5 hour layover in Hong Kong

Aug 14th, 2011, 03:14 PM
  #1  
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5 hour layover in Hong Kong

I think I have to msit onmy hands based on earlier trips to HK but we arrive at 5 AM into HK (assume we are on-time). We are off the plane in 15 minutes but if we do not say in the "in-transit" area is there anything to do worthwhile we may have missed and be back at the airport at 9 AM knowing HK traffic. I think not but thought maybe I missed something in prior visits. I am not prepared to spend more than $100+ USD for 2 hours.
Thoughts?
StanKase is offline  
Aug 14th, 2011, 04:13 PM
  #2  
 
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stay in airport
rhkkmk is offline  
Aug 14th, 2011, 04:15 PM
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Maybe take the train into the city for some dim sum...
Kathie is offline  
Aug 14th, 2011, 10:34 PM
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The best solution is probably to stay put in the airport. There's not really much to do in HK so soon in the morning - it takes you 30mins to get into the city centre, but I'm afraid everything but for 7-11 will be closed at that hour of the day
hanabi is offline  
Aug 15th, 2011, 03:59 AM
  #5  
 
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Find some breakfast at airport (many only open at 6, but *bucks on departure level is 24-hours), then take first Airport Express train to city at 5:54a. Buy a same-day return ticket for the same price as roundtrip. HK$100 (~US$13 each). You'll get to HK Island before 6:20a.

Take lower deck of Star Ferry - HK$2 or 26 US on weekdays, HK$2.4 or 31 cents weekends - for a ride across the Victoria Harbour to Kowloon side. Walk along the harborfront for a little bit, then go to one of the major hotels - Marco Polo, Peninsula or Sheraton - to take the free shuttle (every 12 minutes) to the Kowloon Airport Express station and ride the train back.

Total expense for 2 - under US$30.

But if you had been to HK before, then probably not worth the trouble.

If you decide to stay at airport, it may still be worthwhile to go through immigration to have dim sum on the land side. Maxim's at T1 opens at 6:30, while Chao Inn at T2 opens at 7:00.
rkkwan is offline  
Aug 16th, 2011, 07:38 AM
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Your arrival time for me is the big issue, as many sights are not going to be open (like the Po Lin Buddha just up above the airport). The first subway into town starts at 6 am (there is some limited overnight bus service that will still be running.) The Star Ferry does not start running until 6:30 am.

You could take the bus up the Buddha at Po Lin, which is a very pretty ride. The Buddha itself does not open until 9 am, but the ride alone may be worth it, and you probably can get a look at the Buddha even if you can’t walk up to it. The #23 bus goes from the Tung Chung Towne Centre, and takes about 40 minute each way, so this may be pushing it if you need to be back by 9 am (What time is your onward flight?) . See http://www.newlantaobus.com/road_23.htm for schedules and fares. You could also stop off at one of the many beaches which the bus passes on the journey, or at the reservoir.

You could take the ferry from Tung Chung to Tuen Muen and back, this will cost like US$3 a person and will take you completely across the harbour to the New Territories. On a clear day, this could be a very pretty ride, and absolutely no other tourists . Buy a coffee and Danish (or dim sum) at the airport or in Tung Chung, and have breakfast on the boat. Ferry departs at 7:30 am and you would be back by 8:30. The ferry pier is about a 5-minute walk from the City Gate Outlets/ Tung Chung Centre, which is less than 5 minutes by taxi from the airport. (Take the cheaper Blue Lantua taxi.) See http://www.fortuneferry.com.hk/timetable.php for ferry schedules, most of this is Chinese, but this page will show times in English.

You could go to Shek Mun Kap Village and walk about 10 minutes to the temple and monastery there, I believe they would be open at that time. The ramshackle villages in the area are interesting as well. Take the #34 minibus from Tung Chung Town Centre, the bus trip is about 15 minutes. See http://www.newlantaobus.com/road_34.htm for the schedule and fares.

Tung Chung is a modern, purpose-built commuter suburb that does not have a lot to see (other than the fort mentioned below), but Tai O is an old fishing village, much of it on stills over the water, that is quite interesting. You can take bus #11 in about 50 minutes, the ride itself is very pretty (much of this is the route to the Buddha). I am not sure what you will find open in Tai O early in the morning in terms of restaurants, so take something with you. There are 3 temples there, they may not yet be open, but the Yeung Hau Temple (built 1699) by the water is in quite a pretty setting and worth the short walk out to. Even if nothing is open, just wandering the car-free lanes of this coastal town will give you lots of sights. See http://www.newlantaobus.com/road_11.htm for fares and schedules.

