Last Updated on 08-11-2023
Let me take you on an exciting journey to one of Kaohsiung’s coolest hangout spots, the Pier-2 Art Center. Nestled in Yancheng District, this vibrant arts center breathes life into the city’s transformation from an industrial hub to a cultural mecca.
Pier-2 Art Center stands tall as a beacon of creativity and innovation. The former warehouses have been artfully converted into hundreds of shops, cafes, artist studios, music venues, and bars, buzzing with a diverse and captivating atmosphere. Visitors are immersed in a kaleidoscope of artistic expressions, as street art adorns every corner, reflecting the vibrant culture of both Kaohsiung and Taiwan.
Enjoy your exploration and make unforgettable memories amidst the captivating charm of Pier-2 Art Center!
How to go
1. MRT Orange Line Yanchengpu Station (Station O2) Exit 1, walk south along Dayong Road for about 5 minutes.
2. MRT Orange Line Xiziwan Station (Station O1) Exit 2, walk east for about 2 minutes.
1. Take the Kaohsiung Light Rail Transit (LRT) Line to Barrier 2 Penglai Station (Station C13).
2. Take the Kaohsiung LRT and exit at Barrier 2 Da Yi Station (Station C12) and walk east for 1 minute.
- MRT Yanchengpu Station (Wufu 4th Road：
Jianguo Route (88), 56, Wufu Route (50), 33, 11, 219, 24B
- Barrier 2 Arts District Station：
Harmasin Cultural Bus, Orange 1 (Holiday)
- Kaohsiung Harbor Station：
248, Orange 1 (limited holiday service), E05 Westside Express
- MRT Xiziwan Station Exit 2：
219, 99, Wufu Route (50), Tangerine 1
Pier 2 Art Center: Main Section
The “Pier-2 Art District” was originally a collection of abandoned warehouses located next to Kaohsiung Port’s No. 2 Pier. By a stroke of fate, it became the venue for the National Day fireworks display, leading to the discovery of this art space with great potential for use.
The main structures in the “Pier-2 Art District” include the spacious P2 Warehouse suitable for large-scale exhibitions, the C5 Taiwan Sugar Warehouse used for small-scale art displays, workshops, and classrooms, the Moonlight Theater for performances, and the Art Plaza, which serves as a community gathering place, art market, and performance venue. The Moonlight Theater has a special romantic ambiance since it had previously suffered from a fire that burnt down its entire roof.
At the back of the Pier-2 warehouses, you can find the abandoned former famous “Marine Palace” that was once standing here, as well as numerous figurines along the bike path. The “Pier-2 Art District” not only revitalizes old warehouses but also allows people to get closer to art. Strolling through the district, you can experience the leisurely beauty of the city.
Hamasen Museum of Taiwan Railway
To preserve the historical significance of Hamasen, the Hamasen Taiwan Railway Museum was established. The museum’s theme revolves around the local history of Hamasen and extends to Taiwan’s century-old railway history. It particularly focuses on HO (1:87) scale railway scenes, tracks, and train models. The exhibition combines theater sound and light effects to showcase Taiwan’s railway’s century-long development and civilization. It is currently the largest HO gauge three-dimensional model in Asia.
Located in the Pier-2 Art Center, the Hamasen Taiwan Railway Museum covers over 100 ping and consists of ten exhibition areas. The total length of the tracks exceeds 2 kilometers, incorporating four major mainlines, including the North-South Main Line, and eight major branch lines, including those for sugar, salt, forestry, and mining. Over 30 classic railway train models can simultaneously operate daily, running through 200 different scenes, making it a first-of-its-kind display in Taiwan.
In addition to observing the railway models, visitors can also take a ride on the Hamaxing Pier-2 Line small train. The small train operates on the country’s first fixed 5-inch railway track and provides approximately 8 minutes of fun for both adults and children.
Banana Pier, formerly known as “Banana Shed,” has stood near Kaohsiung Port for nearly half a century and is now one of Kaohsiung’s historical buildings. In the 1950s, Taiwan exported a large number of bananas to Japan, earning substantial foreign exchange. At that time, almost all the bananas from various regions were handled through Kaohsiung Port.
To improve the quality of bananas and accommodate the increasing production, a double-decked Banana Shed was built in 1963 at Pier 3. As demand modernized and banana exports declined, the Banana Shed gradually became a part of history. With the collaboration of riverside dining establishments, new life was injected into the Banana Shed, and in 2010, it was officially renamed “Banana Pier” to honor its history as a storage place for bananas.
The ground floor of the pier houses Taiwanese specialty souvenir shops, the Banana Story Museum, themed stores, and an international cruise terminal. The second floor offers a one-of-a-kind seaside banquet venue, along with free parking. With its inherent advantages and diverse planning, Banana Pier has become a new landmark for Kaohsiung’s tourism.
Kaoshiung Port Warehouse No.2
The KW2 Warehouse is located at Pier 2 of Kaohsiung Port. During the Japanese colonial period, it served as a storage facility for sugar and exported goods. It suffered damage from American bombings but was reconstructed in 1962 and played a significant role in transferring goods between rail and sea transport.
