SCMP Friday, March 2, 2001

Do-it-yourself historical excursions


Yau Ma Tei's famous gwo-laan (fruit wholesale market) on Waterloo Road is always worth a look and is at its best early in the morning. Numerous old cha-chaan teng (local cafes) offer a steaming glass of nai-cha (milk tea) and tasty, filling kung-si jee (Chinese-style club sandwiches) for under $30.
Yau Ma Tei Hei Yuen (Yau Ma Tei Cinema) on Waterloo Road, right near the gwo-laan, has been showing films since the 1920s. Dilapidated today, it is probably Hong Kong's oldest surviving movie house. From there, wander up to Kowloon's famous Tin Hau Temple - this temple complex on Public Square Street partly dates from 1870. Now over two kilometres inland, it was formerly on the waterfront. Around the corner on Canton Road the Yau Ma Tei Police Station dates from 1922.
The ever-popular Jade Market on Kansu Street is across from the police station. And all this is only 10 minutes' walk from both Yau Ma Tei and Jordan MTR stations.