Results 1-8of 8 Reviews
Scarborough, England, United Kingdom
October 2, 2012
From journal A trip to the Orient
May 20, 2005
The first time we came to this Market it was gone 11pm, and the place was heaving with customers. We joined this bustling throng in search of a bargain. And there was plenty to choose from, as this is market covers a large area. It’s basically a linear market, with a couple of cul-de-sacs terminating in a large loop around Temple Street.
The lower end of the market is where we concentrated our efforts as here we found cheap designer watches, which were virtually disposable at five for 100HKD and a great Chairman Mao clockwork watch for 20HKD. All had to be bargained for, but the negotiation really was not that tough, it just made the transaction a bit more fun. This market is renown for ladies evening bags and there was a whole range from beaded to tapestry, sequined to miniscule clutch bags. The prices started high but with a bit of persistence we managed to negotiate a purchase with a two-thirds reduction.
My wife was in her element as this was pashmina heaven and there were loads of silk garments. I got carried away with the purchase of ties, but the prices were so cheap it really didn’t matter if I only wore them a couple of times. There was ample opportunity to buy cheap CDs and DVDs, although I’m sure that the DVDs were all illegal copies (at five for 100HKD, these stalls were fairly busy).
Progressing up the street, we were met with the pungent smell of the street food stalls selling savoury pancakes, fish balls, seafood kebabs, and a range of unspecified meat. These were extremely popular, even as we approached the bewitching hour.
At this road junction, I’d recommend you take a right turn (to the left are cheap pirated goods, tacky toys, and a range of sex aids and pornography), because this will take you to the interactive part of the market. It’s here that you may be lucky enough to see street performers (we didn’t!), but one side of this road is lined with local fortune-tellers and soothsayers. We had offers to read our faces, our palms, and our heads; to play the tarot cards; to allow a caged bird to assist in defining our destiny; even to have our handwriting analysed. It’s a fascinating part of the market, and everyone seems take it really seriously (with the exception of me!). Most of the consultants looked the part, and I’m sure they modelled themselves on the romanticised image of the fortune-telling Oriental.
From journal Hong Kong - a shopper's paradise
December 8, 2004
From journal HKG
March 25, 2004
Temple Street gained fame for impromptu Chinese street opera, fortune tellers, even the streetside dental exams, and in the process earned the name "Hong Kong's Poor Man's Nightclub". Despite Temple Street’s long history of Chinese street opera, unfortunately, visitors to Temple Street Market in contemporary times are unlikely to witness this street theater. The market is especially busy on Saturday evenings and during special festivals, times that also offer the best chance catch the impromptu street opera.
Regardless of the night, visitors will witness seemingly endless food stalls, bargain goods including all manner of knock-off t-shirts, jeans, bags, and pirated DVDs and CDs. Temple Street is set apart im my mind from other markets because it has managed to stay true to its roots as a real street stall-based market. This is not the case with the shop-style markets, found at the Stanley Market for example. Although you may find antiques and jewelry like those at Stanley or at other markets in Hong Kong, keep in mind that these antiques are not quality items and should not be taken as legitimate articles. But on the other hand, if you like what you find, the prices will be generally better than at other Hong Kong markets.
To access Temple Street, please use the MTR. Take the Jordan Road station exit that leads out to Nathan Road. From there head north on Nathan Road for two or three blocks, with your attention focused on finding a narrow alleyway, which leads to the night market.
From journal Hong Kong - Shenzhen border crossing
Birmingham, United Kingdom
May 19, 2003
As you walk up through the brightly lit stalls, the air does tend to heat up rapidly. You have to cross about 4 roads as you go up the length of Temple Street so take advantage of the space between each section to catch your breath.
If you can spare the time, I advise you to take an evening stroll there with the intention of buying nothing. Some of the traders are very persuasive so use a first visit to spot the things you might like to buy. If you still want them the next day, then go for it.
Around the Temple Street area are some great, cheap restaurants. These are the kind of places the locals eat and a lot of them don't have any English on the menu. Unless you are feeling really brave, it's always worth finding a restaurant with pictures on the menu. We ate around here a few times and paid about HK$25 for each meal (£2ish).
As for myself, I didn't buy anything from Temple Street. There was nothing there that I wanted and it felt a bit like the whole thing was trying to cater too much for the tourists.
From journal A week in Hong Kong
February 21, 2002
Asian Night Markets: An Introductory Note
Night markets are a long-standing and utterly delightful tradition in East and Southeast Asia that must date back
centuries. Every city of any size from Indonesia to HongKong and beyond has at least one. Although some have
begun to open up in the late afternoon - due largely I suspect to pure avarice and greed - they never really kick
off until after dark when most people are off work, need to shop, and desperately want to get out of their almost
universally cramped apartment blocks. The night market is cheap - or even free if you don't buy anything - and
offers a great opportunity to see and be seen. Evening strolls through the local night market are in many senses
the Far Eastern equivalent to the traditional paseo of Spain. For the visitor, they're one of the best places
to take in the real flavor of the city. In some you will find sections that are mostly set up to cater to foreigners
- the night markets of Chiang Mai or Phuket (Thailand) spring to mind - but elsewhere, as in Hong Kong, they do
indeed serve the local population.
Temple Street Night Market
Running between Kansu Street and Jordan Road, Temple Street and the adjacent streets to either side comprise Hong
Kong's best-known night market. Street stalls begin to open up around 4:00 pm but it doesn't really start hopping
until after sunset.
Items for sale:
If you actually are interested in buying something here, you'll find lots of clothing - mostly men's items - tee-shirts,
Oriental bric-a-brac, herbal remedies, cheap electronic goods and watches, fake flowers, sex toys, or you-name-it.
It's not really the place to find quality goods, though there are some fascinating things available from some
of the Tibetan stalls in the area. I saw some very nicely made silver prayer wheels, for example, though I didn't
find any of the extraordinary "singing bowls" that are often available in the streets of Kathmandu or
The Feel of the Place
Whether you buy or not, when you're wandering down the center of Temple Street, there is none of the geographical
ambivalence you feel on Hong Kong Island when you're strolling through the glass and steel high-rise canyons that
feel so much like Manhatten or Frankfurt. Here in Temple Street, one is decidedly in East Asia, from the cackling
cacophony of Cantonese that can be nearly painful to the Western ear to the dried-up oddities sold in the herbalists'
shops whose provenance and purpose will befuddle you for days, or from hawkers proffering fake Rolexes to Tibetans
selling badly executed thankas. It's raw, it's mesmerizing, it's exotic, and it's entertainment that's easily
as enjoyable as anything else Hong Kong has to offer at often staggeringly high prices. Not to spend at least
one evening here during your stay in Hong Kong would be a crying shame.
From journal Hong Kong, NYC on the South China Sea
July 1, 2001
From journal China: Hong Kong - Kowloon
Northern Va Suburbs of DC, Virginia
November 4, 2000
From journal Secrets of Hong Kong