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Stanley is a lovely little coastal village towards the south of Hong Kong thats a very popular place for most visitors to Hong Kong.
Originally a fishing village, but recently its developed more and now hosts a range of restaurants and pubs.
What also makes it very popular is Stanley Market which is visited by many people and is well know by both locals and visitors for getting a few good bargains here. Goods that are available for purchase here range from traditional Chinese souvenirs to traditional arts and crafts, and various other types of stalls.
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Half-day on Stanley Market
Stanley is a district located in the south of HK island. Famous by a crowded market where you also find fakes and everything you might imagine, but relatively more expensive than other places.
Reserve some time to walk on the shore and have lunch in the mid afternoon enjoying some amazing views.
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Stanley Market outside of the mall
If you pass through out of the mall of the souvenir shops, there is a cozy alley with tiny restaurants and bars, also some souvenir shops either.
Much more quiet and less people out there than in the mall. You can escape from the buzz of crowds and take a rest for a while by stepping outside of the mall.
Drive (or riding on a bus) to the opposite of the island from the Hongkong Central, you will get into a high-class residential area. At the end of there, the market will be found.
The market itself seems not for local people but for the visitors as they can shop some souvenirs.
Stanley is a village that many foreign tourists will include in their itineary to Hong Kong. There is a market that sells stuffs gear towards foreigners. I think the boardwalk along the harbour has been completed by now. (My photo showed that it was under construction).
You'll find the Murray House in Stanley. It is a historic colonial style building used by the British army for many years, which was originally located at where the Bank of China Building is now in Central. They took down the building piece by piece and reassembled it here. It now houses the maritime museum and restaurants. It's quite nice to have lunch or dinner here, especially in the balcony patio where you can have a good view of the sea and the village.
There is also a couple of beaches in Stanley. The annual dragon boat race is held here too.
The bus ride to scenery is very beautiful, passing through villas and mansions of the rich and famous. Owning a low-density property in Hong Kong costs a good fortune, and many of them are located in the southtern part of Hong Kong Island, where it is less developed.
Tip: On the bus, be sure you sit on the upper level and sit on the left side. You'll pass by a dam and you can see the wall of the dam - a huge drop to below, with a nice harbour view. (see photo)
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HK Island: Sun, sand, sea & shopping in Stanley!
Stanley is pretty seaside town less than an hour from Central. Many people, both locals and tourists, converge on Stanley during the weekends, where they can swim, water ski, wind surf, sail their yachts, and generally enjoy the sparkling blue water. At the gazetted lagoons, there are lifeguards and changing room facilities.
Many westerns and tourists like to relax at one of the many (overpriced) alfresco cafes / restaurants lining the street between Stanley Plaza and Stanley market, even in the hot afternoon, while locals mill around the area behind Stanley Plaza and the beachside picnic area to the left of Stanley Market.
Stanley Market consists of many small stalls selling goods from sportswear and made-in-China souvenirs to ladies' fashion, shoes and luggage bags. Those who enjoy shopping will likely spend a great deal of time thronging through the market.
Visitors can find a quiet spot off a path along the sea leading away from Stanley Plaza, to which not many venture. This path leads a 1000-year-old Well and small temple, outside of which there is a shady spot and a stone bench.
Buses to Stanley will generally terminate at the Stanley bus terminal.
Although the Stanley Market is a tourist trap and the prices for tourist trinkets are high. Its still a nice place to visit. After you fulfill your urge to buy all the typical touristy stuff, take a stroll to the Stanley Village waterfront and enjoy the scenery and quaint cafes and restaurants.
To buy or not to buy
Stanley is a town on the south side of Hong Kong Island. It is famous for its markets.
The large open-air marketplace is well known for being able to find most things - particularly silk and traditional Chinese dress. There are many toy shops, shops for ornaments and arts and crafts even a Haagen-Dazs and a Dymocks book shop. It is popular with locals and tourists alike.
It is a bit touristy but a perfect place to do your Christmas shopping or the gift for Aunt Mary or the neighbour looking after the dog. Even if you don't buy, the markets are a great place to spend some time and soak up the local scene.
