Spending time with sparrows and pigeons

Exploring Hong Kong Part 5 – Hong Kong Park & Victoria Park

If you tire of tall buildings, crowded streets, and insanely-packed markets, take a break and wander into Hong Kong Park (Admiralty MTR) or Victoria Park (Tin Hau MTR) for a relaxing stroll amongst beautifully-landscaped scenes, complete with butterflies, artists, bursting flowers, and the obligatory pigeon putt-putting its head.

Two of the best reasons to go into the city are below:

Victoria Park

I happened upon Victoria Park almost by accident, as I bought a ginger milk tea with coffee jelly from ShareTea (recommended!) and started to walk around to look for a place to eat lunch. I settled on Poppy’s Restaurant & Wine Bar, a cute, shabby-chic-esque diner near the park. The outside decor – lovely vine plants, a lamp, possibly some red-and-white checkered cloth – attracted me inside. Try their lunch set pumpkin seafood risotto – I guarantee that it’ll make you go, “hmm…how’d that all get into a small pumpkin?”

On my way to find lunch, I “ran” into a park. This was the lovely Victoria Park I’d heard about. I decided to amble around a bit, and I have to say, there’s nothing more satisfying than reading a book in the half-shade, half-sunshine on a park bench whilst watching the sparrows, pigeons, and doves hop around looking for snacks. Even listening to birds chatter is a real treat.

Hong Kong Park & Central architecture 

My discovery of Hong Kong Park was a little more planned, as I was on a self-guided walking tour of the old British colonial buildings in Central. The walk recommended that I begin in HK Park. I found the Flagstaff House, which was built in the mid 1800s. The cool thing is that it’s the oldest piece of colonial British architecture in the city, and it also has a tea museum inside. The Rawlinson House (early 1900s) was now a marriage registry. Both of them are clearly marked on signposts as you stroll around the park.

Not all of Central’s lovely architecture is within Hong Kong Park. Take some time to walk around the streets of Central to get to know the buildings and their history. They’re much more interesting than the mega-malls, but that’s just my preference.

As I spent time in the park, I was overcome with a sense of tranquility in such a big, busy city. With the plethora of eager butterflies, packs of sunning turtles, and greedy koi fish, I kept thinking of the next time I could make the long trek in to hang out int he park. I can’t explain how nice it is to see nature and have it be so accessible now.

Then, you can also check out the more modern architecture as well.

 

For information on the walking tour I did, check it out at “Garden Road Leisure Walk – a Century of Architecture” on the Discover Hong Kong website.

 

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