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About Pokfulam, Hong Kong Island - and Hong Kong

Directions and location map


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Pokfulam history and country park

The T Hotel is in Pokfulam, a residential area that has grown around a three-hundred-year-old village.

The hotel is within the former site of Hong Kong's first dairy farm. Though the Dairy Farm brand lives on, little remains of the farm today except two former cowsheds - which are larger and sturdier than many houses. The cowsheds are now part of the Béthanie complex, neighbouring the hotel.

Built in 1875, Béthanie's main building was Hong Kong's first sanatorium, where French missionaries came to recover from illness. Together with the cowsheds, it was renovated by the Hong Kong Academy of Performing Arts - leading to an Honourable Mention in the 2008 UNESCO Asia-Pacific Heritage Awards for Culture Heritage Conservation programme. Today, it features a neo-gothic chapel, and has facilities for arts students, and the BNP Paribas Museum of Béthanie, which tells the history of the French Mission, Béthanie and its sister foundation Nazareth. The cowsheds have become the Wellcome Theatre. For more information, see Béthanie (Hong Kong) on Wikipedia.

Just beyond Béthanie is a narrow road to Pokfulam Reservoir. This is in a valley below Victoria Peak, which is often known simply as the Peak, and is one of Hong Kong's key landmarks. Hiking possibilities include a route through Pokfulam Country Park to the upper station of Hong Kong's renowned Peak Tram.

The hillsides are verdant. Formerly, botanists exploring Hong Kong Island found an array of plants that were new to science, including the Hong Kong orchid tree, discovered at Pokfulam in 1908. Also known as bauhinia, this has become the Hong Kong emblem.

The original Pokfulam Village - dating back to the early 17th century - is beside the T Hotel. Its streets are little more than footpaths, running between a warren of tiny houses, with market stalls and a small restaurant.

Nearby attractions

Other tourist attractions within easy reach are Ocean Park and Aberdeen. At Aberdeen, the Jumbo Kingdom is popular, and there are ferries to Po Toi and Lamma islands, which have seafood restaurants in rural settings.

Along the southern coast of Hong Kong Island, there are beautiful beaches and the bustling Stanley Market - which can be accessed by a direct bus route.

Hong Kong information

As the title "Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (SAR)" indicates, Hong Kong enjoys a distinct status in China. It became a British colony in 1841, and was returned to China in 1997 with a promise of "one country, two systems" - which would mean substantial autonomy in all matters other than foreign and defence affairs for the next 50 years.

The main urban areas are along the north coast of Hong Kong Island and the Kowloon Peninsula, which are separated by Victoria Harbour. North of Kowloon lie the New Territories; and southern Hong Kong includes an archipelago of over 200 islands and islets, the largest of which is Lantau.

The airport lies off the north coast of Lantau, and is linked by road and rail to the city, where the main business district is Central, Hong Kong Island. Renowned as an entrepot and international finance centre, Hong Kong also boasts fascinating blends of eastern and western culture, together with a remarkable variety of landscapes.

Hong Kong weather

Hong Kong has a sub-tropical climate. From late April to early October, days and nights tend to be hot and humid - especially in July and August. Daytime temperatures can reach around 35°, with humidity often over 70%; even at dawn, the temperature may still be over 26°. Rainfall can be heavy during summer monsoons, or occasional tropical cyclones, the strongest of which are known as typhoons.

Summer also brings days with intense blue skies, and light winds. Rainfall decreases as autumn progresses, and by late September the humidity is falling too - leading to more comfortable conditions for outdoor activities. By November, there may be some days with winds blowing from the north - which can make for short but chill spells before a return to balmy days of 20° or more.

January and February are the coolest months, when surges of northerly winds can bring temperatures of around 10°. Days may be cloudy and humid, with periods of light rain; dry and warm spells occur too.

Spring brings warmer weather. Spells of rain or fog are interspersed with pleasant sunny periods.

Useful links
Pokfulam Country Park - mentions trails from Pokfulam.
HKTDC - the international marketing arm for Hong Kong-based traders, manufacturers and service providers.
General holidays for 2018 - calendar of official Hong Kong holidays.
Discover Hong Kong - official travel guide from the Hong Kong Tourism Board (HKTB)
Events & Festivals in Hong Kong - on HKTB website.
Peak Tram - on the renowned funicular.
The Star Ferry Company - includes history of the company.
Ocean Park - colourful site on the theme park.
MTR System Map - for the mass transit railway.
Hong Kong International Airport - includes arrivals and departures, plus transport to and from the airport.
HK Stanley Market - has brief information including what to buy.
Hong Kong Outdoors - travel guide to the wilder side of Hong Kong.
Pokfulam Village - established by villagers; includes history and some events.
Béthanie Chapel - neo-gothic chapel neighbouring T Hotel.