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Flag Raising Ceremony on the First day of the Year
Celebrating the arrival of the new year at the northern tip of Taiwan

Time:January 1
Location:Keelung Chaojing Park

Keelung coastal area has been long known as a spectacular place to catch the first rays of sunshine, with the Doufu rocks (Heping Island) being acclaimed as among the 21 famous sunrise spots. The Keelung City Government had conducted its flag raising ceremony on the square outside the Keelung Cultural Center over the years, but decided to hold the 2016 flag-raising ceremony in Chaojing Park near the National Museum of Marine Science and Technology. All attendees stood here at dawn to greet the sun on the first day of the year.

According to Sinovision Net, the Doufu rocks are ranked as the 21 best places to watch sunrise and appreciate the grandeur of nature.

Events Flag raising
Events sunrise

Railway Cultural Fireworks Festival
Appreciating the fireworks at the old-time railway station

Time:From February through March
Location:Qidu District

Previously known as Chitu Station, this railway station was built in the 19th century under the rule of the Qing dynasty. Now Qidu Railway Memorial Park is established at the venue of the old Chitu Station, which was widely known for its solely timber construction—an unusual style of construction in Taiwan. Currently Qidu is chosen by the city government for a series of activities, including the railway photography contest, railway culture exhibition, stamp collection activity (two stamps for a free limited-edition Easy Card), and Qidu fireworks carnival.

Events Fireworks
Events station

Keelung Ocean Fairy Tale Festival
Arts Banquet and Fun Festival in Keelung

Time:From April through June
Location:Keelung City

The children in Keelung grow up in the natural environment surrounded by the seas and mountains. Every year “Keelung Ocean Fairy Tale Festival” is jointly hosted by the Keelung City Government and Yang Ming Ocean Culture and Art Museum. This year we have arranged for a wide variety of fun activities about art, the environment, the ocean and family education. We have conducted a series of activities for children to “enjoy” art, “play” with art, “learn” about art, and we hope our children can understand the culture and history about Keelung through all the artwork. In addition, we have invited internationally renowned Evergreen Symphony Orchestra to play the Opening Overture with our students at the festival. We hope to create more possibilities, growth and to develop the art education in Keelung in cooperation with all these various art teams. We also want to exhibit all the creative art products created by all the participating individuals to represent Keelung.

Events activity
Events theater

Keelung Waxberries Festival
Snow-white Tung blossoms and aromatic waxberries

Time:From April through May
Location:Qidu District

With uplands occupying 95% of the total area, Keelung has been widely known for a number of high-quality crops. As late spring gives way to early summer, waxberries and Gui bamboo shoots have been ready for harvest, when the city government and farmers' association would hold a waxberry festival in the hopes of attracting the public to come over picking waxberries and collecting Gui bamboo shoots.

An old-time anecdote has it that merely imagining waxberries (aka Yang-mei) helped fatigued troops get through tough times when there was no water in sight. Waxberries can be eaten promptly, and can also be made into jelly, jam, or juice. The Keelung City Government has sought help from universities and institutions in the past few years for product development. Such efforts have yielded delightful results like cosmetics and ice cream.

Waxberries are in large part spread over Malingken (of Qidu district), where Tung flowers also render the hills an ivory-white look in springtime.

Events stream
Events fruit

Fish Fry Release Activity
Co-existence of species and ecological sustainability

Time:May
Location:National Museum of Marine Science and Technology & Bisha Fishing Port

Surrounded by the seas on three sides, Keelung has been in great possession of marine resources throughout centuries. For the conservation of the ocean and its marine life, the city government seeks cooperation with academic communities and grassroots organizations by jointly holding “iSea Keelung—Fish Fry Releasing Activity”. Over 40 yachts, sailboats, and recreational fishing boats would dart swiftly into the seawaters surrounding Keelung Island and release 100,000 fries of the red seabream. It is our hope that this release activity might serve as a reminder to the public of the importance of marine conservation and help to restore marine biodiversity and fishery sustainability in the foreseeable future.

Events ship
Events fishing

International Environment Art Project/ Paradise : Sustainable Oceans
The relationship between art creation and an international environment

Time:From May through August
Location:Chaojing Park / Keelung City's downtown

Situated in Badouzi, this museum embraces long stretches of coastlines and mountains rising in the distance. The magnificent façade of this museum indicates a spirit of openness, abundance and tolerance, just like far-ranging seawaters embrace all inhabitants on this island.

Events art The museum has been putting forth efforts in deploying the local and the global resources as a way to add value to the community's environment. This cross-boundary aesthetics mainly resorts to installation art, a genre of 3-dimensional works commonly designed to transform the perception of a space. These pieces of installation which are placed in both the fishing village called Badouzi and the museum effectively create a shared identity in the hearts of the locals.

