Hong Kong is one of the most densely populated sovereign territories in the world with millions of people living with the land area of just 1,106 sq kilometers. It was colonized by the British Empire and returned back to China in 1997.
The city has so much to offer, from street markets to luxurious shopping malls, local traditional Chinese food to international cuisines, and spectacular city skylines to the natural sites. During the night, the city is still filled with plenty of excitement including performances, midnight feasts, and one can explore the night markets.
Hong Kong has a huge airport called Hong Kong International Airport (Airport Code: HKG). This airport is located on Lantau Island, New Territories and has replaced the old Kai Tak International Airport. Every day, it welcomes hundreds of international flights and thousands of travelers from Asia, Europe, the Middle East, and North America.
When you check out from the immigration center at Terminal 2 take the Airport Express or public buses into the city. The Airport Express is slightly more expensive, but is the fastest way. Once you arrive in the city, you can take the MTR to your hotel or Airbnb.
Hong Kong has a highly efficient and comprehensive transport network. Getting around Hong Kong will be a bit of adventure and travelers can get to any tourist spot hassle-free. You can use double-decker buses, red and green light buses, MTR, trams, ferries, junk boats, and taxis.
Best Things to do for 4 days in Hong Kong
During my four-day trip to Hong Kong, I felt very grateful that have visited and done most of the stuff on my bucket list. I have only missed out two things- the tram ride to The Peak and Peak Tower, despite the heavy downpour of the second day. So, here’s to summarize the amazing things I did in Hong Kong.
Visit the stunning Sky100
Sky100 (天際100) is a 360-degree indoor observation deck located on the 100th floor of the International Commerce Center and used as a major transportation, entertainment, and shopping hub in West Kowloon. It is the tallest building in the city, standing 393 meters above sea level. It takes you above on the high-speed double-deck elevator in just 60 seconds. This observation deck allows visitors to enjoy the magnificent view of the entire Hong Kong by day and night, making a perfect choice to spend time with friends, family, and loved ones.
If you are a person who enjoys the night view of the city like me, head to the top after 9 pm when the crowd is lesser and definitely have the chance to pick a great spot for night photography and enjoy the amazing city view.
Check out their official website for more details and purchase the tickets with 10% discount.
Getting There: MTR Kowloon Station, exit C1 and D1, and enter the Elements shopping mall, in the Metal Zone on the second floor.
Try street food and explore local markets
Stroll through the street markets of Hong Kong to search for unique antiques, gifts, electronic goods, and clothing. Get an opportunity to test your bargaining skills and fetch good price for anything you ask for.
Kowloon Peninsula: Ladies Market, Apliu Street Flea Market (Electronic), Cheung Sha Wan and Granville Road (Fashion), Temple Street Night Market, Jade Street, Shanghai St, Bird Garden, Flower Market, Goldfish Market, Sneaker Street
Hong Kong Island: Cat Street (Antiques), Li Yuen Street (Fashion), Tai Yuen Street (Toys), Gough Street, Dried Seafood Street and Tonic Food Street, Ko Shing Street
Food stalls and ‘Cha Chaan Teng’ are one of the least expensive places to dine in and they can be found in every corner of the streets. Dim Sim is the most popular Chinese traditional food in Hong Kong and is best to go with Hong Kong-style milk tea. You can save a lot of money on food without dining in for dim sum at any shopping malls. What’s more, you get the view of the locals doing their early morning grocery shopping in the street market.
Enjoy a ride on the junk boat
Don’t miss out one and only remaining sailing junk boat ride in Hong Kong. This junk boat named ‘Duk Ling’ represents as the landmark of the city, the sense of humane of the fishermen in the previous generation, and their integrity in which promise that must be kept. Back in the 1950s and 1960s, the fishermen used these junk boats for fishing in the ocean and sailing across the Victoria Harbour.
Hop on this antique sailing junk as the guide and the crews take you on this traditional junk boat ride to enjoy the magnificent view of Victoria Harbour and picture yourself back 150 years ago. Luckily for me, I was the only passenger on board. So, my guide personally shared some history of Hong Kong while passing through the place of interests around the harbor.
Getting There: You can board the boat in Pier No 3, Tsim Sha Tsui, Kowloon or Pier No 9, Central, Hong Kong Island, and tickets can be purchased while boarding.
Enjoy the splendid Symphony of Lights
Named the “World’s Largest Permanent Light and Sound Show” by Guinness World Records, over 40 skyscrapers on both sides of the harbor are light up with colored lights, laser beams and searchlights perform with all-around synchronized music and narration that celebrates the energy and diversity of Hong Kong. The show is held daily at 8pm and lasts for 13 minutes.
