Here Comes the Sun — Afternoons in Stanley

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.

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Stanley is a relaxing place to get away when life in Central gets too hectic.
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I visit Stanley when I miss the feel of sand between my toes.
Enjoying a cold drink by the sea.
Enjoying a cold drink and some people watching by the sea.

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 The Stanley Old Police Station is the oldest surviving police station in Hong Kong, although it has been replaced by a newer facility.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.

With so much to see and do, even a leisurely afternoon can be an adventure. Beautiful Stanley is one of my favorite places 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.
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. It houses restaurants, bars and the Hong Kong Maritime Museum.
When they reassembled Murray House, there were six columns left over.
When they reassembled Murray House, there were six columns left over.
Blake Pier in Stanley was originally a ferry pier in Central but was replaced with a more modern structure in the 1960s. The original 1909 roof served as a park pavilion for many years but  was finally brought to Stanley in 2007.
Blake Pier in Stanley was originally a ferry pier in Central but was replaced with a more modern structure in the 1960s. The original 1909 roof served as a park pavilion for many years but was finally brought to Stanley in 2007.
Stanley is home to the oldest Tin Hau temple in Hong Kong.
Stanley is home to the oldest Tin Hau temple in Hong Kong.
A fierce looking dragon stands outside the temple.
A fierce looking dragon stands outside the temple.
Families leave offerings in the temple asking for Tin Hau, Empress of Heaven, to protect them.
Families leave offerings in the temple asking for Tin Hau, Empress of Heaven, to protect them.
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Stanley Market is a great place to pick up souvenirs, especially if you don’t like to haggle.
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Homemade bread from the Stanley Cave beckons visitors inside.
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Unusual little carvings are just one of the many things for sale in Stanley Market.
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Stanley Plaza decked out in cherry blossoms for Chinese New Year.
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A replica of the Kowloon Walled City, once the most densely populated place on earth.

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You never know what you'll see in Stanley.
You never know what you’ll see in Stanley.
Stanley Plaza made it into the Guiness Book of World Records when 268 people simultaneously brushed their dogs' teeth. (You can't make this stuff up!)
Stanley Plaza made it into the Guiness Book of World Records when 268 people simultaneously brushed their dogs’ teeth and again the following year when 339 participants groomed their dogs. (You can’t make this stuff up!)
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One Comment Add yours

  1. Kathy Barber says:

    Great information and pictures about Stanley, Sharon.

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