The southern city of Kaohsiung (高雄; Gāoxióng) is Taiwan's largest port, its second-largest city and centre of the country's heavy and petrochemical industries. Despite this, today's Kaohsiung is a modern urban landscape of airy cafes, wide streets, waterside parks, public transport, bicycle lanes and cultural venues that have embraced and re-imagined the city's manufacturing past. There are also two swimming beaches within the city area, and 1000 hectares of almost-pristine forest right on its doorstep.
Many popular sights are clustered in areas that are within walking distance or a short bus ride (or cycle) from a Kaohsiung Mass Rapid Transit (KMRT) station, like the harbour and lower Love River area (in the Yancheng, Gushan and Sizihwan districts); and Cijin Island. But do not limit yourself to these areas. Like any sophisticated modern city, Kaohsiung has tons of charms stashed away to reward the curious and patient.