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Best Hong Kong Itineraries: Top City Tours and Side Trips

Written by Mike HoUpdated Jun. 19, 2023

As one of the key gateways to China with a unique blend of Eastern and Western cultures, Hong Kong is a vibrant and exciting city that offers plenty of activities that cater to families with kids. From thrilling amusement park rides to educational museums and beautiful nature parks, your family including the little ones would surely have a great time in this city. Here are some suggestions for planning your Hong Kong itinerary based on our extensive trip planning experience.

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How Long to Spend in Hong Kong

If you are visiting Hong Kong for the first time, it is recommended to spend 3–4 days to visit the top attractions, including Ocean Park, Victoria Peak, Disneyland Park, the Big Buddha, and your choice of the many museums. If you have a longer holiday, you could extend your trip to nearby places, such as Guangdong, Macau, or Guilin.

  • Guangdong (3–5 days to explore Guangzhou, Foshan, Kaiping, Chaozhou, or Shenzhen)
  • Macau (3 days to experience Chinese and Portuguese cultures.)
  • Guilin (3 days to appreciate celebrated river-and-mountain beauty)
How Long to Spend in Hong Kong

1. 4-Day Classic Hong Kong Itinerary for Families (Most Chosen)

With 3–4 days, you can have great fun and excitement at Disneyland and spend some quality time with family at the highlights of Hong Kong Island.

Day 1: Hong Kong Ocean Park

Hong Kong Ocean Park

Ocean Park should be on your list if you are traveling with kids. To save your time and energy on the ticket lines, our guide would take care of the tickets and lead you into the park directly. There you would meet pandas, dolphins, and sea lions, explore rainforests, and ride roller coasters.

Day 2: Disneyland and Hong Kong Island

Disneyland and Hong Kong Island

To have a relaxed pace and avoid the rush hour in the morning, it is recommended to stay in Disney's Hollywood Hotel and enjoy a magical night there. Then have a full family day in the fairy-tale kingdom of Disneyland Park. Remember to catch the beloved Disney characters on parade, try out exciting rides, enjoy terrific live shows, and gaze at the "Disney in the Stars" Fireworks.

Day 3: Victoria Peak and Repulse Bay

Victoria Peak is the highest peak on Hong Kong Island, where you can have a panoramic view of Hong Kong's skyline. The best way to the Peak is by the Peak Tram. Our guide would purchase tickets for your family in advance to save time, but during the peak season, you would still need to queue for about 8 to 20 minutes to take the steep tramway.

The next spot we recommend is 'Golden Beach' (Repulse Bay) in Hong Kong. The waves are gentle, and the sand is soft. You can have a lovely beach picnic with your family there.

Day 4: Giant Buddha and Tai O Village

Head to Lantau Island and enjoy the ocean views as you are driven across Tsing Ma Bridge. Visit one of Hong Kong's most fascinating sights — Po Lin Monastery and the Giant Buddha. We would arrange a round-trip Ngong Ping 360 cable car ride to help you get a nice view of the Buddha.

The other spot you should see on Lantau Island is the quaint and picturesque village of Tai O. There you can enjoy a sampan ride around the stilt houses and visit Ngong Ping Village, a culture-themed village with lively tour experiences.

2. Hong Kong 1–2-Day Itineraries (Good for Layovers or Time-Smart Trips)

If you have limited time in Hong Kong, we recommend spending a day on the most-popular city sightseeing, such as visiting famous Victoria Peak. However, if you want to experience local lifestyle and culture more deeply, we suggest spending your second day exploring Hong Kong's quintessential fishing village — Tai O Village and Giant Buddha.

  • Day 1: One-Day Hong Kong Sightseeing Tour Visiting Victoria Peak
  • Day 2: One-Day Tai O Village and Giant Buddha Discovery Tour

If you have other requirements/interests or questions, please feel free to contact us. We are ready to help with your tour arrangements, private transportation, hotels, and anything else you need to make your Hong Kong itinerary awesome and hassle-free.

