Just when you thought you’d exhausted all the fun and interesting activities to do in Hong Kong, there are more! Bowling, while a popular pastime in the US, and heavily featured in movies and TV shows, is also accessible in Hong Kong. A perfect alternative for those rainy days, or when you are looking to do something different! While a number of private membership clubs like the Hong Kong Football Club and Ladies Recreational Club have their own alleys, there are a number of bowling alleys in Hong Kong open to the public.
Hong Kong also has an outdoor version of bowling which was introduced during British colonization: lawn bowling, colloquially called ‘bowls’. This is our round-up of not just the ten pin bowling, but also lawn bowling in Hong Kong!
What is lawn bowling?
Firstly, what most people associate with the word ‘bowling’ is probably alley bowling, which has 10 pins, colourful neon balls, and people yelling “strike”, “split”, and “gutterball”. But lawn bowling, which is normally played outdoors, is a different sport that was brought to Hong Kong by the British in the early 1900s and was most commonly played by the British and Chinese upper class. Players roll balls which are usually biased (uneven, weighted, or generally unbalanced), trying make them stop as close as possible to another smaller white ball.
The Hong Kong Lawn Bowls Association was established in 1961 and the first public bowling greens in the city was opened in Victoria Park. The game remains popular among Hong Kong’s upper-middle class with an active lawn bowling community, 8 public government-facilitated bowling greens, and numerous private venues.
SCCA Bowling Centre — Causeway Bay
The South China Athletic Association is a hidden gem for indoor sports lovers in the middle of Causeway Bay. Although technically entrance requires a membership, with the association’s mission to promote sports and foster healthy citizenship (as well as its status as a non-profit), the fee is only $200 per year.
Prices per game for ten pin bowling start at just $28 on weekdays, going up to $43 on weekends. It is also the largest space for bowling in Hong Kong, with 60 lanes! So whether it’s a birthday bowling party, a team bonding activity, or any large event, you are sorted. Just be sure to book 14 days prior to the event, for group applications. Do note that only children above 8 are welcomed at the centre!
SCCA Bowling Centre, 88 Caroline Hill Rd, Causeway Bay | 2890 8528
Dragon Bowling — Ho Man Tin, Tsuen Wan, Tuen Mun
Dragon Bowling has operations worldwide, and four bowling alleys in Hong Kong: US Dacos Bowling Centre in Tsuen Wan, Mei Lok Bowling Centre in Tuen Mun, and their eponymously named centres in Ho Man Tin and Tuen Mun. All of the locations have approximately 30 lanes for ten pin bowling, and also darts, foosball and a pool table, making for a great gaming day for groups. They even have a simple snack bar if you’d like some onion rings or drinks with your game, truly mimicking the western bowling experience. Adults can also enjoy some beers.
US Dacos in Tsuen Wan is known for its great staff and a huge chandelier in its entrance corridor whereas the Mei Lok Tuen Mun location is known for its fun and festive atmosphere. While the equipment is on the older side, the price is only $100 per hour. For more enthusiastic players, they also host regular tournaments and leagues for individuals or teams.
Multiple locations | 2494 7383
Tikitiki Bowling Bar — Sai Kung
For a truly unique bowling experience, you just need to head over to Sai Kung. Combining the tropical feel with amazing food, fruity cocktails, and of course bowling, the Tikitiki Bowling Bar is a one-stop-shop party experience. Prices can start from as low as $99 per hour per lane for members during off peak hours, but can quickly rise up to $299 for prime time (Fridays and weekends, especially in the evenings).
Tikitiki only have 10 lanes though, so be sure to make a booking during prime times! They are also known for their amazing themed parties where you can experience a bit of glitz and glam with their Viva Las Vegas or lean into the Caribbean theme with Crazy Calypso Nights. Another great secret – they often host Catherine’s Puppies Adoption events on Sundays. So why not play with some pups and then get in a round of bowling!
Tikitiki Bowling Bar, 4/F, Centro, 1A Chui Tong Rd, Sai Kung | 2657 8488
Thunderbowl — Whampoa
Open since 2004 in the heart of Whampoa, Thunderbowl has all you need from a bowling alley. Twenty-two cool, modern ten pin bowling lanes – check. Tournaments and leagues for the competitive ones – check. Introductory course to take your skill to the next level – check!
Moreover, in terms of facilities they also have a VIP room with two lanes that can be partitioned off for a private bowling party. If you really want to jazz up the party, just play some music and light up the LED lights on the lanes, and it’s quite a show. If you are bowling with kids (or even adult beginners), they have bumper lanes to avoid the dreaded gutter ball. Costs start as low as $26 for students on weekdays, and go up to $55 for adults on weekends.
Thunderbowl, Shop 2, B1/F, Screen World, Site 8, Whampoa Garden, Hung Hom | 2122 9822
Victoria Park Lawn Bowling Greens — Causeway Bay
In Victoria Park, just walking distance from the concentration of large offices and homes, is a great little spot for Lawn Bowling. There are two artificial turf bowling greens which each have six rinks. They allow a maximum of eight players in a rink at any time. The Victoria Park Lawn Bowling Greens are open from 7am to 11pm daily, perfect for before- or after-work games. Not only is the location convenient, it is also a wonderful opportunity to enjoy the beautiful weather on any day. For first-timers, they also offer training courses. The best part is that it is incredibly affordable! Hourly rates start at $15 for the concessionary rate and $40 for the regular rate.
Victoria Park Lawn Bowling Greens, Victoria Park Rd, Causeway Bay | 2890 5824
If you are looking for a longer day out, with a side of cycling, taking in the views of the sea, and perhaps even spotting some cherry blossoms in the spring, then Tai Po Waterfront Park is a great place to go. This park has a number of different highlights including a lookout tower, an ecological garden, a water feature, and a 600-seat amphitheatre. They are also the first venue in Hong Kong to provide a natural turf bowling greens. Like Victoria Park, they have two greens with six rinks each, which allow a maximum of eight players at a time. Hourly rates are, again, $15 for the concessionary rate and $40 for the regular rate.
Tai Po Waterfront Park Bowling Greens, Tai Po Waterfront Park, Dai Fat St, Tai Po | 2667 5489
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