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CruiseDirection - Magazine May 2019

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The city of Keelung (sometimes called Jilong) is a large port city located in northeast Taiwan and it has a population of roughly 350,000 people. The weather in Keelung is warm and mild in the summertime with regular short bursts of rain, while the winter months can be very wet and overcast.  

Keelung has numerous military forts of varying historical significance that are popular attractions for tourists. One of these is the Ershawan Gun Emplacement also called Haiman Tiansian, which is Mandarin for “very dangerous gate to the ocean.” Built in 1840 by the Ching government, this fort was strategically utilized during the Sino-French war from 1884-1885.  

Also built during the Ching Dynasty, Gongzih Liao Gun Emplacement is another fort of military significance. Famous for its architecture as well as its history, it only ceased from being an active military facility a few years ago. Because of its relatively recent use, the fort though old, is in very good condition.

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Why visit Keelung ?

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Something different

A worthwhile destination to consider

Other military forts available for viewing are Baiminwong, Dawulun, and Shihciouling Gun Emplacements, each with its own unique architecture, scenery, and place in military history. For military people or history buffs, a tour of these forts is a definite must.  

Hoping Island (originally named She-liao-island) is known as the “doorway to Keelung Harbour.” Originally a settlement of an early native tribe, it is now the site of a popular seashore park. Inside the park there are many picturesque rocks that have been eroded by wind and sea to take on intriguing formations. While the island is truly a geologist’s dream, you don’t have to be a scientist to appreciate the natural beauty and splendour it offers.  

Waimu Shan Seashore is the longest natural seashore in Keelung City stretching for five kilometres from Waimu Shan Fishing port to Aoditong Village. The combination of marine cliff and open seashore combine for breathtaking scenery. For those who like to swim or scuba dive, there is a beach near Aoditong Village that is the last sandy seashore in Keelung or for those who prefer fresh water; the nearby “Octopus” swimming pool is available for public use as well. If the opportunity arises, visiting in time to view the sunrise is highly recommended.  

Another fun place to visit is Lovers’ Lake Park. This is an extraordinarily scenic place with dense woods and a stunning lake. During the spring and summer, migrating birds and butterflies routinely gather here make this an especially nice time to visit.  

No trip to Keelung would be complete without a jaunt to Keelung Miaokou Eateries. This world renowned spot is a favourite of locals and tourists alike for the delightful dining selections available. Vendors provide a cornucopia of local delicacies including Tempura, Dinpientso, chicken rolls, butter crabs, pao pao ice, stewed eel thick soup, and many more. Don’t forget dessert, you can indulge in baked squid feet, sugar-coated haws, pickled guavas and other favourites. Adjacent to Miaokou is a traditional night market, which is a great place to shop for souvenirs and mementos of your trip.  

Keelung is certainly not the first place most people consider when planning a holiday, but if you are looking for something different and slightly off the beaten track, it is certainly a worthwhile destination to consider.

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