Jinmen (Kinmen), Taiwan

Date of visit: October 2011
Guide book used: none

Pictures of Jinmen can be seen here

Jinmen is a useful alternative to Hong Kong or Macau as a place to exit China for people who have visas with more than one entry into the mainland.

Transport: there are boats from both Xiamen and Quanzhou. Boats in Xiamen go from both the main passenger ferry terminal and Wutong ma tou (五通码头). If you are coming from the airport Wutong is best as it is only about a 10 minute drive away. There is an airport shuttle bus for Y6 (timed to coincide with the boat departures and arrivals). The boat is Y160 there, and return NT$750.

Visa: Citizens of most developed countries do not need a visa.

Money: On arrival in Taiwan you are able to get Taiwan dollars in exchange for RMB inside the departures area of the ferry terminal. Strangely there is nothing in the arrivals and also they do not accept US dollars.

Tourist information. Proper tourist information offices exist and they seem to be doing a major drive to get tourists to Jinmen. The problem is most of the information is only in Chinese. English materials are as follows:

  • Tour Introduction of Kinmen – on one side an introduction to Jinmen, plus names of hotels and suggested itineraries in both English and Chinese. On the other side is a map in Chinese only
  • Kinmen delicacies guide map – introduces in English and Chinese the local delicacies and provides a restaurant list and maps of their locations.

In the ferry terminal there is a branch in the arrivals area. When I visited one person spoke passable English. They can help arrange hotels.

In Jincheng there is a branch in the bus station. No English seemed to be spoken. They can lend (free) you a bicycle in return for your passport or similar identification.

Getting around: as most islanders have a car or moped public transport is limited. Sporadic buses go to many places on the island but usually operate less than once an hour.

Tourist information can lend you a bicycle for free. Bright orange, they are six speed. Mine seemed to have a big problem getting the gears to go down. I couldn’t get it to go back down past 3rd. You can also borrow a helmet.

There are new cycle routes complete with orange bicycles painted on the road and signs by the side of the road with directions and distances. The area around Jincheng is reasonably flat and so not bad to cycle around.

Tourist attractions: many on Jinmen are free to enter.

  1. Where do I catch the airport shuttle bus to Wutong ma tou?

    what is the bus departure time for me to catch the last ferry boat at 5 PM to Kinmen?


  2. When you just exit the airport terminal building go right. The airport shuttle buses usually leave from around the side of the building. Having said that, when I took it I was told to wait around there for a while and then directed across a parking lot for buses to a building on the far side.

    Bus departure times are to coincide with ferry departures. My guess is that it would be somewhere between 4.00 and 4.30 but sorry I can’t tell you a definite time.

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