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Hong Kong (HK) is short for the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region of the People's Republic of China (Hong Kong SAR or HKSAR). Hong Kong has developed from a small fishing village in the 1800s into a dynamic and thrilling 21st century cosmopolitan metropolis.
It is a bustling coastal city full of impressive high rises, and a fusion of eastern and western cultures. It proudly proclaims itself to be "Asia's World City" and remains a key gateway to China.
Summary: While HK remains the world's top travel destination, and it's now enticingly affordable, you may want to avoid the risks of inconvenience, disappointment, and physical harm, though this risk is slight if you stay away from any sign of protesting.
Travel in Hong Kong isn't as safe and convenient as in the past because, for the last half-year, there have been massive demonstrations in the whole region, damaging infrastructure and causing disruptions.
The violence and vandalism, including scattered arson, has been increasing, and tourism is way down (overall about 8% less than in 2018). Groups of armed thugs have attacked protesters, passengers, and bystanders in train stations and in the streets, so now, most people try to stay off the streets after dark. Streets and shopping areas may be closed, transport has been disrupted, and tear gas is often used to disperse crowds.
Many of the traditional annual Christmas events have been canceled. Also, HK won't be as well-decorated as in the past due to vandalism in shops. In attempts to stop the protests, the government will probably cancel big public events.
Great bargains: This Christmas and New Years' season may be the best time in decades for touring and shopping inexpensively and without the crowds of tourists! You can find great bargains on everything from hotel rooms (up to 70% off in Tsim Sha Tsui) to fine dining to discounted shopping.
December 2019 is a particularly good time to go for low prices and to enjoy shopping for bargains as the stores try to sell their stocks of products. You can enjoy the region's world-class facilities and service at much lower prices than for decades.
Hong Kong is a Special Administrative Region (SAR) of the People's Republic of China. It is located on the southeast coast of China, facing the South China Sea. It is about 3½ hours by air from Beijing and 2½ hours from Shanghai.
With an area of 1,110 sq. km, Hong Kong consists of Hong Kong Island, Kowloon, the New Territories and a group of 260 outlying islands.
The city of Hong Kong is dominated by modern architecture, with a large number of skyscrapers on both sides of Victoria Harbour — more than 3,000 buildings over 90 meters high. The number of skyscrapers in Hong Kong ranks first in the world. Learn the best places to visit Hong Kong's skyline.
Hong Kong is a shopping paradise that brings together all the world-famous brands. Shopping malls, department stores, and boutiques cluster around the city.
See What to Buy and Where to Shop in Hong Kong (with a helpful info-map).
Hong Kong is a fusion of many cultures. Remnants of its colonial past, as well as the British culture and values, share space with the Chinese traditions. There is no better place to experience both eastern and western cultures, and experience traditional and modern life.
Hong Kong is a world of exquisite, mouthwatering international cuisine. According to statistics, there are more than 10,000 Chinese and Western restaurants in Hong Kong. Discover 20 Hong Kong Dishes You Should Try.
Hong Kong offers visa-free access for passport holders from about 160 countries including the US, Canada, Australia, and most of the countries in Europe. The duration ranges from 180 days to 7 days, depending on nationality. Read more about Hong Kong's Visa Policy.
Hong Kong boasts a highly developed transportation network. It is very convenient to travel to and from Hong Kong. Hong Kong is the ideal springboard for trips to the rest of China as well to other parts of East Asia.
Discover more reasons to visit Hong Kong.
Hong Kong consists of Hong Kong Island, Kowloon, the New Territories and a group of 260 outlying islands. The following places you might visit during your trip in Hong Kong.
Central is Hong Kong's economic center, with top shopping malls, high-end hotels, and expensive luxury brand stores.
Mong Kok is a good place for Hong Kong local culture. Between the fashionable high-rises, you can find local streets and night markets full of cheap but good-quality goods and authentic snacks.
Outlying islands such as Lamma Island, Cheung Chau, and Ping Chau are places where you can feel the quiet side of Hong Kong.
Hong Kong is a melting pot of East and West, tradition and modernity. It offers countless things to do and see.
Beyond the must-see attractions, these cultural experiences will enrich your stay in Hong Kong.
Hong Kong offers rich travel experiences from convenient layover tours and relaxing family vacations to active outdoor adventures. No matter what kind of travel style you prefer, you can find something catering to you.
Hong Kong is a popular layover destination for its visa-free access for most countries and well-developed infrastructure. You can make the most of your stopover time in Hong Kong by visiting some must-see attractions or just go shopping. See the Complete Guide to a Hong Kong Layover.
Hong Kong is a perfect destination for family tours. It offers a wide array of kid-friendly attractions from interactive museums to nature reserves and incredible theme parks, such as Disneyland and Ocean Park. Learn about the top things to do with kids in Hong Kong.
About 70 percent of Hong Kong's 1,100 square kilometer (420 square mile) territory is undeveloped country park land, and there are many large areas to hike, bike, camp, canoe, swim, surf, and have fun in.
There are four main areas with natural parkland or islands that are big enough to really enjoy yourself and get to where you won't see people or houses: in Sai Kung in the eastern part of Hong Kong, in the country park area north of Kowloon, on Lantau Island, and out of the city on Hong Kong Island. See our Hong Kong Hiking Guide.
The best time to visit Hong Kong is from October to December, when the weather is sunny, mild, and pleasant. The weather from January to March is also relatively dry and cool/mild, but cloudier.
The weather from April to September can be hot, wet and humid. The typhoon season runs roughly from June to October, and sometimes starts even in April or May. See more on Hong Kong Weather.
Hong Kong hotels can cater to all needs to a high standard from luxury resorts to campsites. Generally speaking, due to the high land price in Hong Kong, hotel prices are high and rooms can be quite small.
There are many high-end hotels in Hong Kong and the prices vary widely.
The price for luxury hotels is about HK$3,800 per night per room or more and some with a sea view can reach HK$8,000.
In general, five-star hotels are priced HK$2300–2800 and four-star hotels HK$1300–2000. These hotels are concentrated in Central, Wan Chai, Causeway Bay, and Tsim Sha Tsui.
Three-star hotels are generally HK$800–1200. Most are concentrated in Yau Ma Tei and Mong Kok.
The prices of the hotels are generally more expensive during the peak season (September – March) and the peak season for exhibitions (April). They may rise by 2–4 times! During these months, you'd better to book in advance.
Hong Kong is one of the most entry and exit cities for passengers to China and Asia. There are many flights between Hong Kong and major cities of the US, Australia, and Europe.
Hong Kong is a transport hub to extend your tours to Macau and Mainland China. It takes about one hour to Macau by ferry, 1- 1½ hours to Shenzhen by MTR subway or Train, and about one hour to Guangzhou by high-speed train.
It is popular to travel from Hong Kong to Shanghai, Guilin, Lijiang, etc. See Top China Tours from Hong Kong.
Hong Kong boasts a highly-developed city transportation network. The MTR subway, trams, and buses offer cheap and convenient ways to do sightseeing. Taxis and ride apps are very efficient. Read more on Hong Kong transportation.
English is widely spoken and almost all the street signs are bilingual. Few visitors will have problems getting around in Hong Kong. If you would like to explore the real Hong Kong and experience the lives of local people, it will be helpful to have a professional tour guide.
Here are our most popular Hong Kong tours, for your reference:
See more Hong Kong tours.