The quaint Aberdeen fishing village is famous for its picturesque harbor, where local Tanka boat people live on houseboats, junks, and sampans lashed together in messy rows and bobbing in the water in the shadow of modern skyscrapers. Situated between Hong Kong Island and smaller Ap Lei Chau, Aberdeen Harbour is home to one of Hong Kong’s most famous seafood restaurants (and one of the largest floating restaurants in the world), Jumbo Kingdom.
Many half- and full-day sightseeing tours of Hong Kong stop in Aberdeen. A popular way to experience the harbor is on a sampan ride through the trawlers and junks of the floating village. By night, travelers can dine at Jumbo Kingdom, which looks more like a Chinese palace than a restaurant, after a sunset cruise on Victoria Harbour.
Things to Know Before You Go
- The fishing village is a must-see for first-time visitors to Hong Kong.
- Sampan tours of the harbor last 25 to 30 minutes. If you haven’t booked a tour in advance, be prepared to negotiate a rate.
- Hong Kong city tours that stop in Aberdeen typically last four to eight hours, depending on the option chosen.
- Aberdeen is a regular stop on hop on, hop off bus tours.
How to Get to Aberdeen Harbour
To get to Aberdeen, take the MTR to Wong Chuk Hang station and leave through Exit B; it’s a short walk from there to Shum Wan Pier. Alternately, catch Bus 7 from the Central Ferry Piers, Bus 70 from Exchange Square, Bus 72 or 77 from Causeway Bay, or Bus 973 from Tsim Sha Tsui in Kowloon.
When to Get There
For the best weather—sunny but not too hot—plan to visit between October and March. During the fifth lunar month (usually May or June), Aberdeen Harbour hosts the annual Dragon Boat Festival, when colorful racing boats fill the water and spectators munch on sticky rice wrapped in bamboo leaves.
Things to Do Near Aberdeen Harbour
Aberdeen is located on the south side of Hong Kong Island, where travelers will find plenty of other worthy attractions. Families traveling with kids will find amusements for all ages, including roller coasters, water rides, and animal exhibits at Ocean Park. The beaches of nearby Repulse Bay make for a serene escape from the bustle of Hong Kong, and shoppers won’t want to miss the bargains in Stanley Market.