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The Hong Kong Winter Festival is coordinated by the Hong Kong Tourism Board to attract overseas visitors and locals alike each Christmas and New Years.
The American CNN television network named the Hong Kong WinterFest as one of the Top 10 places to spend Christmas in the whole world.
Colorful lights decorate the streets and buildings and Christmas displays are everywhere. Christmas events, the revamped, charged up Symphony of Lights, and the Hong Kong Pulse 3D laser graphics displays wow visitors, and the run up to the New Year countdown ends the year with fireworks over Victoria Bay.
The Winter Festival is filled with stunning beauty, twinkling lights, old world traditions and the sound of carolers, and it culminates in a display of fireworks over the city which is reflected in Victoria Harbor.
The Hong Kong Winter Festival varies in themes from one venue to another. Each mall changes their theme for the year.
Generally, the main things to see and do are Christmas displays and events, the New Year fireworks and countdown, and visiting the major attractions of Hong Kong.
Victoria Harbor is a dazzling sight especially when the fireworks bursts in the light show on New Years Eve. You can see the Christmas lights on dozens of buildings along Victoria Harbor choreographed in a light show with Christmas and New Year's decorations.
During WinterFest, most of the the city is aglow with festive lighting and laser and graphics imagery.
The Nutcracker is a world-renowned operatic ballet and a special Yuletide tradition enjoyed by audiences of all ages.
The Hong Kong Philharmonic presents a special Music for Kids. They play kids' favorite Christmas songs and classic Christmas carols for a sing along of thousands. The Hong Kong Philharmonic orchestra is a professional orchestra sponsored by the HK government.
As part of the WinterFest, this high tech laser audiovisual display dazzles the crowds in and around the plaza of the clock tower near the Star Ferry in Tsim Sha Tsui.
Every night during the season, you can head to Victoria Harbor and watch the free holiday light show of the Symphony of Lights. For Christmas, 2017, the entire show is being newly revamped and modernized. Many more lasers and LED screens will make a bigger spectacle than ever before.
The best view is along the pedestrian light show called Avenue of Stars. where you can see the 3-D Pulse show too and hear the narrative and music from the Hong Kong Philharmonic.
Every shopping mall dons Christmas decorations, and the ritziest malls put up spectacular and expensive displays.
1881 Heritage Royal Ice Palace: the ritzy hotel on Victoria Harbor builds grand themed decorations in its front plaza each year.
Statue Square Christmas display: Every year, the best display is hosted at Statue Square by the Hong Kong Tourism Board.
Dates: December 1 – January 1, 2018.
In the days before Christmas and on Christmas Eve, groups of carolers from churches and schools go around and sing in the parks and malls. You might spot groups of children, teenagers, and adults walking in Central, Kowloon Park or elsewhere, joyously singing! Music groups and orchestras also put on free concerts.
Hong Kong has about 80 Michelin-starred restaurants in 2017. Some have Christmas dinners, and many are quite affordable for the average tourist although they might not have special Christmas food. Check our list of recommended restaurants on our restaurant guide.
Hong Kongers like to celebrate both the Western New Year and the Chinese New Year in a big way, so if you're there near midnight on December 31, 2017, you'll see the fireworks spectacular in the New Year's countdown. Some of the same buildings involved in the Symphony of Lights take part in this spectacle, and large crowds line both sides of the harbor.
This year in 2017, some of the fireworks are from a European company, and the display starts earlier, at 11 pm. There is accompanying music and laser lights lighting up the atmosphere.
Read more about the New Year Fireworks and Countdown 2017.
The major venues for Hong Kong Winter Festival in 2017 include Hong Kong Disneyland, Hong Kong Ocean Park, Madame Tussauds Wax Figure Gallery, Hong Kong Wetland Park, Ngong Ping 360, and the Sky 100 Hong Kong Observation Deck.
Disneyland presents amusement and entertainment starting from the middle of November to New Year's Day.
This year, the theme park features a "Christmastime Ball" musical extravaganza, a "Magical Twilight Snowfall," and a tree lighting ceremony on Main Street, USA.
On December 11, Ocean Park will officially kick off the Ocean Park Christmas Sensation. The entire park will be decked out with festive decorations such as a giant 40-foot Christmas tree, artificial snow, and Santa's Cottage.
This winter season, the park features Hong Kong's only virtual reality (VR) roller coaster. The Christmas Market will transform Waterfront Plaza into a Christmas village for food and gifts.
Unfortunately, there aren't pre-Christmas sales with lower prices to attract shoppers. Instead, during the Christmas to Chinese New Year winter shopping season, prices actually go up. However, the malls try to to attract customers through special Christmas displays and entertainment.
Christmas gifts of electronics, clothing, and other common items might be bought at the street markets such as Ladies Market in Mongkok (clothing, electronics, souvenirs, pets, jewelry, etc.).
Temple Street near the harbor is where you'll find a variety of products for tourists plus many open-air restaurants for Chinese food. See Christmas Shopping in Hong Kong in 2017.
December is an excellent time for touring in Hong Kong. The busy crowds of Chinese tourists don't arrive until Chinese New Year, and many foreigners visit during their Christmas and New Year holidays.
The weather in December in Hong Kong is generally mild and dry and often sunny. It is good for those wishing to avoid freezing weather elsewhere.
For your winter holidays, we can arrange a fine winter tour for you.
Or we can create a personalized Hong Kong tour.