Aberdeen Fishing Village, Hong Kong

Winnie gave us great history and perspective on the culture and life in and around the Aberdeen Fishing Village in Hong Kong. We boarded a sampan, a small, flat-bottomed  floating vessel, to tour the floating village. Sampan literally means “3 pieces of wood” which refers to the three planks used historically to build the boats: one for the bottom of the boat and two planks for the sides. The front of the boat was used for fishing and the back of the sampan was for showering and sleeping. Most fishermen used to live on their sampans and some still do. But, most now just use the boats for fishing. Twenty to thirty years ago, they became motorized.

Winnie says many of the buildings surrounding the fishing village are used for housing. They cost a premium although they are often no more than 300 sq. feet with shared kitchens or bathrooms. Some have been remodeled and given private bathrooms and kitchens. Some are subsidized and there is an incredible waiting list for these.

I was continually struck by the contrast between the old fishing boats and shanties and the modern buildings surrounding the village.


On the way to our sampan boat for our tour of the village. Jumbo is a very famous restaurant and Winnie recommends it!


When typhoons hit, families would hide in the bottoms of the sampans.


Our sampan driver, a retired fisherman. I didn’t notice his tip jar until I edited this photo. Darn.

A sampan ride is required for a Jumbo meal experience. Hmmm…one day!

So many details. So much history. Life and waste and beauty and poverty and riches.


Do you see him?


How about now?


There he is!

And, we received a warm greeting, indeed, on our return to the dock!