Mui Wo is another semi-modern fishing town on the coast and might be interesting for the bus ride there and perhaps have breakfast. Take the #3M bus from Tung Chung Town Centre, journey is about 40 minutes each way. See
http://www.newlantaobus.com/road_3M.htm for fares and schedules.

There is a Ming dynasty-era fort in Tung Chung, about a 20-minute walk from the Tung Chung town centre, it is marginally interesting (it does not open until 10 am, but I don’t know if they actually lock it up at night. There is no admission charge, see http://www.lcsd.gov.hk/CE/Museum/Mon...numents_07.php). You could take a taxi form the airport to the fort, or take a taxi to City Gate Outlets at Tung Chung Town Centre (where the MTR station is) and walk from there. The 3M, 11, 23 and 34 buses stop quite near, but it might be hard to figure out which stop you want (it is about the 3rd stop, but buses only stop if people want to get on or off, and therefore it is easy to miss stops). See http://www.newlantaobus.com/ for schedules.

One excellent thing to do would be to take a walk or hike in the immediate Tung Chung area. Most any hike will involve a good bit of uphill; not sure of your interest in hikes or walks, but if you are interested, let me know and I can send you some ideas. There is a relatively flat hike along the coast which will give you some great views of the airport, and also passes by a nice temple on the water (may not be open until after 9 am). You could do part of this and then turn around and head back to Tung Chung, and have breakfast in City Gate Outlets (some places should be open by then). See http://www.citygateoutlets.com.hk/home/Pages/home.aspx for info on City Gate Outlets.

Otherwise (and if it is raining), I think I would tend to say to stay at the airport. You can always have a massage to get over the early morning arrival….although you may find many shops and restaurants closed until later in the morning.
Cicerone is offline  
Aug 16th, 2011, 02:10 PM
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Not worth the trouble taking the buses to Ngong Ping, Tai O or Mui Wo. 40 minutes bus ride each way with maybe 10 minutes on the ground.
rkkwan is offline  
Aug 17th, 2011, 04:14 PM
  #8  
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We are in our mid to late 60's and lomg walks is not in the cards due to a very problem knee. What about a taxi (which one and cost) at 7 AM to the best dim sum within 15 minutes of the airport but also located so we can get a taxo back to airport at 9:30 maybe in an areas that would just be opening to walk around for 30 mintes. But, delicious dim sum that westerners like us would find reasonable and someone there can speak engish to tell us the stuffing in the delicate buns. Yes, I like bums as well. We cannot miss or 11 Am connection so we want to be back at the airport by 10 AM.
StanKase is offline  
Aug 17th, 2011, 04:37 PM
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No need to go outside the airport. Maxim's at T1 and Chao Inn at T2 both offer high quality dim sum.
rkkwan is offline  
Aug 17th, 2011, 04:47 PM
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5 hours? Have been following this thread but can't imagine leaving the airport. To do so is just insane - at least 30-45 minutes into town and same to return + 2 hours check-in and immigration again. What are the other posters thinking?
Craig is offline  
Aug 17th, 2011, 06:55 PM
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2 hours for check-in and immigration? The OP will have the boarding pass already, and it takes little time to go through immigration. I won't suggest leaving airport, but going landside to have dim sum is totally doable.
rkkwan is offline  
Aug 18th, 2011, 01:32 AM
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Good point about having the boarding pass already which will reduce the time needed, rkk. I did not consider that. Still, I agree with you that leaving the airport is not a good idea...
Craig is offline  
Aug 18th, 2011, 06:46 AM
  #13  
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Thanks. I think I will have dim sum at the airport. We are arriving on Cathay Pacific. Is Maxim's or Chao Inn better or about the same and are they open by 6 AM?
StanKase is offline  
Aug 18th, 2011, 07:12 AM
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As I mentioned in my first reply in this thread, Maxim's 6:30a, Chao Inn 7:00a. They are both pretty good. I know Chao Inn is 30% off in the afternoon for dim sum, and probably for morning (before 11:45a). Both belong to major dining chains in HK with quality stuff.

I ate at Chao Inn just 10 days ago. 2 people, table full of dim sum in the afternoon, and cost
rkkwan is offline  

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