Lighthouses of Western Taiwan

Taiwan is a large island, nearly 400 km (250 mi) long, lying about 180 km (110 mi) off the coast of China. The island was claimed by the Chinese Empire in 1683 and some of its coastal regions at least were governed by China for more than 200 years. In 1895, following the first Sino-Japanese War, China ceded control of Taiwan to Japan. Japan governed the island until the end of the Second World War in 1945. While in power the Japanese constructed several lighthouses in Taiwan that remain active today. In 1949 the collapse of Nationalist forces in mainland China led to a new governmental separation between Taiwan and the mainland, with the Nationalist government (the Republic of China) on Taiwan and the Communist government (the People's Republic of China) on the mainland. This separation continues to the present day.

This page includes lighthouses of the western coast of Taiwan including the important ports of Tainan and Taichung.

Lighthouses in Taiwan are operated by the Maritime and Port Bureau of the Ministry of Transportation and Communication. The Bureau has adopted a program to restore and develop the light stations as tourist attractions.

The Chinese word for a lighthouse is dēngtǎ (灯塔). Jiao or chiao is a cape, dao, tao, yu, or hsu is an island, wan is a bay, and kang or gang is a harbor. Due to competing systems for transliterating Chinese into Latin characters there are always several possible spellings for the names of places in China. The Wade-Giles system was in use in Taiwan for many years, but at the beginning of 2009 the Pinyin system used on the mainland became the standard in Taiwan as well. At the present time most place names in Taiwan are still known under their Wade-Giles spellings: Keelung rather than Jilong, for example, and Kaohsiung rather that Gaoxiong.

ARLHS numbers are from the ARLHS World List of Lights. Admiralty numbers are from volume P of the Admiralty List of Lights & Fog Signals. U.S. NGA List numbers are from Publication 112.

General Sources
Online List of Lights - Taiwan
Photos by various photographers posted by Alexander Trabas. The Taiwan photos are by Felix Lin.
Lighthouses in Taiwan
Hosted by the National Kaohsiung University of Applied Science (NKUAS), this page links to individual pages on all the major lighthouses of Taiwan. Text in Chinese.
Lighthouses in Taiwan
Photos by various photographers available from Wikimedia.
World of Lighthouses - Taiwan
Photos by various photographers available from Lightphotos.net.
Lighthouses in Taiwan
Wikipedia checklist, useful for its Pinyin spellings.
Leuchttürme auf Briefmarken
Postage stamp images posted by Klaus Huelse.
Leuchttürme Chinas auf historischen Postkarten
Historic postcard images of Chinese lighthouses, also posted by Klaus Huelse.
Navionics Charts
Navigation chart information for Taiwan.


Fangyuan Light, Fangyuan, September 2009
Flickr Creative Commons photo by WunKai Wang

Tainan Metropolitan City Lighthouses

Anping District Lighthouses
Tainan is a historic port founded as a Dutch trading base in the mid 17th century. The modern city has a population of about 1.9 million. Anping is the principal harbor district of the city.
* Anping South Outer Breakwater
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 24 m (79 ft); red light, 1.5 s on, 1.5 s off. 23 m (75 ft) octagonal concrete tower with gallery, painted red. Jy Tang has a photo, Tim Banan has a 2018 closeup, and Google has a satellite view. Anping is the harbor district of Tainan. In 2006-07 new breakwaters were built to extend Anping Harbor, and the breakwater lighthouses were either rebuilt or relocated to the ends of the new breakwaters. Located at the end of the extended south outer breakwater of Anping. Site and tower closed. Admiralty P4629.23; NGA 13834.
* Anping North Outer Breakwater
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 24 m (79 ft); green light, 1.5 s on, 1.5 s off. 23 m (75 ft) octagonal concrete tower with gallery, painted green. Lian Weifeng has a photo and Google has a street view and a satellite view. In 2006-07 new breakwaters were built to extend Anping Harbor, and the breakwater lighthouses were either rebuilt or relocated to the ends of the new breakwaters. Located at the end of the extended south outer breakwater of Anping. Site and tower closed. Admiralty P4629.24; NGA 13829.
* Anping (Anping Chiang) (3)
1965 (station established 1891). Active; focal plane 23 m (75 ft); three white flashes every 15 s. 22 m (72 ft) square skeletal tower with lantern, gallery, and enclosed watch room. Lighthouse painted white, lantern dome black. Mark Chang has the photo at right and also a more distant view, Trabas has Lin's closeup photo, Chengnan Wu has a photo, and Google has a street view and a satellite view. The original light, a square tower, was replaced in 1909 by a round brick tower built on Anping Castle (the old Dutch Fort Zeelandia). The 1909 light appears in Huelse's postcard view. Located adjacent to a factory on the north side of Anping harbor. Site and tower closed, but the lighthouse can be seen from the street nearby. ARLHS TAI-002; Admiralty P4628; NGA 13828.

