You might think you’ve hit all the best “secret” spots in town – but honestly, the speak-easy that’s been open for a few years doesn’t really count anymore. In the city of Hong Kong, there are surprisingly more than a few sites off the beaten path that perhaps even locals don’t know about.
Explore Hong Kong hidden gems, discovering the best of the island’s quiet and coolest places, from an Instagram-friendly swimming shed, a hidden dim sum joint in the mountains, some local street art, to a little-known tide pool off the coast of Aberdeen.
Shek Kwu Chau
You’ve probably stepped foot on Lamma or Cheung Chau – but did you know there’s an outlying hidden gem island off the coast of Lantau called Shek Kwu Chau? The isle houses a rehab clinic, but that is not what makes this spot one of the coolest places to uncover in the Hong Kong islands.
Home to extensive classical-inspired structures and even a Roman-style bath, built by patients at the clinic over decades, Shek Kwu Chau is truly a hidden gem. Although being entirely off limits to the public every other day of the year, there is one day in November when the public can flock to what is a true contender for one of the most quiet places in Hong Kong. An ideal opportunity to take a day to slow down and explore Hong Kong from a new point of view.
Wong Nai Chung Reservoir
Pedal boating? Check. Plenty of fish and ducks to feed? Check. The Wong Nai Chung Reservoir has everything you need to make for an unusually relaxing day out at this hidden gem. This quiet place in the city is located next to the Parkview estate in Tai Tam, the reservoir is in fact an artificial lake. Set against the hills of the Southside, it feels very much like an oasis in the middle of Hong Kong Island. Remember to BYOP (bring your own picnic) and bread to feed the fish with, and water for the day. There’s a tiny kiosk here, but items are often sold at an inflated price.
Tai Tong Organic Ecopark
Most people aren’t aware there are farms in Hong Kong, but Tai Tong Organic Ecopark is one such location. Nestled in Yuen Long, the 30-acre farm offers strawberry and lychee picking, horse-riding, fishing and a BBQ lunch, as well as agricultural workshops. A very humble experience and quiet place, far from the busy Hong Kong city.
Sai Wan Swimming Shed
Any Instagram addicts, or swimming aficionados in the house? Try Sai Wan Swimming Shed. Just off Victoria Road in Kennedy Town, the swimming shed is the only one of its kind that remains in the city. The picturesque spot has become popular with amateur photographers making it one of the coolest places in the Hong Kong islands. Oh, and it’s not a bad place for a dip either.
Victoria Peak Garden
The Peak is obviously no secret to anyone within the Hong Kong islands. The Victoria Peak Garden, however, is located on a lesser-travelled section, offering a quiet place to rewind. A true hidden gem of the Hong Kong islands. Complete with trickling streams and plenty of shade, the gardens are one of the coolest places on offer – an idyllic place for a picnic. Whether with friends or a solo respite perfect for a day off the grid with nothing but a book and your mind to wander. There are gorgeous pergolas and pavilions dotted around the place too (cue the #nofilter hashtag!). The garden once used to be part of the Governor of Hong Kong’s residence but is now open to all, including our furry friends – a rarity in Hong Kong.