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Kaohsiung is a modern city that shouldn't offer any pitfalls for seasoned travelers or even new arrivals. Though English is not widely spoken, familiarity comes in other forms such as a prevalence of ATMs and shopping malls that proliferate on what seems like every corner of the city. With a pre-booked hotel and English-speaking concierge, the city is easy to absorb.
Kaohsiung is Taiwan's holiday city. The second-largest city in the country is built around a picturesque harbor, which is the setting that has earned it its nickname, the ‘Harbor Capital'. Around one and a half million people live in Kaohsiung, most of them on the shores of the river with the lovely title, the Love River.
Eating is one of the main pastimes of the people of Kaohsiung. There is not really an area in town that doesn't offer some kind of fast food outlet, food court or fine dining restaurant and the quality of the food here is absolutely first rate.
Kaohsiung at night is like so many cities in Asia. Endless flashing neon signs advertise karaoke bars and nightclubs and though most real nightlife lovers to Taiwan head for Taipei, there are plenty of night-time options for people staying in Kaohsiung.
Kaohsiung is like the rest of Taiwan if you want it, it is likely for sale here. Electronics and designer clothes are especially good buys here but anyone coming in from Southeast Asia and expecting great bargains will be sorely disappointed. Taiwan is a wealthy country and the Taiwanese love to spend their money, usually in large amounts.
Kaohsiung may not be the sightseeing capital of Asia but there are plenty of attractions in Taiwan's second-largest city to keep most visitors looking about for at least a few days. If nothing else, the approach to skyscraper design should inspire many happy snaps.