PLACES – The Hakka Walled Village of Tsang Tai Uk, Sha Tin 8


‘Big House of the Tsangs’ or Tsang Tai Uk (aka Shan Ha Wai – the ‘Walled Village at the Mountain’s Foot’) is a Hakka walled village in Sha Tin, near Lion Rock Tunnel. It is a Grade I heritage site as of 2007, and is probably the most accessible village of its kind in HK…

Construction began in 1848 by the wealthy granite merchant and stonemason Tsang Koon-Man…

It took 20 years to complete, during a time when HK was awash with pirates. The original construction materials are still intact today, and much of the fortified village is still inhabited…

The complex is rectangular and consists of 3 rows of houses and some land for agriculture where flowers and fruits such as papaya are still grown. The four corners feature a 3-story guard tower with openings for guns…

All of the homes are linked by passages and small courtyards…

There are three arched entrances and, in the centre of the complex, is an ancestral hall where meetings and ceremonies took place…

Visitors are permitted in the first courtyard and ancestral hall; the remaining courtyards and buildings are private (and heavily guarded!)…

To visit, board the Ma On Shan MTR Line to Che Kung Temple or Sha Tin Wai and walk to Tsang Tai Uk. Buses 74A, 80X, 82K, 82M, 82S, 85A, 249X, N281 run past the village, as do green minibuses 61S, 803, 803A, 804, 809K. Alternatively, hire bikes in Tai Wai and visit by bicycle.