The Top 10 Things to Do in Central, Hong Kong
Central District is the heart of Hong Kong and one of the earliest areas to be developed. Today, Central District is Hong Kong’s business center and one of its top shopping areas. You can also travel easily to other districts of Hong Kong from Central.
Besides shopping malls and skyscrapers, there are various interesting activities and historical sites. In Central, it is possible to experience the lively lifestyle and cultural atmosphere of Hong Kong at the same time.
Read on to find out what you can experience in Central.
1. Ride the Tram to Victoria Peak
Victoria Peak is the most spectacular viewing point in Hong Kong, giving you a bird’s-eye view of the whole of Victoria Harbour and the city.
The most relaxing way to reach the top is to take the Peak Tram. The tram began operating in 1888 and it drives you slowly to the peak in about 7 minutes. As the tram continues to operate late into the night, it’s good to go there at night and enjoy the night view.
You can also find Madame Tussauds Hong Kong in the Peak Tower.
2. Ride on the “Ding Ding” Tram
Walking around in Central’s avenues, you may hear a special “ding-ding” sound. This sound comes from the unique double-decker tram, officially called Hong Kong Tramways. The rail tracks for the tram span from east to west across the northern shore of Hong Kong Island, and passengers can also ride the tram across Central District.
This transportation vehicle has served Hong Kong for over 100 years, and it can only be found in this area.
The “Ding Ding” tram drives at a slow speed. When riding on the tram and passing through the aged alleys and bustling avenues, it will be as though a scroll is gradually unfolding before your eyes, telling you stories about Hong Kong during the past century.
3. Travel across Victoria Harbour on the Star Ferry
The Star Ferry is a popular and widely praised experience when looking to travel from Victoria Harbour. The ferry can take you on a trip from Central to Tsim Sha Tsui, Hung Hom, and Wan Chai.
The Star Ferry pier is located on the north coast of Central District. The ferry offers you a relaxing time in Victoria Harbour, with a good view of Hong Kong’s skyline.
4. Take the Escalator from Central to the Mid-Levels
The Central–Mid-Levels Escalator and walkway system connects Central to the Mid-Levels district. Having been in operation since 1993, this is the world's longest outdoor pedestrian escalator system. By riding the escalator, people can travel between Central and Mid-Levels in about 24 minutes.
The system connects some important streets and areas, such as Queen’s Road Central, Hollywood Road, and the SoHo area. If these places are on your list, the escalator is sure to be very convenient for you.
5. Celebrate Festivals in Lan Kwai Fong
Lan Kwai Fong is a short and narrow L-shaped alley between Wyndham Street and D'Aguilar Street in Central. It is much more famous than it looks because it is a lively restaurant and bar street attracting local youngsters and foreign visitors.
During Western celebrations, such as Halloween, Christmas, and New Year’s Eve, Lan Kwai Fong is one of the most bustling areas in Hong Kong. If you like this type of atmosphere and are traveling during these periods, it will be an impressive experience to enjoy a drink there.
Read more about Hong Kong’s nightlife.
6. Find Nostalgic Items in Hollywood Road
Hollywood Road was one of the earliest settlement areas for people in Hong Kong. The road got its name from the holly trees that used to be planted along it, forming ‘woods’. It was named this long before the Hollywood of the American film industry.
Hollywood Road still retains some historical buildings, and there are hundreds of shops selling Chinese antiques and nostalgic items, such as ceramics, jade wares, carvings, and calligraphy and painting items.
Walking along the road, you can admire some exquisite objects from ancient Hong Kong and buy some pretty but inexpensive ones as souvenirs. However, you are not recommended to buy any expensive antiques unless you are a professional in this field.
7. Visit the Stone Paved Pottinger Street
Central always leaves an impression of skyscrapers and avenues. However, did you know that there is still a stone paved street there? In Queen’s Road Central, Pottinger Street is a mountainside street paved with stone slabs.
Compared with the bustling avenues and shopping malls, you can experience a more genuine atmosphere for the locals’ authentic lifestyles. The best way to visit the street is simply to walk around and look at the interesting objects sold in the shops, or you can try to bargain with the shopkeepers. Taking a rest in a roadside restaurant or bar is also a pleasant choice.
8. Learn about the Hong Kong Police Force on Hollywood Road… and Contemporary Art
The Hong Kong Central Police Station used to be on Hollywood Road. The series of buildings have now become a museum, and the area is free to visit. If you like Hong Kong police and gangster movies, you must visit the former police headquarters building, which has exhibitions about the history of Hong Kong’s police force, as well as the buildings that used to be the court and prison.
There is also an art gallery at the site, exhibiting contemporary artwork.
For contemporary art that the police are known for stopping (but not here), head to Graham Street for its famous graffiti wall depicting old HK townhouses. Graham St. is only 200m north of the Old Central Police Station. It is very cool to take photos of the wall and share them online. Walking the alleys nearby, you may find more graffiti walls and the chance to find out more about the art from local Hong Kong street artists.
9. Enjoy the Night View from the Hong Kong Observation Wheel
The Hong Kong Observation Wheel is a Ferris wheel located in Central Harbourfront. The wheel is 60 meters high with 42 gondolas. A ride on the Ferris wheel takes about 15 to 20 minutes and costs 20 HKD (about 2.50 USD). On the wheel, you can enjoy the scenery of Victoria Harbour from a different viewpoint.
The observation wheel operates until 11pm. If you happen to pass by, it is a good experience to try.
10. Visit Hong Kong Zoological and Botanical Gardens
Founded in the 1860s, the Hong Kong Zoological and Botanical Gardens is the oldest park in Hong Kong. The park covers an area of 56,000 square meters and is divided into two parts. The eastern part contains a greenhouse and a garden, which is home to many kinds of birds. Reptiles and mammals live in the western part.
Besides admiring the flora and fauna, some historical sites in the park are also worth a visit. Just walk around and soak up the comfortable atmosphere.
Visit Central in Hong Kong with Us
Besides the activities mentioned above, there are many more things to do in Central, Hong Kong. If you travel with us, your local private guide will introduce you to many more amazing experiences in Hong Kong.