Taipei, June 13 (CNA) A new ferry route from Cijin Island to Kaohsiung Port Warehouse No.2 (KW2), next to Kaohsiung Pier-2 Art Center, started Wednesday with an official launch ceremony at KW2.
After attending the ceremony, Minister of Transportation and Communications Ho Chen Tan, Taiwan International Ports Corp. Chairman Wu Hong-mo and acting Kaohsiung Mayor Hsu Li-ming boarded the ferry for its maiden voyage.
Noting that the new route will be serviced by electric boats, the transportation minister said this new green transport choice, together with the Kaohsiung Mass Rapid Transit (KMRT) and light rail system, will not only help boost local tourism and economic development but also promote environmental protection.
The new line complements an existing ferry route linking Cijin with the Hamasen area, a tourist destination located in the northwest of Kaohsiung Port.
Hsu said the new route's cost-performance value is high as it improves connections between several tourist destinations, including KW2, Cijin and the Hamasen area.
Ticket packages include tickets to the Hamasen area, the home of Hamasen Railway Cultural Park, Takao Railway Museum and a number of scenic spots, night markets and historic sites. Also offered are discounted KMRT and light rail tickets to encourage more people to visit the area where they can enjoy local culture, gourmet food and ocean scenery.
The ferry service will only be available at weekends and holidays when it will run at 30 minute intervals from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. However, it will operate the same hours every day during the summer break, according to the city government.
Cijin Island is a small island in Kaohsiung, a 5-10 minute ferry journey from Kaohsiung Harbor. (By Chen Chi-fong and Evelyn Kao)