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The Lin Yutang House

1. The Lin Yutang House incorporates element s of the Chinese and Spanish architectural styles; it was designed by master architect Wang Da-hong, who also did the Sun Yatsen Memorial Hall.Lin YutangLin Yutang was one of the greatest men of letters of the modern Chinese world. Best known in the West for his writings in English, bridging the cultural differences and relating the history and worldview of the East, his mind served as the key portal for many a Western reader seeking to understand Chinese culture. His importance in this role, interpreting East for the West and vice versa, is perhaps unsurpassed.

In 1966, after having lived elsewhere around the globe, Lin made the decision to settle down up on Yangmingshan to enjoy his golden years. The multi-talented man drew up the plans for his new home himself and asked respected local architect Wang Da-hong to carry them out. 2. Inside the residence you can browse Lin's manuscripts, books, and other relics, symbols of a literary master's life and evidence of a life well lived.As you'll see when you visit, the theme is a bright and energizing pattern of alternating blue and white, the look and feel distinctively Mediterranean. Lin had lived here for 10 years, and after his passing away, Taipei City Government decided to honor his literary accomplishments and his fulfilling life by opening the residence to the public. Each year in spring, the eclectic“Popia Festival” is held, featuring a series of arts and culture lectures, bringing people up the mountain in numbers for fun and learning. Lin was passionate about popia , a type of spring roll ; “popia”is the Taiwanese pronunciation,“runbing”the Mandarin.

3. The You-Bu-Wei-Zhai cafe is housed in what was Lin's dining area, serving simple refreshments and teas.As the saying goes,“People reflect their residences, and residences reflect their owners”. In this home, Lin mixed the traditional Eastern courtyard-house architectural style with Western aesthetics. You'll see Asian glazed indigo roof tiling, European-style curving covered galleries, and spiralling columns brought together into a seamless whole, China and Spain living in perfect, elegant harmony. At the same time, a modern feel is happily married with classical aesthetics. Chinese and Western, the new and the old—these attributes both encapsulate Lin's home and the goals this modern renaissance man pursued in his literary life.

4. The traditional Eastern courtyardhouse architectural style is mixed with Western aesthetics, displaying Asian tiling and European-style curving covered gal ler ies and spiralling columns.

The Lin Yutang House
Tel: (02) 2861-3003
Add: 141, Sec. 2, Yangde Blvd., Shilin District
Hours: 09:00-17:00
(closed Mon)
Website: http://www.linyutang.org.tw/english/
Tel: (02) 2861-3003, ext. 11
Hours: 10:00-21:00 (closed Mon)
1. Public bus: No. 260, Red 5, 303, Small 15, Small 16, or Small 17 to Yongfu (Lin Yutang House) stop.
2. Driving: Parking lot for passenger vehicles is located diagonally across boulevard.
Traffic restrictions:
Passenger vehicles are not permitted access to Yangde Blvd. on national holidays from 07:00 to 15:00.

The Lin Yutang House is exactly as it was when Lin graced the premises. As you pass through the blue-tiled, white-stucco front gate, your first sight is of the courtyard. He loved nature's gifts, especially bamboo and stone, and in one corner you'll spy a lovely little bamboo-shaded and rock-set landscaped pond. One of Lin's fondest pastimes, as he'd say, was to sit on a poolside rock and“watch the fish with pole in hand”, meditating and joyfully wiling the time away. Heading down the courtyard's right-side gallery, you'll come to the study, bedroom, and living/dining room area. As a true renaissance man, Lin was of course obliged to be an inventor as well, and in the exhibit area, you'll see models, photos, design blueprints, and patent applications for his Chinese Fast Typewriter, Automatic Toothbrush, Automatic Bridge Playing Machine, Automatic Door Lock, and English Typing Keyboard. From these displays, Lin's scientific creativity and ingenuity are clear, along with his vanguard role in the“synthesis of East and West”.

The You-Bu-Wei-Zhai cafe occupies what once were the family's dining and living rooms. Lin in fact called his study“You Bu Wei Zhai,”translating as his“study for doing nothing in particular,”a humble reference to his avoidance of trying to play the great man in life. Light meals, teas, and coffees are available, and there are few better places to have a meal, sip a hot drink, and peruse a fine work of literature than the Spanish-style veranda, as Lin himself loved to do, looking out over Yangmingshan above and Tianmu below.

Lin once described his Yangmingshan oasis in this way:“Garden within a house, house within a garden, courtyard among rooms, trees among courtyard, sky above trees, moon in sky, is this not happiness?”. It would be a fine thing for each of us to see the world just as Lin Yutang saw it, and what better way can you think of than to sit in the very spots he did and look out over the very sights he loved, wiling away a sunny blue afternoon waiting for the sunset he so enjoyed, soaking in the Lin sense of humor and aesthetics?