The International Environment Art Project is a grand arts festival, the aim of which is to introduce art creations made from natural materials and to disseminate key concepts regarding sustainability to a wider population.

Dragon Boat Festival
A 60-year tradition boat race as a celebration of the Dragon Boat Festival

Time:June
Location:Badouzi Fishing Port

Dragon Boat Festival is an important traditional festival in our country. The dragon boat race is famous and a very popular event in Keelung. It could date back to the 1960s, and it is the only race which takes place in a port in Taiwan. The boat race is always held in Badouzi Fishing Port. There used to be a traditional “Sampan dragon boat race” in Badouzi Fishing Port, and local seniors always feel proud of it. In recent years, local people have made great efforts to restore the glorious past. Now Dragon Boat Race Carnival is an annual event conducted by the city government. Beside the Dragon Boat Race, there are painting competition, stand the egg at noon activity, fairs and sing and dance competition etc. The dragon Boat Race Carnival is an opportunity for all families to have a great time.

Events competition
Events game

Wainushan Marathon Swim Race
Able swimmers join in this race and have a jovial time

Time:June
Location:Wainushan Fishing Port

The Waimushan marathon swim race has been a major event for all avid swimmers throughout Taiwan. The Waimushan Coast, located at the northern Taiwan, has recently been included in the North Coast & Guanyinshan National Scenic Area, along with two other scenic spots, and is very soon to be ranked as No. 1 in the survey called Taiwan’s Top Ten Attractive Stretches of Water for 2015. The stretches of coastlines in Keelung provide an amazing view for these competitive swimmers in the race.

Events swimming Starting from Hai Xing Swimming Association (near Waimushan Fishing Port), swimmers have to swim all the way toward Dawulun Fishing Port in order to complete the whole distance of 3.2 kilometers. This area of seawater is in possession of fresh water and a wide diversity of living organisms for everyone to delve into and explore. Every year some 3000 swimmers would sign up for this race. The age group of swimmers might range from 10 to 87 years, while foreign swimmers and people with physical disabilities can also be found in this long-distance swim race.

Keelung Squid Festival
Embrace the ocean at midnight

Time:July
Location:Bisha Fishing Port

The squid is known as a short-lived yet highly fertile creature, and is thus considered a species worth advocating for sustainable fishery. Statistically, Keelung is accountable for over 1/3 of the landings of swordtipin Taiwan.

As a city that is surrounded by seawaters and hills, Keelung has prospered on marine culture since ancient times. In earlier periods, fishermen used bamboo torches or kerosene lamps, which dotted the seawater like the Great Wall built on the sea, to attract fish, especially the swordtip. Fishers today use mercury-vapor lamps or incandescent light bulbs instead.

Every year Keelung conducts a series of activities, such as an exploration of the habitat where the squid inhabits, night fishing, primitive camping, and a tour seeking local delicacies. This activity incorporates leisure travel, ecological experience, local delicacies, and aquatic education, and aims to promote industry development & cultural explorations, and upgrades fisheries on a nationwide level. Now it is regarded as one of the most well-known oceanic celebrations in Taiwan, attracting as wide attention as the Pingtung Bluefin Tuna Cultural Festival.

The swordtip would form shoaling and swim from northeast of Pengjia Islet toward the seawaters surrounding Keelung since June till September. Local fishermen attract large shoals of the squid with lamps or light bulbs and make a considerable landing in late summer and early autumn.

Events activity
Events Set sail
Events seafood
Events fishing at night

Keelung Mid-Summer Ghost Festival
A folk custom with a history of over 160 years held in the Chinese ghost month

Time:July till August (according to the Chinese calendar)
Location:Keelung City’s downtown area (in Zhongzheng District)

Keelung Ghost Festival is regarded as the most important event in this port city. This commemorative tradition involves a series of rituals, celebrations, and cultural activities every July (Chinese lunar month). On the first day of the ghost month, the Laodagong Temple opens the gate to the shrine (symbolizing welcoming the ghosts into the physical world), which is a curtain raiser for this month-long festival. Then the abbot lights all the blubs and sets off fireworks as an introductory ritual on the 12th day and welcomes the bucket lanterns (for a prosperous year ahead) on the 13th day. On the 14th day, people launch water lanterns over riversides. They do a universal salvation (called “pudu ritual” in Chinese) with a rite called “teasing Zhong Kui” on the 15th day. All activities draw a large number of people to join in and will inevitably create a strong impression on them. On the first day of August, the gate to the shrine is to be shut, signaling the end to a full-month’s celebration with a handover of the hand-warmer.

