When I think of iconic Keelung places, the one that immediately springs to mind is the Zhengbin Fishing Harbor. In fact, if you search “Keelung” in instagram, this is one of the spots you’ll see most of. Built during Japanese colonial rule in 1934, it was once Taiwan’s biggest fishing port. It has, since, become a much more sleepy part of town.
*COVID-19* note: please be aware that during Taiwan’s Level 3 alert, business hours listed in this post may vary – please double check to make sure that businesses are open and using normal hours.
Now known for it’s distinctive row of brightly colored buildings, the Zhengbin Fishing Harbor draws many a photography enthusiast and sightseer, even on the most humble of weekdays. While many see the Zhengbin Fishing Harbor as a mere photo opportunity, I wanted to take a closer look and show you the insider charms of an often-overlooked neighborhood.
Make a Day of It
While in and of itself the harbor might not warrant an out-of-your-way-visit, it’s the perfect location to build a day trip itinerary around. The Zhengbin Fishing Harbor sits but a short walk from several other places I would encourage you to check out. Among them, the ethnographic museum Keelung City Indigenous Cultural Hall, devoted to Taiwan’s aboriginal tribes. A better known museum, but a little further away (about an 8 minute drive) is Keelung’s National Museum of Marine Science and Technology.
Keelung City Indigenous Cultural Hall
Open Tuesday – Sunday 9 AM – 5 PM
No. 75號, Lane 116, Zhengbin Road, Zhongzheng District, Keelung City, 202
National Museum of Marine Science and Technology 國立海洋科技博物館
Open Monday – Friday 9 AM – 5 PM,
Saturday & Sunday 9 AM – 6 PM
No. 367, Beining Road, Zhongzheng District, Keelung City, 202
The Harbor also just so happens to be on the way to Heping Island, where my favorite place in all of Keelung is: Heping Island Park. As well as having amazing coastal views, it’s a really relaxing place to get away from the rush of the city, take a scenic walk and, best yet: go for a swim! They have crystal clear blue ocean pools where you can swim with the fish!
Heping Island has plenty of other sites to offer as well. You can stop at the Agenna Shipyard, an abandoned relic from Taiwan’s colonial past, the historic Hepingdao Fort, and Tianhou Temple (the first in northern Taiwan dedicated to Mazu, goddess of the sea. It is thought to be over 300 years old).
Eat, Drink & Be Merry
Once you’ve strolled around and taken in the sights, sit a while and sate your appetite at one of the many cafés and restaurants at Zhengbin Fishing Harbor. There are plenty of harbor-side spots where you can sit back and continue to bask in the views. Here are a few I find particularly irresistible:
圖們咖啡 tuman café
Open 11 AM – 7 PM
*temporarily closed due to Level 3 Alert
No. 551號, Zhongzheng Rd, Zhongzheng District, Keelung City, 202
Ruth Espresso Bar 茹絲濃縮咖啡吧
Open Saturday & Sunday 12:30 – 5:30 PM
202, Keelung City, Zhongzheng District, Zhongzheng Rd, 559-2號地下層港邊
Find Happiness Coffee Shop 找到幸福咖啡店
Open Tuesday – Friday 12 – 7 PM, Saturday & Sunday 10 AM – 6 PM
No. 559, Zhongzheng Rd, Zhongzheng District, Keelung City, 202
Bear Bean Coffee Shop 熊豆咖啡店
Open Sunday – Friday 1 – 8 PM,
Saturday 1 – 8:30 PM
No. 579-1號, Zhongzheng Rd, Zhongzheng District, Keelung City, 202
默默吃 MER CAFE
Open Monday, Thursday & Friday 10:30 AM – 2 PM & 5 – 8 PM
Saturday & Sunday 9:30 AM – 7 PM
No. 70號, Zhengbin Road, Zhongzheng District, Keelung City, 202
閑閑 Sián Sián
Open Friday – Sunday 1 – 6 PM
No. 40號, Zhengbin Road, Zhongzheng District, Keelung City, 20246
Casa PICASSO 畢加索餐廳
European-style restaurant specializing in seafood dishes with warm cozy vibes and a scenic harbor-side spot.
Open Wednesday – Friday 12 – 9 PM, Saturday & Sunday 12 – 10 PM
No. 527, Zhongzheng Rd, Zhongzheng District, Keelung City, 202
Highly-rated seafood restaurant with a view of the colorful house row across the harbor.
Open Tuesday – Sunday 11:30 AM – 2 PM & 5:30 – 8:30 PM
202, Keelung City, Zhongzheng District, Zhengbin Road, 68號202
河豚很多 (A Lot of Pufferfish)
A seafood restaurant serving up all kinds of delicious pasta dishes. Also situated across the harbor from the colorful houses, enjoy the view!
Open Wednesday – Monday 11:30 AM – 2 PM & 5 – 9 PM
No. 88, Zhengbin Road, Zhongzheng District, Keelung City, 202
If You’re Looking for a Place to Stay
粼島旅宿 Spangle Inn
A modern hostel with a view of Zhengbin Fishing Harbor. If you’re looking for a scenic spot that’s definitely off the beaten track, then this hostel has your name on it!
No. 34號, Zhengbin Road, Zhongzheng District, Keelung City, 202
I hope you get to enjoy exploring the wonderful Keelung, and particularly this small and delightful corner of it. Let me know what you think in the comments below. As always, thanks for reading ☺️
Check out more things to do in Keelung!