Hualien Port lies on Taiwan's eastern shores facing the Pacific Ocean, backed by the Central Mountain Range. Hualien City is the capital of Hualien County, and it is home to about 110 thousand souls.
Hualien Port is an artificial harbor constructed in the 1930s. Hualien Port has been expanded several times to support the local economy and industrial development on the east coast of Taiwan. In 1963, Hualien Port was recognized as one of four Taiwanese international ports, and it was opened to international commerce.
As early as 1622, Spanish colonists attempted to mine gold in Hualien Port. However, the permanent settlement did not begin to grow until 1851, when 2200 Han Chinese farmers came to Fengchuan from Taipei. More farmers from Yilan followed them in 1875.
Hualien Port was ceded, with the rest of Taiwan, to Japan after the Sino-Japanese War of the mid-1890s. At that time, there were not many people living in Hualien Port. Hualien Port was originally called Kilai. In the early 20th Century, the Japanese administration changed its name to Karen because the word "kilai" sounded like the Japanese word for "dislike."
In the early 20th Century, Hualien Port expanded to take in Guohua, a region later called Old New Port. Then in 1923, Hualien Port took in Aolang Port (now New Port) which contained Gouwei. The Hualien County government was established in 1946.
After World War II, when Japan surrendered, the island of Taiwan was of uncertain sovereignty. During the Chinese Civil War in 1949, having lost the war, Chiang Kai-shek led the Kuomintang in escaping mainland China, landing in the largest city in Taiwan, Taipei, from where they claimed to be the sole Chinese government. About two million Chinese soldiers, intellectuals, and business elites also came to Taiwan in their escape from the mainland. The political status of Taiwan has been cloudy. China has long claimed that the island belongs to China, yet the Chinese living on Taiwan insist that it is independent, calling itself the Republic of China.
Hualien Port is located in a beautiful natural landscape near one of the country's most beautiful national parks, the Taroko National Park.