Side Trip Itineraries from Hong Kong

If you have a longer holiday in Hong Kong, we recommend you extend your trip to nearby cities of China, such as Guangdong, Guilin, or Macau. Here are several options for different interests…

3. A Side Trip to Guilin from Hong Kong

Guilin landscape

Guilin is one of the most popular travel destinations in southern China, which is well-known for its rustic-river-and-pointy-peak views. And now you can take advantage of the visa-free transit policy to visit Guilin for 3 days before departing China.

  • Day 1: Visit Guilin's downtown attractions like Elephant Trunk Hill, Reed Flute Cave, and Solitary Beauty Peak in the Ming Mansion.
  • Day 2: Take a Li River cruise from Guilin to Yangshuo, during which you would see celebrated mountain-and-river views.
  • Day 3: Set off on a Yangshuo countryside tour, cycling among the paddy fields, meeting local farmers, and exploring caves.

If you are interested in this itinerary, click for our detailed tour page for more information: The Essence of Guilin — 3-Day Guilin and Yangshuo Tour.

4. Hong Kong Side Trips to Guangdong Province

Located adjacent to Hong Kong, Guangdong is a very popular destination for a side trip, where you can taste authentic Cantonese food, appreciate lightning-fast city development, explore the classic southern China lifestyle... Below are some popular Guangdong city tour plans.

a) 4–5 Days in Shenzhen and Guangzhou

These two cities would allow you to experience China's modern development and southern cuisines. It is recommended to spend three days in Guangzhou and 2 days in Shenzhen.

  • Day 1: Shenzhen Museum, Splendid China Folk Village
  • Days 2: Shenzhen OCT Loft Creative Culture Park, Shenzhen Bay area
  • Days 3: Guangzhou Chen Family Ancestral Hall — see traditional Guangdong-style architecture
  • Days 4: Visit Qingping Market to experience local life.
  • Days 5: Buddhist tranquility at Six Banyan Trees Temple

If you are interested in a side trip to Guangzhou and Shenzhen, click to read more about the Guangzhou and Shenzhen itineraries.

b) 3-Day Shantou and Chaozhou Side Trip

Our 3-day trip to Chaozhou and Shantou would help you discover the unique and distinctive features of Chaoshan culture, especially the food culture and folk customs.

  • Day 1: Taste authentic Chaozhou kung fu tea in a local teahouse and listen to Chaozhou opera.
  • Day 2: Take a walking tour of Chaozhou old town.
  • Day 3: Walk through Shantou Old Town, visiting Little Garden Park and Laoma Palace, and Shantou Intangible Cultural Heritage Exhibition Hall.

Click here to see our 3-day Chaozhou and Shantou tour package.

c) 3-Day Kaiping and Foshan Side Trip

Our 3-day trip to Kaiping and Foshan would enable you to discover unique Lingnan folk culture, feast your eyes on gorgeous countryside landscapes, and satisfy your taste buds with Cantonese food.

  • Day 1: In Kaiping, visit the charismatic diaolou ('watchtower buildings') and lovely countryside.
  • Day 2: Hunt for tasty Cantonese food in gourmet city Shunde, and take a leisurely walk for digestion in Qinghui Park, the most famous Guangdong Garden.
  • Day 3: Visit Foshan Ancestral Temple to watch lion dancing and a martial arts performance.

Click here to explore our 3-day Kaiping and Foshan tour package.

5. Trips to Macau from Hong Kong

Trips to Macau from Hong Kong

Macau is famous for its unique blend of Chinese and Portuguese cultures, which can be seen in its architecture, cuisine, and way of life. It is convenient to travel from Hong Kong to Macau by ferry, which would take about an hour. It is recommended to spend 2–3 days to visit all the main highlights of this small city.

  • Day 1: Visit the ruins of the Church of St. Paul and other city sights.
  • Day 2: Senado Square in the historical center of Macau, Museum of Taipa and Coloane History
  • Day 3: Macau Wine Museum, Museum of Macau, and shopping

If you are interested in this itinerary, click for our customizable 1-day Macau and Hong Kong tour and maybe inquire from there.

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