In 2018, it was revitalized by bringing together Taiwanese artisanal brands and local culinary delights, creating a vibrant and enjoyable waterfront space. The pure white carousel symbolizes the “Dream Harbor,” showcasing the charm and romance of the port city.
In 2023, in collaboration with the “MUJI RENOVATION Space Revival Project” team, a new historic architectural warehouse accommodation, “KW2 HOSTEL,” will be created, emphasizing the enhancement of the “Three Senses and One Power”: historical sense, international appeal, value sense, and creativity. This initiative aims to drive the development of a diverse cultural and creative tourism experience in the Kaohsiung Port area.
HoloPark Salt District is a development concept that fully recreates the prosperity of Kaohsiung’s bustling Salt District in the 1950s. Combining cutting-edge 5G holographic and VR virtual reality technology, it aims to create Taiwan’s first high-tech tourist attraction. HoloPark Salt District invests heavily in constructing Taiwan’s first holographic floating theater.
You can enjoy a breathtaking performance featuring the unique holographic light and shadow effects, as real-life dancers seamlessly blend with light and lines, creating a mesmerizing spectacle against the backdrop of special effects and illusions.
Additionally, the “Taiwanese Electronic Music Extravaganza” presented by the Electronic Music Queen will dazzle you with the fusion of electrifying lights and Taiwanese fashion. You won’t need 3D glasses to witness the three-dimensional imaging; instead, you can watch it with your naked eyes. Coupled with theater-grade surround sound, the experience will transport you right into the heart of the celebration as if you were there in person.
The Public Park Road Bridge Railway, established in 1976, has long connected Kaohsiung’s Gushan and Yancheng districts. However, after the expansion of the ground-level road in 2008, it lost much of its transportation function. Originally slated for complete demolition, the red bridge was retained by the Kaohsiung City government, and a decision was made to transform it into the Sky Cloud Platform.
Preserving the Sky Cloud Platform and integrating it with the Pier-2 Art Center, it formed the “Hamasen Railway Cultural Park,” becoming a favorite among Kaohsiung residents and foreign visitors alike. Furthermore, the Sky Cloud Platform is the only urban space transformation project to have received the “Government Service Quality Award” from the Executive Yuan.
Speaking of the Sky Cloud Platform, its design concept must be mentioned. During the day, it brings white clouds closer, acting as a sunshade. At night, it becomes the shining star of the Hamasen Railway Cultural Park. Additionally, the original expansion joints on the bridge were transformed into large chairs for people to relax and rest.
Takao Railway Museum
The Old Takao Station Story House utilizes the space of the old Taiwan Railways Administration Kaohsiung Port Station and transforms the idle station into a railway heritage exhibition area, offering citizens an experience of the railway operations scene.
The first exhibition room (former cargo office) showcases old photographs of the Kaohsiung Port Station during the Japanese colonial era on the walls, while the office area recreates the atmosphere of railway passenger and freight operations. The second exhibition room (former station master’s room) mainly exhibits themes such as “Stationmasters, Promotion, Appointments, and Railway Life ” of successive stationmasters and Taiwan Railways staff. The Railway Information Room was previously the south side general affairs office and is now planned as the “Railway Information Museum,” currently housing the publications of the Railway Culture Association.
Visitors can scan the QR codes with their smartphones on-site and access more information about the exhibits through explanatory webpages. The clever use of IT technology in the old station creates a simple and practical user-friendly service, becoming an interactive focal point between the exhibits and the public.
Accommodations in Kaohsiung
Silks Club Kaohsiung offers a convenient location for travelers to explore the vibrant arts scene of Kaohsiung. Situated in the Qianzhen District, the hotel is not far from the famous Kaohsiung Pier-2 Art Center. The Pier-2 Art Center is an open art space that has transformed abandoned warehouses into a thriving cultural hub. Every month, the center hosts a variety of art activities and exhibitions, making each visit to the area a unique and surprising experience. With the hotel’s proximity to the Pier-2 Art Center, guests can easily immerse themselves in Kaohsiung’s artistic energy and creativity, adding an extra layer of excitement to their stay at Silks Club.
SaYo Hotel located in the artistic and historical district of Yancheng District in Kaohsiung. The hotel offers comfortable and stylish accommodations with attentive service, providing guests with a welcoming and homely experience during both business trips and vacations. It is conveniently situated near the Pier-2 Art Center, allowing guests to easily access this vibrant arts and cultural area. Visitors to SaYo Hotel can explore the nearby artistic attractions at the Pier-2 Art Center and indulge in the culinary delights of the Yancheng District’s public market, all while enjoying the comfortable and stylish amenities offered by the hotel.
Whether you are interested in contemporary art, local culture, or simply looking for a vibrant and artistic hangout spot, the Pier-2 Art Center is a must-visit destination in Kaohsiung. Its ability to preserve the past while embracing creativity and the arts has made it a symbol of Kaohsiung’s transformation from an industrial city to a dynamic and artistic metropolis.
So, don’t miss the chance to explore this fascinating art district and experience the fusion of history, creativity, and imagination at the Pier-2 Art Center in Kaohsiung.