Central

We’ve compiled the best of the best in Central - browse our top choices for the top things to see or do during your stay.

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  • 1. Flagstaff House Museum of Tea Ware

    Central

    All that's good about British colonial architecture is exemplified in this museum's simple white facade, wooden monsoon shutters, and colonnaded verandas. Hundreds of delicate tea sets from the Tang (618–907) through the Qing (1644–1911) dynasties fill rooms that once housed the commander of the British forces. Skip the lengthy, confusing tea-ceremony descriptions and concentrate on the porcelain pieces themselves. Be on the lookout for the unadorned brownish-purple clay of the Yixing pots, whose beauty hinges on perfect form.

    10 Cotton Tree Dr., Hong Kong, n/a Hong Kong, Hong Kong
    2869–0690

    Sight Details

    Rate Includes: Free, Closed Tues., Wed.–Mon. 10–6
  • 2. Hong Kong Park

    Central

    One of the prettiest parks in the city proper is a sprawling mix of rock gardens and leafy pathways. It's common to stumble on locals practicing tai chi or reading in a secluded spot. This welcome respite from the surrounding skyscrapers occupies the site of a garrison called the Victoria Barracks, and some buildings from 1842 and 1910 are still standing. The park is home to the Flagstaff House Museum of Tea Ware and the Edward Youde Aviary.

    19 Cotton Tree Dr., Hong Kong, n/a Hong Kong, Hong Kong
    2521–5041

    Sight Details

    Rate Includes: Free, Closed mornings the 1st and 3rd Mon. of each month, Daily 6 am–11 pm
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  • 3. Tai Kwun Centre for Heritage and Arts

    Central

    After more than a decade of construction, this complex opened in 2018 in the location of the 19th-century Central Police Station; indeed, its name means "big station" in colloquial Cantonese. It's the largest restoration project ever to be completed in Hong Kong, stretching across 16 heritage buildings and 156,077 square feet. In addition to a wide range of restaurants—from dazzling design and Cantonese cuisine at Madame Fu to French fair in charming Cafe Claudel—the complex has local-designer boutiques, performing arts events, film screenings, art exhibitions, and a lovely open-air courtyard. With its red bricks and beautiful verandas, the old-world architecture contrasts delightfully with the adjacent, avant-garde JC Contemporary building—a center for contemporary arts with a metal facade so futuristic that it looks as if the entire building could take off for space at any moment. Tai Kwun is free to visit, however, the number of visitors might be restricted during peak hours. It's advised to apply online for a Tai Kwun Pass to ensure access.

    Hong Kong, n/a Hong Kong, Hong Kong
    3559–2600

    Sight Details

    Rate Includes: Free
  • 4. Victoria Peak and the Victoria Peak Tram

    Central

    As you step off the Victoria Peak Tram, you might be surprised to encounter two shopping arcades crowning Hong Kong's most prized mountaintop. But venture up the escalators to the free viewing platforms—yep, through the Peak Galleria mall—and the view will astound you. Whatever the time, whatever the weather, be it your first visit or your 50th, this is Hong Kong's one unmissable sight. Spread below you is a glittering forest of skyscrapers; beyond them the harbor and—on a clear day—Kowloon's eight mountains. On rainy days wisps of clouds catch on the buildings' pointy tops, and at night both sides of the harbor burst into color. Consider having dinner at one of the restaurants near the Upper Terminus. Skip the Peak Tower's observation deck, which is pricey. The free sights from atop the Galleria are just as good.Soaring just over 1,805 feet above sea level, Victoria Peak looks over Central and beyond. The steep funicular tracks up to the peak start at the Peak Tram Terminus, near St. John's Cathedral on Garden Road. Hong Kong is proud that its funicular railway is the world's steepest. Before it opened in 1888, the only way to get up to Victoria Peak was to walk or take a bumpy ride in a sedan chair on steep steps. At the Lower Terminus, the Peak Tram Historical Gallery displays a replica of the first-generation Peak Tram carriage. On the way up, grab a seat on the right-hand side for the best views of the harbor and mountains. The trams, which look like old-fashioned trolley cars, are hauled the whole way in seven minutes by cables attached to electric motors. En route to the Upper Terminus, 1,300 feet above sea level, the cars pass four intermediate stations, with track gradients varying from 4 to 27 degrees.The well-signed nature walks around Victoria Peak offer wonderful respites from the commercialism. Before buying a return ticket on the tram or on a bus, consider taking one of the beautiful low-impact trails back to Central. You'll be treated to spectacular views in all directions on the Hong Kong Trail, an easygoing 40- to 60-minute paved path that begins and ends at the Peak Tram Upper Terminus. Start by heading north along fern-encroached Lugard Road. There's another stunning view of Central from the lookout, 20 minutes along, after which the road snakes west to an intersection with Hatton and Harlech roads. From here Lantau, Lamma, and—on incredibly clear days—Macau come into view. The longer option from here is to wind your way down Hatton to the University of Hong Kong campus in Western District.Buses 15 and 15B shuttle you between the Peak Tram Lower Terminal and Central Bus Terminal near the Star Ferry Pier, every 15 to 20 minutes, for HK$9.80

