Beigan Township is approximately 30 kilometers northeast of the administrative center of Nangan, and has the second largest population and land area of the Matsu Islands. It also has the most outlying islands, including the eight islands and reefs off the Matsu Tern Conservation Area, as well as Gaodeng and Liangdao, which remain closed off and mysterious to the outside as the ROC Armed Forces remain stationed there. Beigan began to be developed during the Yuan and Song dynasties, but due to the three shifts in border during the Ming and Qing dynasties, the island was left abandoned several times. Pirates frequently operated there until the early years of the Republic, and the vast fishery resources of the surrounding waters attracted coastal residents of Fujian province on the mainland to settle here to fish.
Beigan is long and narrow, with tall mountains for its small land area. Matsu's highest peak, Bishan (298 meters) is located on the island, and the terrain of the entire island rises and falls domestically. Beigan is also characterized by its large number of sandy beaches and outlying islands, which together with its numerous harbors make for a destination full of variety. Lastly, the most unmissable site is the completely preserved traditional Matsu architecture of Qiebi, on a hill facing the sea. The colors of the stone houses appeared to change with the rising and setting of the sun; watching the ocean, sunset and stars here will make you temporarily forget all the trouble and pressure of day-to-day life.
One can travel from the main island of Taiwan to Beigan by air or by sea. There are currently three flights from Taipei's SonShan Airport daily, the flight lasting approximately 50 minutes. You can also take one of the seven daily passenger flights to Nangan Airport, then take a bus to Fuao Wharf to take the hourly Express Ferry to Beigan, which takes only 15 minutes. To travel to Beigan by sea, take the Taiwan-Matsu Ferry from Keelung Harbor. The ferry sets out at 10:00 PM, and arrives at Fuao Wharf on Nangan early the next morning.