Hong Kong: Things to Do

In Travel Inspiration by Soumaya Hamdi

1.Lantau Island

Views from Ngong Ping Cable car. Photo credit MTR Corporation

Hong Kong may conjure up images of skyscrapers and concrete, but Lantau Island remains relatively unspoiled with an abundance of beautiful indigenous forest.

If you enjoy hiking, Lantau peak has a summit of 934m. Stay in a hostel in Ngongping and set off before daybreak to catch the sun rising over the mountain.

One of the best ways you can view the island is via cable car from Ngongping to Tung Chung Town.

Cable car opening hours
Weekdays:
10:00 – 18:00
Weekends/public holidays: 09:00 – 18:30

Entrance fees (round trip)
Child:
 From $95
Adult:
From $185
Senior:
From $130

 

2.Hong Kong Museum of History

A great way to learn more about the island’s history, the museum showcases a staggering 400 million years’ worth of history and culture. Learn about how Hong Kong was founded, what makes it different to China and so much more.

 

Address: 100 Chatham Road South, Tsim Sha Tsui, Kowloon, Hong Kong.
Opening hours: Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays – 10:00 til 18:00. Saturdays, Sundays and public holidays: 10:00 – 19:00.
Entry fees: Permanent exhibitions are free. Some temporary exhibitions are charged.

 

3.Beaches

You may be surprised to know that this small island is not just an urban landscape, but also has some great beaches. On the southern stretch of Lantau island one of Hong Kong’s longest beaches, Cheung Sha beach offers a chance to escape the hustle and bustle of the city.
Address: South Lantau road, Lower Cheung Sha village, Lantau Island, Hong Kong.

 

On the eastern coast of Lantau island lies Silver Mine Bay beach. The beach has an exciting history, as it used to be the site where pirates would land in the hope of securing silver from the mines.

Address: Tung Wan Tan Road, Mui Wo, Lantau Island, Hong Kong.

 

On Lamma island lies Hung Shing Yeh beach, popular for day trips and BBQs.

Address: Yung Shue Wan, Lamma Island, Hong Kong.

 

4.Lamma Island

They say that Lamma island is an irresistible blend of east meets west, the modern mixed in with the old. Have a taste of island life and visit the traditional fisherfolk village. Have a go at angling, weaving ropes and catching fish with the locals. Once you’re worn out, relax on Hung Shing Yeh beach, and finish off your day by exploring the local cuisines and crafts in nearby Yung Shue Wan main street.

 

5.Get a Bird’s eye view from The Peak

Photo credit beautifullyhongkong.com

It goes without saying that visiting a bustling city like Hong Kong, the best way to get a bird’s eye view is to visit The Peak, a lookout which is the highest point of Hong Kong island. Ride The Peak Tram to reach the Sky Terrace where you can enjoy 360 degree views of the island. We recommend going as the sun sets to enjoy the views at their best.

Address: 33 Garden Road, Central, Hong Kong.

Nearest Station: MTR central station, J2 Exit.

 

Opening hours

Peak Tram:  07:00 – 24:00 every day. Depart every 10 -15 minutes.

Sky Terrace: 10:00 – 23:00 Monday – Friday, 08:00 – 23:00 weekends and public holidays.

Entry fees:

To enjoy both the tram and sky terrace, a return ticket is $88 for adults and $42 for children and seniors.

 

6.Shopping!

Ladies market

From Chinese antiques (visit reputable antique shops/auctions to avoid being scammed) and bargain clothing to designer brands, Hong Kong is definitely a great place to snap up some bargains. From luxury goods to local crafts, Hong Kong has a huge variety of goods, making it a great place even for people who don’t enjoy shopping. Many items are also tax free!

Independent shops with clothing by local designers are found in Sheung Wan, Wan Chai and Tsim Sha Tsui. The general rule is that independent shops have flexibility with their prices, but big brand names do not.

The Ladies Market on Tung Choi street is a great place to get your bargaining hat on and snap up some very affordable goods. Reach it via MTR station Mong Kok, exit 2.

Queen’s road east in Wan Chai district offers Chinese furniture shops, where you can also usually arrange delivery of your items.

If you prefer air con and familiar brands, Cityplaza mall has around 170 shops that sell a range of household goods. It’s a great place to explore popular Asian brands that can’t be found in the West including APiTA, a popular Japanese department store.

Address: Taikoo Shing road, Taikoo Shing, Hong Kong.
Nearest station:  MTR Tai Koo Station, Cityplaza exit.

 

Top tip: Wherever you choose to shop, be wary of fake branded goods or warranties that do not apply outside of Hong Kong.

 

7.Hiking

Photo credit lonelyplanet.com

Looking for a diversion away from the material and forever-bustling streets of Hong Kong? Book a hiking tour and enjoy some spectacular views. The easiest and possibly most popular hike is the Dragon’s Back, which takes you through woodland and a high ridge that overlooks the island’s coast.

How to get there: MTR to Chai Wan.

If on Lantau Island and feeling like you need a challenge, Lantau Peak can be hiked and reaches 934 metres high.

How to get there: Start at Tung Chung road or the Big Buddha

 

8.Hong Kong Zoological and Botanical Gardens

Photo credit discoverhongkong.com

Whether you live in Asia or not, it is fascinating to see the collection of over one thousand species of plants at the Gardens, which are primarily tropical or sub-tropical. One of the oldest botanical centres in the world, the gardens are located at Victoria Peak on Hong Kong island.

Opening hours:
Fountain Terrace Garden: 05:00 – 22:00

Green House/ Education Exhibition Centre: 09:00 – 16:30

Other areas: 06:00 – 19:00

Entry fees: Free

 

9.Po Lin Monastery and The Big Buddha

Located in the classic lush greenery that characterises Hong Kong’s rural side, The Big Buddha is a huge bronze statue that draws pilgrims from all over Asia. If you are up for a work-out, take the 268 steps up to where the Buddha looks out and enjoy both mountain and sea views. Entering the monastery will take you through the scents and sights of the pretty flowers that adorn the walkways. What’s more, a vegetarian restaurant nearby provides much-needed sustenance before you attempt to take the steps back down. Alternatively, you can always take the Ngong Ping Cable Car!

How to get there

Take the MTR to Tung Chung station. Use Exit B to reach the cable car or take the New Lantau Bus 23 from Tung Chung city centre, whereafter it is an 8 minute walk.

 

Inspired to visit Hong Kong? Check out where you can enjoy halal food in the city!