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“Well worth the trip”

Hong Kong Museum of Coastal Defence
Ranked #47 of 867 things to do in Hong Kong
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed October 9, 2012

Nice history of Hong Kong defenses (which in retrospect weren't all that successful) over time. Great views. Displays of semi-recent to much earlier military gear, cannons and the like. Weekends and holidays will be packed with school tours.

1  Thank fracmeister
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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"military history"
in 21 reviews
"japanese occupation"
in 14 reviews
"shau kei wan mtr"
in 11 reviews
"ming dynasty"
in 9 reviews
"mtr station"
in 17 reviews
"opium wars"
in 10 reviews
"outdoor exhibits"
in 6 reviews
"torpedo room"
in 5 reviews
"world war"
in 5 reviews
"armored vehicles"
in 3 reviews
"artillery pieces"
in 3 reviews
"anti japanese"
in 2 reviews
"exhibition rooms"
in 2 reviews
"british period"
in 2 reviews
"main exhibition"
in 2 reviews
"nice history"
in 2 reviews
"informative displays"
in 2 reviews
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155 - 159 of 238 reviews

Reviewed August 29, 2012

Firstly I would say if you are a tourist it's worth a visit especially if you a British Canadian or Indian as those troops along with local HK soldiers fought the Japanese here. However, I think the museum is almost in two worlds culturally and politically. Why do I say this well look at the older exhibits that talk about the heroic defence by the British against the Japanese and contrast this with what seems like new displays showing the the British as aggressors attacking the Chinese mainland in the 1800s and paints a slightly one sided view in my opinion and uses some quite strong propoganda. However this is only a small part of the museum. Other parts of the museum paint a better picture and describe the escape of British and Chinese soldiers from the Japanese and their long road to freedom during world war two.

Getting to the museum is good as you walk through areas of true hong kong suburb you may not otherwise experience. Wednesday its free to enter so go then. As you approach you will see a large concrete tower this takes you via a lift to the top of the fortifications so take the lift up.

At the top head for the air conditioned large museum and follow the signs as you walk around bearing in mind the history portrayed here covers other areas of china and may not be the western version of events. In some cases if you are British be aware some of the video material paint a very poor picture of the British.

There is a cafe here but does look very dirty behind the scenes. Now go outside for the fantastic views of the local area, be careful some of the walkways are dead ends and we walked quite far not being able to go any further and had to walk all the way back again so study the map given to you on entry.

For me the best part everyone else walked past were the bullet ridden buildings where the British stood and fought against the Japanese . This is and was a world war two battle site. Follow the trail down past some spectacular views and gun batteries down to where you started. This truly is a magnificent fortress. there is a small gift shop selling children's toys some books but mainly tat and rubbish.

In summary go on a Wednesday. Have an open mind to the history portrayed here. You may want to give the cafe a miss. Take the lift up and walk down the hill. Be aware of where you are going as it is a maze. Enjoy the spectacular views. Enjoy the walk to it through the suburbs.

2  Thank JohnSunderlandUk
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 21, 2012

The Museum of Coastal Defense is a very good museum (HK$10 per person) found in Shau Kei Wan (HK Island). The location is not ideal for visitation compared to our more centrally located museums and there is little else to see in this area of the city. However, this is one of Hong Kong's better overall museums.

The layout of the museum is good, information is displayed very nicely and there is a natural flow to the museum inside the Redoubt structure for Hong Kong's history as it pertains to the protection and defense of the area and its coastal waters through the centuries. The museum is inherently more specific than the more general nature of the Hong Kong Museum of History so it might be to the liking of all visitors. However, those with any interest in the subject matter of this museum are sure to enjoy it tremendously. They did a very good job with this museum.

The outside exhibits are naturally more military oriented and worth a quick look. The star of this museum however is the inside area, known as the Redoubt, where there are 11 galleries dedicated to different time periods of Hong Kong's history as it relates to coastal defense. Information is very well presented, displays are colorful and suitable for both children and adults and the museum layout allows you to move through the centuries (rooms) at whatever speed you like. Overall, an outstanding job planning and organizing this museum! A few of the rooms also have TVs set up, showing programs in Cantonese, Mandarin or English (you can choose). Information is the same you can read on the walls but it provides a nice perspective if you want to give you eyes a break from reading.

Within the Redoubt structure, we particularly like Galleries 2-4 which are dedicated to the Ming and Qing Period, prior to the arrival of Western powers and the first Opium War, an important time period which set the stage for the development and role of Hong Kong as part of the British Empire. Gallery Nine, which covers the Japanese Occupation is also quite well done. Outside there is a small cafe if you need to rest your feet. Food and drink orders are mostly Chinese or snacks.

Overall, the subject matter is specific and predictable so you'll know if this is your sort of thing or not. If so, you are in for a treat and will probably find this to be an outstanding museum, especially considering the cheap price of entry. If this is not your cup of tea though, it's understandable if you give this one a pass, it is not as conveniently located as other important and interesting museums in HK.

The Museum of Coastal Defense is a ten minute walk from the Shai Kei Wan MTR Station. You can also stop by the Tam Kung Temple nearby and between the museum and the MTR station if you want to see something else while visiting this part of HK.

8  Thank BradJill
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 3, 2012

This museum is a little out of the way. It is accessible by MTR and a 10-15 min. walking distance from Sha Kei Wan station (exit B2). All very well sign posted.

The museum is actually a converted coastal fortification and has been there since 1870’s. It still bears the marks of the Japanese invasion of Hong Kong in 1941 with a lot of information on how life was in Hong Kong under Japanese occupation. There are many exhibits that also cover Chinese and British history. Many interesting military relics including canons, batteries, tanks and even torpedo station.

Upon arrival, start your way from the 8th floor and work your way down to the torpedo station following the historical trail. The museum is generally handicapped friendly. However, parts of the historical trail specifically the torpedo station can be quite difficult if travelling with an elder or very young children.

The museum is child friendly, ideal for 4 years old and above. It has an interesting book corner and interactive computers for the little ones. The 12 min. history show at the theatre is a must-see. It has a couple of small cafes and it has fantastic views of the harbour.

Due to outdoor exhibits, interesting historical trail and plenty vantage points for viewing, this attraction is best visited during good weather condition.

Entrance fee is very cheap. Free on Wednesdays and special ticket discounts for Senior citizens and children.

Well worth a visit if you come to Hong Kong.

1  Thank Onbarefeet
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed May 30, 2012

Hong Kong Museum of Coastal Defence

This is a great place for an outing for visitors (adults and children) to Hong Kong and for Hong Kong residents. In fact some school teachers organise museum outings for their students. It is easily reached on foot from the nearest MTR station on the eastern side of the Island Line.

The history of Hong Kong is very well laid out with separate rooms for the main items (uniforms, weapons, photographs, documents etc) and times of interest. At some points, tunnels connect the rooms and one can imagine how the soldiers felt moving around in these tunnels during WW2. Also there is a wonderful AV presentation of the WW2 escape from Hong Kong by a group who travelled through China and Burma.

Outside the actual museum there are some guns and tanks which are worth a look - for adults and kids! Finally, there is a wonderful view from the top of this former fortification across to Kowloon.

The only area which demands improvement is the catering facility – for a museum of this standard this is very poor!

1  Thank bloggo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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