It was said that three old banyan trees next to Guandu Temple unexpectedly withered away together on the same night in 1895. Most of residents reckoned that Mazu predicted that a disaster was imminent. Soon after, as expected, Japanese army occupied Guandu, setting fire and slaughtering. Anticipating that, residents were able to survive. There were many legends like this; a lot of documents were left. A Miracle of Reanimating, published on 11th July 1906, for example, reported Mazu’s divine manifestations.
On the other hand, Yunu Temple, on the west side of Guandu Temple, related to Guandu Mazu as well. There was a beautiful legend about the establishment of Yunu Temple, which was particularly engraved on the monument Goddess Yunu’s Miracle and the History of Guandu Yunu Temple, as a great instance of a combination of Mazu’s divine manifestations and the temple landscape. It was engraved that Lin Shan-Dau, the son of Lin Tie-Gong who moved to Taiwan from China, did not have a child after married, so he worshiped Mazu sincerely. He eventually had a daughter, named ‘Yu-Nu’. Often going to Guandu Temple to worship with her mother, Yu-Nu had natural affinity with Buddha. She usually closed her eyes and sat quietly, murmuring. Yu-Nu always said that sister Mo-Niang (i.e. Mazu) was teaching her doctrines. When she was 16, a drought had been lasting for a long time in Tamsui and Taipei. One night, Magistrate Zhong dreamed that Yu-Nu was praying for rain, so he sent an administrator to invite her to set up an altar for praying for raining in the administrative office. It turned out that it rained right after Yu-Nu prayed. Later, when she was 18, she flied to the sky after she showered. Hence, Mr. and Mrs. Lin changed Lin’s into a temple as a donation, and carved a statue of their daughter for believers to worship.
‘Rivers in Guandu’ was one of ‘Eight Scenes in Tamsui and Taipei’ in Records of Tamsui, which was famous in Qing dynasty. With ‘Fog of Guanyin Mountain’, ‘Sunset of Fort San Domingo’, ‘Tamsui Outfall’, ‘Snow of Datun Mountain’, ‘Moon of Luzhou’, ‘Moonlight in Jiantan’ and ‘Wavesound in Xizhi’, it was one of famous sceneries in North Taiwan. Guandu Outfall was where Tamsui River and Guandu River merged; the water colors of sea and river were clearly distinct. Therefore, it was also called ‘Diverse Tides in Guandu’ to describe the prodigy of two rivers converging. The view was a spectacle, so literators wrote a lot of poems and articles concerned. Unfortunately, we lost the prospect as the streamflow got smaller and the water of sea and river therefore no longer flew together due to the implementation of Tamsui River flood control plan in 1964, the consequent wider Guandu Outfall and the sedimentation of river.
In contrast to the fine view of rivers, three tides of Guandu was beautiful scenery in Guandu. Whenever tides raised, the sea tide which flew in Tamsui Outfall (blue), Keelung River (gray black due to coal ash), Dahan Stream and Xindian Stream (dark green) flew together—you would see three distinct colors in one river, a special landscape. There was a stele craved ‘Scenic Spot of Three Tides of Guandu’ by Huang Jie, a chairman of Taiwan Province Government/a defence minister/a colonel general in the army, in Houshan Park of Guandu Temple. Tamsui River changed since Guandu Narrow had been widened in 1964—a great amount of seawater flew in. Therefore, shells and clams in fresh water died; Mangroves which floated here replaced seaweeds. Guandu Mangrove Zone grew progressively since then.