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Formosa, an Island that Made the Spanish Gasp in Amazement A City You Should Visit at Least Once in Your Life

  • Category:Hot News
  • Date:2019-07-15

Keelung is in the north of Taiwan, facing the sea and being surrounded by mountains on three sides, the sun rising over the sea and setting over the mountains. As one of the most important ports in Taiwan, Keelung offers harbor scenery and is also blessed with beautiful natural coastal scenery. Situated on the coast, Keelung has a deep bond with the sea, with both its industry and culture having a close connection to the ocean. In its long history, Keelung was ruled in succession by the Spanish, the Dutch, Koxinga, the Qing Dynasty, and the Japanese, giving it exotic charm and historic buildings from different eras. It was also once important military stronghold, having more fort remains than anywhere else in Taiwan. With its richly diverse oceanic culture, Keelung is a city that really should not be missed.

 

Oceanic Culture

Keelung stresses its “ocean city” character. The National Museum of Marine Science and Technology, officially opened in 2014, is, as the name suggests, a museum dedicated to educating people about the ocean. The museum has three main areas: the Main Exhibition Buildings, the IMAX Theater, and the Regional Exploration Building. The Main Exhibition Buildings are packed with state-of-the-art interactive technology that is used to increase visitor’s understanding of the ocean; the IMAX Theater is the biggest IMAX 3D theater in Taiwan and shows ocean-related documentaries; the Regional Exploration Building introduces Keelung’s geographical environment and culture and customs.

  Keelung has a thriving fishing industry, which makes enjoying some local seafood top of the list for many visitors. Fresh seafood can be brought at Badouzi Fishing Harbor and purchases are cooked and eaten at one of the dozens of harbor restaurants that provide this cooking service for customers; many seafood lovers are attracted from all over by the delicious dishes served up. Kanzaiding Fish Market is the oldest fish market in Keelung which retains elements of fishing industry culture that are no longer seen elsewhere.

 

Coastal Scenery

On Keelung’s east shore, Heping Island was once separated from the city by a narrow stretch of water and is now joined to the downtown area by Heping Bridge. The most unusual sight on Heping Island is its Formosa, an Island that Made the Spanish Gasp in Amazement many weathered rocks, the magical power of nature sure to take your breath away. February to April every year the wave-eroded platforms of Heping Island and Badouzi are covered in green algae, resembling huge emeralds glittering in the sunshine.

  Situated in the most beautiful bay in Keelung, Waimushan Beach is regarded as the secret playground of “Keelungers.” As well as taking in the views of distant Keelung Islet, visitor should also not miss the sunsets at Waimushan. In summer, this is a great place to paddle or swim and, every year, a long-distance swim is held, one of the few large scale mass sea swimming events held in Taiwan.

 

Historic Sites

At high points along the coast in Keelung there are a number of forts that once stood guard over this gateway to Taiwan and prevented foreign intrusion. These include Ershawan Fort and Sheliao Fort on the east shore, and Baimiweng and Dawulun forts on the west shore. The only fort in the south, and also well inland, is Shiqiuling Fort. This was an important fortification during the Sino-French War and has become a historical site from that time.

  Xiangdong Fairy Cave is the largest sea cave in Keelung which is reputed to have found the way ascending to heaven. A number of Buddhist statues have been carved into the walls and traces left behind by Qing Dynasty literati can also be seen. The magical scenes inside the cave are rare and marvelous.

 

Charming Harbor City

Huzi Mountain, just 10 minutes away from the city center, offers the best night scene in Keelung, including the streams of car lights in the downtown area, the cruise ships in the harbor, and the myriad lights of hillside town Jiufen in the distance. Here, the entire city center can be overlooked without extra journey to another mountain far away.

  The history of snacks at Miaokou Night Market outside Dianji Temple can be traced back to the late Japanese Colonial Period. As the harbor city developed, the market grew to have almost 100 food vendors selling various snacks, such as pork soup, ding bian cuo (pot side sticker soup), one-bite sausages, barbequed sandwiches, Pau Pau Bing(Pau Pau Ice),and other tasty snacks that are well-worth trying.

  Keelung has naturally evolved coastal scenery, a rich culture related to the ocean charm, ancient historic sites, and rich history. In this fascinating city, every scene is so unique, the culture so diverse, and there are so many distinctive features. This is why Keelung is a city you must visit at least once in your life.