There are five main themes: Awakening, Energy, Heritage, Partnership, and Celebration. There is no admission fee required and the best place to view is at Tsim Sha Tsui waterfront outside Hong Kong Culture Centre and the promenade outside the Golden Bauhinia. You can even purchase tickets to ride on the Aqua Luna to enjoy the night performance on board.
Travel tips: The show will be canceled if Tropical Cyclone Warning Signal No 3 and above or Red/ Black Rainstorm Warning Signal is issued at or after 3pm on the day. No show will be staged even if the signal is removed before 8pm on that day or any emergencies with prior notice.
Admire Golden Bauhinia Square and HKCEC
Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre (HKCEC) is a venue to host many local and international functions and events. It is a harbor front expansion that used top-down construction techniques to challenge its limited supply and used highly innovative methods. With the shape of a tortoise, it was built with its vast curtain of glass and 40,000 sq meter of aluminum roof sculpted, making a major unique landmark on Hong Kong Island skyline.
The Golden Bauhinia Square represents the symbol of Hong Kong and was a gift from the Central Government to mark the 1997 Handover by former British Crown Colony to the People’s Republic of China. It attracts many tourists across the world and marks as the calligraphy of President Jiang Zemin, who represented China during the ceremony and celebrate the pomp and symbolism of the daily Flag-raising Ceremony with the beautiful Victoria Harbour.
Getting There: MTR Wan Chai Station Exit A5, walk along the footbridge of O’Brien Rd, pass through Immigration Tower and Central Plaza to HKCEC.
Ride on the cute Ding Ding
These trams have been running between the east and the west along the northern coast of Hong Kong Island, dating back to 1904 and currently have more than 100 of them in operation. It is easy to spot one of them and is one of the cheapest transportation to explore the island. It has a cute name called ‘Ding Ding’.
Take the mid-level escalator
Head on the world’s longest outdoor escalators as it takes you from Des Voeux Road, Central to Conduit Road at the top of the hills. You will pass through many pubs, bars, restaurants, shopping malls, galleries, and apartments uphills. Its original purpose was to bring office workers from Mid-Levels flats to the Central to and back from work.
If you have reached the top and have trouble getting all the way down, there is a bus stop at Conduit Road and take the green light bus down to the streets of northern Hong Kong Island.
Take a Morning at Stanley Harbour
Stanley is a town and tourist attraction, located on the peninsula of Hong Kong. It was named after Lord Stanley, a British Colonial Secretary at the time of the cession of Hong Kong to the United Kingdom.
Shopping here is well-complemented by cooling breezes and a great variety of local and international food. If you are searching for gifts, jewelry and branded clothes, Stanley Market, Stanley Waterfront Mart, Stanley Plaza and Murray House are the great places for shoppers. The Black Pier and the waterfront are the best points to enjoy the sunset with the views of South China Sea.
Getting There: There are many bus routes to get there. The common routes are 6, 6A, 6X, 66 and 260 from Central Exchange Square. Currently, there is no MTR routes served to Stanley.
Stroll around at Aberdeen
Aberdeen is a place where modernity meets tradition with skyscrapers facing a community living on traditional junks. The typhoon shelter is located on the south side of Hong Kong Island.
It is also a famous seafood dining spot and home to the Jumbo Kingdom, one of the world’s largest floating restaurants designed like a Chinese palace. The restaurant can seat up to 2,300 diners, which includes a tea garden and gourmet restaurant that serve high-quality traditional Chinese and modern fusion dishes.
Getting There: MTR Central Station, Exit A, then take bus 70 from Exchange Square bus terminus
Visit Ngong Ping 360
Start the Lantau Island journey with a 25 minutes cable-car ride from Tung Chung as it gives a bird’s eye view of the deep blue sea, green mountainside and Hong Kong International Airport. Explore the Ngong Ping Village that offers shopping, dining and entertainment experience.
Visit the renowned Big Buddha, Po Lin Monastery, Ngong Ping Piazza and Wisdom Path and hike along the Lantau Peak to look the gorgeous view of Lantau Island along its coast.
Getting There: Arrive at MTR Tung Chung Station, Exit B and walk to the Tung Chung Cable Car Terminal.
Visit the little Tai O Village
Tai O belongs to the home of Tanka people, a community of fisherfolk who have built their houses on stilts above the tidal flats of Lantau Island for generations. These unusual structures are linked, forming a tightly knit community that literally lives on the water.
This enchanting world is a paradise for photographers and worth exploring the lifestyle of its people. Hop on the boat ride as they take you through the fishing village and out into the sea to enjoy the sunset.
Getting There: Take the bus 21 from Ngong Ping bus terminus or bus 11 from MTR Tung Chung Station to Tai O. Then walk around 5 minutes to the Rope-drawn Ferry Bridge and take a stroll along the waterfront.
Going Elsewhere Near Hong Kong
If you are planning to stay longer for more adventures in Hong Kong, you can check out some of my other posts: