5 Hong Kong Cultural Sites that Most People Don’t Know
Hong Kong/ Nomads/ Explore

5 Secret Cultural Spots to Visit in Hong Kong that Aren’t in Guidebooks

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Amidst Hong Kong’s impressive collection of towering skyscrapers lie hidden remnants of the city’s cultural past that desperately cling to a bygone era. This article shares five much-smaller, lesser-known cultural gems in Hong Kong that many locals wouldn’t even have heard of.

So, if you’re looking to get an intimate glimpse into Hong Kong’s fascinating cultural heritage, these secret museums, tranquil gardens, and mysterious tombs around the city may be exactly what you’re looking for.

Yuen Yuen Institute

Yuen Yuen Institute in Hong Kong with Buddhist, Taoist, and Confucian culture
Photo/Hong Kong Tourism Board

The Yuen Yuen Institute, a unique cultural destination located in Tsuen Wan, blends together elements of Buddhism, Taoism, and Confucianism. The sprawling complex features beautiful gardens, temples, and pavilions, and is designed to provide visitors with a peaceful and serene environment for reflection and contemplation.

Visitors can explore a range of exhibits on Hong Kong religious culture and history, including displays on traditional festivals, customs, and beliefs. The estate also features a vegetarian restaurant and a tea house, where visitors can sample delicious meat-free cuisine and authentic Chinese teas.

Where: Lo Wai Road, Sam Dip Tam, Tsuen Wan, New Territories

圓玄學院, 香港新界荃灣三疊潭

Hours: Daily, 8:30 AM – 5:30 PM

How Much: Free entry

Sam Tung Uk Museum

Sam Tung Uk Hakka culture museum in Tsuen Wan, Hong Kong
Photo/Hong Kong Tourism Board

The Sam Tung Uk Museum is tucked away in an unassuming little corner of Tsuen Wan, just a stone’s throw away from the MTR. The museum is situated within a beautifully restored 200-year-old Hakka village house that provides visitors with a glimpse into the daily life of a traditional Hakka family.

Entrance to the museum is free of charge, with a range of exhibits, each housed in individual rooms of the house, that showcase the history, culture, and customs of Hong Kong’s Hakka people. Exhibits include displays on farming, weaving, cooking, and traditions followed by Hakka people. A video even shows what life was like in Sam Tung Uk before it was abandoned.  

Where: 2 Kwu Uk Lane, Tsuen Wan, New Territories

三棟屋博物館, 荃灣古屋里2號

Hours: Mon, Wed to Sun 10 AM to 6 PM

How Much: Free entry

3. Tai Fu Tai Mansion

Tai Fu Tai Mansion in Hong Kong preserves the history of the 5 Great Clans of Hong Kong
Photo/Hong Kong Tourism Board

Tai Fu Tai Mansion is a beautiful 19th-century mansion in Yuen Long. Built in 1865 by a wealthy member of the Man Clan,  one of the Five Great Clans of the New Territories, the mansion is a stunning example of traditional architecture and design. It features intricate wood carvings, colourful tiles, and beautifully landscaped gardens.

Today, Tai Fu Tai Mansion is open to the public as a cultural heritage site and museum, offering visitors a chance to explore the rich history and culture of the Hakka people. The museum features a range of exhibits on traditional Hakka architecture, furniture, and art., and vVisitors can also explore the peaceful gardens and courtyards of the mansion for an unforgettable cultural experience.

Where: Wing Ping Tsuen, San Tin, Yuen Long, New Territories

大夫第, 香港新界元朗區新田永平村

Hours: Mon to Sun: 8 AM – 1 PM and  2 PM – 6 PM

* Tai Fu Tai Mansion is temporarily closed until Jun. 26, 2023

How Much: Free entry

4. Law Uk Folk Museum

Law Uk Folk Museum in Chai Wan was the site of Hakka villages in the past
Photo/Hong Kong Tourism Board

The memory of Chai Wan’s once-abundant ancient villages has been preserved in the form of Law Uk – a typical Hakka village house built by the Law family in the mid-18th century, during the Qing Dynasty. This was about 90 years prior to when the British took possession of Hong Kong Island.

In order to provide visitors with a sense of the original interior and living conditions of the house's inhabitants, Law Uk has been fitted with a collection of village furniture, utensils, and farming tools. Some information pertaining to Law Uk, the history of Chai Wan, and Hakka culture is available within the museum.

Sadly, all the villages around Law Uk were demolished to make way for industrial expansion, which is why it is such an important cultural landmark, despite its small size.

Where: 14 Kut Shing Street, Chai Wan, Hong Kong Island

羅屋民俗館, 柴灣吉勝街14號

Hours: Monday to Wednesday, Friday to Sunday: 10 AM – 6 PM

How Much: Free entry

5. Lei Cheng Uk Han Tomb Museum

Lei Cheng Uk Han Tomb Museum in Sham Shui Po is a well-kept Hong Kong cultural secret from the Han Dynasty
Photo/Hong Kong Tourism Board

The Lei Cheng Uk Han Tomb Museum is a fascinating cultural destination hidden in Sham Shui Po. The museum houses an Eastern Han Dynasty tomb that dates back to the 2nd century AD and offers visitors a rare glimpse into the ancient burial customs of the Han Dynasty.

The tomb was discovered in 1955 during a construction project and was subsequently excavated and preserved as a cultural heritage site. The museum features exhibits on the history and archaeology of the tomb, including displays of artefacts found within the tomb such as pottery, bronze vessels, and jade ornaments.

Visitors can only view the tomb through a pane of protective glass to avoid exposing this culturally significant site to potential damage.

Where: 41 Tonkin Street, Sham Shui Po, Kowloon

李鄭屋漢墓博物館, 深水埗東京街41號

Hours: Mon to Wed, Fri to Sun: 10 AM – 6 PM

How Much: Free entry

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