Grassy lawn with harbor views and a short but storied history
When local Rocco Yim designed a new headquarters for the Hong Kong government on the site of the former Tamar naval base, he envisioned it as an arch that represented transparency and openness. Beneath the arch, a park with broad trees and lush green lawns sloped down towards Victoria Harbor.
Invitation to protest
Yim probably didn’t anticipate that Hongkongers would take his sentiment to heart. In 2014, demonstrators angry at China’s decision to restrict Hong Kong’s election choices occupied the streets around Tamar, sparking a 79-day protest known as the Umbrella Movement. The entire area became a self-contained tent city with artworks, speeches, a church, a library and a study center for students. A blank concrete wall on the edge of the government headquarters was covered in messages of hope and peace, earning it the nickname of the Lennon Wall.
Today: picnics and dissent
Today, Tamar Park is still a popular spot for protesters, but it is also a lovely place to sit on the grass and have a picnic, which is exactly what many people do on sunny afternoons in the autumn, winter and spring.
Coffee with a view
We love iBakery Gallery Café, which has locations at both ends of the park. The bakery is a social enterprise that employs people with disabilities, with the goal of eventually integrating them into the workforce.
Next to Tamar Park is a large privately-managed event space that is home to many popular festivals, including the Art Central art fair, Wine & Dine food festival, Clockenflap music festival and Beertopia craft beer festival.