Kowloon, Hong Kong » City Info » History

The name Kowloon was known as the nine dragons represented by eight peaks and which included a Chinese emperor. They are named as Kowloon Peak, Tung Shan, Tate's Cairn, Temple Hill, Unicorn Ridge, Lion Rock, Beacon Hill, Crow's Nest and Emperor Bing. South of Boundary Street part with Stonecutters Island of Kowloon remained largely undeveloped.

Kowloon was once a separate city, which was acquired by Britain in 1860 and later returned to China in 1997 with the rest of the colony. The city was a wilderness and was used by the British for tiger-hunting expeditions. Today, Kowloon with an area of 47m² (18mi²) is a shopping, arts, and entertainment district.

Architecture side of Kowloon was not very much developed as compared to Hong Kong Island and it started developing on a large scale in the early 20th century with the Kowloon-Canton Railway and the Kowloon Wharf. West Kowloon was known as the Royal Navy dockyard and now it is used as a typhoon shelter which can be reached by Star Ferry boat. Both parts of Kowloon with the rest of Hong Kong were transferred to China in 1997 as deal between Hong Kong and China.

The city was rebuilt as a fort in mid 1800s Kowloon Peninsula of Hong Kong after serving as a watch post for defending the area against pirates and managing the production of salt. In 1842, Qing authorities established a military post to rule the area and to check further British influence when Hong Kong Island was ceded to Britain.

Additional parts of Hong Kong (the New Territories ) excluding walled city were handed to Britain for 99 years with a population of 700. It was also stated that China could keep troops but they would not interfere with Britain's temporary rule. Depending upon this favorable condition Britain quickly went back and attacked on Kowloon Walled City in 1899. In eras 1890s and 1940s Yamen, as well as other buildings outpost was not refurbished. This resulted into the fall of the Qing government, establishment of a Republic of China in 1911 and the People's Republic of China in 1949 later. Till 1940 the Kowloon city remained as a tourist attraction curiosity where British colonials and tourists could have the old China. Finally people were evicted from the city, and Japan demolished much of the city - to provide building materials for Kai Tak Airport including the parts of wall.