Shau Kei Wan
The former fishing village of Shau Kei Wan is the place to go for delicious, authentic Chinese food. Head to Kam Tung Tai Kitchen on Main Street East for traditional Tanka-style seafood, or slurp fishball noodles at On Lee. For dessert, try Lui Chai Kee’s sweet Cantonese soups. For diversion, both the Hong Kong Film Archive and the Museum of Coastal Defence are within hailing distance, while to the south, Shek O Country Park’s hiking trails provide an ultra-green escape from the city.
Just half an hour by ferry from Central, car-free Peng Chau shows visitors the sleepier side of Hong Kong. Peng Yu Path winds along the island’s coastline, leading to hidden coves that are perfect for paddling. An easy hike to the top of Finger Hill delivers panoramic views of Hong Kong’s many islands. Kee Sum Cafe serves some of the city’s best shrimp toast, while Sun Sat Store – which only opens at weekends – is a treasure trove for quirky vintage finds.
Sham Shui Po
Street art aficionados should head to Spanish artist Okuda San Miguel’s heroic Rainbow Thief mural adorning Man Fung Building on Tai Nan Street, as well as the not-so-mellow-yellow Kam Ning Building next door. Further along the street, Savon Workshop stocks artisanal soaps, while Openground is a cafe, bookshop, gallery and makerspace combined. For a deeper dive into the neighbourhood, check out our feature on the top things to do in Sham Shui Po.
No place does the Alice-Through-the-Looking-Glass segue from ancient to modern better than North Point. A short walk from the spruce Hotel VIC on the Harbour leads to Chun Yeung Street’s market, photogenically bisected by the tram line. The revitalised Sunbeam Theatre stages Cantonese opera, while Oi! – whose century-old arts and crafts-style architecture is at odds with surrounding tower blocks – is a government-backed arts space. Peckish? Gai daan zai (egg waffle) fans drool at the mention of Lee Keung Kee on King’s Road.
Shek Kip Mei
Shek Kip Mei has developed its own distinctly artsy vibe. Built in 1954, Mei Ho House was part of Hong Kong’s first public housing estate and is now a heritage museum. Nearby Pak Tin Street is home to the Jockey Club Creative Arts Centre, a factory-turned-artists’-village hosting studios, a theatre and Toolss – an independent cafe-stationer. Creative university SCAD nurtures Hong Kong’s next generation of artistic talent, and runs an extensive public exhibition programme.