Kaohsiung: Love River

Love River begins at Bagualiao in Kaohsiung City’s Renwu District. It divides Kaohsiung City into two parts. The Jianguo, Cisian and Jhongjheng Bridges connect the two sections and the river flows directly into the sea. Love River had originally been a shallow creek, which could only be crossed by ferry. During the Japanese Colonial era it was dredged into a canal and named The Kaohsiung River. This was the first time the river had been given an official name. It was formally referred to as The Kaohsiung Waterway or The Kaohsiung Canal. In 1948, Love River Boat Company was opened near the Jhongjheng Bridge. This gave people the opportunity to row up and down the river. This became particularly popular for local couples and therefore acquiring the name – Love River. Love River is a very distinct river in Kaohsiung. It was previously used for shipping, transportation and leisure. Over the years it slowly became a polluted open-air sewer. Recently, with the cooperation of the Kaohsiung residents, the city government and the private sector it has been restored to its former splendor. The west bank of The Lover River is located in the Yencheng District. The city government has recently renovated bridges along The Love River. They now emit rainbows of light after dark, creating a delightful visual effect.

Love river-2The Soaring Dragon Fish Statue is located on the east bank of the Love River. It was originally created as a theme lantern, created for the 2001 Kaohsiung Lantern Festival. It was once used to promote Kaohsiung, Taiwan’s Maritime Capital. The dragonhead and fish body is a symbol of Kaohsiung, a city in transformation. The Dragon Fish statue is 25 meters in height weighs 30 tons and built entirely of stainless steel. During festive occasions, flickering lights illuminate the dragon’s body and the dragon breathes smoke.