Taipei or Kaohsiung?

I think I already know the answer to this one…

I have been offered a teaching job in Kaohsiung, but was really hoping to go to Taipei. Can anyone tell me why I would want to go to Kaohsiung rather than Taipei?

[quote=“pandagirl”]I think I already know the answer to this one…

I have been offered a teaching job in Kaohsiung (Gaoxiong), but was really hoping to go to Taipei. Can anyone tell me why I would want to go to Kaohsiung (Gaoxiong) rather than Taipei?[/quote]

Geert lives in Gaoxiong.

the weather in kaohsiung is much better than Taipei
less traffic
more friendly local people

just my opinion…

I went to Gaoxiong once. It was enough for me.

I’ll give you a job in Taipei if you like. (PM me).


Well, I just looked over the contract. IF I accept the contract for teaching in Kaohsiung, they will provide free housing. Sounds good, but Taipei seems much more promising in terms of activities, entertainment, meeting people (correct me if I’m wrong). I’ve asked them to look into contracts in Taipei for me. I’m sure they won’t offer me free housing there, but I think I’d rather be paying rent and enjoying where I live than living rent-free in Kaohsiung.

You’ll save a lot more money in Kaohsiung, that’s for sure. Everything in Taipei is 2-3x more expensive than the rest of Taiwan.

You came here to teach and make cash. Go to kaoohsiung, you will save, you will make friends, you will learn Chinese, you will travel, you will live well. Its a small island, and you are already online with your support group. Go to kaohsiung…then I’ll have a place to stay whenn I get there (always an ulterior motive dear watson)


Kaohsiung is great for making coin. You can also find foreigners here if you need. email I can give you more KHH info if you like.

Here’s the deal. The school is Kojen, and they’ve offered me two other locations - Taipei and Keelung. Neither include free housing. The one in Taipei is an hourly position, the one in Keelung is salaried (meaning they’ll pay for my airfare). Don’t know a thing about Keelung…what’s it like? Is it livable? It seems nice from what I’ve read (but really, how much can lonely planet tell you?), and it still seems close enough to Taipei.

Fill me in, folks. I could pretty much care less about the money I make - I just want to meet new people, experience the culture and hopefully see some things I would never see here (the U.S.).

You can do that anywhere in Taiwan.

Kaohsiung is two hours’ drive from Kenting National Park. That’s a big plus.

Taipei’s major advantage is that at least 2/3 of the foreigners congregrate in that city - your fellow waiguoren countrymen are much sparser throughout the rest of Taiwan. But, if you’re here to experience the culture, being surrounded by lots of other foreigners might be a handicap.

Less crowds and better weather in Kaohsiung. Plus, they’ve just remodelled the outdoor pool at the Grand hotel where they play trance music all day, serve chilled beverages and have tons of people frolicking in and around the pool! :sunglasses:

If you have family in Taipei, then Taipei is good. However, if you’re coming in from abroad I’d recommend Kaohsiung. The weather is much better than Taipei and the cost of living is significantly lower than Taipei. It’s a friendly city, for the most part and they’ll have a subway/MRT/underground system soon. If you yearn for home once in a while, there’s Costco, SubWay, TGI Friday’s, Tex-Mex, and other things. (Be forewarned about Costco, though. They’re very serious about membership and you’ll need to bring your ID, passport, etc. in order to get a membership card. They even put your picture on it! It’s a wonder they don’t want blood and DNA samples, too. It costs about US$40 for a membership there.)

If your favorite artist comes to Taiwan, you’re likely to have to go to Taipei for a concert or visit, but that’s OK. The island’s not THAT big. A train ticket to Taipei from Kaohsiung will only cost you something like US$25, so it’s not a big deal for the times you DO want to visit Taipei.

Your job is at Kojen, huh? I drove past that place a few days ago when I went through Kaohsiung. It looks like a nice place, at least. I’d choose Kaohsiung over Taipei, though. Definitely avoid Keelung (Jilong) though, because it’s a rainy mess. The air passes over the mountains north of Taipei and dumps all of the moisture that has condensed—right onto Keelung.

Let me know if you have any more specific questions.


I live in Kaohsiung and I often wonder why people choose to live up north.
I’m sure there has to be good reasons for that and I’m curious.
I’ve only been in Tapei once for the weekend so my knowledge of the city is very limited.
Many of us down here beleive that Tapei is cleaner(I’ve noticed that) and you guys actually have side walks. Imagin that. Spitting is illegal up there too…That’s different.
Tapei aslo has more variety and more work opportunities by far.
Kaohsiung on the other hand, is dirtier(garbage on the streets and such), if you want to go for a walk you need to dodge scooters and cars on the road as vendors use every sidewalks in the city. Only about 30 minutes south is Linyuan industrial area. Smoke stacks as far as the eye can see. Everything here is covered with black dust from it. It’s all over the city and worse in the southern part. Do you have the black dust in Tapei?
On the bright side for Kaohsiung, opportunities are still ample although fewer than Tapei I think. It’s much warmer here. Today It’s sunny and warm(25), I can wear shorts on my bike, it’s like summer back home. It hardly ever rains in the winter out here. The weather is far better here year round. I’m near Kenting national park here too. Decent diving, beautiful beaches and warm water. I guess it’s cheaper living here too.
That’s why I live here. Why do you live in Tapei? Why not Kaohsiung?

