Best Things to See and Do in Hong Kong

Hong Kong is one of the most densely-packed cities in the world. It’s a vibrant, towering, eclectic city that’s bursting at the seams with people, food, activities, and history.It’s one of my favorite cities in the world.Home to over 7 million people, Hong Kong is comprised of over 260 islands. It’s is a fast-paced city with world-class food, a lively nightlife, energetic night markets, and plenty of spaces to escape to when you need to relax.Whenever I visit Asia, I make sure to stop in for a visit. I never get tired of spending time here — and I’m sure you won’t either!To help you plan your trip, here are my favorite 23 things to see and do in Hong Kong.

Enjoy Kowloon Park

To relax and soak up the sun, head to Kowloon Park. It’s a massive green space that spans over 13 hectares (32 acres) and is home to some relaxing Chinese gardens, ponds where you can feed ducks and other birds, an aviary, a fitness center, swimming pool, and lots of space to relax and watch the city go by. When the weather gets too hot (and it will!) come here to chill out in the shade. It’s one of the best places to people-watch in the city.

Ride the Star Ferry

While you’ll likely need to ride the Star Ferry just to get around, it also makes for a fun activity in and of itself. You’ll be able to see the city and its towering skyline from a new perspective — all for just 2.70 HKD. It’s one of my favorite activities (and it’s cheap too!).

Rent a Junk Boat

Junk boats — those classic boats with the large sail you see in any movie about Hong Kong — are an iconic part of Hong Kong. These traditional ships have been around since the 2nd century (the name possibly derives from chuán, the Chinese word for “ship”).Today, you can sail around on a half-day or full-day trip. You can rent a private boat with a large group of friends (12–60 people) with packages that range from bring-everything-yourself to all-inclusive. You can also join a group tour and pay per person if you’re traveling solo. Here are some recommended companies that offer affordable tours:
Island Junks – They have a couple cruise options, costing around 650 HKD per person.
Saffron Cruises – If you have a large group (20-30 people), this is the best option for you. A charter will cost between 9,500-19,000 HKD.
Hong Kong Junks – This is the classic party boat experience, usually for younger travelers. Budget options available.

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Take a Day Trip to Macau

Macau is considered the “Las Vegas of Asia” and is a huge gambling mecca. It’s just 50-75 minutes away from Hong Kong by boat and makes for a fun day trip. The city, which is a Special Administrative Region in China (similar to Hong Kong), was originally a Portuguese colony and trading post. From 1557-1887 it was governed by Portual and was a vital trading port.Today, the city is full of modern casinos and offers an interesting mix of Chinese and Portuguese culture. Even if you’re not a big gambler, it’s still a unique place to visit and explore for a day.

Experience the Nightlife at Lan Kwai Fong

LKF is the main nightlife and party spot in the city. It’s also the main expat district too and the area is full of bars, clubs, and shisha bars. Drinks are cheap and the nights out are wild. The streets get crowded and it gets rowdy, but if you want to see the city’s wild side then this is where you need to be. It’s especially wild on Halloween and New Year’s Eve.

Have Fun at Disneyland

If you really want to play tourist and get in touch with your inner child, head to Disneyland. The park has over 36 attractions, including favorites like the spinning teacups and Jungle Cruise. Located on Lantau Island, you can reach the park in just 20 minutes by car. It’s super easy to get to (you can take public transportation there as well in around 45 minutes). They also have a nightly fireworks show at 9pm.

See the Street Markets in Mong Kok

Located on Kowloon, Mong Kok is a winding area of narrow streets known for its markets. To really get a sense of the city, some here and soak up the frenetic atmosphere, see the sights, and bask in the organized chaos of Hong Kong. If you’re looking for inexpensive souvenirs be sure to check out the Ladies Market (it has lots of bargain clothing, accessories, and souvenirs) and the Temple Street Night Market (which is more of a flea market). Even if you don’t plan on buying anything, you should still visit some of the markets. You’ll get a much deeper feel for the city and there is lots of great people-watching here too.

Take a Free Walking Tour

The first thing I do when I arrive at a new destination is take a free walking tour. They give me the lay of the land, show me the main sites, and give me access to a knowledgeable local who can answer all my questions.There are two companies that offer comprehensive free walking tours in Hong Kong:
Hong Kong Free Walk
Hong Kong Free Tours
Both offer multiple tours and have competent, knowledgeable local guides. Just make sure you tip your guide at the end!

Ngong Ping 360

Ngong Ping 360 is a gondola that stretches over 5.7km (3.5 miles) from Tung Chung across the bay toward the airport and then onward to Lantau Island. The ride takes around 25 minutes and offers a panoramic view of the entire city and harbor.You’ll arrive at Ngong Ping Village, which is super touristy (there are lots of tacky souvenir shops and carnivalesque performances) but still fun. Don’t miss the nearby Po Lin Monastery (a Buddhist monastery founded in 1906) and Tian Tan, a 34-meter bronze Buddha statue that sits on the top of the island’s peak.