To get to the Ladies’ Market at Tung Choi Street, take the MTR to Mong Kok Station…
Watch this water-fountain amplifier…
I’m not exactly sure what the rage about chilies were about. Some friends asked me to bring back the fridge magnets (bottom right hand).
Haggle wisely. These loot should not even cost more than HK$30 (i.e. HK$5.00 for six fridge magnets). According to a widely-travelled friend, he suggested that you should also threaten to go to another stall if your opening bid doesn’t meet the vendor’s agreement. This would likely open up the vendor’s willingness to lower the prices further. Of course, some reasonable discretion as to how low the prices should go must be taken into account as well.
A word for those who visit the market early in the morning – it is a pervasive vendors’ (or businessmen, if you prefer) superstition that their first business of the day must be successfully concluded (whether to your detriment or otherwise). So, do not approach any vendor first thing in the morning, haggle until the cows are ready to be milked (or gamely negotiating without any real intention to buy) and then ditch the vendor. You can be sure that they won’t be so hospitable at this stage.
The Ladies’ Market consists of rows and rows of stalls selling approximately the same items. To illustrate, if you found a stall selling some Chinese artistic paintings, you should be able to find another vendor slightly further down the road peddling more or less the same things as well.
So, do not plunge your cash at the first stall you see. You could scope out the prices around the area first before deciding which items merit a purchase.
Personally, I don’t have any particular interest in mind when I came here. Sure, the clothes, bags, shoes and other souvenirs are cheap but you get what you pay for in terms of quality. The walk down the entire street is also quite tiring and watch out for your personal belongings at all times.
At night, we visited the famous Temple Street just to see what items are for sale there:
The night market atmosphere was very lively but unless you are the sort who likes to get into congested areas and rub shoulders with foreigners, this may not be the place for you. Besides, the wares sold at the Temple Street market didn’t offer much variety from the Ladies’ Market.
There were some Chinese-made LEGO sets and also some tarot card kits but these are the exception and not the norm. If you are into trinkets and cheap clothes and bags, then this place is for you. Otherwise, this is a great place for food and some drinks. Some restaurants in the area are also tourist traps (just look at the places where there are many Caucasians eating and then briefly peruse the menu given – then you’d know). Hint: take a cue from the locals – they don’t eat at places which is a rip-off, right?
Away from the bustling night market…
While most of Kowloon’s buildings and surroundings are rather old and filthy (most tenements are so indescribably old that they were abandoned) and the locals are also quite brusque in their manner of communication, a walk down a quiet street such as this was quite enjoyable.