As you may know, Hong Kong is a very vibrant and magnificent city. Its a city of towers, skyscrapers, and full of other places to visit. We will refer our reader of 7 places in our opinion most worth to visit while in Hong Kong: the Big Buddha monastery, the Temple Street Night Market, the Happy Valley Racecourse, pandas at Hong Kong Ocean Park, Hike up to Victoria Peak, Lan Kwai Fong parties and of course Stroll through Hong Kong Park.
1. Meet the Big Buddha
Sitting on the high hills of Lantau Island, the Big Buddha Hong Kong statue is the most popular tourist attraction in this area and should be on the must-visit list of every visitor. The official name of this statue is the Tian Tan Buddha. The Big Budha is 34 meters tall and it is considered as a statue belonging to the Po Lin Monastery. This massive 250 tons weighing bronze statue has earned the title of one of the world’s most impressive Buddha statues. It was first created to inspire people and is now one of the biggest Hong Kong tourist attractions, millions of visitors come to see it each year from all over the world.
You can see the statue standing out from any point in Lantau. You can take a free hike from the base of the statue up to the Big Buddha itself, in total of 260 steps. Once you are at the top you will also be amazed by the green views of Lantau Island. You can also visit the monastery where they have and view its handmade decor. Also, there is a monastery canteen for those who want to refuel, note that you need to get a meal ticket at the counter at the foot of the steps.
2. Visit the Temple Street Night Market
Temple Street Night Market is a famous street bazaar named after the Tin Hau temple which is located there as well. In this colorful and loudly cheerful place, you can find anything you want or need, from trinkets to clothing, electronics, seafood, noodles, and other delights.
This place reminds you of one of those Hollywood movies Chinatown scenes. Lots of lights and billboards, smells and sounds mixing together make this place even more charming. The market gets busy once the sun is down, it became a popular tourist attraction for its unique history, and a variety of things one can get here. You can find stands selling anything here, however, note that many products sold here are counterfeits. Do not forget that you can bargain in the Temple Street Night Market. You are also likely to meet local prostitutes lurking in the shadows and fortune tellers, promising to tell your future from your palm, tarot cards and many other techniques.
If you want to see this place at its busiest time you should go there after working hours, however, if you are going there for shopping it is advised to go there around 3 pm.
3. Discover the Happy Valley Racecourse
Since 1846 the Happy Valley Racecourse was Hing Kong’s main horse racing track. Here you can view exquisite horse racing and experience a real Hong Kong lifestyle environment. Huge cheering crowds and your favorite horse race will make your adrenaline jump from excitement. In Hong Kong horse-race is a booming business, the city is surrounded by a huge green track from all sides. The Happy Valley Racecourse offers night races as well, where you can peek at Hong Kong star horses. Locals visit the Happy Valley Racecourse by thousands of groups from September to July, where they can enjoy their time watching horse ride on huge screens and participate in computerized bets.
The arena offers public and private seatings. For those who want to enjoy the race more privately, there are private boxes available for rent, both during the night and day. You can also participate in a Come Horse-racing Tour where you will be able to examine the horses before the race together with Hong Kong Jockey Club Members.
At the Happy Valley Racecourse, you will also find some bars and restaurants where you can also see the race while dining. There is also a Hong Kong Jockey Club Archive and museum at the Happy Valley Racecourse.
The entry fee starts from 10 HKD, this ticket lets you enter all public areas. There will be applied other fees if you wish to enter other parts of the arena. Only visitors who have 18+ years are allowed to enter the racecourse.
4. Meet pandas at Hong Kong Ocean Park
Hong Kong Ocean Park is known as a mammal park, oceanarium, animal theme park and amusement park located in Wong Chuk Hang and Nam Long Shan in the Southern District of Hong Kong. Giant Pandas residing here among lots of other animals. Firstly in 1999, the park was given two giant pandas, a male, and a female panda. The pair of pandas was permanently housed in Hong Kong Ocean Park when in 2007 two more pandas were brought to the park. The pandas were shown to the public first on the 1st of July 2007 during an event “Giant Panda Adventure”. One of the local pandas was titled as the world’s oldest panda age 38 (114 in panda years) grown in captivity. When normally in the wild pandas live 15-20 years depending on the surrounding conditions.