I enjoy taking the bus to Stanley and as I get off opposite the Markets I always take a wander through. On my last visit I bought some handbags and jewellery but sometimes I dont buy anything! The Market is a selection of open front shops linked by covered walkways.
In my opinion Stanley Market is not the place for "die-hard" bargain shoppers. A bit of extra effort is needed here to talk down the prices. Some shop owners wont budge on price at all. This market caters to tourists and many of the items for sale reflect that, but there are also shops selling more expensive one-off items that you wont find at other markets. Obviously shop owners dont want to "give" them away so dont be surprised if they seem a little annoyed by your bartering.
If you want a t-shirt with your name written on it in Cantonese then you can have that done. There are also a loads of souvenirs (stress balls or chopsticks anyone?) and more traditional chinese craft shops. Beautiful chinese style dresses are also available and a selection of silk evening wear. Paintings and posters are also available.
A Shopper's Heaven
Stanley is located on the outer boundaries of Hong Kong Island and is the mecca of bargain shopping. There are street stalls which is much like an outdoor flea market type setting within the confines of this quaint town. There are also some restaurants, pubs, a Tin Hau Temple, (Tin Hau - God of the sea) and the maritime museum. The shops located within Stanley Market have everything from souvenirs, to jewelry, to clothing, artwork and anything else you can think of. More about the shopping in my shopping link. Below are pics of Stanley Bay and the Tin Hau Temple.
You can't go to Hong Kong Island without going here.
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This is the place to get your jade chops and various oddities. A great range of goods available, including limited copies of artworks by famous local artists. Be sure to bargain and haggle as this is part and parcel of the shoping experience here at Stanley.
The best way to get to Stanley, if you're first taking the MTR, is to get off at Wanchai MTR station and take one of those green/red-topped vans there (the Octopus card is also accepted on these vans). It's very efficient and the van ride would take around 15-20 minutes. Buses also go from Wanchai but would be, of course, much slower unless you plan to take the upper deck to do some sight seeing.
STANLEY MARKET - check out my travelogue on Hong Kong_2
We took the double decker bus to Stanley Market one afternoon. The ride there was pretty long as Stanley Market is at the other end of Hong Kong island. I remembered passing through the 'old' Wanchai area before turning into the highway, through a tunnel and along the coast. The journey along the coast was kinda cool - the sea looked so inviting :-). We also passed Repulse Bay - beautiful place, could have a better name, though.
Stanley area is a nice posh kind of area. Nice restaurants and pubs overlooking the sea. Its really a cool and relaxing place ... somewhere to get away from the city and chillout during the weekend.. although the journey there can be excrutiating (for me, at least).
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This is the village of Stanley, it was once a fishing village, but now totally residential and the home of the Stanley Markets.
Although this market is not as good as Temple Street, if you have time it is another enjoyable day.
Easy to get to by bus, the winding narrow road in a double decker bus is a trip on its own. On the way up you will notice gondolas, these are at Ocean Park.
As you come into this village there are public toilets on the right hand side of this photo.
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There are 3 beaches in Stanley: one more rocks than beach but with a small strip of sand (immediately adjacent to the temple and the end of the market): the second, the City Beach - a long and popular strip - head off in the opposite direction to the market when getting off the bus - it's a few minutes to the beach: the third, and nicest, is a 10-15 minutes walk towards the headland. St Stephen's Beach is on the way to the fort (not open to the public) and the Military Cemetery (you can see St Stephens from the rocky beach and the restaurants) - a smallish cove with safe bathing and virtually no-one on it. Amazing considering the sardines on the main town beach.
Stanley, a coastal village right on the southern side of Hong Kong Island. It used to be a small fishing village but with the popularity of the markets, a series of restaurants and pubs have opened and its now a very busy location. At the western end of the market street is the Tin Hau Temple (temple of the Queen of Heaven), one of the oldest in Hong Kong
The scenery enroute to Stanley is really interesting as well. If you're travelling in the nonair-conditioned bus, don't sit too close to the open window on the narrow roads, the bus gets so close to the shrubs that branches brush the side of the bus and flick inside. Sit upstairs on the seat along the back and hang on for dear life around the windy twists and turns of the narrow roads out to Stanley. It was like a roller coaster ride and I loved it!!!!
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