Weiwuying is a metropolitan park and the National Kaohsiung Center for the Arts in the heart of Kaohsiung. Unveiled in 2018, the massive arts center sits on what used to be a military training base. Covering 3.3 hectares (141,000 square meters, over 1.5M square feet), it also is as of 2020 still the biggest art venue in the world.
Designed by Dutch architectural firm Mecanoo, the sleek architecture stands out in the city and yet reflects so beautifully the land it occupies, and consciously creates an inviting place to gather and celebrate the arts. On any given day, you’ll see a combination of local residents, visiting students, international artists and architecture lovers enjoying the building and the park, exploring the way it ebbs and flows, providing a shady haven from the relentless southern Taiwan sun. The undulating architecture was inspired by banyan trees local to the area. Beneath the roof is Banyan Plaza, an organic public space that flows beautifully between indoor and outdoor, inspiring formal and informal creative activity.
Inside, the complex houses various performance venues from a grand 2000+ seat Opera House to an intimate Recital Hall to a stunning amphitheater that seamlessly flows from the roof. Their programming spans all kinds of performing arts, from music to theater to dance to circus, with internationally-acclaimed artists as well as local groups, and a lot of family-friendly programming and education programs.
You don’t need to be attending an event to appreciate Weiwuying. The complex has plenty of indoor and outdoor public space, some shops, cafes and restaurants inside, and of course the sprawling 116 acre park surrounding. Whether for a casual morning walk or a global cultural performance, Weiwuying is a must visit any time you’re in Kaohsiung.
Go here for: drooling over beautiful architecture, photography, a nice stroll, a cultural event or musical performance
Don’t miss: even if you aren’t coming for an event, it’s worth popping inside, both to admire the architecture from within, but also to peruse the shops
Amount of time to spend: give yourself at least 1 hour to wander around the center and the park
When to come: mornings are peaceful, since there aren’t really any events until later in the day. Golden hour is particularly beautiful
Getting here: there is a dedicated MRT stop Weiwuying station, and exit 6 drops you off right in front of the building. There are also many buses with stops nearby, both on Sanduo Rd and Nanjing Rd
Other things to note:
Last visited: April 2019
Last updated: September 2020