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Kaohsiung Next

Kaohsiung is Taiwan's second largest city with over one million inhabitants. The city is an economic manifestation as it has the island's largest seaport, major industrial centers, and an international airport, the only one besides Taipei. Kaohsiung port is the world's third largest container port behind Hong Kong and Singapore with extremely large grounds for repairs and maintenance.

From Taipei, Kaohsiung is about four to six hours' drive on the North-South Highway. Trains, buses, and planes frequently make trips down to the city. Visitors may choose to fly direct to Kaohsiung from Hong Kong or other various destinations.

Like most other major cities, Kaohsiung has enjoyed immense developments in its economy, but with the downside of intensifying pollution. Although the government is trying to establish high-tech industrial centers in the suburbs, the city continues to live beneath somber smog. Because of its port, the major industry here is fishing, with over 1,500 vessels registered to enter waters as far as South Africa.

Shoushan Mountain

To get an overview of Kaohsiung city, visitors may go up to the Shou Shan Mountain, or Longevity Mountain Park as it is known to the locals. Unfortunately, Shou Shan Mountain does not promise excellent picturesque sights all year long. Most days, the views of the city are disappointing due to the heavy smog and haze. Nevertheless, atop the mountain is a Martyrs' Shrine, together with a series of other temples, pavilions, historical monuments, and terraces.

Three Phoenix Palace

Situated on Hopei Road, the palace is the largest temple in Kaohsiung, which is devoted to the demon expurgator, Li Na-cha. Leading to the central hall, you will pass stone lions standing at the foot of the steps. The central hall has three major icons, delicate altar tables, and ten large image cones that glow warmly. At the rear of the main hall, a set of steps takes you to a smaller Buddhist shrine with three altars, three gilded Buddha images, and statues of warrior guards and Buddha's disciples.

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