Perry and I had been to the Hong Kong Museum Of History twice. But we didn't appreciate it as much as we went the second time.
Entrance of the Hong Kong Museum of History for Special Exhibition, such as the Terra Cotta
The reason we went the second time was mainly for the Terra Cotta. It was a special exhibition (which only lasted for a short period of time and changes continuously) for the Hong Kong Handover 15th Anniversary. Due to this celebration, we even saw the Terra Cotta Mid-Autumn Festival decoration along the Tsim Sha Tsui coast line.
When it comes to special exhibition like this, you are only allowed to be in that special section for an hour. It cost us HKD10 per person. Children under 4 is FREE. The fee is the same for visiting the permanent exhibition in the museum. But you MUST pay separately.
In other words, the total per person for both permanent and special exhibitions would be HKD20. It was not bad at all. In my opinion, every penny was very WELL spent.
The day when we were there, it was a bit late. We tried to work around the schedule of the permanent and special exhibitions in the museum. Even though everything is in the same building, they have 2 different entrances.
We had to go to the special exhibition at a particular time. It got very tricky when we were in the middle of the permanent one and tried to figure out how we could get to the entrance of the special exhibition through a short cut without passing through everything in the
The outlook in front of the museum building. The BIG painting on the floor, the staircase and the statues were aligned with the theme of the Terra Cotta
The BIG painting showing the Terra Cotta came into lives fighting in wars
Step closer....you would feel like in mainland China looking at the real Terra Cotta
We purchased the tickets for the Terra cotta exhibition first. Then, we went to the main section of the museum to kill some time.
Before stepping into the Hong Kong Museum Of History, I remember seeing a sign of no camera. After walking around for 30 minutes, I saw many people taking pictures, except me.
Luckily, I happened to see a security guard to ask. It turned out that you can take pictures inside the Hong Kong Museum Of History, but not videos.
We could not finish all the sections before moving on to the terra cotta exhibition.
The technology used in the special exhibition was amazing. It made you feel like going back to 221BC in the Qing dynasty and witnessed how the terra cotta were made.
At the time of our visit of the museum, I saw a Hong Kong news article about the success of using the technology in the terra cotta exhibition. The Hong Kong government confirmed that they will incorporate it more in the upcoming exhibitions.
The only setback was that it was ridiculously crowded on top of a school of students. I, personally, wished that we could stay longer to appreciate the craftsmanship of the terra cotta made thousands years ago, especially many of them are genuine that were specially shipped from China.
This is one of the terra cotta statues which still preserved a little bit of color that you can imagine how they looked like before oxidation.
If you look closely, different statues have different faces
When we were there, I realized that there were scholars explaining the history related to the terra cotta and the Qing dynasty. A lot of knowledge they shared are not easily found in books.
After we left this special exhibition, I realized that there was still an hour before the closing of the day of the museum in the permanent exhibition.
So, I decided to try to talk to the staff and hope that they would let us to go back into the museum. We were lucky that they let us to do so after showing our tickets purchased on the same day.
We jumped right back to the section where we left off about an hour ago. And we were able to see everything before we finally left the museum for the day.
After the second visit of the Hong Kong Museum Of History, the exhibition started to fall into places of all the attractions that you see in your Hong Kong vacation. Yeah, it finally hit the nail in my head. I know why....When I lived there, I took everything for granted. After moving here to the States, I started to appreciate what I miss over there.
There are 8 sections in the Hong Kong Museum of History for the permanent exhibition. I group them into 4 main categories.
Category 1 The Natural Environment And Prehistoric Hong Kong
Like many countries, this was how human history started. In Hong Kong, the Geonational Park (coming soon - link to Hong Kong Geonational Park page) was the legacy of this period of time.
In this section, there is movie giving you some brief ideas of where you can trace the track.
Category 2 - Dynasties: from the Han to the Qing and Folk Culture in Hong Kong
You could see the Han tomb in this area which just looks like a Hong Kong historic monument, the Lei Cheng Uk Han Tomb.
There are other replicates in the Hong Kong Museum of History, such as:
a) Hong Kong Law Uk Folk Museum
b) The Wall City in Kowloon City
c) The Junk Boat
4) Cheung Chau Bao Festival (coming soon - Link to Hong Kong Cheung Chau Tour page)
The Wall City - You still can find a section of it in the Kowloon City
A replicate of a junk boat which was used to be the home of a fisherman
Brides in the past got to put on wedding dress like this. People nowadays still put it on as a tradition. This one is very special to me because it reminded me my mother's. Every year on my grandparents' birthdays (from my father's side), she had to put it on before she could greet them "Happy Birthday".
Category 3 - The Opium Wars and the Cession of Hong Kong and Birth and Early Growth of the city
In my opinion, this section paved the path of the prosperity and the development of Hong Kong.
Although there were wars and many lives were sacrificed, there is NO modern Hong Kong without them.
The Statue of Lin Zexu, the patriot confiscated all the British opium and burned it all. Part of the reasons led to the First Opium War in 1839-1842.
The Treaty of Nanking, the first unequal treaty the Chinese government signed and led to the cession of the Hong Kong Island
Category 4 - The Japanese Occupation and Modern Metropolis and the Return China
Many Hong Kong people are and were the eye-witnesses of this period, such as my grandparents, parents and people of my generation, even myself.
Unfortunately, many replicates in this section could hardly find them anywhere in Hong Kong.
To live the history of this period of time, check out the Ocean Park Hong Kong. You can eat, feel and taste it.
Some buildings and museums out there which are the historical monuments of this period of time, for instance:
a) The former Government House
b) The Convention and Exhibition Centre
3) The Museum of Coastal Defence
You may occasionally see a pawn shop in a district which is waiting for urban redevelopment. My mom said that a blanket was worth quite a bit of money in the past
This setup reminds me the stories I heard many times from my mom and grandparents. They used to set up their rooms like that in order to rent a space to someone else to make extra money for the living.
A picture of the old public housing estates built by the British government. There are not many of them left now.
Overall, the Hong Kong Museum Of History was a wonderful experience. For me, this is the place to show my son where part of his root came from. Visual experience is definitely easier for children like him to
For you being interested in Hong Kong history, but with limited time, this is a big time-saver.
MTR Tsim Sha Tsui Station Exit B2. Walk along Cameron Road towards Tsim Sha Tsui East for approximately 20 minutes.
MTR Jordan Station Exit D. Walk along Austin Road towards Tsim Sha Tsui East for approximately 20 minutes.
MTR East Tsim Sha Tsui Station Exit P2. Walk along the Chatham Road South for 10 minutes.
Fee: HKD10/person; children under 4 is FREE. Special and regular exhibition same price, but pays separately
FREE on Wednesdays, except for Special Exhibition
FREE for Museum Pass and Museum Weekly Pass Holders, click here for the details
Hours: Regular/Permanent exhibition
Mondays, Wednesdays to Fridays: 10 am - 6 pm
Saturdays, Sundays and public holidays: 10 am - 7 pm
Closed at 5 pm on Christmas Eve and Chinese New Year's Eve
Closed on Tuesdays (except public holidays) and on the first two days of the Chinese New Year
Special exhibition is different and not available on the Hong Kong Museum of History website.
An advice for you, always check the special exhibition first before buying any tickets so that this allows you some time to do a little planning. If time allows, walk across the street to check out Hong Kong Science Museum (coming soon - link to Hong Kong Science Museum page)
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