The Lin Family Mansion and Garden in Wufeng is the best place on Taiwan island to witness classical Chinese architecture. The only other place that I can think of where you can see authentic old-Chinese, Hoklo, Fujianese buildings with such intricate brickwork and elegant swallowtail roofs is on Kinmen, one of Taiwan’s outlying islands.
I have a special relationship with the Lin Family Mansion. In 2012, my wife Ruby and I had a wedding photo session, and we went to different sites around Taichung city. One of those sites was the Lin Family Mansion and Garden in Wufeng.
(The rest of the story is below the gallery… By the way, you can click on the pics to see them in full-size. I hope you view them on a proper monitor and not just your smart phone as they are quite high-resolution)
We had obviously only hoped to get some shots outside, at the front, with the buildings as background. When we arrived at the mansion and started the shoot, an old man came over to ask Ruby some questions. After few minutes of conversation, they found out that Ruby’s father and the man had been high-school classmates! Then the most unbelievable thing happened…
He invited us to go INSIDE the mansion to continue our photo shoot. We couldn’t believe it. Our photographers couldn’t believe it either. At that time, the Lin Family Mansion had been closed for years, due to restoration work. Just to be authorized inside was great luck. To be allowed to immortalize my union with Ruby at such a palatial, majestic place was truly an honor I will never forget.
To say that we were lucky to have had the opportunity to get some of our wedding pictures taken at the Lin Family Mansion is an understatement. Deep down inside, I think that destiny played a role in this.
As far as I can remember, I’ve always had a passion for ancient Chinese stuff; history, political figures, religion, and especially old buildings. The only other person in the world that I know who shares this passion is my wife Ruby.
It was not the first time we had been to the Lin Family Mansion. Few years back, when my mom visited us, it had been one of the first places we took her. Then when my dad came, we also brought him here.
As I’m writing this article, Ruby and I are on Kinmen Island, visiting the same kind of old places full of heritage, glory, and tragedy. Like the Lin Family Mansion in Wufeng, it’s a place where a slice of Chinese history has flourished, been destroyed, re-built, and forgotten.
But forgotten no more is the Lin Family Mansion… It has now fully re-opened to the public and it is by far the #1 attraction in Wufeng. Weekends can be extremely busy and it might be hard to get good pictures of the buildings, as there’s always people in the way. So, if possible, go on weekdays.
There are still people from the Lin family living in houses on the ground at the mansion (the row at the southern end) so you should be very mindful when you visit. Remember that it’s not just a museum, you’re in someone’s house.