|Beigan Township · 北竿鄉|
Beigan Township in Lienchiang County
|• Leader||Rei-Guo Chow (周瑞國)|
|• Total||9.90 km2 (3.82 sq mi)|
|Population (Jan. 2014)|
|• Density||230/km2 (590/sq mi)|
Beigan Township (Chinese: 北竿鄉; pinyin: Běigān Xiāng; Báe̤k-găng-hiŏng), is one of the five major islands of the Matsu Islands, is officially administrated as Lienchiang County by the Republic of China (Taiwan). Beigan Township refers to the administrative subdivision that also includes the major island, Beigan island, as well as other smaller islands of Matsu such as Gao-dan island (高登島), Lian island (亮島). This township served as one of the Three Links to mainland China before direct links between Taiwan and the PRC were reestablished.
Beigan was firstly developed during the Song and Yuan Dynasty. In the Ming Dynasty, the island went out of cultivation for several times due to the three "moves". Pirates also were often seen in the area.
Republic of China
In 1949, with the establishment of the People's Republic of China in Mainland China, Matsu was separated from the mainland and was subsequently incorporated under Lienchiang County by the Government of the Republic of China.
Beigan Township is located approximately 114 nautical miles northwest from Taiwan Island. The township is located to the north relatively to the other Matsu Islands and it is the second largest island of all five only after Nangan. The most populous and convenient area of Beigan is Tan-chi village (塘岐村) (this is also the place where major shops and restaurant are located).
There is a small reef just a few meters outside the beach of Chinbi which is about 5m high. The highest peak on the island of Beigan is Bishan peaking at 294m. The whole island is divided into 6 villages:
- Howo (后沃村), this village is situated on the peninsula that has to be reached through a tunnel under the airport.
- Chinbi (芹壁村), this village is famous for a fantastic view and faces the two islands of Beigan, (Liadao) (Gaoden). Often known as the "A Mediterranean town on the Taiwan Straits".
- Tanchi (塘岐村), this village is the most populous and dense village on the whole island.
- Baisha (白沙村), this village is based near the port that the commercial boats park at.
- Banli (坂里村), this is where the Beihai Tunnel of Beigan is situated.
- Chiaozai (橋仔村), located on the Northeastern side of Beigan.
There is one official branch store of 7-Eleven at the village of Tanchi on the island of Beigan and several other shops on the island. Commercial stores are limited, however, there is an official store of the Republic of China Armed Forces that is opened for all customers. The main source of income are tourism and spendings by the military personnel that serves to protect the island. There are about few hundreds to thousand soldiers located in the island roughly divided into five armed forces. There are no banks on the island of Beigan, however, the Chunghwa Post office serves as a commission to transact funds, process saving and account withdraw.
There are one middle school and two elementary schools located on the island of Beigan. The library of Beigan opens daily from Wednesday to Sundays with the exception of national holidays.
- Beigang Health Bureau (衛生所)
- North High Hospital (北高醫院)
Roads in Beigan is served by taxi or rented cars and buses.
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