Xunfang Fortress

Xunfang Fortress (Xùnfāng Pàotái 巽方砲台) Throughout most of the Qing Period in Taiwan (18th and 19th centuries), the island had a reputation as a revolutionary hot spot. Both the aboriginals and the Han peasants frequently revolted against the Manchu Qing. For many of the Han peasantry, the Qing were colonial occupiers who administered the island … Continue reading

Sihcao Artillery Fort (Chenhai Fort)

Sihcao Artillery Fort (Sìcáo Pàotái 四曹砲台) The Qing government added several forts and batteries along strategic coastal areas of Taiwan during the Opium War of the 1840s to help bolster defenses against the British threat. Sihcao Artillery Fort was one of these forts. It covered a strategic position near the harbors at Luerman and Sihcao. … Continue reading


Duiyuemen (Duìyuèmén 兌悅門) Long gone is the Great West Gate from Tainan. The Small West Gate still exists in Tainan, but it has been relocated to the NCKU campus in the east of the city. Still, the western part of Tainan does have a gate that remains in its original location. Duiyuemen was not part … Continue reading

Eternal Golden Castle (Erkunshen Fortress)

Eternal Golden Castle (Yìzǎi Jīn Chéng 億載金城) Not long before Taiwan was handed over to Japan, this fort was built to increase defense against the threat of invasion from those very same Japanese. The Qing leadership began building the fortress in 1874 and completed it in 1876. They hired a French architect named Bordeaux to … Continue reading

Old Tainan City Walls

Old Tainan City Walls When we talk about “Old Tainan City” as a preserved area, we are talking about the part of the city that was once within the city walls. We could add to that distinction the Five Channels port area just to the west of the walls, but generally, Anping is a whole … Continue reading

Anping Old Fort (Old Fort Zeelandia)

Anping Old Fort (Ānpíng Gǔ Bǎo 安平古堡) The center of any visit to Anping is the old fort. Anping Fort is built on the foundations of the Dutch stronghold named Fort Zeelandia. That fort was the anchor point of early settlements in Tainan for both the Dutch and the Chinese, and much of the settlement’s history lies in Anping’s … Continue reading

Great East Gate

Great East Gate (Dàdōngmén 大東門) There are two great gates left in Tainan City from the time in which the city was protected by walls. While the Great South Gate (Dànánmén 大南門) is a more impressive site to visit, the Great East Gate (Dàdōngmén 大東門) is probably more integrated into the lives of people in Tainan. It … Continue reading

Great South Gate

Great South Gate (Dànánmén 大南門) Dànánmén, the Great South Gate, is one of only two main gates left from the days when Tainan City was protected by walls. The other remaining gate is Dàdōngmén, the Great East Gate, but it is surrounded by a traffic circle and cannot be interacted with in the same way. … Continue reading

Chikan Lou (Ft. Provintia)

Chikan Lou (Chìkǎn Lóu 赤崁樓) Chikan Lou, also known as Chikan Tower or Fort Provintia, is among the most important historic sites in Tainan City as well as all of Taiwan. It is also one of the prettiest. Two ornate stone and wood towers sit amongst the grounds of lovely gardens that include a koi … Continue reading