Hong Kong should be at the top of your travel bucket list. The city offers a wide variety of options when it comes to food, shopping, accommodation, and environments. These options give travellers with all kinds of budgets the options they need to have an enjoyable trip. Although it is in Asia, there is no need for English speakers to worry because all the signage is done in both Chinese and English. The city does a great job making visitors comfortable while still preserving unique elements of Hong Kong culture that make the trip more than worthwhile.
No matter what type of cuisine you are looking for, you will find it in Hong Kong. Better yet, there is a large range of prices when it comes to food so you will be able to find something to cure that hunger on any budget. Remember, just because you have a generous budget for dining out, do not skip on cheap eats. There are some gems at affordable prices.
Like the food, shopping in Hong Kong gives you many options. Budgets can be accommodated regardless of what they are. In addition to glossy shopping malls, give street markets a chance. I have found some of my favourite articles of clothing in Wan Chai market for a fraction of department store prices. If you are looking for a cushy shopping experience, you will have no problem finding some of the most luxurious boutiques right in the centre of the buzzing city.
Some of the best cities in the world and built right by the water. Hong Kong sits right on the coast of the South China Sea. Big ships sail in and out of the city daily for tourism, shipping, and transportation; the water is never still. In more remote areas of the city, you may find a secluded spot on the beach where you may enjoy the calm of the waves. No matter where you are in the city, the view of the sea is a sparkling treat.
One of the first things to appreciate when arriving in Hong Kong is that the lights of the city are undeniably incredible (visually as a human). This is effectively represented in Planet Earth II’s sixth episode on animals within the city. Hong Kong is introduced by a clip showing the best parts of the city’s night lights. The episode goes on to reveal that baby sea turtles on the beaches of Hong Kong are confused by the artificial lights and end up dying soon after they are born.
In Hong Kong, the urban landscape is balanced by the calming waves that you can find on sandy beaches. This is a great way to get away for the day. Repulse Bay is one of the most popular beaches in the city because it is a quick bus ride away from the city centre. However, you may want to venture into the more remote areas of the city for a secluded beach you can enjoy away from crowds. Take your pick!
In addition to beaches, one can enjoy nature in the city by going hiking. Hong Kong’s green space surrounds the city and allows for dwellers and visitors to soak in the natural environment if they are feeling the fatigue of concrete jungle life. These hikes will take you to some of the highest points in the city so that you can enjoy the city views from a distance — away from the tensions of city life.
The transportation system in Hong Kong is convenient, affordable, and well-designed. With an Octopus card, you can use the MTR (subway system) all around the city. The Airport Express takes you right from the airport to the city centre in 25 minutes. For more remote areas or overground travel, there is a sophisticated bus system that covers many routes if you are willing to do the research. Travel by water can take you to and from different islands within Hong Kong. This can be very cheap (Star Ferry) or quite expensive (Discovery Bay Ferry). In case of an emergency or for the sake of ease, taking taxis is much more affordable than many cities, say, London.
Architecture in Hong Kong is incredible. At every turn there is a skyscraper and it is really quite difficult to see the sky. Additionally, there are many different styles of architecture leftover from when Hong Kong was a British Colony and also buildings influenced by Chinese architecture. Many buildings are a mix of these different styles and it is really worth trekking about the city in search of some unique buildings.
Like the shopping and the food, Hong Kong offers accommodation at a large range of price points. From The Mandarin Oriental and The Peninsula to hostels and Airbnbs, you can find all kinds of places to get some shut eye. Depending on your requirements, it is possible for you to spend a very pretty penny if you wish.
There is an old Chinese saying “People Mountain, People Sea” that is used to describe a bustling, crowded environment. In Hong Kong, “People Mountain, People Sea” is combined with speed. Personally, speed is a trait of Hong Kong that I find disagreeable. However, I cannot deny that being trained to walk at this city’s speed comes in handy sometimes. If you have not visited, you must witness the efficiency and impatience of Hong Kongers for yourself someday. It is quite incredible. If it is overwhelming for you to be in the middle of it all, find a nice cafe to sit in and just look out the window at passers-by. Even better, find a bar in a skyscraper and watch the people dash around looking very small. The speed is both a blessing and a curse in my opinion — wonderful when you are running short on time but stressful when you are trying to have a relaxing day out.