Craving some local culture and history? Check out new ways to discover old Hong Kong with the fam. We’ve uncovered kiddie-friendly heritage hikes, Tang Dynasty gardens, a traditional teahouse, Jean-Claude Van Damme’s old Kowloon stomping grounds, and more. Pack up the kiddos and start exploring!
Visiting The Big Buddha in Hong Kong is a real bucket list adventure for kids and families. Zip over to the world’s tallest outdoor seated Buddha on the Ngong Ping 360 cable car. It’s free to climb the stars and visit the Buddha, but there is a small fee if you want to go inside. Also, if you are keen on enjoying a snack or lunch at the nearby Po Lin Monastery, you can purchase tickets to the right of the staircase leading up to The Big Buddha. Also, make sure to visit the Ngong Ping Nature Centre for info on ecological resources and then hit the hiking trails to explore.
Po Lin Monastery and Giant Buddha, Lantau Island, Hong Kong, http://www.np360.com.hk
Seeking a bit of alfresco culture? Stroll on over to the beautiful Kowloon Walled City Park steeped with Hong Kong history and lore. Walk the paths, peak into the only remaining building from the Walled City, and enjoy the fascinating photos and interactive exhibition for kids and adults. Check out clips from Jean-Claude Van Damme’s movie filmed when the Walled City was still standing!
Kowloon Walled City Park, Tung Tau Tsuen Road, Kowloon, Hong Kong, http://www.discoverhongkong.com/eng/attractions/kln-walled-city-park.html.
Take a day trip to zen out at the 10,000 Buddhas Monastery in the New Territories! Start by climbing the stairs past the smiling life-size golden buddhas. At the top, take in the views and discover the five temples, four pavilions, verandah, and pagoda. Make a weekend out of it and book a staycation at the Hyatt Regency Sha Tin!
10,000 Buddhas, 221 Pai Tau Village, Sha Tin, New Territories, Hong Kong, +852 2691 1067, firstname.lastname@example.org.
Calling all history buffs and families with kids of all ages, looking for some overnight heritage fun? Head to the Tai O Heritage Hotel, an Old Tai O Police Station built in 1902. It has been renovated into a stunning hotel that has preserved and elevated the heritage of this beautiful building. The hotel houses the Heritage Interpretation Centre, an exhibition area displaying the history of the former police station and Tai O people. It also features Tai O Lookout, a glass-roofed restaurant serving Tai O specialties and displaying artwork by local Tai O artists.
Tai O Heritage Hotel, Shek Tsai Po Street, Tai O, Lantau Island, Hong Kong, +852 2985 8383, https://www.taioheritagehotel.com/en/
The Hong Kong Heritage Museum in Shatin is a one-stop fun fest for the whole family's history, arts, and culture. The Children’s Discovery Gallery is specially designed for children 4 to 10 years old. It features 8 learning play zones where kiddos can discover old Hong Kong, learn about the wonders of nature and mysteries of archaeology, and more.
Hong Kong Heritage Museum, 1 Man Lam Road, Sha Tin, Hong Kong, +852 2180 8188, heritagemuseum.gov.hk. Closed on Tuesdays.
Pop into the Tea Museum (built in the 1840s as the residence of the Commander of the British Forces) and then enjoy seriously delish veg dim sum and tea service at the quaint traditional Lockcha Tea House in Hong Kong Park. Kids especially love the blooming jasmine tea! Afterward, take a stroll through HK Park to the koi fish pond and multiple-level playground.
LockCha Tea House, G/F, The K.S. Lo Gallery, Hong Kong Park, Admiralty, Hong Kong, +852 2801 7177, www.lockcha.com
Jet over to Mongkok for a full day of local market activities. Start at the Flower Market and walk down rows and rows of flowers, plants, and pots. Veer into the Yuen Po Street Bird Garden to find every little chirper imaginable and meet some 'talking' birds and then stroll around the corner to the Goldfish Market with plenty of rare fish for little ones to gaggle over.
Flower Market, Flower Market Road, Mongkok, Hong Kong, Website. Open every day 7am to 7pm.
Bird Garden, Yuen Po Street, Mongkok, Hong Kong, Website. Open every day 7am to 8pm.
The Goldfish Market, Tung Choi Street North Section, Mongkok, Hong Kong, Website. Open daily 10:30am to 10pm.
Check out the world’s largest building constructed without nails. Little culture vultures might enjoy the treasure trove of relics on display in the halls and the complex’s Tang Dynasty architecture. Kids love running wild in the gardens and the educational exhibitions and performances. Take a break at the teahouse and reputable resto serving veg Chinese delights!
Chi Lin Nunnery, 5 Chi Lin Drive, Diamond Hill, Kowloon, Hong Kong, +852 2354 1888, http://www.chilin.org
The Tai Kwun Centre For Heritage And Arts has gotten a phenomenal restoration a few years back. Prepare for a place of inspiration, stimulation, and plenty of fun for all ages. Get immersed in the rich history of this historical compound via hands-on tours, storytelling spaces, and loads of educational programs. There are some amazing restaurants and bars, make sure to visit the Dragonfly, designed by masterful artist Ashley Sutton, a fantastic spot to sip cocktails with the hubby on date night.
Tai Kwun (Old Police Station), 10 Hollywood Road, Central, Hong Kong, https://taikwun.hk/
Chances are you have passed by it while strolling through the streets of Wan Chai and wondered what this bright blue building is. Known as The Blue House, it's over a century-old colonial architecture where people still reside! There are some lovely restaurants, and cafe's around the corner to have a snack or delicious lunch.
The Blue House, 72-74A Stone Nullah Lane, Wan Chai, Hong Kong.
Pick up The Heritage Hiker's Guide to Hong Kong by Peter Spurrier. The book is packed with fun facts about Hong Kong's history. You will be amazed and discover colonial forts, historical homes, backstreet shophouses, wartime tunnels, and more in your very own backyard. The easy-to-read maps and walking tours are perfect for families to discover HK together!
Bookazine, Click here to purchase.