We spend many lovely afternoons strolling around picturesque Stanley browsing in shops, dining al fresco and enjoying the seaside. On any nice day you can find locals and tourists relaxing on the beaches and in the cafes along the Stanley waterfront on the south side of Hong Kong Island. This charming town with a rich history and a modern, European vibe has become a favorite retreat when the pace of the Central district becomes too hectic. For the price of a bus ticket or a cab ride, it’s like going to a completely different world.
Stanley’s origins as a fishing village predate the arrival of the British in Hong Kong and much of the rich history of the area has been preserved. Stanley is home to the oldest Tin Hau temple in Hong Kong. Murray House, a colonial army barracks built in 1844, was dismantled stone by stone and relocated to the Stanley waterfront from its original site in Central where the Bank of China Building now stands. The Stanley Old Police Station is the oldest surviving police station in Hong Kong, although it has been replaced by a newer facility. There is now a grocery store in the old building.
Old and new reside in tandem as major redevelopment has created a boardwalk, shops and restaurants, and an amphitheater for live music performances. Stanley Plaza is a waterfront shopping arcade offering shopping, dining and professional office space. Stanley Market is maze of shops selling an array of items such as souvenirs, clothing, art, jewelry and even home furnishings.