This city on the southern side of Hong Kong Island started as a small fishing village and remains famous for its boat-people and floating restaurants.
Aberdeen is a city of 60,000 people, most living in towering high-rises, but some living in junks in the waters of the typhoon shelter as their ancestors have done for centuries. Visit the area as an interesting, slightly slower alternative to the hustle and bustle of Hong Kong and Kowloon.
Walk along the shore and marvel at the dense collection of boats in the sheltered waters between Aberdeen and the island of Ap Lei Chau. Nearly 20,000 boat-people live on more than 2,000 junks and sampans next to the brand-new yachts owned by multi-millionaires. Select a pilot and sound-looking boat to take you on a tour for a closer look at the variety of craft in the harbor; use the licensed operators at Aberdeen Centre waterfront promenade.
During the day, take a trip to nearby Ocean Park to enjoy thrill rides, a large aquarium, animal shows and a tall observation deck overlooking the South China Sea. Play golf at Hong Kong Golf Club in nearby Deep Water Bay. Visit Horizon Plaza on Ap Lei Chau to purchase antique Chinese furniture that can be shipped to your home. Find Aberdeen’s Tin Hau Temple, built in 1851 to protect the seafarers and harbor residents.
One of Aberdeen’s highlights is its floating restaurants. Visit the tea garden or high-end Chinese restaurant on Jumbo Kingdom, a giant complex with seating for 2,300 people. Find the Jumbo boat launch to take the short ride to the floating ship, a brightly lit structure built in 1976 to look like an imperial palace. Enjoy fresh local seafood including abalone, steamed garoupa, squid and crab, and corn soup.
Reach Aberdeen via taxi or bus. Enjoy the ride to the island’s south side, seeing bits of Hong Kong’s curving roads and smaller neighborhoods. Or take advantage of Hong Kong Island’s excellent system of walking trails and make the 90-minute hike down from Victoria Peak to Aberdeen Harbour.