Shuitou Village is perhaps the most visited historical village in Kinmen. It features mansions from some of the wealthiest merchants in Kinmen at the time, preserving western style mixed with traditional Southern Min style architecture. Walking through this village gives you a unique time-period view of Kinmen's history.
Shuitou Village has been inhabited for over 700 years. In it's prime, it was the richest village in Kinmen. The western style mansions (Yanglou 洋樓) in the village built by rich merchants are among the best preserved and extravagant on the island. These mansions are available for tours daily. Among the most famous buildings are Deyue Gun Tower, Jinshui Elementary School, and the Huang Family Ancestral House. Most of the people in the town were either fisherman or farmers, being close to the major wharf on the island (Shuitou Wharf).
Deyue Tower and Mansion Tour Times: 09:00、10:00、11:00、14:00、15:00、16:00, and open for visits 8:30 AM -5:00 PM every day.
Other Tours and Activities in Kinmen:
There are many tours and activities available on the islands, such as fishing, clamming, traditional Chinese Costume Experience, Water Gun Shooting, Night Otter Spotting, SUPing / Paddle Boarding, Intertidal Eco Tour, Handmade Metalworking DIY, and many others. For more information, look at other tour/ferry sites or book a personalized tour with Klook here or KKday here.
We stayed at and can recommend Sihai Hostel, which is a quality hostel with spacious and clean rooms. They also arranged transport to and from the hostel for free. You can book Sihai Hostel on Agoda here, Klook here, or Trip.com here.
Looking for a hotel? We recommend booking through Agoda here, which provides the best quality selection of accommodation on the islands.
You can also find out more about where to stay in our Taiwan hotels guide here.
You can also book Wifi and SIM cards for Taiwan on Gigago here.
Need travel insurance? Compare prices on Insubuy here.
Just to let you know, if you book using the links above, we get some commission at no cost to you, and you can help support our blog. You can click here to receive $5 USD on your first Klook purchase.
How to get there:
By Scooter or Car: From Kincheng, take Xinhai Raod Sec. 1 south to Shuitou village. The tower will be hard to miss. You can book a scooter rental for Kinmen Island on Klook here or on KKday here. You can also check out our scooter rental guide here.
You can rent a car for Kinmen on KKday here or charter a car on Klook here. You can also check out our car rental guide here.
Shuttle Bus: You can book a discount tourist shuttle bus pass on KKday here.
Bicycle Rental: Cycling is the best way to enjoy Taiwan's landscapes if you have the time and energy. Looking for bicycle rentals in Taiwan? You can search on KKday here and search for tours on Klook here. You can also check out our Taiwan cycling guide here.
Map: Please see below:
The entrance to Shuitou village is hard to miss. There is a giant white bottle of the famous Kinmen Sorghum Liquor, one of Kinmen's major exports.
A classic Kinmen Southern-Min style house and roof ornament.
One of the most obvious and striking buildings in the village is the Deyue Gun Tower, built to ward off pirates and bandits in the early 1900s. For more information about this tower, see our full blog about it here.
Check out our drone footage of Shuitou village in the video above. There is a flight restriction because the village is near an airport, so we made sure to stay below 50 meters.
The famous and extravagant Shuitou elementary school.
Traditional Southern-Min houses in Shuitou village.
A basketball hoop hiding a row of derelict ancient houses.
The entrance to the Deyue Tower mansion.
A derelict house next to the mansion.
A view of the two story Huang Huihuang western style mansion. This was completed about the same time as Deyue tower in 1931.
An ancient wash basin and water pump.
Gift shop inside the Huang Huihuang Yanglou mansion, called Wuzhou Pottery Art Shop.
The pink mansion in front of the Deyue Tower is another western style mansion in the Huang Family, called the Huang Yongqian and Huang Yongzao brothers Yanglou (黃永遷、黃永鑿兄弟洋樓) built about 4 years after Deyue Tower in 1935.
Currently there is a Mao Zedong themed restaurant there, probably to lure in mainland Chinese tourists?
Inside the mansion there is more information about this rich family. Inside the Huang Huihuang Yanglou, on the first floor is the "Overseas Chinese Cultural Exhibition Hall."
"Successful Migrants from Kinmen in Indonesia"
"In the mid- 19th century, quite a few people had migrated from Kinmen to Indonesia, mostly laborers who worked in farming, fishing, forestry, and mining. After one or two generations had worked in these lowly jobs and accumulated wealth, the migrants moved in the Pasar (market) to run stalls and went on to open small shops or small scale wholesale businesses. Some operated import and export and made their fortunes."
"History of Chinese Migration in Indonesia"
"Records show that there were groups of Chinese in Sumatra from the latter half of the 9th century, concentrated around Palembang. In the 12th and 13th centuries, an overseas Chinese community gradually formed in Indonesia. From the mid-14th to the start of the 15th century, this Chinese community became wealthy. Of course, marriage with locals produced a large number of Peranakan Chinese. In the 17th and 18th centuries, the Chinese community didn't increase significantly because they were oppressed by the Dutch colonialists. From the end of the 18th century to the early 20th century large numbers of migrants headed south from China."
"Local development was closely connected to the overseas Chinese. apart from trade, they were the main force behind cultivating, mining, livestock rearing, fishing and water recourse construction and also the development of Jakarta and the sugar industry on Java. Tin mining on Bangka and Billiton was also carried out by Chinese."
"The pepper produced by Lampung and Mentol accounted for over 85% of the word's supply and most was grown by Chinese. The Chinese were willing to take risks, worked hard and made an outstanding contribution to society."
"Migrants from Kinmen spread all over Indonesia"
"Migrants from Kinmen spread all over Indonesia, with Jakarta, Semarang, Surabaya, Medan, Asahan Mata, Palembang, Pontianak, Banjarmasin, Pakanbaru, Samarinda, Balikpapan, Kutamalu, Bangka and Cirebon all having a significant number."
Seating area in the Huang Huihuang Mansion next to Deyue Tower. The mansion was renovated in 2004 to become a major tourist attraction in the area. The same architect that made Deyue Tower, architect Chen Nan-An, also created Huang Huihuang's mansion.
You can see many intricate designs on the Huang Huihuang Mansion, such as this fish, now covered by an electric wire.
Mural on top of the house depicting the sun.
Stylized version of the character "壽" meaning long life and prosperity.
Another fish on the roof, perhaps part of the drainage system. This one orange.
Bird like statue on top of the building.
The main centerpiece of the Huang Huihuang mansion, featuring western type figures and features.
Floral relief on the Huang Yongqian mansion.
A water reservoir created in 1974.
This one has live fish living in it!
Drone shot of the upper older part of the village.
Shot of Shuitou Elementary school with Maoshan Tower in the background.
Another shot of the ancient houses to the east of the village.
If I was pro I could have got a shot like this one that I saw at the airport. I'll be prepared the next time I go back.
There are many tours and activities available on Kinmen, such as SUPing / Paddle Boarding, Intertidal Eco Tour, fishing, clamming, Night Otter Spotting, Handmade Metalworking DIY, and many others. For more information, look at other tour/ferry sites or book a personalized tour with Klook here or KKday here.
For more of Taiwan's outer Islands, check out our ultimate guide to Kinmen here.
You can also check out our full guide to all of Taiwan's outer islands here.
You can also check out our full travel guide to Taiwan here.
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.