Hong Kong is a strangely captivating place, stuck between worlds. It’s both traditional and ultra-modern, urban and rural, western and eastern – but within these combinations something truly unique has emerged. A frenetic and vibrant city which will have you hooked.
Experience the overwhelming Central, whose teeming streets have colonial flair somewhat overshadowed by the immense skyscrapers that soar into the sky. Visit the chic stores and restaurants of SoHo, before taking in the stunning views of Victoria Harbour’s myriad of lights. Take a Star Line Ferry to Kowloon to enjoy the more traditionally Chinese lifestyle of Tsim Sha Tsui, or the neon-lit frenzy of Mong Kok’s markets. Breathe in the aroma of Hong Kong’s renowned cuisine, from the famous dim sum parlours to the street food stalls selling pork buns and ‘stinky’ tofu. If you want to experience one of the busiest and exciting cities in the world, then book flights to Hong Kong now.
The glittering skyscrapers that form HK’s spectacular skyline line the harbour of this thriving commercial district. Home to some of the city’s best and most innovative architecture, this is what visitors expect when coming to Hong Kong. It continues as the hub of business and commerce, and could be described as the city’s heart – historically where the colonial British established their community, yet little of this past remains. Rub shoulders with the local elite in chic bars and expensively tasteful eateries in Lan Kwai Fong.
A superb collection of trendy boutiques and chic eateries are to be found along Hollywood Road and to the south in SoHo (south of Hollywood). Great for shopping during the day, the narrow streets, hip bars and exotic restaurants in SoHo really come alive in the evening. Sheung Wan is one of the most up-and-coming places in HK, great for antique shopping and for searching for the ideal souvenir. Once thought of as the cheap part of town, it is now a trendsetting neighbourhood.
Discover a shopping mecca at Causeway Bay, along with abundant dining and nightlife options. The retail therapy choices here are as dazzling as the lights, with an array of department stores, boutiques, market stalls and malls including the Times Square Megamall. Hop on the MTR for a short ride west to Wan Chai, which transforms from a major business district by day to a buzzing hub for nightlife by evening. Stay at The Excelsior hotel, overlooking the harbour in Causeway Bay.
With its kaleidoscopic neon signs and multi-coloured lanterns, the bustling harbour front creates an authentic Chinese experience. See the famous colonial-era clock, and then take an evening stroll along the famous Tsim Sha Tsui Promenade, taking in the unbelievable skyline of Hong Kong across the bay. Don’t miss the statue of legendary martial artist Bruce Lee, before heading for lunch at one of the many luxury hotels, maybe try The Peninsula. You can also find some great museums, like the Hong Kong Museum of Art.
Jump on the quick MTR north from Tsim Sha Tsui to the traditional district of Mong Kok. This bustling part of town has a great atmosphere, full of markets like the Bird Market and Ladies’ Market where you’ll pick up a few bargains. Wander the stalls selling everything from souvenirs and trinkets for the tourist visitor to clothing and electronics made for the locals. Don’t forget to get some authentic street food from Mong Kok, as the menu on offer is staggering.
Conveniently situated near the airport and just a 35-minute train ride from Hong Kong Island, Lantau Island is a must visit. Travel by cable car to Ngong Ping and marvel at the bronze Big Buddha, then visit the beautiful Po Lin Monastery. Enjoy magical family days out at Hong Kong Disneyland® or step back in time at the traditional fishing village of Tai O, where the Tanka residents live in stilt-mounted houses. Be aware, it is very popular with groups, but a visit comes highly recommended.
Just across the Zhujiang River, the island of Macau is known as the ‘Vegas of China’. And for good reason, Macau has no less than 30 casino resorts, and many people come here to gamble. But the city is more than that, once a colony of Portugal, it is a city of blended cultures – everything from delicious food fusions to traditional temples with Portuguese Azulejo tiles. There are beautiful churches and ruins, such as the hollowed out Church of Saint Paul, and some great museums. Plus, there are no shortage of superb bars and restaurants to occupy your time in the evening.