Together with the park’s most popular giant pandas Ying Ying and Le Le, there are also inhabited a bit smaller but also extremely lovely red pandas, these species are also endangered, along with Chinese giant salamander, the largest amphibian in the world.
If you are planning to visit giant pandas at Hong Kong Ocean Park you might consider getting tickets in advance as this park might be busy. You can purchase tickets online at the Hong Kong Ocean Park website.
5. Hike up to Victoria Peak
Victoria Peak reveals to Hong Kong’s visitors’ amazing panoramic view of this vibrant harbor city and its skyscrapers. Victoria Peak is found at 552-meter height and makes it the highest point in Hong Kong Island.
Victoria Peak is one of the most touristic attractions in Hong Kong, the spectacular breathtaking views will make everyone’s heart melt.
You can get to Victoria Peak by the Park Tram, this railway was built 125 years ago and departs from Garden Road. Take the tram up to level 5, there you will reach Sky terrace 428 which is located at 428m above sea level. At this point, you will be facing a 360-degree panoramic view of the forest and Hong Kong metropolitan city, harbor and Kowloon. At the height of 500m above sea level, you will find the old governor’s summer villa, during world war 2 it was burned by the Japanese. The charming gardens were saved, refurbished and are open to the public. Once you pass the gardens you will reach the second lookout point where you will be able to glimpse at the island and the sea.
Make sure to arrive 30 minutes before sundown as it will make your experience even more memorable. If you are up for a longer hike you might as well pick up a map at Hong Kong Visitor Centre or download Hong Kong Hiking app.
6. Party to Lam Kwai Fong
Lan Kwai Fong is Hong Kong’s nightlife capital street that hosts more than 90 places for dining and drinks. One can find here fancy wineries, cocktail bars, jelly shot bars and a variety of different restaurants to meet anyone’s taste and needs. Lan Kwai Fong is a small square of streets in Central Hong Kong.
Lan Kwai Fong is filled with local office workers, businessmen, and foreigners. The best time to visit this place and experience it at its peak is every Friday and Saturday night, it’s the time of the week when Lan Kwai Fong is busiest. At 17:00 to 21:00 is the happy hour for white collars. To attract customers bars and restaurants offer special deals, such as buy one get one free, and half-price for the meal. Many students and foreigners visit this place at the spree hour which starts at 22 pm. Even though Lan Kwai Fong is mostly for businessmen, it is surprisingly affordable. A beer is 40-50 HKD, and half-price during happy hours.
The interiors of Lan Kwai Fong are westernized, the bars and restaurants have simple furniture and decor. Wing Wah Lane offers foreign gourmet cuisines, like Japanese dishes, Malaysian and Thai style food. Once in Lan Kwai Fong, you will not have any problem to order in English, as most waiters will understand you perfectly.
7. Stroll through Hong Kong Park
Hong Kong Park can be compared to an oasis in the desert, as it is surrounded by the big city jungle. The Park was built and opened in 1991 it was designed to blend in with the surrounding natural landscape and create a peaceful atmosphere to relax and run away from the Hong Kong city chaos. The Hong Kong park has fountains, lily ponds, playgrounds for kids, a greenhouse, a museum of Tea Ware, the Hong Kong Visual Arts Centre and even a marriage registry. Also, there is an aviary that became home to 80 species of birds. If you appear to be in Hong Kong, do not miss a chance to take a relaxing walk in Hong Kong Park.
You can also take a free Morning Bird-Watching walk that takes place every Wednesday, it is held by the Hong Kong government and the Hong Kong Bird Watching Society.
Hong Kong Park outdoor facilities are open for business from 6:00 a.m. till 11:00 p.m. The Aviary is open from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. The park’s restaurant opens at 11:00 a.m. and closes at 10:30 p.m. You can find more information on the official Hong Kong Park website.
Hong Kong is a small group of Islands, however, it became a popular tourist attraction due to a variety of activities and attractions that may be found here. If you love to spend your vacation actively, with a lot of walking and sightseeing in Hong Kong is a perfect place for you. Once you are here the time will fly as you will find lots of fun things to do. We have revealed just a small part that Hong Kong has to offer for an island of its size, so don’t miss a chance to visit this vibrant city!