A Day on Cijin Island

Departing from Kaohsiung's mainland.
This mom and her kids were adorable.
When my dad and I went to Kaohsiung, he let me be the "tour guide". Although I'd never been to Kaohsiung, I was the one who created our schedule. It wasn't difficult, yet I wasn't sure whether or not all the places I chose would be enjoyable. As everyone knows, a person may like a place that another dislikes. However, as Kaohsiung has a different atmosphere to Taipei, I felt we would enjoy most of our stops

The Kaohsiung MRT map.
Before we went to Kaohsiung, I thought Cijin Island was just an island community and not included in Kaohsiung City, but it's actually one of the city's districts. Through my research, I also discovered Cijin Island is a well-known tourist attraction. Many people have commented on the beauty and the fact that it is a fun place to visit, and after visiting myself I agree with those sentiments. Aside from swimming, there are many activities to enjoy on the island, which was important to me because I don't like swimming. Actually, I can't swim...

Cijin Island is also an easy place to access. Ride the Kaohsiung MRT to Sizihwan Station (四子灣站) then check the guide map and look for "Gushan Ferry Pier"(鼓山輪渡站). It only takes about 10 minutes to walk to the station. You'll see the long line of people before you spot the pier!

While the line for Cijin Island is long, it moves fast and takes only about 10 minutes to board the ferry. If you have a bicycle or motorbike, you can take it on the boat. The ferry doesn't accommodate cars, but I'm sure there is port for car riders.

Tuntex Tower
Cijin ferry station.
Riding the ferry to Cijin Island is quite fun. From the boat you can clearly see the Tuntex Tower. From far away, the Tower looks like a spaceship! It's striking and slightly awkward but the visual effect is awesome.

When I ride boats, I often get seasickness, but luckily on the way to Cijin Island I didn't feel any because the boat wasn't moving quickly. Getting to the island took about 10 minutes.

Cijin District's ferry station is close to the beach, a few historical sites, and restaurants, so after you get to the island you don't have to walk far. We didn't have a lot of time (that night we had to ride the train back to Taipei), so we mainly visited Tianhou Temple and strolled the beach. I also ate some snacks.
This was a bustling street with a lot to buy and eat.
I bought my dad a hat.
Tianhou Temple was built in 1673 and is Kaohsiung's oldest temple. I think it's stunning, if you go to Cijin District you should definitely visit it!

Burning paper money.
Tianhou Temple's artwork.
People's wishes. They were written in Chinese, Japanese, English,
and many other languages, but we didn't write one.
The couple who were determined
to take our picture.
You cannot swim in the ocean,
but you can admire it!
There were a lot of people at the beach, young people clearly go to Cijin Island for the swimming. There are swimming pools at the beach because swimming in the ocean is strictly prohibited. At the beach we just chatted and people-watched. Others watched us two as well. There was a couple that wanted to take our picture, but I firmly said in Chinese, "We don't want our picture taken". The man raised his camera anyway, so my dad raised his phone. The guy then seemed to understand and he laughed and walked away. 

A big crab statue at the beach.
There were many people enjoying the beach.
I love to watch cargo ships coming and going.
The cute fulinggao vendor.
Fuling gao is a cake made mainly
from the poria mushroom.
I bought one with red bean filling.
In Taiwan, famous places always have good food. I think eating good food is one of Taiwanese people's pastimes. To me, fuling gao (茯苓糕) is the most interesting snack in Kaohsiung. I chose the red bean fuling gao. The white poria portion isn't too sweet, and the red bean filling pairs with it wonderfully. It's delicious! It's a pity I only bought one. I should have gotten more for the train ride back to Taipei.

The squid ink sausage vendor.
I also ate squid ink sausage or moyuzhi chang (墨魚汁腸). I had eaten it before many times, but I wanted to taste Cijin Island's. It was similar to the ones I had in the past. The sausage's black color is a little weird, but the taste is pretty normal.
The color may frighten some, but they taste mild and delicious.
Dried fish and seaweed.
There are many types of dried shrimp.
We also visited a huge dried fish market because I wanted to buy a big bag of it for my mom. The dried fish there is cheaper than it is in America. There were several stalls, but they all sold the same things. I simply chose one and bough three bags of dried fish, about $9.79 altogether. 

Me buying dried fish for my mom.
I bought the fish from this woman.
She was warm and friendly, how southern Taiwanese people
are often described. 
I wish we had the opportunity to spend more time at Cijin Island. While it's small, there are several areas to explore and I imagine it's fun to bike ride around the island like I saw several people doing. If I have an opportunity to return to Kaohsiung, bike riding on Cijin Island will definitely be at the top of my list!

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