Cigu District Lighthouse
* Guosheng (Kuosheng) Kang (2)
1971 (station established 1957). Active; focal plane 34 m (112 ft); two white flashes every 15 s. 33 m (108 ft) tapered square skeletal tower with lantern and gallery, mounted on a square stone foundation. Lighthouse painted with black and white horizontal bands. Huang Yongyuan has a closeup street view and Google has a street view and a satellite view. The original lighthouse, a 21 m (69 ft) skeletal tower, was destroyed by a typhoon in July 1970. Located on a low point of land in Cigu township about 16 km (10 mi) northwest of Tainan. Site open, tower closed. ARLHS TAI-013; Admiralty P4630; NGA 13840.
Anping Lighthouse
Anping Light, Tainan, July 2007
Flickr Creative Commons photo by Mark Chang

Jiangjun District Lighthouses
* Jiangjun (Chiang-chun) South Breakwater
Date unknown. Active; focal plane about 23 m (75 ft); red light, pattern unknown. Approx. 20 m (66 ft) octagonal concrete tower. Entire lighthouse is red. No closeup photo available but Google has a satellite view and a distant street view. Located on the south breakwater of the Jiangjun Harbor in northern Tainan. Probably accessible by walking the pier. Site open, tower closed. Admiralty P4630.61.
* Jiangjun (Chiang-chun) North Breakwater
Date unknown. Active; focal plane about 23 m (75 ft); green light, pattern unknown. Approx. 20 m (66 ft) octagonal concrete tower. Entire lighthouse is green. No closeup photo available but Google has a satellite view and a distant street view. Located on the south breakwater of the Jiangjun Harbor in northern Tainan. Probably accessible by walking the pier. Site open, tower closed. Admiralty P4630.62.

Chiayi County Lighthouses

Budai Commercial Port Lighthouses
Budai South Breakwater
Date unknown. Active; focal plane about 20 m (66 ft); red light, pattern unknown. Approx. 16 m (52 ft) round tower. Entire lighthouse is red. A photo is available and Google has a satellite view. Budai is the terminal for fast ferries to Magong in the Penghu (Pescadores) Islands. Located on the south breakwater at the entrance to Budai Harbor. Site status unknown. Admiralty P4631.7.
Budai North Breakwater
Date unknown. Active; focal plane about 20 m (66 ft); red light, pattern unknown. Approx. 16 m (52 ft) round tower. Entire lighthouse is green. A photo is available and Google has a satellite view. Located on the north breakwater at the entrance to Budai Harbor. Site status unknown. Admiralty P4631.5.

Yunlin County Lighthouses

Waisanding Lighthouses
Waisanding (Wai-san-ting Chou) (6)
2006. Apparently inactive. 38 m (125 ft) square skeletal tower topped by a square skeletal mast and mounted on a square platform supported by four massive piles. Tower painted with red and white horizontal bands. Chengnan Wu has a 2020 photo, a view from shore (this light is on the left) is available, and Google has a satellite view. Lighthouse painted with red and white horizontal bands. The new tower stands on the same platform as the previous (1974) tower This light station is located near the end of the Waisanding sandbar, which stretches for some 20 km (13 mi) southwest from Kouhu. It has been rebuilt or relocated five times, usually to accommodate changes in the sandbar or to replace towers toppled by typhoons. Accessible only by boat. Site and tower closed. Site manager: Southwest Coast National Scenic Area. ARLHS TAI-054; ex-Admiralty P4658.6.
Wenkan Tui (Wengangdui, Waisanding) (7)
2012 (station established 1914). Active; focal plane 14 m (46 ft); white flash every 4 s. 16 m (52 ft) square skeletal tower painted black. A view from shore (this light is on the right) is available, but the tower is not seen in Google's satellite view. Located about 1.5 km (1 mi) north of the Waisanding lighthouse. Accessible only by boat. Site and tower closed. Site manager: Southwest Coast National Scenic Area. Admiralty P4658.4; NGA 13844.