Kaohsiung has a lot of potential and I could see living there in about 10 years when all the factories have finally left for mainland china and the air quality has improved to where it’s only mildy harmful to your health like taipei. :slight_smile:

If you want to talk about beaches, though, I can be at one of 5 beaches in an hour. I can be in the mountains on clean, silent trails in 10 minutes. Even from downtown Taipei you can be in the mountains in 30 minutes whether you go east, north or south. There are now about 100km of bike trails around the city itself mostly along the riversides. Go in the mornings before the air pollution rises and it is quite nice.

Taipei has excellent museums and can attracts international exhibits. I’ve learned far more about impressionistic painting here than I ever did in canada. In addition, you’ll always find good quality opera or dance or musical events showing at a reasonable price.

Taipei has a modern and growing international feel to it now. It’s the capital and it feels like it. Living in Kaohsiung would feel to me like living in the suburbs of a provincial town. In other words, completely out of it. Living in taipei you feel that whatever taiwan has to offer you will find it here. And since Taiwan is limited somewhat in what it has to offer I want to be where the offerings are best. :smiley:

Kaohsiung is the best. Beats Taipei hands down.

Thank you Mucha Man. :slight_smile: I think BMF merged my post with posts from 2003. It did gave me more answers too, thanks for that.
No one answered this question I asked:[quote=“hatch”]Do you have the black dust in Tapei?
It’s the worse part down here.

[quote=“hatch”]Thank you Mucha (Muzha) Man. :slight_smile: I think BMF merged my post with posts from 2003. It did gave me more answers too, thanks for that.
No one answered this question I asked:[quote=“hatch”]Do you have the black dust in Tapei?
It’s the worse part down here.[/quote]

No, we have the black death here. :slight_smile: If you mean soot, not really. Taipei doesn’t have a big industrial zone near it like Kaohsiung. Our air pollution is almost all from car exhaust, except in spring where we get dust and sand and crap blowing in from China. This means that most nights and especially early morning the air is fairly fresh in Taipei (unless we have an inversion whicj traps everything in for a couple days. Then you stay at home with the air filters on.). If you live in the suburbs near the mountains you cut down on pollution even more.

By the way, do you ever get down to Dapeng Bay? Much closer than Kenting (though Kenting is only 90 minutes so it’s never that far). Not as beautiful of course but I had a tour last spring before they opened and it seemed it would be a nice place for watersports.

That’s what I meant. It’s terrible, everything turns black and dirty. I really hate that. I can’t imagine building a house here and watch it get filthy in less than a year. Same goes for a car or anything you own, it’s a nightmare.

They are working on the MRT and also they are replacing the sewage system accros the city. This adds to the dust and the roads are always wet and muddy all over the place and I can’t keep my bike clean although it bloody never rains. There isn’t one major road in Kaohsiung that isn’t under construction it seems.

I haven’t been there yet but I drove past the turn off many times. A bit slower for me, I make it to Kenting in a little over two hours but I drive slow. If I remember correctly, It’s about an hour from here. I’ve been meaning to check it out a few times. This time of year the drive is often pretty windy and cold so I tend to go to Maolin instead, in the mountains north-west of here. Nice hot springs over there(very hot), beautiful drive, especially in the spring when the trees are blooming.(not sure the type of trees but it blooms white flowers)The hills in some areas are covered in white flowers, it’s quite a scene.
There are quite a few water falls in that area as well, a popular one is the Dajin waterfall.
Some of the area(Maolin national park)is very well kept and parts of it seem abandonned. It adds a memorable cachet to the place actually. It’s only about an hour from here too.

There are many places north of Kaohsiung and around Tapei that I want to check out yet. I have to make time. Again this CNY, I’m flying out.
Maybe this summer…

Oh the dust and grime is terrible here too. All of Asia is dusty and the high humidity makes it stick to every surface with angry persistance. I only drive my car occassionally and usually have to get it washed before I go anywhere or it just looks too shabby.

It’s not hard though to keep buildings clean. It’s just that most buildings do not have community fees (such as in larger gated communities) to pay for repairs and cleaning. And since many taiwanese just don’t care what the outside of their building looks like they won’t pay to clean it unless forced. In my building we have one or two families who always refuse to share the cost of building repairs such as new intercoms or fixing the railings in the staircase. The other families all then start to argue that they don’t want to pay extra to subsidize the non-paying families. So things take a long time to get fixed and some never do until we all get sick of it and agree to pay extra.

I own an apartment in Taoyuan and pay community fees there so the place, despite being 9 years old looks very good. No dirty, grime coated tiles there. And Taoyuan is about as dirty as Kaohsiung.

The white flowering trees you mention are probably youtong. We get them up here in the north. Really beautiful the way they turn entire mountainsides white. I find them much more beautiful than the cherry blossm trees which tend to be very small here compared to Canada or Europe.

I agree Maolin is a very nice area. The outdoor hot spring is great especially with the big natural swimming hole in the river beside it.

Have you seen the purple butterflies in the winter at Maolin? They migrate from the north and winter in Maolin. There’s a small park on the west side of Maolin Village where the park’s people built a shelter. Hundreds of butterflies in the shelter and more around the park grounds. A local aboriginal told me that in the valley behind the park thousands of butterflies can be found together.