Events the photo of the Wang Ship The saying goes that Keelung Ghost Festival originated from fights between mainlanders from Zhangzhou and Quanzhou and the Taiwanese people. During the dynasties of Ming and Qing, an increasing number of Chinese people came to Taiwan through the treacherous Taiwan Strait (aka the Black Ditch), most of whom were from southern provinces such as Zhangzhou and Quanzhou. The road death was allegedly every 6 out of 10 persons, with 3 persons arriving in Taiwan and the last one deciding to turn back. Bouts of bickering and disputes arose from issues such as land borders, irrigation channels, or problems related to animal husbandry. This led to intense fights with both sides armed with weapons in the end.

Under the rule of Xianfeng Emperor (1851-1853), these fights increased in magnitude. Considering the scale and calamity of these riots, both sides decided to call a truce and worked out a peace deal. They then agreed to collect all the deceased’s bodies (called Laodagong) and buried them in a tomb for future worship services. It was also agreed to conduct a Pudu ritual for salvation of these spirits. Each and every clan (with a distinct surname) would take turns in hosting this ritual. Thus people from Quanzhou and Zhangzhou began to learn to live peacefully without resorting to fists or fights anymore. This had taken place some 160 years ago and was believed to be the origin of today’s ghost festival.

Launching water lanterns was another feature of the ghost festival. Starting at 11 pm sharp (“Zi Hour”), all the heads of clans would gather round the beachside, lighting lanterns and seeing them drift outward toward the far end of the sea. It is widely believed that the more far away the lantern drifted, the better luck the clan would have in the year ahead. The old saying goes that this was intended to welcome those ghosts that could not make it over the Black Ditch and soldiers who had died in battles fought in the reigns of the Qing Dynasty and the Japanese colonial period. This festival is known to have a diversified array of rituals and ceremonies, which is acclaimed to be No. 1 intangible cultural asset in Taiwan and bears a historic significance in this time and age.

Events the event of the Wang Ship
Events the Wang Ship sailing to sea

Keefu Marathon
Take a tour round the northeastern coast of Taiwan for a LOHAS experience

Time:September
Location:Keefu Highway (in Nuannuan District)

The Keefu Marathon comprises three races: a full marathon, half marathon, and 9-km marathon, as the course starts at Nuannuan Sports Park and passes through Dongding Rd., Dongshi St., Nuandong Gorge, Longmen Mountain, County Highway No. 106, and Wufenshan Weather Radar Station before returning back to the starting point.

With a variety of natural landscapes, this highway is the best route for a marathon, during which runners will most likely experience what it is like to live a healthy and sustainable lifestyle by immersing themselves in nature and enjoy the unpolluted air from forests nearby. Runners are very likely to discover the beauty of Keelung over the course, too.

Since Keefu Highway (Provincial Highway No. 2C) opened to traffic at the end of 2014, it has very soon become a popular route for car drivers and bike riders because this highway provides excellent scenery for people and leads to the North Coast & Guanyinshan National Scenic Area, a most-loved scenic attraction for tourists.

Events jogging through the tunnel
Events marathon

Christmas Celebrations
Enjoy a beautiful Christmas eve in this port city

Time:December
Location:Keelung Maritime Plaza

Events sheep Since mid-17th century, missionaries from Spain and Holland came to northern Taiwan, and introduced Christianity to the Pingpu peoples who lived in this area at that time. Meanwhile, as a commercial sea port of northern Taiwan, Keelung was the first city to embrace cultural diversity since the 19th century (known as the Age of Discovery). Christmas celebrations are one of the customs that last till today.

From 2015 onward, the city government has decided to work with Christian’s an other organizations in cohosting a grand celebration on the plaza outside the Keelung Cultural Center. A super Christmas tree over which numerous bulbs are lighted, 3D light shows and lantern shows, art installations, and a series of concerts are all eye-opening performances. An exhibition called the “Sheep Parade” is held around the square of the Yang Ming Cultural Foundation, where art installations can be found here and there, adding bright colors and vitality to Keelung at the end of year.

Events the event of Lantern
Events goat Lantern

New Year's Eve Countdown Party
Keelung Port is My Own Live House

Time:December
Location:East wharf of Keelung Harbor

Independent rock (aka Indie rock) is a genre of alternative rock. Originally it was used to describe record labels that produced rock music. Taiwan is currently known to have diverse record labels that produce indie rock in a mature way with a distinctive attitude. A number of bands have developed a concept and rendition of their own, which wows the audience all the time.

In 2015, Keelung conducted a concert called “Keelung Port is My Own Live House!” Many independent bands were invited to give new renditions for this live performance, and audience members were all very excited, saying this performance was full of local spirit and glamor of independent bands at the same time.

Events poster
Events concert
Events party time