Hong Kong is best known as a shoppers' paradise. There is, however, so much more to Hong Kong than shopping. Visitors can enjoy views of the city from high altitude, sample local food, celebrate festivals, watch sports competitions, and visit movie settings in the city.
You can also take advantage of the visa-free policy and convenient transport. Your travel to and within Hong Kong can be easy, relaxing, joyful and meaningful.
This guide will help you know what to expect in Hong Kong. Just read on to find out why you should visit Hong Kong in 2019.
1. It’s Multicultural: Experience Western Life and Chinese Customs
A colonial background gave Hong Kong a sophisticated fusion of east and west. Hong Kong’s culture is unique, while simultaneously representing a fusion of different backgrounds.
In Hong Kong, you can visit a high-altitude café in a skyscraper and enjoy a cup of coffee there in the morning, before going to pray for good luck in a Chinese-style temple in the afternoon. You can taste the special menu of the Winter Solstice Festival on December 22, and then join in the prayers at St. John’s Cathedral on Christmas Eve.
Diverse cultures in Hong Kong bring convenience for visitors. You will find it easier to travel around Hong Kong, for many people can speak English, with many major streets and places having easy-to-read and -understand English names.
2. Cuisine: Tasty Local Dishes, and Food from All Over the World
Renowned as the culinary capital of Asia, Hong Kong is a world of exquisite, mouth-watering international dining options.
The local dim sum and fresh seafood should definitely be sampled! Hong Kong’s local food is all well-prepared using fresh ingredients and has a pleasing appearance and light flavor.
Compared with the food in some other places in China, which may have a strong taste or strange ingredients, Hong Kong’s food is more palatable and worth a try.
Apart from trying out the local food, you can also enjoy a full range of authentic cuisine from Japan, Korea, India, Thailand, or even Africa. There are also western restaurants. If you wish, you can eat just like you do at home.
- Top Dishes You Might Like to Try in Hong Kong.
- The Best 20 Hong Kong Restaurants — Something for Everyone.
3. Shopping: Resplendent Malls, Street Markets & Duty-Free Shops
Famed as a shoppers' paradise, Hong Kong offers a unique shopping experience. From trendy boutiques to traditional stores with Chinese products, from luxurious shopping malls to bustling street markets, you can find everything from the latest designer fashions and electronic products to best-value collectibles and antiques.
Trendsetters from all over the world find Hong Kong to be Asia's best place for buying fashion clothes, electronic goods, watches, cosmetics and ornaments. In some duty-free stores and during the sales season, some goods are sold at prices cheaper than the prices where they were produced.
4. Sightseeing: Breath-Taking Harbor Views & Skylines
Reach the summit of Victoria Peak to enjoy spectacular views! This is an imperative for every first-time visitor to Hong Kong. On the observation platform of the peak, you can have a bird’s-eye view of Victoria Harbour and downtown Hong Kong, and admire Hong Kong’s skyline in the distance.
You wouldn’t need long to climb up and see the great views, though riding an antique tram is a more popular and relaxing way of getting there. For closer contact with local people, you can also ride a Star Ferry on Victoria Harbour.
5. Family-Friendly: Kids Also Like Hong Kong
Hong Kong is a perfect destination for family tours, with distinctive parks, great museums, and nature reserves. Children will have fun meeting cartoon characters in Disneyland, taking a boat ride at a fishing village, and watching science movies shown on the hemispherical dome of the Hong Kong Space Museum.
6. Festivals: Celebrate Eastern and Western Festivals with Locals
There are many festivals throughout the year, and whenever you visit Hong Kong, you may have a good chance to experience its unique festival culture.
Hong Kong is one of the best places for celebrating Christmas and New Year’s Eve. During Christmas, streets and buildings have special festival decorations. There are also countdown events and firework performances on New Year’s Eve around Victoria Harbour.
Take the opportunity to experience Chinese festivals in Hong Kong, like Spring Festival, Dragon Boat Festival and Mid-Autumn Festival. Enjoy the lively celebrations and special festival cuisine.
7. Colorful Nightlife
Don't miss the night fun in Hong Kong. You will find plenty of places to have some food, a drink, or other fun. The bars and pubs are concentrated in east Tsim Sha Tsui, Lan Kwai Fong and Wan Chai. Most restaurants, bars and other places of entertainment operate until the wee hours.
You can alternatively take a night cruise at Victoria Harbour to enjoy the views and the Symphony of Lights. Of course, there are many other such possibilities.
8. Sports: International Competitions of Rugby, Tennis, Horse Racing…
Hong Kong, with its many world-class sports events, is the perfect place for you to watch top sports’ stars perform and to join in the excitement! There are many high-profile sports events throughout the year, such as the Hong Kong Rugby Sevens, the Hong Kong Tennis Open and the International Dragon Boat Races.
Hong Kong horse racing is not only popular locally, but also important internationally. During the racing season from September to July, don’t miss the races in Happy Valley Racecourse or Sha Tin Racecourse. International competitions are convened there every year.
9. Movie Pilgrimage: Shooting Sites of Hong Kong & Hollywood Movies
Like Hong Kong movies? Then go to Temple Street, Yau Ma Tei Fruit Market or Chung King Mansions to see where the movies were shot. Hong Kong is also the site of many Hollywood movies, like Transformers 4, Doctor Strange and Ghost in the Shell.
If you are a fan of Hong Kong police and gangster movies, you can visit the Police Museum to see the history of Hong Kong police and the weapons they use.
10. Visa-Free: 90-180 Days
Most foreign visitors can enjoy a 90-day visa-free stay in Hong Kong, including passport holders from America, Canada, Australia, New Zealand and EU countries. Visitors from the United Kingdom can stay visa-free for up to 180 days.
11. Transportation: Direct Flights from the World’s Major Cities
Hong Kong International Airport has direct flights connecting many major cities of the world, including London, New York, LA, Toronto, Vancouver, Melbourne, Sydney, Tokyo, Osaka and Seoul.
Hong Kong also has one of the world’s best subway systems, as well as convenient buses, trams and ferries. You don’t even need to prepare loose change. Buy an Octopus Card and you can get on nearly all public transport with it.
- Read more about Hong Kong Transportation.
12. Gateway: Your Starting Point for Visiting China and the Rest of Asia
Hong Kong's location makes it the main gateway to China as well as the rest of East Asia. Its international air service is excellent, and competition keeps the fares relatively low compared to neighboring countries.
Enjoy Exploring Hong Kong with Us
China Highlights can offer you a hassle-free journey to Hong Kong. If you travel with us, you will enjoy a private tour with an experienced guide. You can discover Hong Kong all at your own pace.
Here are some of our standard tour plans for your reference:
- Half-Day Hong Kong Island Tour — including Victoria Peak with a one-way Peak Tram, and Aberdeen with a sampan ride
- One-Day Lantau Island and Giant Buddha Tour — taking you to visit Po Lin Monastery and Tai O fishing village
- 10-Day China Family Tour to Beijing, Guilin, Yangshuo, and Hong Kong