Tsim Sha Tsui and the southern section of Kowloon peninsula have long been Hong Kong’s premier tourist precinct. Extensive redevelopment has erased many aspects from the past, but as in other parts of urban Hong Kong a surprising amount remains. Pre-British Kowloon was a collection of small villages; no physical trace of these still remains of this time, but there are numerous reminders of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries all waiting to be explored.
The former Marine Police Headquarters on the Kowloon waterfront, originally built in 1884, has been recently redeveloped. Signal Hill, near the Intercontinental Hotel with its preserved tower, the old Central British School on Nathan Road and the nearby St. Andrew’s Church, which was donated to the community by the Armenian millionaire Sir Paul Chater, will all be visited.
Along the way we will visit the world-famous Chungking Mansions. One of Hong Kong’s leading trading hubs, and a back-packer haven for decades, this much-mythologised, endlessly-fascinating corner of Kowloon is not to be missed.
On the way north we will walk past Gun Club Hill Barracks on Austin Road, and the nearby Canossian Convent and St. Mary’s Church. In the vicinity of Jordan Road there are a number of surviving pre-war buildings which will be discussed.
We will end our walk in Yau Ma Tei, near the venerable Tin Hau Temple from which Temple Street takes its name.