Hong Kong

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Hong Kong’s rich history is well-documented in its many museums, which explore the subject from various perspectives – art, science, history, defense, and medicine. If you only have time for one museum, make it the Hong Kong Museum of History, where you can learn about the how the city developed from a collection of fishing villages in the 19th century to a strategically important naval port and trading entrepôt thanks to the British Royal Navy, and, most recently, into a financial center with the world’s 12th highest GDP per capita.

Hong Kong Museums

Hong Kong Museum of Art

The Hong Kong Museum of Art’s permanent collection of Chinese fine arts and antiquities is supplemented by regular visiting displays in the contemporary exhibition hall, which features popular shows organized by guest curators and new media artists. It’s not just the exhibits at Hong Kong’s largest arts venue that makes this museum so spectacular – the waterfront location next to the Star Ferry pier is equally stunning. Ticket prices (under $2 for adults) are very reasonable.

10 Salisbury Rd., 011-852-2721-0116, hk.art.museum
Tags: arts and culture | great value | museum

Hong Kong Museum of Coastal Defence

Some six centuries of Hong Kong’s coastal defenses are explored in the 19th-century Lei Yue Mun Fort, one of the city’s oldest and best-preserved British-built fortresses. Start with the 1997 handover of Hong Kong to China and go back as far as the Ming dynasty, when the coastal defenses guarded this area against the invasion of Japanese pirates and “Western barbarians,” as they were then termed. The museum’s location – on a cliff overlooking the eastern end of Victoria Harbour – is just as impressive as the historical displays.

175 Tung Hei Rd., Shau Kei Wan, 011-852-2569-1500, hk.coastaldefence.museum
Tags: views | history | museum

Hong Kong Museum of History

For a fascinating look at the last 400 million years of Hong Kong history (no kidding!) – from the city’s beginnings as a Neolithic settlement to its transformation into a modern metropolis – there is no better place than the Hong Kong Museum of History. See the back stage of a Chinese opera, delve inside a fishing junk, glimpse Kowloon Walled City in its glory days before it became a park, and take in what life in Hong Kong was like under Japanese occupation. Entire streets have been recreated here, making this museum a wonderful way to spend a day. Audio guides provide commentary on more than 100 exhibits.

100 Chatham Rd. South, 011-852-2724-9042, hk.history.museum
Tags: family | arts and culture | history | museum

Hong Kong Museum of Medical Sciences

Despite being a bustling modern metropolis, traditional Chinese medicine still plays an important role in society and the waiting rooms of Chinese herbalists are full of patients willing to queue for hours if necessary. The Hong Kong Museum of Medical Sciences takes an in-depth look at the historical development of both Western and Chinese medicine in Hong Kong and draws comparisons between the two. Check out the displays on acupuncture and traditional Chinese herbs as well as the exhibition rooms devoted to radiology and dentistry, all located in this Edwardian-style former Pathological Institute.

2 Caine Lane, 011-852-2549-5123, www.hkmms.org.hk
Tags: history | museum

Hong Kong Science Museum

Meteorology, geography, light, sound, motion, electricity, and magnetism are all explained at this hands-on museum, with more than 500 exhibits spread over four floors devoted to the life sciences. Try navigating a flight over Hong Kong at night, learn about herbs used in traditional Chinese medicine, experiment with various optical illusions, or test your personal fitness.

2 Science Museum Rd., 011-852-2732-3232, hk.science.museum
Tags: family | museum | science

Hong Kong Space Museum

With its interactive rides and exhibits (including a multi-axis chair designed to recreate the feeling of weightlessness astronauts experience, and a virtual paraglider) the Hong Kong Space Museum is perfect for kids. The white-domed building is divided into the Stanley Ho Space Theater – with a Zeiss star projector that can cast 9,000 stars on the ceiling – the Hall of Space Science, and the Hall of Astronomy. Headsets with English translation are provided free of charge.

10 Salisbury Rd., 011-852-2721-0226, hk.space.museum
Tags: family | museum | science

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