The celebration of Halloween in Hong Kong got its start in the then British Crown Colony’s premier dining and entertainment district, Lan Kwai Fong, more than 20 years ago. In the early days, a small handful of expats would show up at their favourite drinking holes on 31 October in costumes. Everyone else just wore normal attire.
Word slowly spread among the Chinese community, and locals started showing up to witness what in the early years was a rather low key spectacle.
Crowd Control Measures Adopted
Year by year, the throngs got larger, and slowly more and more people – both Chinese and expat – started showing up in costume. Making the holiday their own, many locals started showing up in costumes with Chinese themes.
Soon, crowd control measures had to be taken, with the then Royal Hong Kong Police setting up barricades and forcing the thousands of curiosity seekers to march in an orderly fashion through the district – much to the bemusement of the drinkers watching from the inside of bars. Eventually, a few of the locals started showing up in costume themselves. Nowadays, Halloween has evolved into one of Hong Kong’s biggest and most popular celebrations.
Copyright: Michael Taylor Pictured: street parties on Halloween in Hong Kong Photo Credit: Hong Kong Tourism Board