Aberdeen is an old harbour on the southern side of Hong Kong island. It was re-named, in 1845, after the British Secretary of State for War and the Colonies, George Hamilton-Gordon, 4th Earl of Aberdeen. Competing with Cheung Chau and Shau Kei Wan in the race to be Hong Kong’s largest fishing harbour, Aberdeen is also famous to tourists for the boat people living in the harbour and the floating seafood restaurants such as the Jumbo Floating Restaurant.
Aberdeen is known indigenously as Heung Kong Tsai or Hong Kong Tsai (香港仔), which means Hong Kong Minor. It is believed that Aberdeen is where the name of Hong Kong (more accurate transcription, Heung Kong) originates. Heung Kong Tsuen (香港村, Hong Kong village) on Ap Lei Chau was mentioned on Ming Dynasty maps. Another walled-village, Heung Kong Wai in Wong Chuk Hang, was also founded during the Qianlong era of Qing Dynasty. Heung Kong means Fragrant Harbour, where incense trees (Aquilaria sinensis) from the New Territories were transferred here for export to other cities in China.
Hansen’s Hikes is happy to arrange guided tours of Aberdeen, neighbouring Ap Lei Chau island and other south Hong Kong destinations that include an exploration of the harbour in one of the traditional sampans. Contact us for further arrangements.