The family mansion of Lin Ying-yin boasts wood and stone carvings, traditional architectural motifs representing luck and fortune, and a beautiful traditional garden. You can visit the garden – which includes ponds, pavilions and numerous buildings – on your own, but admission to the residence (三落大厝; Sān Luò Dà Cuò) is via guided tour only (10am, 11am, 2pm and 3pm Tuesday to Friday, additional tour 2.30pm Saturday and Sunday). The residence stays open later on Friday, when the garden is illuminated by lanterns.
To get here take Fuzhong MRT Exit 3 and follow the English signs (about a 600m walk), or take a YouBike.
In 1778 Lin Ying-yin migrated to Taiwan from Fujian province, and his family amassed a great fortune trading rice and salt. Eventually the family settled in what is now Banqiao city, building this mansion and its expansive gardens in the mid-19th century. Today both are the largest remaining examples from that period left in Taiwan. Beautiful carvings and traditional motifs abound: in particular look out for the windows shaped like butterflies, bats, coins, peaches and fans. The garden is designed in the southern-Chinese style with abundant viewpoints created in the limited space by narrow maze-like walkways.
Of all the restored residences in Taipei and New Taipei, this is by far the most worthwhile to visit. It's closed on the first Monday of the month.