Tamsui's Little White House (officially the Tamsui Customs Officers' Residence)
is an important historical building in Tamsui, near Fort San Domingo. The ticket to Fort San Domingo also allows entrance to this building, so you should definitely check it out if you visit the area.
As a result of the Second Opium War, China was forced to open more ports to the west, including in Tamsui and Tainan, therefore creating a need for the Qing government to create a customs office in Tamsui.
The Tamsui Customs Officer's Residence was built in 1870 for the Custom Officer. The first customs officer was W. Maxwell of the UK. After the Japanese took control of Taiwan, the house was abandoned. Later after the ROC took control of Taiwan, the building was later annexed as part of the nearby Tamkang High School. In 1996, the building was set for destruction but was saved by local scholars who protested. In 2004, the building was renovated as a tourist attraction in its current form.
Because of its stark white appearance, it has been nicknamed the "little white house" referring to the resemblance to the White House in Washington DC.
80 NT (including entrance to For San Domingo and Hobe Fort)
9:30 AM to 5:30 PM (tickets not sold after 4:30)
How to get there:
By Car/Scooter: Take provincial highway 2 north from Taipei until you reach Tamsui. The white house is passed 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 white house.
Please see below:
We have visited the little white house once. It's a small house near Fort San Domingo, near a number of other historical buildings in the area.
You can walk to the little white house from Tamsui MRT station, but it is a little far. I have always taken a scooter there. There is a little bit of scooter parking around the white house, some of it is legal some of it is not.
The 80 NT ticket also allows you to see for San Domingo and Hobe Fort, so if you bought a ticket at one of those places, you can also come see the little white house at no additional cost. Sorry I have no idea who this lady is but she decided to pose for this photo.
Map of the area in front of the little white house. This is where you can find legal scooter parking.
Some illegal scooter parking, probably parking fines are not enforced here.
First view of the house from the main entrance.
View of the front porch.
Another view of the arches.
Look inside the front door.
Looking outside to Mt. Guanyin across the Tamsui River.
Art on display inside the little white house, along with a biography of the artist.
A timeline of events for the little white house.
What would a paid museum be without a model of the building inside?
View out the front door.
Windows open to the outside.
Another model of the building.
Qing era ship.
Dutch map of the area.
Living room with fake bookshelves.
An interactive history of the little white house on LCD screen.
Painting of era Qing ships.
Another view out the front door.
Small addition to the side, which is now a bathroom.
View of the side of the house, with caretakers cleaning up the place.
Sign introducing the Douglas Lapraik & Co. Building, The former Residence of Tamsui Township Head of Tada Eikichi, Fort San Domingo, and the Tamsui Customs Wharf.
A dark and dreary day in Tamsui.
View of the little white house from the street.
Looking at the main entrance.
An introduction of the bushes around the white house that have been here for over a hundred years, imported from India.
Traditional Fujian style rooftop nearby.
Entrance to Tam-kang high school, which used to own the little white house as an extension building.
Some other old buildings in Tam-kang high school.
The front door to the little white house, which is now used as scooter parking, The official entrance is out back.
We are US Expats that have extensive experience living and working 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.