Hong Kong doesn’t really do parks well - this is the city that didn’t really get the idea. Where you’d expect sports, a spread of green grass and picnic table or two what you’ll find in Hong Kong is fenced off pools, plazas, and concrete. It’s not pretty.
Green Green Grass of Victoria Park
Thankfully, Victoria Park in Causeway Bay is one of the few parks in Hong Kong to buck the trend and has its very own green field, It may not seem like much but in Hong Kong, it’s just short of a miracle. Be warned, there is still a long list of things you are not allowed to do, including kite flying, messing around with balloons and playing music.
The grass is also in demand – particularly at weekends – especially Sundays – when you can barely see the grass for the bodies. Nevertheless, the fact that there is grass you can access makes this the best park in Hong Kong city center.
Victoria Park Sights
As you can tell, we’re most excited about the grass, but there is a little more to Victoria Park. The park gained its name thanks to Queen Victoria whose statue still sits near the main park entrance – removed from its spot in Statue Squares in the 50s. It’s a blackened Victorian era statue that wouldn’t look out of place in the pages of a Dickensian novel. Just outside the park is another colonial relic – the Noon Day Gun – which still fires its cannon every day at noon and gave rise to the phrase only mad dogs and Englishmen go out in the midday sun.
Victoria Park Facilities
Back in the park, there are a number of public leisure facilities, including a bowling green, football pitches, basketball courts, tennis courts and outdoor swimming pool. The tennis courts are often used to host international matches between the biggest stars in the sport. All of the facilities are bookable through the LSCD website.
More uniquely there is a model boating lake where you watch wannabe daredevils revving up their model speedboats for a trip around the lake. That’s about as exciting as it gets for kids as the playground is small and underwhelming.
Victoria Park as a Public Space
Victoria Park has long been one of Hong Kong’s most iconic public spaces. It’s here that each year thousands of protestors gather to march on the Legislative Council in protest of the lack of action taken by the Chinese government over Tiananmen Square. It’s also where many marches against interference by Beijing in Hong Kong affairs have kicked off. The parks public and political role is underlined by the weekly recording of radio show Public Forum, which regularly attracts pro Beijing protestors who try and shout down pro-democratic legislators.
Less dramatically, Victoria Park is also a popular spot for dozens of Tai Chi practitioners and their peaceful, unified movements make a dawn visit recommended. Equally worthwhile is the flower market held here at Chinese New Year; a colorful, bustling market filled with families searching for the perfect kumquat tree.
How to Get to Victoria Park
Victoria Park is in Causeway Bay and as ever the best way to reach the park is by MTR and alight at Causeway Bay. The park is well signposted.