A Cozy Café on Taiwan’s Matsu Islands

Furen Café (夫人咖啡) in Taiwan’s Matsu Archipelago. (Image: Billy Shyu / Vision Times)
Furen Café (夫人咖啡) in Taiwan’s Matsu Archipelago. (Image: Billy Shyu / Vision Times)

Situated on the western tip of Nangan Island (南杆) in Taiwan’s Matsu Archipelago, Furen Café (夫人咖啡), also known as Madam Café, is a cozy coffee shop on the island’s Xiwei Village (四維村), also known as Furen Village (夫人村).

The front door of Furen Cafe. (Image: Billy Shyu / Vision Times)

The front door of Furen Cafe. (Image: Billy Shyu / Vision Times)

The café is the namesake of the village’s nickname, which is so-called because of various distinct legends. Some said that it was so named because all the housewives in the village defeated a pirate invasion while their husbands were away from home to catch fish in the sea.

It's great to sip a cup of coffee while taking in the spectacular views of the sea and sunsets. (Image: Julia Fu / Vision Times)

It’s great to sip a cup of coffee while taking in the spectacular views of the sea and sunsets. (Image: Julia Fu / Vision Times)

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Others said that it was because pirates once arranged for some abducted madams to live in the village. Still, others said that the village was so-called because an elegant Japanese madam enjoyed the scenery there very much when she paid a visit to Furen Village a long time ago.

The coffee shop is on the first floor and the front yard of the cafe. (Image: Billy Shyu / Vision Times)

The coffee shop is on the first floor and the front yard of the café. (Image: Billy Shyu / Vision Times)

The café used to be an abandoned 2-story stone house built about 100 years ago. The owner started to renovate the granite stone house at the end of 2003 with painstaking efforts, and it was finally turned into a café with a simple homestay on the second floor in the summer of 2004.

The cafe is decorated with some traditional items and mementos. (Image: Billy Shyu / Vision Times)

The café is decorated with some traditional items and mementos. (Image: Billy Shyu / Vision Times)

Not only does the café have a romantic name, but it is also nestled at a perfect location where visitors can take in spectacular views of the Port of Fuao (福澳港) and Beigan (北竿).

Visitors can purchase hand-made mementos from the cafe. (Image: Billy Shyu / Vision Times)

Visitors can purchase handmade mementos from the café. (Image: Billy Shyu / Vision Times)

In fact, upon arriving at the narrow entrance with a small national flag of the Republic of China (Taiwan), visitors are often enchanted by the unique decoration in a wide variety of beautiful flowers and plants.

Furen Cafe was once a photo studio for souldiers on Matsu Islands. (Image: Billy Shyu / Vision Times)

Furen Café was once a photo studio. (Image: Billy Shyu / Vision Times)

While enjoying the magnificent view of the peninsula and the beautiful surroundings of the café, visitors can taste the aromatic coffee/drinks and the unique meals in a relaxed ambiance. The most popular dishes served at the café are hand-made fish noodles, fried rice, hot pot, mussels, fish balls, sautéed seashells, fresh fish, and various kinds of cakes, etc.

The fried rice served at Furen Cafe in Matsu's Nangan Island. (Image: Courtesy of Furen Cafe)

The fried rice served at Furen Cafe in Matsu’s Nangan Island. (Image: Courtesy of Furen Cafe)

Additionally, there are Matsu old wine, handmade delicacies, an array of snacks, and crafts displayed at the café. They are perfect items for visitors to bring back as gifts or souvenir mementos.

The finger-shaped seashells and wild mussels served at Furen Cafe. (Image: Courtesy of Furen Cafe)

The finger-shaped seashells and wild mussels served at Furen Cafe. (Image: Courtesy of Furen Cafe)

Over the years, Furen Café has become one of the most popular tourist spots in Nangan. In 2019, the coffee shop was voted as one of Taiwan’s top 100 guesthouses from the 457 guesthouses participating in an online poll conducted by Taiwan’s Tourism Bureau.

Attracted by its reputation, many famous figures have patronized Furen Café, and among them is Taiwan’s former First Lady Zhou Mei-qing (周美青), the wife of former President Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九). Therefore, many said that Furen Café is a destination that visitors can’t miss out on when visiting Mastu.

Furen Café has been patronized by many famous figures, including Taiwan's former First Lady Zhou Mei-qing (周美青). (Image: Billy Shyu / Vision Times)

Furen Café has been patronized by many famous figures, including Taiwan’s former First Lady Zhou Mei-qing (周美青). (Image: Billy Shyu / Vision Times)

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