Statue Square and Cenotaph

Statue Square and Cenotaph, Hong Kong: Hours, Address, Statue Square and Cenotaph Reviews: 3.5/5

Statue Square and Cenotaph
3.5
Points of Interest & Landmarks • Monuments & Statues
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12:00 AM - 12:00 AM
Monday
12:00 AM - 12:00 AM
Tuesday
12:00 AM - 12:00 AM
Wednesday
12:00 AM - 12:00 AM
Thursday
12:00 AM - 12:00 AM
Friday
12:00 AM - 12:00 AM
Saturday
12:00 AM - 12:00 AM
Sunday
12:00 AM - 12:00 AM
What people are saying
Mairwen1
By Mairwen1
“Empty Tomb”
May 2021
The cenotaph or ‘empty tomb’ was unveiled on 25 May, 1923, five years after the end of WWI, to commemorate the lives of those who served in Hong Kong in the Royal Airforce, Navy and Army during WWI. It was to be a permanent and lasting memorial. At the time, no-one could imagine another world war but within 20 years, the world was at war again and thousands were dying on battlefields and in muddy trenches. After WWII, a new inscription was added, with the words, ‘The Glorious Dead’ and the dates 1939–1945. It took another few decades before a Chinese inscription was also added to honour those who’d died defending Hong Kong during the Japanese invasion. The Chinese characters are translated as ‘May their martyred souls be immortal, and their noble spirits endure’. It is an appropriately sombre and formal structure. Based on the London cenotaph, it is a simple classical design, harking back to ancient Roman and Greek principles of symmetry, with no unnecessary decoration or ornamentation, except for carved wreaths at the top. It is built of dressed ashlar stone blocks and the granite platform has a few steps leading to the cenotaph and are important for the laying of remembrance wreaths. Remembrance Day and the ANZAC Day dawn service are celebrated in front of the cenotaph each year. For tourists, one of the interesting things to know is that when it was built in the 1920s, it stood on the waterfront. Aggressive land reclamation has pushed the waterline so far back that it’s difficult to imagine today that the harbour once came up this far.

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The area
Neighborhood: Central
When people think of Hong Kong, most imagine movies with famous skyscrapers dominating the skyline. The area widely known as Central is the major financial hub and entertainment district, which truly lives up to the saying, “work hard, play hard.” Bars stay open late into the night and there just happens to be a street party every weekend. Although everything seems to be operating at lightning speed, Central is full of quiet, hidden gems. Nestled between office towers are wet markets and some of the city’s oldest restaurants dating back to the 1960s. Feeling a bit overwhelmed? Retreat from the crowds by exploring beautifully restored historical buildings and even a green oasis of botanical gardens.
How to get there
  • Central • 1 min walk
  • Hong Kong • 5 min walk
Detailed Reviews: Reviews order informed by descriptiveness of user-identified themes such as cleanliness, atmosphere, general tips and location information.
Popular mentions

3.5
53 reviews
Excellent
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Average
24
Poor
2
Terrible
1

Mairwen1
United Kingdom6,324 contributions
May 2021
The cenotaph or ‘empty tomb’ was unveiled on 25 May, 1923, five years after the end of WWI, to commemorate the lives of those who served in Hong Kong in the Royal Airforce, Navy and Army during WWI. It was to be a permanent and lasting memorial. At the time, no-one could imagine another world war but within 20 years, the world was at war again and thousands were dying on battlefields and in muddy trenches.
After WWII, a new inscription was added, with the words, ‘The Glorious Dead’ and the dates 1939–1945. It took another few decades before a Chinese inscription was also added to honour those who’d died defending Hong Kong during the Japanese invasion. The Chinese characters are translated as ‘May their martyred souls be immortal, and their noble spirits endure’.
It is an appropriately sombre and formal structure. Based on the London cenotaph, it is a simple classical design, harking back to ancient Roman and Greek principles of symmetry, with no unnecessary decoration or ornamentation, except for carved wreaths at the top.
It is built of dressed ashlar stone blocks and the granite platform has a few steps leading to the cenotaph and are important for the laying of remembrance wreaths.
Remembrance Day and the ANZAC Day dawn service are celebrated in front of the cenotaph each year.
For tourists, one of the interesting things to know is that when it was built in the 1920s, it stood on the waterfront. Aggressive land reclamation has pushed the waterline so far back that it’s difficult to imagine today that the harbour once came up this far.
Written May 10, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

BradJill
Hong Kong, China146,852 contributions
May 2020
The Cenotaph is one of Hong Kong's military related monuments, this one being dedicated to the fallen victims of WWI. It was built at this location in 1923 and is modelled after the Whitehall Cenotaph monument in London. The Cenotaph is situated in a square surfaced with grass and is a sombre reminder of the tragedies of war.

