If you’re planning a weekend getaway to the golden shores of Kenting National Park, one of the very first things you’re probably trying to figure out is how to get to Kenting. Although there are no local or high-speed trains to Kenting, getting from Kaohsiung to Kenting is not as tricky as you might have thought. And in this guide, I’ll show you the easiest routes so that you can spend more time enjoying all the amazing things to do in Kenting and less time stressing over the logistics.
Not sure how to get to Kaohsiung? Read my detailed guide on getting to Kaohsiung from Taipei.
Ready? Let’s go! Read along to find the easiest ways to get to Kenting from Kaohsiung!
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How to get from Kaohsiung to Kenting National Park
1. Taking the Kenting Express Bus from Zuoying THSR Station
Travel time: 2.5-3 hrs | Cost: NT$600 return
By far, the easiest way to get to Kenting from Kaohsiung is to take the Kenting Express Bus (bus 9189), which departs from Kaohsiung HSR Station, more commonly known as Zuoying Station.
Although there are several buses a day, make sure to time your visit as waiting times can sometimes be up to an hour. The travel time between Kaohsiung and Kenting is roughly 2.5 hours, but it can take slightly longer, especially if you are traveling during peak traffic hours or busy holidays. If you can, it’s best to catch one of the earlier buses. That way, you’ll be able to maximize your time in Kenting and miss most of the rush hour traffic.
Buying Tickets for the Kenting Shuttle Bus
If you haven’t pre-booked a Kenting shuttle bus ticket, then you’ll need to buy a ticket at the Kenting Express Bus ticket booth. The booth is located right in front of Exit 2 at Zuoying THSR Station, and you really can’t miss it! Tickets cost NT$410 for a one-way journey and NT$600 for an open-ended return ticket. If you have an Easy Card, you can also buy a discounted ticket. Discounted tickets are only available for one-way tickets and cost NT$354. Since you probably need to get back to Kaohsiung, buying a return ticket still works out cheaper.
After you’ve purchased your tickets, head down the escalator, where you’ll see the bus terminal right in front of you, the Kenting Express Bus departs from Bus Platform 2, and you’ll want to make sure that the signboard shows Xiaowan as the terminal station. The bus works on a first-come, first-serve basis. Therefore, if you already see people queuing up, get in line! Otherwise, you might have to wait for the next one!
Kenting Shuttle Bus Schedule
- Zuoying departures: Buses are more frequent in the morning. Between 8:30 and 10:30, buses depart every 30 minutes. However, from 10:30 to 17:30, buses only come every hour. After 17:30, there are only three more buses. These leave at 18:00, 18:30, and 19:10, respectively.
- Kenting departures: To get back to Kaohsiung from Kenting is pretty straightforward too. The first bus leaves Kenting at 8:30, and the last bus is at 19:10. Morning buses depart every hour and every 30 minutes between 12:30 and 15:30.
Where to get off in Kenting
The bus stops at several locations along the way, so listening to the announcements is important. Another option is to keep Google Maps open to know exactly when and where to get off.
In short, though, if you’re staying at South Beach, get off at the Nanwan stop. For those staying near Dawan Beach or along Kenting Street, you can either get off at Kenting Arch, Kenting Police Station, or Xiaowan, depending on where your accommodation is located along the strip. However, if you’re staying further afield (Chaunfanshi, Eluanbi, or Fengchuisha), you’ll need to either catch another local bus or rent a scooter to get there.
Travel tip: Bring a sweater or a light jacket for the bus ride, even if it is hot and humid outside because the AC is always cranked up in the bus!
2. Taking a Shared Taxi from Zuoying Station to Kenting
Travel time: 2-2.5 hrs | Cost: Approximately NT$ 450 per person one-way
A slightly faster and more comfortable way to travel between Kaohsiung and Kenting is by shared taxi. You’ll find loads of taxi drivers hanging out around the HSR station who offer rides at practically the same rates as a one-way shuttle bus ticket. If you don’t like taking public transport this will be a good option for you. Moreover, this option is also perfect if you’re traveling in a group. But even if you aren’t traveling in a group, it can still be an option for you. Just know that you’ll be sharing the car with other travelers, and you might need to wait a bit for the driver to find other passengers.
If you have already purchased a Kenting bus ticket at the ticket booth but would rather take a taxi, that is also possible. Most drivers will accept the ticket as payment, but you’ll still need to pay an additional NT$100-200 in cash. Although taking a taxi from Kaohsiung to Kenting will be slightly more expensive, you’ll easily shave off 30-60 minutes in traveling time!
3. Renting a Car in Kaohsiung to get to Kenting
Travel time: 2.5 hrs | Cost: NT$1200-1600* per day (*Prices may vary from one dealer to another)
Another straightforward way to get to Kenting from Kaohsiung is to rent a car and drive down yourself. While this is definitely the most expensive option on this list, it would allow you to explore all of Kenting’s best bits at your own pace.
There is no shortage of car rental companies in Kaohsiung. However, two of the easiest places to pick up a car are at the HSR station or the airport. Car rentals in Taiwan generally start around NT$1200-1600 a day. However, the starting price may vary from company and type of vehicle you choose to rent. Remember that you’ll need a valid international driver’s license (or a local license) and a credit card to do so.
4. Getting from Kaohsiung Airport to Kenting
Travel time: 3-4 hrs | Cost: NT$317 one-way
If you’ve arrived at Kaohsiung Airport and do not plan to check out all the cool sights in Kaohsiung City, there are several options to get to Kenting.
The first option is to catch bus 9117 directly at the airport. But you should know that this bus isn’t nearly as frequent as the Kenting Shuttle Bus, so this might not be the fastest route for you if you visit Kenting on a day trip. Buses come at odd hours too, with departures at 10:10, 11:30, 14:30, 15:50, 16:50, 18:30, and 23:00.
The second (and much faster) option is to take the Red MRT Line from the airport to Zuoying Station, where you can catch the Kenting Express Bus. (See above for timings and prices). Once you arrive at the MRT Station, follow the signs to the HSR Station. You’ll need to go up the escalator and locate Exit 2, where you’ll see the ticket booth.
Getting to Kenting in Conclusion
Well, that wraps up this guide on how to get from Kaoshiung to Kenting. As you can see, traveling between Kaohsiung and Kenting via public transport is pretty straightforward. While your choice of transportation will probably depend on your budget and travel preferences, I hope this post has made figuring out the best way to get to Kenting a little easier!
Do you have an easier way to get to Kenting National Park from Kaohsiung? Let me know in the comments below!
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