How to Make the Most of Your Hong Kong Visit

June 7, 2013 by

Asia, Bus Tours, City Tours & Sightseeing, Travel Advice & Inspiration

Hong Kong is one of Asia’s most vibrant and international cities, and you could easily spend a week or more shopping its mega-malls and night markets, visiting its temples and savoring the unique flavor of each individual neighborhood. If you’re only passing through Hong Kong and have limited time in the city, you can still experience the best of what Hong Kong has to offer with a little planning.

What to hit and what to miss

Hong Kong

Hong Kong

To make the most of your time in Hong Kong, you’ll need to prioritize. In general, it’s better to skip the attractions that you could experience elsewhere, like Hong Kong Disneyland, Ocean Park or the Hong Kong Zoo, and instead focus in on the sights and experiences unique to the city.

No matter your particular interests, you should set aside a few hours to appreciate the world famous skyline at its best — first from the Star Ferry that will carry you across Victoria Harbour with the skyscrapers of Hong Kong Island and Kowloon on either side, and next with a trip up the Victoria Peak Tram for a bird’s eye view of the city. If you get an early start, you could easily fit both into a half-day.

Travelers who come to Hong Kong for the excellent shopping have plenty of options. For uniquely Hong Kong retail, spend your time along the Golden Mile of Nathan Road with an evening exploring one of Kowloon’s many night markets (the Ladies’ and Temple Street markets are the best).

If you’re interested in museums, you’ll find many located within easy walking distance of each other near the Tsim Sha Tsui promenade in Kowloon. The Hong Kong Museum of History is considered the best in the country, with the Hong Kong Science Museum, Hong Kong Space Museum and the Museum of Art all located nearby.

Getting around

Hong Kong - Victoria Peak

View from Victoria Peak

Hong Kong has an excellent public transportation system, but if you want to make the most of your time, consider buying a pass for the Hong Kong Hop-On Hop-Off tourist bus. These open-top, double-decker buses cover three routes with stops at 23 Hong Kong attractions, including the Star Ferry, Victoria Peak Tram, Temple Street Market and many of the city’s top museums. The cost of the ticket includes a one-way ride on the Star Ferry and a roundtrip journey on the funicular tram to and from Victoria Peak, making it a good value for travelers on a budget. You’ll have the option of either a 24- or 48-hour pass good for all three routes.

If you plan to visit sights not covered by the Hop-On Hop-Off bus, the subway will likely be your best transportation option, and you can purchase an Octopus card from the airport station that will allow you to ride the metro (as well as buses and taxis) without having to buy a ticket for every trip.

Book tickets for a Hong Kong Hop-on Hop-off tour

Where to stay

Hong Kong hotels are notoriously expensive and small, and while it may seem tempting to go for a hotel in the New Territories or the outskirts of the city to save money, you’ll save yourself a lot of time by finding accommodation in central Kowloon or Hong Kong Island, depending on where you plan to spend the majority of your time. Getting to central Hong Kong from the outskirts can take up to 45 minutes on the metro, and that adds up to 90 minutes each day you could be using to enjoy the city.

- Lydia Schrandt

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One Response to “How to Make the Most of Your Hong Kong Visit”

  1. Pa Ul Says:

    I have been to this place too. Hong Kong is really a beautiful city. Someday I will return here and see other places I’ve never visited there yet.

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