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Detours with locals. Travel tips you can trust.

A guide to local favorites in Kowloon City

  • By Mary Hui
  • Photos by Lam Yik Fei
Kowloon City
Hong Kong
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Quaint low-rise buildings with traditional architectural features already made this neighborhood’s neat grid of streets a delight to walk through; now throw in an impressive mountain range in the distance peeking through the buildings, a feast of restaurants serving a range of cuisines, and a historic park with ruins that tell the story of an infamous past. At the foot of the famous Lion Rock, Kowloon City is also a good starting or ending point for the steep hike up Hong Kong’s iconic lion-shaped mountain.

Meet Mary Hui

Mary Hui is a Hong Kong-based writer. Her work has appeared in the Washington Post, The New York Times, the South China Morning Post, and CityLab.

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Kowloon City

Islam Food
This decades-old restaurant serves delicious and affordable halal food. Its pan-fried beef buns are otherworldly — just be careful of exploding scalding juice as you take your first bite.
G/F, 1 Lung Kong Rd., Kowloon City, Hong Kong
Thai Chang House (translated from Chinese)
Kowloon City is known as the Little Thailand of Hong Kong, and this restaurant reliably whips up affordable and authentic Thai food.
Thai Chang House, 48 South Wall Rd., Kowloon City, Hong Kong
Chiu Chow Hop Shing Dessert
Come here for traditional, nourishing desserts, including classic black sesame dumplings and sweet soups of black glutinous rice or water chestnut. Note that the menu is only in Chinese, and it opens in the afternoon.
9 Lung Kong Rd., Kowloon City, Hong Kong
Hoover Cake Shop
The bakery often has a line out the door for its many types of buns, tarts and sweet treats.
Hoover Cake Shop, 136 Nga Tsin Wai Rd., Kowloon City, Hong Kong
Kowloon Walled City Park
This beautiful Chinese-style urban park is built on the site of what was formerly an overcrowded crime-ridden slum.
Junction Road and Carpenter Road, Kowloon City, Hong Kong
Yee Heung Bean Product Co.
Fried, sweet, stuffed: Get your tofu fix at this old shop, along with lots of other snacks.
Yi Heung Soy Bean Shop, 74 Nga Tsin Long Rd., Kowloon City, Hong Kong
Mary Hui
Mary is a Hong Kong native, having lived there her entire life except for a few years away for college and work. She loves to walk the city’s streets and run its trails. She’s so obsessed with the place that she hung a giant topographic map of Hong Kong in her house.
Lam Yik Fei
Lam is a contributing photographer for The Washington Post born and raised in Hong Kong, a dynamic and sleepless city that allows him to travel the globe via direct flights. He loves bringing his cameras to the various hidden gems and documenting the daily life of the people.