February 28, 2019
Explore this visual and immersive photo gallery of images either captured by locals or sourced by SCMP for their ability to show the “real” Hong Kong, and experience another side of this cosmopolitan city.
By Kate Springer
A city on the move, Hong Kong continues to reinvent itself year after year, decade after decade. Today’s city of 7.4 million people evolved from its humble beginnings as a fishing village into a thriving port, manufacturing hub and high-flying financial district. Hong Kong may be best known among visitors as a luxury shopping destination, but there’s more than meets the eye to this ever-evolving metropolis.
Venturing beyond the glossy malls and stunning skyscrapers of Central, travellers can discover another side of Hong Kong – one that traverses ancient traditions and endearing quirks, nature trails and unforgettable festivals. Thanks to the city’s efficient MTR and ferry systems, you can leave the city centre behind and be surrounded by greenery in just 20 minutes, watching the buzzing streets fade away below as you ascend one of Hong Kong’s photogenic peaks.
The call of the wild can be heard from every corner: in Sai Kung, in north-eastern New Territories, undulating green hills beckon travellers to climb the craggy coastlines and dive into sun-kissed blue bays. In Tai O, in the southwest corner of Lantau Island, pastel-painted stilt houses compete for locals attention as shrimp-paste producers dry their bright red wares in the sun as sampan boats ply around the quiet canals.
There is also much to discover in the heart of the city itself. From a wellspring of murals peppering the alleyways of Sheung Wan to Tai Hang’s mesmerising autumn Fire Dragon Dance, addictive dim sum served in old-school tea houses and Instagram-worthy outdoor markets, the city abounds with untapped experiences waiting to be discovered.
Celebrating the true spirit of Hong Kong, we invited locals to capture different sides of the city through a local lens. Explore our interactive map (above) to delve into the story behind each image:
Here are some other digital native projects you might want to visit
Or visit the SCMP graphics home page