Mailiao Lighthouses
Mailiao South Breakwater
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 24 m (79 ft); red flash every 3 s. 23 m (75 ft) octagonal concrete tower with lantern and gallery, painted red. No photo available but Google has a satellite view. Mailiao Kang is a large modern harbor enclosed by long breakwaters; it serves Taiwan's largest oil refinery. Located at the end of a short, west-pointing spur off the south breakwater. Probably accessible only by boat. Site and tower closed. ARLHS TAI-045; Admiralty P4659.415; NGA 13854.
Mailiao West Breakwater
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 24 m (79 ft); white flash every 3 s. 23 m (75 ft) octagonal concrete tower with lantern and gallery, painted green. Tao Jianzhong has the photo seen at right and Google has a satellite view. Located at the end of the west (outer) breakwater. Probably accessible only by boat. Site and tower closed. Admiralty P4659.412; NGA 13855.

West Breakwater Light, Mailiao, May 2018
Google Maps photo by Tao Jianzhong

Changhua County Lighthouse

Fangyuan Lighthouse
**** Fangyuan (Fong Yuan)
1983. Active; focal plane 36 m (118 ft); white light, 5 s on, 5 s off. 37 m (121 ft) octagonal concrete tower with lantern and double gallery. Tower painted with black and white vertical stripes; lantern painted white with a black dome. WunKai Wang's photo is at the top of this page, K.H. Yeh has a photo, Chengnan Wu has a photo, Trabas has Lin's photo, and Google has a street view and a satellite view. The lantern was transferred here from the Taichung (Cingshuei) lighthouse (see below). Located on the north side of Fangyuan. Site open, tower open daily except Mondays year round. ARLHS TAI-007; Admiralty P4659.5; NGA 13852.

Taichung Metropolitan City Lighthouses

Taichung is the second largest city of Taiwan, with a population approaching 3 million, and also the second largest port.

Taichung South Harbor Lighthouses
Collier Channel South Range Front
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 38 m (125 ft); continuous green light. 28 m (92 ft) square cylindrical skeletal tower mounted atop a warehouse. The tower carries a green triangular daymark, point up. Google has a distant street view and Bing has a satellite view. This range guides vessels in the southern portion of Taichung harbor. Located at the end of a quay facing the west side of the channel. Site and tower closed. Admiralty P4660.617; NGA 13921.2.
Collier Channel South Range Rear
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 72 m (236 ft); continuous green light. 68 m (223 ft) round chimney. No photo available but Google has a satellite view. Located 864 m (1/2 mi) south southwest of the front light. Site and tower closed. Admiralty P4660.618; NGA 13921.21.
Taichung West Pier Range Front
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 13 m (43 ft); continuous green light. 10 m (33 ft) square cylindrical orange skeletal tower carrying a triangular daymark. No photo available but Google has a satellite view. The range guides vessels leaving Taichung's inner harbor. Located in an liquified natural gas terminal south of the entrance to the inner harbor. Site and tower closed. Admiralty P4660.61; NGA 13921.5.
Taichung West Pier Range Rear
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 24 m (79 ft); continuous green light. 14 m (46 ft) square cylindrical orange skeletal tower carrying a triangular daymark. No photo available but Google has a satellite view. Located 116 m (380 ft) north of the front light. Site and tower closed. Admiralty P4660.611; NGA 13921.51.

