If you’ve wander around the New Territories, you’ll probably have seen bits of the unique walled villages in the form of the occasional grey brick walls with traditional sloped roofs. These walls and roofs are remnants of settlements founded by various Hakka and Cantonese communities during the Qing and Ming Dynasties. The walls helped protect the villagers from pirates, who ran amok along the Guangdong coast in those days.
While the threat of pirates might have dissipated, some of these villages are still intact today — particularly in areas such as Yuen Long, Sheung Shui, Sha Tin, Fanling, and Wong Tai Sin. The villages are characterized by square or rectangular blocks of houses separated by narrow walkways. Though many villages have since been replaced by more modern buildings, you may still be able to catch sight of a wall or gate that has been left behind.