Stanley Market grew out of an open-air marketplace in the nearby village of Chek Chu Tsuen. The small market in that village eventually grew as Hong Kong Island continued to develop. As the area continued to grow and tourism to the area increased, people began to flock to the area to buy discount goods. This attracted merchants as well, and, in no time, the market boomed to its current size. Now, the market boasts name-brand vendors as well as humble merchants, and you can find everything from luxury goods to cheap eats in this market.
One of the reasons why Stanley Market is so popular is for its bargains. You can buy a luxury handbag for a steal of a price, but in most cases fakes or you can get a small souvenir for pennies. You'll also find authentic Chinese knickknacks and goods at the market, which make great souvenirs for people back home, including traditional Chinese clothing and arts and crafts. But if you do make a purchase from one of these shops or stalls, be sure to bargain and haggle. Not only will it assure you the best possible price on what you want, but it's also a part of the market experience. Stanley is a day market and the best time to visit is 11:00 or 11:30 am.
After you've finished a long day of shopping and haggling, you're bound to work up an appetite. Fortunately, there are plenty of eateries in the area that are ready and waiting to cater to your every craving. There are restaurants on Stanley Main Street that offer just about every cuisine under the sun, from traditional Cantonese fare to any international flavor you can imagine. There is even one dai pai dong, or open-air food stall, still in existence here. So whether you're craving haute cuisine or street food, you can get it at Stanley Market.