Taichung Main Harbor Lighthouses
Taichung South Breakwater
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 21 m (69 ft); red flash every 2 s. 20 m (66 ft) round concrete tower with lantern and gallery, painted red. Trabas has Lin's photo, Zhang Juzheng has a closeup street view and Google has a satellite view. Located at the end of the south breakwater at Taichung harbor. Probably accessible only by boat. Site and tower closed. ARLHS TAI-028; Admiralty P4660.6; NGA 13904.
Taichung Main Channel Range Front
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 45 m (147 ft); continuous light, white, red or green depending on direction. 42 m (138 ft) tapered square skeletal tower with gallery. The tower is at the left side of a photo and Bing has a satellite view. This is the main harbor entrance range. Located on a main quay just inside the entrance to Taichung Kang (harbor). Site and tower closed. ARLHS TAI-049; Admiralty P4660.94; NGA 13906.
* Taichung Main Channel Range Rear
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 70 m (230 ft); continuous white light. 67 m (220 ft) tapered square skeletal tower with gallery. Trabas has Lin's photo, Google has a street view and Bing has a good satellite view. Located at a major street intersection just east of the harbor facilities. Site open, tower closed. Admiralty P4660.941; NGA 13907.
* Taichung Kang
1982. Active; focal plane 62 m (202 ft); three white flashes every 30 s. 63 m (206 ft) 2-story light tower with lantern and double gallery, mounted atop a huge concrete warehouse. The building is unpainted light gray concrete. A portion of Chi Hong's photo is at right, Trabas has Lin's photo, Hong Min Ji has a 2017 photo, and Google has a satellite view and a distant street view across the harbor. Located on the main north quay just inside the entrance to Taichung Kang (harbor). Site open, tower closed. ARLHS TAI-052; Admiralty P4660.15; NGA 13896.
Taichung North Breakwater (Taichung Harbor)
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 21 m (69 ft); white flash every 2 s. 20 m (66 ft) round concrete tower with lantern and gallery, painted green. Chi Hong has a distant view, Lai Shijie has a street view and Google has a satellite view. Ke Jinyuan has a photo of the lighthouse under restoration in 2010. This breakwater extends about 2.5 km (1.5 mi) into the Taiwan Strait, considerably beyond the end of the south breakwater. Located at the end of the north breakwater at Taichung harbor. Probably accessible only by boat. Site open, tower closed. ARLHS TAI-026; Admiralty P4660.4; NGA 13900.
Taichung Harbor Entry Directional (Range Front) (1 and 2)
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 11 m (36 ft) (?); continuous light, white, red or green depending on direction. The light was originally on a 16 m (52 ft) hexagonal cylindrical concrete tower; it has been moved to a square cylindrical skeletal tower, painted yellow and carrying a green triangular daymark pointed up. Jin Jiazhang has a photo, another photo is available, and Bing has a satellite view. Despite its name, this is really an approach range for arriving ships rather than an entrance range. Located at an elbow of the north breakwater. Site open, tower closed. Admiralty P4660.48; NGA 13901.

Taichung Kang Light, Taichung, December 2015
ex-Google Plus photo by Chi Hong
Taichung Harbor Entry Range Rear
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 37 m (121 ft); continuous yellow light. 30 m (98 ft) square cylindrical skeletal tower carrying a green triangular daymark pointed down and mounted on a square platform supported by piles. Zhu Yuxian has photo and Bing has a satellite view. Located north of the north breakwater, 500 m (0.3 mi) east northeast of the front light. Accessible only by boat. Site open, tower closed. Admiralty P4660.481; NGA 13901.1.

Taichung Harbor Inner Basin Lighthouses
Taichung Fishing Harbor Outer Breakwater
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 9 m (30 ft); green flash every 6 s. 7 m (23 ft) post centered on a round 1-story equipment shelter. Entire lighthouse is green. Trabas has Lin's photo and Google has a satellite view and a distant street view. Located at the entrance to the fishing harbor on the north side of Taichung's harbor. Accessible by walking the pier. Site open, tower closed. Admiralty P4660.64; NGA 13908.
Taichung Fishing Harbor West Inner Breakwater
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 8 m (26 ft); green flash every 4 s. 7 m (23 ft) post centered on a round 1-story equipment shelter. Entire lighthouse is green. Trabas has Lin's photo and Google has a street view and a satellite view. Located on a breakwater a short distance east of the Outer Breakwater Light. Accessible by walking the pier. Site open, tower closed. Admiralty P4660.66; NGA 13909.
Taichung Fishing Harbor East Inner Breakwater (2)
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 17 m (56 ft); continuous white light. Approx. 11 m (36 ft) round 2-story tower with a pagoda-style roof. Tower painted white; the roof is red. Qiu Jiarou has a 2016 photo, Trabas has Lin's photo and Google has a street view and a satellite view. NGA describes an 8 m (26 ft) yellow tower. Locared on the east side of the entrance to the fishing harbor. Accessible by walking the pier. Site open, tower closed. Admiralty P4660.67; NGA 13909.5.
Taichung Harbor Craft Basin West Breakwater
Date unknown. Active; focal plane about 7 m (23 ft); green flash every 4 s. 6 m (20 ft) post centered on a round 1-story concrete equipment shelter. Entire lighthouse is green. No photo available but Google has a satellite view. Located on the west breakwater of an inner harbor basin of Taiching. Site status unknown. Admiralty P4660.93; NGA 13920.
Taichung Harbor Craft Basin East Breakwater
Date unknown. Active; focal plane about 7 m (23 ft); continuous red white. 6 m (20 ft) round barbell-shaped tower. Entire lighthouse is red. No photo available but Google has a satellite view. Located on the east breakwater of an inner harbor basin of Taiching. Site status unknown. Admiralty P4660.932; NGA 13920.1.
Collier Channel North (Fishing Harbor) Range Front
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 21 m (69 ft); continuous green light. 18 m (59 ft) square cylindrical tower carrying a green triangular daymark, point up. Trabas has Lin's photo and Google has a satellite view and a distant street view. This range guides vessels departing the southern harbor. The rear light is on a 28 m (92 ft) steel mast. Located at the rear of the Harbor Craft Basin. Site status unknown. Admiralty P4660.675; NGA 13921.1.
* Taichung North Jetty
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 13 m (43 ft); three white flashes every 10 s. 12 m (39 ft) round strongly tapered concrete tower attached to a square 1-story equipment shelter. Lighthouse (including the equipment shelter) painted red. Trabas has Lin's photo, 2015 closeup is available, and Google has a satellite view.The lighthouse was formerly painted with red and white horizontal bands. Located at the end of a short pier at the south entrance to a small boat harbor north of Taichung's main harbor area. Accessible by walking the pier. Site open, tower closed. Admiralty P4660.2; NGA 13940.

