With its unique blend of old and new, Hong Kon
g is a must-see destination for all travellers. Whether you like sipping cocktails while watching the dazzling lights sparkle across skyscrapers, or prefer an adventurous cable car ride up to a 34m tall bronze statue, Hong Kong is sure to have something for you.
As the perfect stopover on your way to Europe, Hong Kong can be explored (or at least introduced) in around five days. Hong Kong is on the southern coast of China, and consists of Hong Kong Island, the Kowloon Peninsula, the New Territories, Lantau Island, as well as over 200 other islands. Currently it is the world’s fourth most densely populated region, so prepare yourself for crowds. You’ll also need to pack some Hong Kong dollars
, so keep your eye on the most current exchange rate and make sure to make use of Travel Money Oz’s Best Price Guarantee*
Perhaps one of Hong Kong’s most well-known (and Instagram-worthy) attractions is Victoria Peak, Hong Kong Island’s highest point at almost 400m above sea level. To get to the top, take a ride on the Peak Tram, first operated in 1888, and the first cable funicular to operate in Asia. For the best experience, make sure to go on a day that isn’t smoggy, or you may miss out on the beautiful view.
Tian Tan Buddha:
If you have a spare half day, take a trip out to see Lantau Island, home of the Tian Tan Buddha and the Po Lin Monastery. Getting here will take you a 25-minute cable car ride. Before you depart, you will get the choice of a standard cable car, or a ‘Crystal Cabin’, a glass-bottomed cable car (not recommended for people scared of heights). Once you’ve reached the peak of the island, it will then take you just 268 steps to be up close to the giant bronze statue, where you will also have an amazing view of the island.
Make sure to stick around for the incredibly impressive kung fu performances by the Shaolin monks, before indulging in a four-course lunch at Po Lin Monastery’s vegetarian restaurant. Lunch will cost around $30 Australian dollars, and it is sure to fill you up.
The Mid-Levels and Soho:
In Hong Kong’s central district, you will find the Mid-Levels; the world’s longest outdoor escalator system. Although it seems a bit excessive, the escalators are actually a great way to head up to Soho, allowing you to save your energy for exploring the artsy area.
In Soho, you will find Hong Kong’s old Central Police Station compound, which has now been turned into a centre for heritage and arts, known as Tai Kwun. Here you can experience performing and visual arts displays, historical museums, as well as niche boutiques and gourmet restaurants.
If the hustle and bustle of busy markets is more what you’re after, make sure to check out the Mong Kok Ladies’ Markets, held most evenings in Tung Choi Street in Kowloon. Here you will find knock-off designer items, cheap clothes, electrical goods, toys, and souvenirs. The markets are extremely crowded and stall-holders will be fighting over you, however many visitors enjoy the experience and usually walk away with at least one tacky trinket. Make sure to visit us in store to secure your Hong Kong dollars before you leave.
For families travelling to Hong Kong, or for anyone wanting to see a panda bear up close, make sure to visit Ocean Park while you’re in Hong Kong. In addition to rollercoasters and rides, the theme park is home to pandas, dolphins, penguins, sea lions, and monkeys. In recent years, the park has also put a strong emphasis on environmental sustainability. Visitors can take part in an interactive quiz to find out the size of their carbon footprint, and there are signs and videos throughout the park encouraging patrons to reduce their plastic consumption.
And finally, if you’re exhausted from a jam-packed trip to Hong Kong, relax with a ride on the Star Ferry, Hong Kong’s preferred method of transportation since 1888. The Star Ferry is an excellent way to get between Hong Kong Island and Kowloon (because taking a bus through an underwater tunnel isn’t quite picturesque), but it is also a great way to relax while taking in views of the iconic harbour up close.
As the day turns to night, make sure to line up amongst the crowds of people waiting to watch the Symphony of Lights performance, a multimedia light show that takes place along the skyscrapers of Hong Kong’s harbour. The show takes place every evening at 8pm, and has done so consistently since 2004!
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