The former British Consulate at Takou in Kaohsiung is over 150 years old, spanning a long and complex history in Taiwan. Originally built by the British, it was taken by Japan, then used as a weather observatory by the ROC, and in 2003 it was converted into a museum. Now it is a popular tourist destination, with great views of Kaohsiung Harbor and Xiziwan.
The British built the consular residence in 1865. The building materials were shipped over from Xiamen, China. Robert Swinhoe was appointed as the first Consul General in Taiwan.
The building was forcibly taken by the Japanese in 1909.
After the ROC took Taiwan in 1945, they converted the building into a weather station.
In 1986, the building was declared a historic monument, and in 2003 it was converted into a museum.
Now the government maintains the fort as a tourist attraction.
In 2005, the building received over 400,000 visitors and received a Yuan-Yeh Award.
10 AM to 7 PM
Admission: 99 NT per person (can be used against merchandise in the gift shop over 300 NT).
Cruise Adventure Journey of Robert Swinhoe: 299 NT (a boat cruise around Kaohsiung Harbor and Xiziwan)
How to get there:
By Car/Scooter: Take provincial highway 2 north from Taipei until you reach Tamsui. The fort is past the old street on highway 2. Parking can be hard to find, but there should be plentiful parking at Tamsui Elementary School and other places further away.
By MRT: Take the red line MRT north to Tamsui station and walk 1 KM north or take a bus to the fort.
Please see below:
I have been to the British Consulate in Kaohsiung only once. Sadly I lived in Kaohsiung for three years but I only visited after I moved to Taipei. It was better than I expected, and despite the steep entrance fee, it was a good experience. It is for sure better than the British Consulate in Tamsui.
Yes, a 99 NT entrance fee is required, and drone flying, smoking, and dog walking are prohibited.
Side view of the building, with people enjoying coffee on the second floor.
Another view of the front side.
Side view facing west.
There is a great view of the sunset from here.
And there is also a great view of Kaohsiung Harbor.
View of Kaohsiung Harbor from the consulate.
Closeup on the 85 tower.
An old coral fort.
Another view of the west side.
Inside is the museum portion of the area. There are many paintings, photos, and artifacts here to enjoy. See the gallery above for more photos.
And of course there is a gift shop that also sells drinks. But you need to spend over 300 NT to be able to offset it with your 99 NT entrance ticket, kind of a ripoff.
View of Kaohsiung Harbor from one of the windows.
Another view of the harbor from inside.
Side view of the house.
View from inside, showing the two floors.
View from the basement, with more photos above.
More tables overlooking the harbor out back.
Ad for the Robert Swinhoe Cruise, which is a boat ride around Kaohsiung Harbor and Xiziwan for 299 NT.
In front of the consulate, there are some steps that lead down to another part of the consulate.
View of the stairs and a statue of a man.
View of an old cellar.
Inside the cellar.
Another display of James L. Maxwell, the first medical missionary in Taiwan, from the Presbyterian Church.
Side view of the lower building.
Inside there are more photos and lots of manakins.
Old British tombstones.
View of what the street looked like at Shaochuantou at the time.
Another view of the historical scene.
View from the side.
If you have time, you can also visit the British Consulate in Tamsui, which is cheaper but not as fun as this one. For our full blog on the Tamsui Consulate, click here. Thanks for reading and be sure to check out more of our blogs on Kaohsiung to come!
We are US Expats that have extensive experience living, working, and travelling in Taiwan. In our day, we had to learn many things about Taiwan the hard way. But we have come to learn that Taiwan is one of the best places in the world for Foreigners to live. Our blog does not represent the opinions of every foreigner in Taiwan. We are just trying to help others learn more about this beautiful country.