Finding a little quiet time for yourself in Keelung
After a full day of visiting Keelung’s Renai day market, the E-square mall, and the many stores, cafes, and little restaurants in the downtown core, you might want to find a little place to sit down and have a little quiet time for yourself.
Recommend: Keelung’s Lido Butterfly Garden
Keelung’s Maritime Plaza might be a good place to rest with its many benches overlooking the harbor; or you can sit on the green artificial turf on the Guomen Square next to the plaza and watch the ships and boats moored at the marinas. But you might still be in the hustle and bustle of downtown with the crowds waiting to catch a bus or a cab, or the many other visitors snapping pictures at the harbor. If you really want to escape the crowds, let me recommend you Keelung’s Lido Butterfly Garden, above the East Passenger Terminal.
The Lido Butterfly Garden is located just one block south east of the Maritime Plaza (or the right side of the harbor), above Keelung’s East Passenger Terminal. The terminal is the place where cruise ships from around the world moor, and their passengers disembark to visit Keelung in the spring and summer. But not many know about the garden on its roof, so you might find yourself completely alone (maybe except for the butterflies in the spring) enjoying the views of the harbor without the crowds.
A new place to enjoy the sunset
I was visiting the East Terminal, curious about the architecture of the building (the back end of which resembles the upper deck of a cruise ship!) when I stumbled onto its rooftop, and I felt like I discovered a lost little paradise of tranquility, with lots of plants, shade, and a great view of the harbor and the Keelung Sign. There are also plenty of marine ships, big and small, to take pictures of. The sunset is just marvelous up there, but unfortunately the garden closes at sundown, so don’t stay up there too late. On weekends, it might close at 5pm, although it seems sometimes they lock the doors a bit later.
Besides a few staircases leading to the gardens, there are also elevators for those with mobility problems or for strollers, so you can bring your whole family -young and old- there to enjoy the views of Keelung’s downtown away from the traffic and noise. And once rested, you can resume shopping at the little but well stocked (if not fancy) department store on the terminal’s second floor. I’ve seen quite a few bargains there!