I explored so many street markets in Hong Kong that I have a long list of Hong Kong Souvenirs to share with you. Honestly, before the trip, my image of the city was that of a modern city with glittering malls where you mostly get the branded stuff. Brands tend to be pretty global these days, especially if we think of urban areas of the world as a universe. I could not have been more wrong. At the base of tall buildings are these charming street markets full of choices for the Souvenirs from Hong Kong.
Top 20 Hong Kong Souvenirs – Shopping in Hong Kong
My recommendation for shopping the Best Souvenirs from Hong Kong are:
Jade & Other Precious Stone Products
The Jade is a favorite stone of the Chinese. They believe that it brings good health, long life and with that a good fortune. No wonder, every market here has Jade accessories. Most popular are the Jade charms. There is a charm for each of the zodiac signs. Tell them your year of birth and they will give you your charm. You can tie it to your wallet, your bag or your bracelet.
Pick up the bracelets or earrings or rings in Jade. I picked up simple Jade earrings from Jade Street.
For better quality Jade products, you can visit the shops next to the Jade Street Market. Here you can get the more exquisitely carved Jade Products. They, of course, come at a price.
You can get basic jade accessories almost everywhere in the city. It is a must-buy souvenir from Hong Kong.
I always wondered if I will ever be able to learn to use chopsticks to eat. At Hong Kong, food always came with ChopSticks. At a Chinese restaurant, they even had a card telling you how to eat Dim Sums with chopsticks. Another time I observed people around and managed to finish my bowl of noodles with chopsticks. So, it is not difficult, just demands a bit of practice.
At different markets, I found these lovely sets of chopsticks. The most used ones are the wooden ones, although I saw them in ceramics or porcelain as well. I wonder if I would be too scared to use them or are they meant for some special occasions.
In any case, chopsticks would make a perfect souvenir. They come in lovely packaging along with smallholders used to rest them on.
Engraved Cypress Block
On the cross-section of a trunk of Cypress tree – artists write prayers by engraving them. Sometimes they carve a Buddha or a Bodhisattva instead of a prayer. These wooden blocks, when put on a stand, look beautiful.
I could not communicate with the artisans, but I believe if you can, you can get any design of your choice etched on these blocks of wood.
Cypress blocks would be one of my favorite souvenirs to get from Hong Kong.
Lace Work or White on White Embroidery
At Stanley market, I saw these shops selling home linen in delicate white on white embroidery. It looks a classic thing to pick as a gift. It was not cheap but then when does exquisiteness come cheap.
You can choose from bedsheets to bed covers to cushion covers. They even had small embroidered bags. It would be one of those classic gifts for family and friends.
Netsuke Art is nothing but the miniature metal figurines. They are usually animal and human figurines. They were probably used as like tassels, suspended at the end of the garments.
Today, they can be a miniature collector’s muse.
Chinese Silk Dresses
China is known for its silks. Here you get these shining silk dresses, mostly in red color but sometimes in other bright colors like golden and bright blue too. An alternative to dresses is small pouches or handbags or mobile cases made of same shining silk.
I would pick them up for young girls in the family.
Like Indians, Chinese also seem to be fond of heavy gold jewelry. In every market, I could see these heavy gold jewelry on display. They are available both as branded and custom-made jewelry. Designs are very different and always have some defining element that tells you that it is Chinese.
Gold Jewelry is obviously is the costliest souvenir you can pick.
In the Ladies Market, I found these quirky baggage tags. They would not just tell you which is your bag but also bring a smile to anyone’s face who sees them on the baggage belt at the airport.
Creative Memory Cards
Imagine a plastic Coke bottle that is actually a memory stick. I know some people who collect these funky shaped or quirkily designed memory sticks. I think it would make a great gift for the younger generation who are always in need of memory and who would not love these designs.
On a lighter note, it would be easy to remember which stick you use for what purpose ????
Funny Ladies Stuff
Imagine these manicure sets in colorful designs or some funky colorful wigs. Or a hand mirror that no one can ever guess is a mirror. There are so many of these things available in the markets that you would be spoilt with options to choose from.
Paper Cutting Punch Machines
These colorful bits are punch machines to cut paper in various shapes. A perfect gift for young ones who can use them creatively.
Classic Chinese Souvenirs
Wood Carves Furniture in many places would remind you of old furniture in your grandparent’s home. Remember those four-poster beds with colorful porcelain tiles in them. You can still get them at furniture shops. I agree they are not the easiest souvenirs to carry back home, but then some of us like to fill our homes with designs from around the world.
I would love a well-carved chair in my library.
Traditional Chinese Paintings have an air of delicacy married to finesse. Colors used are soft yet vibrant. You mostly see finely dressed women surrounded by flowers, or their silk costumes shimmering in the moonlight as they walk in gardens.
An easy way to carry them back is to buy them as fridge magnets or bookmarks.
Now, if you visit museums as I do – you cannot but be fascinated by the fine Chinese Porcelain. When I visited Meissen Porcelain in Germany – I heard the stories of Chinese Porcelain. So, it was always on my Hong Kong Souvenirs List.
Well, I did not pick one, but I explored all possible Chinese Porcelain that I could. You can pick up the inexpensive tea sets at Ladies Market or Temple Street or walk to high-end showrooms and buy the exquisite Chinese Porcelain with delicate hand-painted designs.
Most Chinese Porcelain I have seen outside China is Blue and White in color, but here, I found them in all possible colors and color combinations.
Chinese Board Games
The Chinese have a set of board games that they have given to the world. In fact, on the streets, I could still find groups of men playing these games. Some of the classic Chinese games that you can buy are:
- Chinese Checkers
- Abacus – Not a game, but they come in such cute designs
Feng Shui Items
Feng Shui is China’s Vaastu Shastra. They have these arrays of red and golden products that they believe bring all kinds of fortune, wealth, and happiness. For every problem in life, there is an item that you must keep in a certain place and in a certain direction. For example, golden coins kept in your wallet attract wealth.
The shopkeepers would be able to guide you or even a google search can help you pick the right feng shui item for you.
I think Feng Shui is a traditional souvenir to buy for anyone. They are not too expensive and can easily fit in your luggage.
For the Foodies
China gave us tea. So, Tea is an obvious choice as a souvenir from the city. I would love to learn how they make Chilled Milk Tea or Nai Cha. It was one of my discoveries there.
The Mooncakes are a delicacy that is at its peak during the Mid-Autumn Festival. A little birdie tells me that this dessert has a mysterious history – it seems they were used as messengers during the times of love and war. They were used to conceal messages both my lovers and by army generals.
I could see mooncakes everywhere in bakeries and sweet shops around the city. Big advertisements adorned the walls of MTR stations. You can pick up in nice tin boxes – with a single piece of square moon cake or multiple pieces.
You can find these at most local bakers. You must sample them and pack them for your journey back home.
So, which is your favorite pick?
Recommend you read following travel blog on the city.