Top Experiences in Hong Kong
No trip to Hong Kong is complete without a yum cha (translates into "drink tea") experience. Along with their tea, guests nibble on small plates of delicacies and bamboo steamers of designed-to-share dim sum. Traditionally, yum cha is available for breakfast and lunch, but there are many dedicated restaurants that serve made-to-order dim sum all through the day.
Ride the Star Ferry
The iconic Star Ferry has been shuttling passengers across Victoria Harbour for more than a century. Today's green-and-white boats are relics of the ’50s and ’60s. Take one from either Wan Chai or Central to Tsim Sha Tsui, then turn around and admire that famous Hong Kong skyline. At night, catch the eye-popping Symphony of Lights show.
Take the Tram
These rattling cars have become giant rolling advertisements, carrying everyone from schoolboys to grannies through all the main street action straight across Hong Kong Island. Climb aboard at off-peak hours on an early weekday afternoon for a leisurely ride from the busy Western Market terminus to Happy Valley or Victoria Park.
Nightlife in Lan Kwai Fong
Hong Kong has no shortage of after-hours hangouts, but for the most concentrated stretch of clubs and bars, head to Lan Kwai Fong. Options here range from casual beer joints to happening dance clubs, and everything is concentrated in a small area, so it's easy to hop from one venue to the next.
The longest outdoor covered escalator system in the world covers half a mile of moving stairs, walkways, and passageways from the business hub of Central to the residential heights of Mid-Levels. Step off a few flights up from Central in SoHo or on Hollywood Road to check out the galleries, restaurants, and bars. Note that the escalators go in only one direction during rush hour, so be prepared to take the stairs if you're heading in the opposite direction.
Go to the Races
Even if you're not a gambler, it's worth heading to Hong Kong's tracks in Happy Valley and Sha Tin. It's a multimillion-dollar-a-year business, and the season runs from September through June and draws serious crowds. In the public stands the vibe is electric and loud, thanks to the gamblers shouting and waving their newspapers madly. Out of money? You can still grab a beer and a slice of pizza from the food stands and enjoy live music as the horses thunder past.
Take a Walk
In town you can take in colonial architecture during an hour-long stroll through Western between the University of Hong Kong and Western Market. Or try walking across Central through buildings linked by covered pedestrian passages. You can also head for the hills and hike along the Dragon's Back or up to Lion Rock.
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