You have not truly seen Kaohsiung if you have not experienced Liuhe Night Market. People flock to this very popular night market to eat, drink, buy, meet people, have fun, and just feel how it is to be a part of the action. When vacationing in Kaohsiung, don’t even think of just watching the TV in your hotel room at nights instead of gaining a unique social, cultural and shopping experience in the night market.
The practice of selling bargain commodities in this area at nights began as early as the 1950s. Located in Dagangpu, Hsinhsing District, it used to be known as the Dagangpu Night Market, until it got bigger and became the Liuhe Night Market. The area is now known as the oldest shopping district in Kaohsiung, which covers the Central Post Office, Kaohsiung Railway Station, and Hsinhsing Market. Locals typically shop during the day at Hsinhsing then move on to Liuhe in the evenings.
The night market is only a 10-minute walk away from the train station on ZhongShan Road. During the day, the street of Liuhe is not any different from the other streets; but as night falls, traffic closes and out comes 138 stalls selling all kinds of garments, fabrics, shoes, groceries, handicrafts, electronic gadgets, souvenir items, pieces of jewelry, pets and snacks (including cheap but delicious beef steaks), to name a few. There are so many dishes, drinks, and snack items to choose from. The most sought after ones are sea foods, shaved ice, dumplings, rice congee, steamed shrimps, papaya milk, peanut-in-rice balls and the exotic eel spaghetti. The place is always crowded because in addition to the hundreds who come to shop and dine, hundreds come just to see the place and immerse in the unique experience of being there.
The stalls remain open until there are customers and buyers around, and that is usually until the wee hours of the morning. Early the next day, students and stall owners clean up the place just before it reopens to the daily traffic.
Kaohsiung shopping is typically done in the Dream Mall or Star Plaza grocery stores, but those who want to experience Kaohsiung as locals do go to the Liuhe Night Market. Although tourists and vacationers from around the world are now regularly making their way to Kaohsiung, this southwestern Taiwanese city was originally developed for something else. It used to be a humble fishing village but through the years, its neighboring cities and countries have transformed it into one of the biggest and most lucrative harbors in the world. The ultra modernized Kaohsiung port is the 6th busiest cargo harbor in the world.
Kaohsiung is a bustling city that is second to Taipei in terms of trade, commerce and tourism. It is home to a number of interesting and must-see sites in Taiwan, such as the Love River, Urban Spotlight Arcade, Tuntex Sky Tower, Chai Mountain, Lotus Lake, Cijin Island, ChinHou Lighthouse, and Confucius Temple, among many others. Major airlines from major Asian cities, such as Tokyo, Seoul, Kuala Lumpur, Singapore, Hong Kong, Manila, Bangkok, Jakarta, Ho Chi Minh, and Taipei, land at the Kaohsiung International Airport every day. Local tourists also arrive in hordes on board Taiwan’s high-speed Metro Rapid Transit (MRT).