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Located in southern-­‐western Taiwan and facing the Taiwan Strait it is by area the largest municipality, at 2,947.62 km2, and second most populous by urban area) with a population of approximately 2.77 million. Founded near the end of the 17th century, the village was known as Takau. Kaohsiung's real economic and strategic importance began under the Japanese occupation. The Japanese needed a good port in southern Taiwan to serve those designated areas that were to become a major source of raw materials and food for Japan and Kaohsiung was chosen. Over time Kaohsiung has grown from a small trading village, into the political, economic, transportation, manufacturing, refining, shipbuilding and industries centers of southern Taiwan. The Kaohsiung International Airport serving the city is the second largest airport in Taiwan and the Port of Kaohsiung is the largest harbor in Taiwan. 

Kaohsiung is sometimes seen as the political mirror image of Taipei. While northern Taiwan leans towards the Kuomintang party (which supports eventual unification with mainland China) in the state­‐level elections, southern Taiwan leaned towards the Democratic party (pro‐independence) since late 1990s, and Kaohsiung is no exception.  

In 2009 Kaohsiung was the host city of the World Games, a multi-­sport event primarily composed of sports not featured in the Olympic Games. 

Kaohsiung has a tropical climate with monthly mean temperatures in the range of 19.3 (January) to 29.2 °C (July) and relative humidity between 71 and 81%, due to its location with a relatively warm sea temperature year round. It has a noticeably warmer climate than nearby cities located at similar latitudes such as Hong Kong, Guangzhou and Hainan. With more than 2210 hours of bright sunshine, Kaohsiung is one of the sunniest areas in Taiwan.  

Interesting facts

  • Kaohsiungs’s port is the largest port of Taiwan 
  • The crime rate in Kaohsiung is much lower than probably any city of comparable size in the west 
  • The first name of Kaohsiung, Takau, means ‘Beating Dog’ 

Top three activities

  • The Dream Mall is the largest shopping mail in Taiwan, ride the ferris weel on the roof for a nice view of the city. 
  • Visit the Dome of light, this is a public artwork in the Formasa Boulevard MRT Station and the world’s largest stained glass installation.   
  • Visit Shoushan, also known as Monkey Mountain, were you could see monkeys all along the mountain looking for snacks. 

Facts about Kaohsiung

Population      2,770,000
Size (km²)2,946
GDP per capita$24,000

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