Hong Kong is a seriously epic city, with so many different aspects to experience that you will likely feel a bit overwhelmed with where to start. And you can read all about its rich history, countless activities, and tasting tips in Aspire, Hong Kong Airlines’ in-flight magazine. But after visiting for ourselves we want to give you our tried, tested and true tips as well.
For starters, one of the best things about flying to Hong Kong is the flight itself! From the second you step onboard a Hong Kong Airlines flight, you’ll be treated to a full Hong Kong experience. We’re talking about an inflight Skybar for both Business and Economy class, an iPad 4 mini to watch some entertainment during the flight, and gourmet popcorn for snacking.
Plus, with daily nonstop Hong Kong Airlines flights from YVR to HKG and all the in-flight comforts you could ever ask for (shout out to the amenity kits and the comfiest airplane seating ever!), there’s no better way to start your adventure.
So now that your flight is settled, here are the non-negotiable activities for your trip to Hong Kong.
Take in the skyline
A one-word summary of Hong Kong’s skyline: EPIC. You have some of the most unique, colourful, and animated skyscrapers in the world, set against the stunning mountainous backdrop of Victoria Peak. From the Bank of China Tower’s blinking diamond shapes (fun fact – designed by the same architect of the Louvre); to the twinkling ICC tower (the tallest in Hong Kong at 118 floors); to the giant “SELFIE TIME” sign (as if we needed a prompter) – your eyes will be dancing around in awe.
Our recos for best vantage points: Anywhere along Tsim Sha Tsui harbour; aboard the Star Ferry; from the top of Victoria Peak via cable car; or from the Hong Kong Observation wheel. Make sure to tune in for the Symphony of Lights show at 8 pm nightly, when the lights and lasers put in a show you won’t want to miss.
Eat. And then eat some more. Never stop eating.
There is no such thing as getting all dim summed out. One trip to HK and you will know that the locals take their dumplings seriously. This is a dish traditionally enjoyed with tea in the morning or at lunch. You will want to get your hands on certain signature eats such as the cha siu bao (steamed pork buns) or xiao long bao (soup dumplings).
Budget backpackers can grab street food at Stanley Street or Temple Street markets, or if you feel like treating yourself, wine and dine at Mott 32 or HEXA. There are also great mid-range dining spots such as Tim Ho Wan or Lee Lo Mei. We promise you will not be short on options!
Experience Hong Kong nightlife
Hong Kong’s nightlife scene is off. the. hook. Stop by SoHo or Lan Kwai Fong on a Friday or Saturday night and you’ll see what we mean. Locals and expats from all over the world flock to these areas and pour out onto the streets, as the open-air bars keep things going with the most bumpin’ beats.
There is also an amazing rooftop bar and speakeasy scene thanks to the many alleyways and mixed-use skyscrapers in the city centre, known as Central. We would suggest enjoying some live music and awesome decor at Iron Fairies (just don’t steal the fairies!); sneaking into Stockton for a handcrafted cocktail; or kicking back for some pool and beer pong at Racks City.
Explore the hoods
Okay so you’ve partied in Central, now it’s time to see the rest of Hong Kong.
Check out the markets of Sham Shui Po for every random knick knack you didn’t know you needed until now – toys, electronics, clothing, materials, etc. etc. Walk in Hong Kong tours can show you the hotspots for Instagram shots, eats, and history in this neighbourhood. It’s definitely a grittier side of Hong Kong but it will give you a glimpse into the real lives of the hustling’ Hong Kong-ers.
Stop by Mong Kok for more footwear options than you have ever seen in your life on Sneaker Street; browse through Ladies Market for some very convincing knock-offs for yourself or your lady; or visit Temple Street Night Market for menswear, trinkets, souvenirs, gadgets, and more.
Get out of the city and into nature
When you think of Hong Kong, betcha don’t think of tropical pristine beaches or lush mountains for hiking, do ya?
Well you should, because Sai Kung is home to 70 islands and stunning beaches, and people are flocking. In the summer, go kayaking through the 70 islands of Sai Kung; and in the winter, go hiking up Ma On Shan Mountains. For ease of planning and a wealth of local insider info, go with Wild Hong Kong adventure and eco tours.
You can also hop on the MTR (Hong Kong’s user-friendly transit system) over to Lantau Island, Hong Kong’s largest outlying island, and take the glass-bottomed cable car up for mountainous views of the city, sea, and airport. You can stroll around the grounds of Ngong Ping and view the Po Lin Monastery and Tian Tan Buddha (or our preferred name, Big Buddha) statue. While you’re here, pop down the hill to the quaint fishing village of Tai O, where the stilted houses will make you feel like you’ve been transported to another world.
Hong Kong is a place of many, many layers (both literally and figuratively), so we have only just scratched the surface of all that this dynamic destination has to offer.
Go visit for yourself and share your own experiences with us using the hashtag #dailyhivemapped, #Travel2HongKong, #hkairlines!
Now that you have your itinerary all figured out, there’s only one thing left to do – take advantage of the flight specials from Hong Kong Airlines and book that flight! You’ll be glad you did!
For more information on Hong Kong, visit Discover Hong Kong.
Enter for your chance to win the following prize:
- 2 x Economy class return tickets from Vancouver – Hong Kong – Ho Chi Minh City, provided by Hong Kong Airlines
- 3 x nights accommodation in Hong Kong for two people on a twin-sharing basis, provided by Hong Kong Tourism Board (HKTB)
- Airport-hotel return transfers
- Two tours for two people in Hong Kong (choice of hotel and tours are at the discretion of HKTB)
- A trip for 2 people to Vietnam, Ho Chi Minh, provided by Bestway Tours & Safaris
- 3 x nights accommodation for two people (choice of hotel and program are at the discretion of Bestway Tours & Safaris)
- Transfer services
- Entrance fees and boat fees where applicable
- Vietnam Visa on Arrival Approval letter
- Pre-arranged meals
- Guided by an English-speaking local guide
Blackout dates: 11 December 2018 – 5 January 2019, 29 January – 17 February 2019, 16-25 April 2019, 22 Jun – 10 Sep 2019, 11 December – 5 January 2020
To enter for your chance to win the prize listed above, courtesy of Hong Kong Airlines, Hong Kong Tourism Board, and Bestway Tours & Safaris, fill in the Google form below:
Contest entries will be accepted from the time and date of publishing until 11:59 pm on December 10, 2018. One winner will be chosen at random and contacted directly from Hong Kong Airlines.