Hong Kong is one of the most densely populated sovereign territory in the world with millions of people living in 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 views to the places close to nature. During the night, the city is still filled with plenty of excitement including performance, midnight feasts and one can explore the night markets.
During my four-day trip in Hong Kong, I felt very grateful that have visited and done most of the things on my bucket list. I have missed out two things- 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.
Sky100 (天際100) is a 360-degree indoor observation deck 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 and will take 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 for friends, family and your loved one.
If you are the person who enjoys the night view of the city, like me, head to the top after 9 o’clock, where the crowd is less and definitely has the chance to pick a great spot for the night photo shoot and enjoy the amazing city view.
Check out their official website for more details and purchase the tickets with 10% off discount.
Getting There: MTR Kowloon Station, exit C1 and D1 and enter the Elements shopping mall, in the Metal Zone on the second floor.
Street Food and Market
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 for 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.
Don’t miss out the 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 a promise that must be kept. Back in the 1950s and 1960s, the fishermen used this 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.
Symphony of Lights
Named as 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.
*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.
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 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 represent 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 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.
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 impossible to spot one of them and is one of the cheapest transportation to explore the island. It has a cute name called ‘Ding Ding’.
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.
Stanley is a town and tourist attraction, located on the peninsula on Hong Kong. It was named after Lord Stanley, a British Colonial Secretary at the time of the cession of Hong Kong to United Kingdom.
Shopping here is well-complemented by cooling breezes and a great variety of local and international food. If you 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 serve to Stanley.
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
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.
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.
Getting There and Around
Hong Kong International Airport is the main airport that served over hundred of air routes around the world. Once arrived at the terminal 2, getting into the city by Airport Express or public buses will be the easiest way.
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 spots with hassle-free. There are many varies mode of transportation including double-decker buses, red and green light buses, MTR, trams, ferries, junk boats and taxis.