#Special Interests (Western-style Buildings)
One of Kinmen's glories that you'll spot in all 4 towns and most villages is its yáng lóu (洋樓), literally "Western buildings". There are stories behind each one…
In the late 1800s and early 1900s, most Kinmen young men left to go find work. They started out as coolies in Singapore, the Philippines, Malaysia, Indonesia and other Southeast Asian countries. Some of them climbed far up the social and economic ladders, and amassed quite a fortune.
Impacted by Western colonial architecture in their new surroundings, they returned home to show friends and family what they had become by building homes and schools. These reflect the Western influence on the outside, but remain traditional Chinese on the inside. The result is an architectural treasure trove.