai, and Pan families and an idol of the Chinese sea goddess Mazu. This was housed in a bamboo and thatch structure that formed the first Chi Jin Mazu Temple. The town grew up around the temple grounds.
Arts & Craft
Kaohsiung’s crafts have not only retained their traditions, but are also innovating for a new age. Indigo dyeing and Meinong oiled-paper umbrellas, with their origins in Hakka culture, faithfully carry forward the down-to-earth aesthetic and refined handiwork of our forefathers. The complex woodcarvings on the upper parts of the main hall of Sanfong Temple are part of the priceless legacy left behind by one of Kaohsiung’s most accomplished master sculptors. And the exquisite carving of the heads of theatrical glove puppets, along with the production of their headgear, is an indispensable element in the transmission of southern Taiwan’s puppet theater heritage.
In carrying forward their own cultural heritage, ceramic artists such as Chu Panhsiung of Meinong, and Henry Shen of 1300 Only Porcelain in Cijin, have sought innovations and breakthroughs to develop large-scale ceramic relief murals and sculpted ceramic works that betray thoroughly modern artistic values. Other craft products, such as traditional conical sun hats, grass mats, embroidery, and glass beads, bring superlative good taste into everyday life.