Of all China’s glittering cityscapes, Hong Kong is without question the most impressive. Whether it’s the city’s waterside location, its cluster of skyscrapers or its blend of old and new architecture that sets it apart from other Chinese metropolises — this is one Asian city that’s well worth a visit.
While Hong Kong is now famous for its glut of sparkling high-rises, its history stretches back thousands of years, something which gives the city a whole other dimension that is sure to surprise some first-time visitors.
If you have recently booked a cruise from Hong Kong, or the city is just one stop as part of a wider Chinese or Asian cruise itinerary, we’ve provided some top tips on what to see, do and eat during your visit.
Given its size, you’d think it would be impossible to see all of Hong Kong in one fell swoop. Make your way to the summit of Victoria Peak, however, and you’re granted a dazzling view of the entire city sprawling away into the distance below. An absolute must during any visit to Hong Kong.
Big Buddha & Lantau Island
Big Buddha, known locally as Tian Tan Buddha, is a bronze statue of Sakyamuni Buddha located at Ngong Ping, Lantau Island. Said to represent the relationship between man and nature, the Big Buddha statue is the main centre for Buddhism in Hong Kong, and makes for one amazing spectacle.
Chi Lin Nunnery
If you want to experience the olde worlde side of Hong Kong, there’s no where better to visit than the Chi Lin Nunnery — a large Buddhist temple locate in Hong Kong’s charming Kowloon district. Though built as late as 1934, Chi Lin was constructed using traditional Chinese architectural techniques, so it perfectly echoes the history of the city.
Walk in Nan Lian Garden
Escape the relentless hustle and bustle of Hong Kong with an afternoon stroll in the serene Nan Lian Garden. Located just a stone’s throw from the Chi Lin Nunnery, this beautiful garden features the same traditional architectural touches as the Buddhist centre, and is well-known for its dreamy peace and quiet.
Ride the ‘Ding Ding’ Tramway
Hong Kong’s ‘Ding Ding’ tram system is one of the city’s most famous landmarks, attracting millions of visitors each year. Though some of its cars are decades old, the tramway is used by thousands of commuters everyday, and is the only tram system in the world to use double decker trams. Why not take one to the summit of Victoria Peak?
Take a Trip Aboard the Star Ferry
Although you might be tired of being aboard a ship at this point, you must take a trip aboard the Star Ferry during your stop over in Hong Kong. The Star Ferry is without question the best way to see the city, travelling back and forth along the waterfront and stopping at a number of key visitor sites.
Tin Lung Heen
As one of the few restaurants in Hong Kong to be awarded two Michelin Stars, Tin Lung Heen serves up an eclectic roster of award-winning fare that promises to tempt those taste buds. Expect some of the finest, most authentic Chinese fare you’ve ever eaten.
If you’re travelling with children or just don’t fancy sampling traditional Chinese food, head to Mistral — an authentic Italian restaurant serving up a good range of Italian-inspired favourites. With pizza, pasta and steaks aplenty, Mistral is a great choice for those who prefer familiar eats while they’re away.
While the arrival of the Michelin Star continues to shine a light on Hong Kong’s haute cuisine establishments, you mustn’t forget the cheap street food options when you’re visiting the city. One of our favourite places to tuck into faithful Chinese street food is Lin Heung — a charming street vendor whose Dim Sum attracts huge crowds.
If you’re interested in booking a cruise break to Hong Kong, visit the Cruise1st Australia website or call us on 1300 857 345.
Header image sourced via Flickr Creative Commons. Credit: ¡kuba!
Body images sourced via Flickr Creative Commons. Credit: Florian Rohart, Canadian Pacific, Chelsea Marie Hicks