When we decided to visit the Hong Kong Museum of Coastal Defence, we also decided to explore Shau Kei Wan a little bit. This district is at the Far East of the Hong Kong Island and you can either travel there by MTR or by tram. If you take the tram it will take some time, but it’s going to be a very interesting ride – it will end at the Shau Kei Wan Terminus.
Next to the tram and MTR stations is a small local market – with lots of different produce. From fresh vegetables over meat to lots of seafood. I took some pictures there at the market to contrast it with my experience at the Tsukiji Fish Market in Tokyo – and I have to say there is no winner.
The seafood sold in Hong Kong is also fresh and I love the colorful arrangements with the handwritten notes. The lobsters look very yummy, I would have loved to purchase them – but then the other museum visitors would have been upset with me, if I’d been carrying seafood with me.
So we left the market and walked across the street to the Shing Wong Temple, which was hiding behind a few motorcycles.
This temple was originally called Fook Tak Tsz. It was built in 1877 and expanded in 1974, and has been especially popular with local residents.
What I like best about this temple is this display of statues – each statue has a few dates underneath, and if it’s the current date (just the year) it will be displayed in the main section of this display. So every figure will appear for one year and then will be back on the shelf for many many many years until it is back again.
We left the temple and walked along the street, just following the signs, until we reached the next temple. It is another Tin Hau Temple, one of many in Hong Kong that is dedicated to the Goddess of the Sea. This temple is from 1876 and hosts a number of well-preserved murals, woodcarvings and pottery.
When we visited this temple, it was full of incense smoke. It was so strong that I could barely breath and I left the temple quite quickly. I’m sure it’s a nice and interesting temple, but it was just too much incense smell for my taste.
We continued to walk along Shau Kei Wan Main Street East and visited the tiny Yuk Wong Temple. This temple was originally a shrine built in the mid-19th century by people from Mainland China who worked in a nearby stone quarry. It is so small that we almost overlooked it and had to walk back to find it.
We then visited the Museum of Coastal Defence before exploring the final temple in the area, Tam Kung. This was the largest of the four temples we’ve visited and a much-loved patron of fishermen. That’s why this temple includes statues of fishermen and houses a small wooden junk and a dragon boat.
If you are interested in this walk, which only takes about an hour (with stopping and taking pictures), check out the Discovery Hong Kong website, it provides a map with the walking directions here.