Qingshui Lighthouse
**** Gaomei (Kaomei, Gau-mei)
1967. Inactive since 1982 but maintained as a daybeacon. Approx. 34 m (112 ft) tapered octagonal concrete tower with gallery, painted with red and white horizontal bands. Lantern removed and transferred to the Fangyuan lighthouse (see above); it has been replaced by an observation room open to the public. Zhuo Lifen's photo is at right, WunKai Wang has a closeup and a second view, and Google has a street view and a satellite view. The red and white banded daymark is unique in Taiwan. The lighthouse was restored in 2014 and has been opened for climbing; a covered observation deck was built atop the tower in place of the lantern. Located on the coast in Qingshui (Cingshuei) township, about 4 km (2.5 mi) northeast of Taichung harbor. Site open, tower open daily except Mondays year round. ex-Admiralty F4660.1.

Gaomei Light, Qingshui, February 2018
ex-Google Plus photo by Zhuo Lifen

Miaoli County Lighthouse

Tongxiao Lighthouse
* Tongxiao (T'ung-hsiao) South Mole
Date unknown. Active; focal plane about 10 m (33 ft); red flash every 4 s. 8 m (26 ft) round red tower mounted on a 1-story square concrete base. Trabas has Lin's photo, Rudy Chung has a street view, and Google has an indistinct satellite view. Located on the short south mole at the small Tongxiao fishing harbor. Site open, tower closed. Admiralty P4660.994.

Hsinchu City Lighthouses

Hsinchu Fishing Harbor Lighthouses
* Hsinchu South Breakwater (1)
Date unknown. Inactive. Approx. 8 m (26 ft) post centered on a round concrete tower. The lighthouse was painted red but the paint is peeling off. Trabas has Lin's photo, Lee Hank has a 2019 photo, and Google has an indistinct satellite view. The breakwater was extended and a new post light (focal plane 14 m (46 ft); red flash every 4 s) was placed at its end. Huang Congyan has a closeup of the new light. Located on the south breakwater of Hsinchu Harbor. Site open, tower closed. Active light: Admiralty P4661.6; NGA 13949.
* Hsinchu North Breakwater (1)
Date unknown. Inactive. Approx. 8 m (26 ft) post centered on a round concrete tower. The lighthouse was painted white but the paint is peeling off. Trabas has Lin's photo, Lee Hank has a 2019 photo, and Google has an indistinct satellite view. The breakwater was extended and a new post light (focal plane 14 m (46 ft); red flash every 4 s) was placed at its end. Sim Chen has a closeup of the new light. Located on the north breakwater of Hsinchu Harbor. Site open, tower closed. Active light: Admiralty P4661.7; NGA 13950.

Information available on lost lighthouses:

Notable faux lighthouses:

Adjoining pages: North: Northern Taiwan | South: Southern Taiwan | Southwest: Penghu Islands | West: Matsu and Kinmen

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Posted September 11, 2007. Checked and revised December 17, 2020. Lighthouses: 35. Site copyright 2020 Russ Rowlett and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.