Author: Anna Yuen
Are you planning to visit Hong Kong? It's always a thrill when you find the best travel deals out there for a great Hong Kong experience. Although my blog is dedicated to Hong Kong food, I would want to walk you through the top 10 activities I recommend. To get the best of your Hong Kong travel, make sure to do them all, or as many as you can.
1. The Victoria Peak 太平山頂
Take the Peak Tram to go up to the Victoria Peak - the number one tourist destination here. The Victoria Peak provides a stunning bird’s-eye view of the world-famous Victoria Harbour, Hong Kong skyline as well as Kowloon. It is a great place for wandering around day and night, for visitors and locals alike. The Peak Tram costs HK$28 for one way and HK$40 for a return trip.
2. Ocean Park 海洋公園
Spend a day or at least half a day at the Ocean Park. Ocean Park is ranked 7th among the top ten most popular amusement parks in the world, according to forbes.com’s announcement on June 1, 2006. It is an ideal place for you take your kids for a day of outing. Children can make fun while learning at the Park. Highlights include Cable Car, Ocean Theatre, Sea Jelly Spectacular, Giant Panda and Red Panda, Atoll Reef and Shark Aquarium. Admission fee HK$250 for adults.
3. Star Ferry
Take the Star Ferry from Central to Tsimshatsui after 7pm. This is the best time in a day to have a close encounter with the Victoria Harbour as well as going to the best location to take a good look at the Hong Kong night view which is certainly one of the most beautiful city night views in the world. Upper deck only costs HK$2.5 for adults on weekdays and HK$3 on weekends. If you want to stay closer to water, you can even take the lower deck.
4. TST East - Hong Kong Night View
After your Star Ferry ride, turn right and walk to Tsimshatsui waterfront, just beyond the Hong Kong Cultural Centre and admire the Victoria Harbour and Hong Kong skyline at night. Don’t forget your camera. The stunning views here attract hundreds of visitors daily, including locals taking their wedding photos and graduation photos. You can also buy the photo services here and collect your digital photos instantly.
5. Lan Kwai Fong / Wanchai
Lan Kwai Fong is a must-go place for you in Hong Kong – if you enjoy night life. If you are here around July, you’ll be able to participate in the Lan Kwai Fong Beerfest - one of the annual biggest ever street parties featuring food and beer from around the globe, live music and dance shows, drinking and eating competitions and a lot more. With over 50 food, beer and interactive booths, every corner of Lan Kwai Fong will be heated up by numerous attractions!
Wanchai at around Lockhard Road and Jaffe Road is referred to be a ‘red light’ district with lots of bars and restaurants. You can enjoy drinks here while watching sports events at large-screen TVs. You can even find girly bars here. So if you enjoy night life, Lan Kwai Fong and Wanchai are where you must go. Here are a couple of the famous bars in Wanchai.
Go for a horse racing if you come between September and June. No races in July and August. Hong Kong is the only city in China where you can enjoy this game. Racing course is the only place where you are licensed to yell as loud as you can without receiving any complaints. Enjoy the fun and excitement here.
Races are usually held on Wednesday nights, Saturday or Sunday afternoon, in either Shatin or Happy Valley racecourse. You need to be at least 18 years old. Tourists with valid passport can use Members Stand at a fee of HK$100 and can purchase the entrance badge at dedicated entrance on the race day. You need to observe the dress code though. Shorts are usually not allowed. Minimum bet is only HK$10. Beginner guides are available at the entrance. Test your luck. Check the racing calendar here.
7. Tailor-made Shirts
Get a custom tailor to make a set of shirts or executive suits at very bottom prices. Ranging from backstreet to fine boutiques in five-star hotels, you can find high quality bespoke service tailors with value for money. Some tailor shops around Tsimshatusi area operated by locals or Indian can even produce your suits in 24 hours.
One of the most famous Indian tailors in Hong Kong is Sam who had served celebrities like Bill Clinton and Samantha Brown. His shop is at 94 Nathan Road, Tsimshatsui, Kowloon.
8. Seafood / Dim Sum
Go do a dim sum or seafood meal or both. As a visitor, make sure to get a sense of the local Hong Kong life style as to enjoy the gems of Cantonese cuisine here – dim sum or live seafood. Dim sum restaurants are everywhere in town. Make sure to try the shrimp dumplings蝦餃, pork dumplings燒賣 and cha xiao bao 义燒飽 (BBQ bun) which are the essence of Cantonese dim sum.
Picking your favourite live seafood from the tanks and have the chef cook for you immediately is another highlight of Cantonese cuisine in Hong Kong. You can rarely find this experience elsewhere. Steaming of fresh seafood is certainly the simplest however best way of cooking live seafood.
There are several dedicated seafood areas in Hong Kong. To combine a nice eating environment with easy access, I would suggest Lamma Island and Sai Kung. Take a ferry from Central to Lamma Island and you’ll find the seafood restaurants around at the pier. For Sai Kung, just take bus 92 from Diamond Hill MTR station to its terminus.
Go buy a mobile phone, notebook computer, digital camera or any other electronic gadgets or fashionable items that you need. Hong Kong is a place free of tax and you can find the trendiest models here at very low prices. You might observe the line waiting outside Prada or LV shops. I am sure the Nokia phone you can buy here is far trendier than that you can buy in Helsinki.
Though shopping in Hong Kong is fun, the Consumer Council here does receive complaints about shops in Tsimshatsui regarding their bait-and-switch tactics. Please be very careful about this. Try to ignore the south Asians approaching you for copy watches. Below are two famous shopping malls.
10. A Day Trip to Macau
Macau is just an hour from Hong Kong on TurboJet. Enjoy very yummy Portuguese and Macanese food along with testing your luck at the casinos. Most of the Vegas Strip casinos are now operating in Macau. Macau old city district is now a listed UNESCO Heritage and there are museums and many historical sites for your sightseeing. Great food and great entertainment are reasonably priced.
View my Macau tour photos to gain an idea of what a Macau day trip is like.
Hong Kong Food Blog - Hong Kong Tourism Top Ten Things To Do