Note: Each November, there is a Armistice Day (Remembrance Day) ceremony organised and held at the Cenotaph Memorial.

Note: The less known WWI & WWII Memorial Arch can be found situated at the entrance to the Hong Kong Zoological & Botanical Garden. This is a more traditional arched gateway structure flanked with guardian lions. It is dedicated to the local Chinese who died fighting for the British cause during the World Wars.
Written May 20, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

brigettimoog
Kriftel, Germany52 contributions
Jul 2020 • Couples
This place honors heroes. But it looks and feels alien among the surroundings. But that is the charm.
Written July 24, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

BradJill
Hong Kong, China146,852 contributions
Apr 2014 • Couples
The Cenotaph in Hong Kong is a bleak and sombre monument dedicated to the fallen victims of World War I. Built at this location in 1923, it is an exact replica of the famous Sir Edwin Lutyen's Cenotaph situated at Whitehall in London.

You can find the Cenotaph in a small grass clearing near Statue Square, Town Hall and the Legco building. It is worth stopping for a moment if you are in the area, even if to simply pay respects before moving on.

There is a Remembrance Day (Armistice Day) Service held at the Cenotaph held in November each year, organised by the local Hong Kong Ex-Servicemen's Association.
Written April 18, 2014
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Me_n_my_rucksack
Yorkshire, UK5,971 contributions
Feb 2012 • Couples
The presence of the Cenotaph, so evocative of the British period of Governance in Hong Kong, makes a visit to this square worthwhile. A solemn reminder of the sacrifice many of Hong Kong made during two world wars.

However if one visits on a Sunday the square, and its sourrounding areas, are filled with throngs of Phillipino and other migrant domestic servants who have their few weekly hours off. They congregate with their friends, share food together and have a happy few hours together.

Two aspects of this small yet impressive patch of the island.
Written March 5, 2012
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

hkvisitor1997
Hong Kong, China539 contributions
In Hong Kong, it's not easy to find a place remind of yesteryears, for some strange reasons, they love to take out the old and replace with the new, so to find this place still here, is a historical find, a memorial to respect the people give their life to make this a better world for us, before the Star ferry relocated, there are thousands of people walk by here everyday, but now is becoming a slowly forgoting our War hero's, those should be remembered forever for what they sacrifice.
Written January 13, 2012
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

MrCushtie
Singapore, Singapore391 contributions
Jan 2012 • Solo
On a Sunday, it's full of domestic helpers having their day off. In the week, it's a bit of a desert - nothing much here apart from an entrance to the MTR station and a few benches to sit on. Really nothing more than somewhere that you'll walk through on the way to something else, whether that's City Hall or the HSBC HQ.
Written January 7, 2012
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Barry-of-Toronto
Toronto, Canada1,031 contributions
Oct 2011 • Solo
This small public space across from the HSBC building may not be worth a special trip on its own, but is worth visiting as part of a walking tour of downtown Hong Kong.

The square has a statue of Sir Thomas Jackson who had a long career with the HSBC. There is also a fountain, and seating areas, and good street level views of the downtown area, most notably the HSBC building and the rather impressive colonial style Legislative building. This square can easily be combined in a walking tour of other nearby sites of interests including the HSBC building, St. John's Cathedral, Hong Kong Park and the Tram entrance for visiting The Peak.

Visitors would do well to cross the next street (harbour side) to visit the Cenotaph monument, which I regret missing, since it holds historical significance for Canadians (Canadian soldiers also served during the battle for Hong Kong and were POWs during the war).

In giving this site an "average" rating, I don't mean to imply it is mediocre or not worth a visit. It's just that most visitors will not find it as important as tourist attractions such as St John's Cathedral, the Star Ferry Clock Tower area, or Hong Kong Park.
Written January 4, 2012
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Thomas N.R. Johnson
Stockholm, Sweden613 contributions
May 2017 • Friends
Today, this feels more like a transitory place than a memorial site over those (British) who lose life during the war, but you will quickly recognize the monument as it is similar in London and in other historically classic British places around the world. Since Hong Kong has evolved and changed very much in recent decades, it is one of the few older landmarks that exist today, reminiscent of the British presence in the first half of the 20th century. There is a 'lonely sadness' over the place and it feels already a bit forgotten ... Hong Kong has a new future!
Written July 9, 2017
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

yfylou
Kota Kinabalu, Malaysia6,502 contributions
Dec 2015 • Family
The Stature Square was one of the Hong Kong's heritage landmark. Special events or promotions will be held in this venue. The events of 'Hong Kong Winterfest 2015' and 'The Sparking Bvlgari Roman Holiday' was being held here was a success.
Written January 22, 2016
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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  • Sun - Sat 12:00 AM - 12:00 AM
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