Hey there stranger!
Sorry for the slight absence on the blog recently – our friend, Josh, visited us last week and I was a very dedicated tour-guide 😉 Anyway he’s off gallivanting around Thailand, Cambodia and Vietnam at the moment (the lucky thing), so I can catch up with you!
Last year, Ry and I ventured into Sheung Wan, an eccentric neighbourhood just outside Hong Kong’s central business district. Pushed westward by Central’s skyrocketing rents, many expats now live alongside the Chinese antique dealers and dried-fish vendors that Sheung Wan is known for. In doing so, they have begun to remake the district in their image, bringing a fresh vibe to a traditional area. As we felt that there was much more of the area to explore, we set off again last month, armed with a National Geographic Walking Tour of the area!
Our first stop was the Western Market, an Edwardian style building created in 1906.
It used to house the neighbourhood market, but now it is home to souvenir shops, fabrics stores and a handful of restaurants.
Ryan was on map duty, as he likes to refer to himself as a pigeon. Also, maps are not my strong point.
We proceeded until reaching New Market Street…
…and turned right onto Wing Lok Street, also know as Bird’s Nest and Ginseng Street.
Merchants have occupied the area since the mid-1800s and dry-goods sellers of all kinds are concentrated in the area. Bird’s Nest are among the most expensive animal products consumed by humans due to its’ health benefits; while ginseng is a plant tuber credited with various tonic and medicinal properties, especially in East Asia.
Many shops dry their goods on the streets.
Women checking the quality of their products.
Some shops sold deer horn – very bizarre!
We turned left on Queen’s Road West and came across many shops selling incense and paper offerings for funerals.
Although we didn’t manage to get any photos of this, the shops sold miniature paper representations of everything that an ancestor might need in the afterlife. This can be anything from food and money to designer handbags, cars and even three-storey villas complete with a swimming pool!
On Hollywood Road,
we came across this gorgeous, little park!
It even had terrapins…
…and a lovely pagoda, where we rested our weary feet.
Oh, and did I mention the moon-gate?! 😉
Our next destination was Tai Ping Shan Street, my most eagerly awaited spot!
Burning coils of incense peeking out of a temple.
I was also really impressed with the yarn-bombing!
Tai Ping Shan Street is a hipster-haven, full of graffiti, independent restaurants, cafes, boutiques, quirky shops, art galleries and pop up stores!
Inventive shop exteriors.
Konzepp also advertises their sunglasses in glass cages with live tarantulas…
Hopefully these pups will make you feel a bit better 🙂
I loved this little neon sign!
Having checked out all of the trendy goods that TPS had to offer, we popped over to Upper Lascar Row to check out the market vendors selling memorabilia and bric-a-brac.
Ry found some beautiful beads for his mum, who loves to make her own jewellery! 😀
Our final stop was Gough Street, a street of low-rise tenements where the printing shops are quickly giving way to trendy shops and restaurants.
We popped into HOMELESS to check out its range of overpriced goodies.
Maybe our home could be enhanced with a Polaroid toilet roll holder, kaleidoscope, pretty vase, beehive dishcloth and a deer-shaped cushion…