A historic fort, fresh seafood, and beautiful sunsets make the quaint seaside town of Tamsui a popular day trip from Taipei. Old-fashioned shops along the main road give visitors a feel for the town's history. Oxford College and the Mackay Hospital, which were built in the late 1800s by Western missionaries, remain to this day. Fort San Domingo, which came to be known by the name "Red-haired Barbarian Fort"once it came into Dutch possession, was built by the Spanish in 1629, occupied by the Dutch in 1642, leased to the British in 1867, and bombarded by the French in 1884. Tamsui has many fine seafood restaurants with large selections of fresh delicacies on display. Some of the restaurants are built along the Tamsui River to provide diners with a riverside view of Tamsui's sunset.
Fisherman's Wharf is a multi-purpose leisure fishing port developed by the Taipei County Government. There are magnificent floating piers and a spacious park, with a bridge in the shape of a boat spanning across the harbor and a wooden path stretching over 300 meters at the waterfront.
It is relaxing to lean against the fence enjoying the breeze and sights at the Tamsui River mouth. In the evening, this is the best place to watch the view of the sunset.
Also, during Valentine's day, it's one of the most romantic place but, frankly speaking, the worst time to visit here maybe Valentine's day as it's too crowded ;)
For an interesting day trip from Taipei, Tamshui is a good choice. Located near the mouth of the Tamshui river, this town was once a major port, but now is mostly a tourist attraction.
There are several historically significant buildings in Tamshui. The most famous is Fort San Domingo, or as they say in Chinese: "Fort of the Red Haired Barbarians". (Meaning guys like me) This fort was originally built by the Spanish in the 17th Century. Also, around town you can find several other old European buildings, including the Red Castle, which was built in the late 19th century.
There is also a new park directly in front of the MRT station. Here they have live bands and other entertainment on weekends...
Resting on the banks of the Tamsui River, the Hsuehhai Academy is the only traditional academy building left in Taipei. Built in 1837, it was used as a military barracks during the Japanese occupation, and was later turned into a Japanese language school. Today it serves as the ancestral temple of the Kao family. Apart from the main walls, the entire building has been refitted.