    Between Garden Rd. and Cotton Tree Dr., Hong Kong, n/a Hong Kong, Hong Kong
    2522–0922

    Sight Details

    Rate Includes: HK$37 one-way, HK$52 round-trip, Tram daily every 10–15 mins, 7 am–midnight
  • 5. Asia Society Hong Kong Center

    Central

    A former explosives magazine compound built by the British Army in the 19th century, the Asia Society Hong Kong Center's Chantal Miller Gallery is a pleasant setting for exhibitions pertaining to Asian countries and cultures. Views from the lush roof garden are spectacular; a walk on the grounds is a must. The Center's AMMO (Asia, Modern, Museum, Original) restaurant and bar is a lovely spot for lunch or a drink.

    9 Justice Dr., Hong Kong, n/a Hong Kong, Hong Kong
    2103–9511

    Sight Details

    Rate Includes: HK$30 to enter Chantal Miller Gallery, Tues.–Sun. 11–6
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  • 6. Bank of China Building

    Central

    The art-deco building at the southern end of Statue Square is the former headquarters of the Bank of China, which was built in the 1950s. The building now houses offices, as well as the members-only China Club restaurant. Don't confuse it with the newer Bank of China Tower, one of the most iconic skycrapers in the city, just down the street on Garden Road. Designed by I.M. Pei, this imposing structure is said to resemble bamboo—a symbol of the city's strength, growth, and enterprising nature.

    2A Des Voeux Rd. Central, Hong Kong, n/a Hong Kong, Hong Kong
  • 7. Bishop's House

    Central

    Formerly the campus of St. Paul's College, the Bishop's House dates back to 1843. This historic Victorian building, which is a pretty shade of yellow, has been the official residence of the Anglican bishop since 1851.

    1 Lower Albert Rd., Hong Kong, n/a Hong Kong, Hong Kong
  • 8. Central Ferry Pier

    Central

    The pier juts out into the harbor in front of the International Finance Centre. Ferries regularly leave from here to Lantau, Lamma, and Cheung Chau islands. The Star Ferry Pier is just steps away.

    Man Kwong St., Hong Kong, n/a Hong Kong, Hong Kong
  • 9. Central Police Station

    Central

    This colonial building is a must-have location for any self-respecting Hong Kong cop movie. It was the neighborhood headquarters from 1864—when part of it was built—to 2004. Closed for renovations, it's slated to reopen as an arts and culture center.

    10 Hollywood Rd., Hong Kong, n/a Hong Kong, Hong Kong
  • 10. Central Star Ferry Pier

    Central

    Take in the view of the Kowloon skyline on this pier, from which sturdy green-and-white Star Ferry vessels cross the harbor. Naturally, the views are even better from the open water.

    Man Kwong St., Hong Kong, n/a Hong Kong, Hong Kong
    2367–7065
  • 11. Cheung Chau

    This 2½-km-long (1½-mile-long) island southwest of Hong Kong is best known as the home of windsurfing Olympic gold medalist Lee Lai-shan. Residents live mostly on the sandbar connecting the two hilly tips of this dumbbell-shaped island. The town harbor is lined with seafood restaurants and shops. A 35-minute fast ferry departs from Central's Pier 5 outside Two IFC. On sunny weekends, Cheung Chau's Tung Wan beach is so crowded that its sweep of golden sand is barely visible. At one end of the beach is the Warwick Hotel, and plenty of nearby restaurants offer food, refreshments, and shade. Apart from emergency vehicles, no private cars are allowed on this island. Among the tourist attractions, find the striking Pak Tai Temple, one of the oldest in Hong Kong, as well as a cave that allegedly housed the hidden treasures of pirate Cheung Po Tsai.

    n/a Hong Kong, Hong Kong
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  • 12. Edward Youde Aviary

    Central

    This pleasant attraction in the southern corner of Hong Kong Park boasts hundreds of birds in a tropical environment. There are dozens of types of birds, including kid favorites like the great pied hornbill.

    10 Cotton Tree Dr., Hong Kong, n/a Hong Kong, Hong Kong
    2521–5041

    Sight Details

    Rate Includes: Free, Daily 9–5
  • 13. Former French Mission Building

    Central

    A tree-lined lane called Battery Path was built by the British in 1841 to move their cannons uphill—hence the name. At the top of Battery Path sits the elegant Former French Mission Building, a neoclassical redbrick building with white columns and green shutters. Finished in 1917, the historic monument is now home to the Court of Final Appeal.

    1 Battery Path, Hong Kong, n/a Hong Kong, Hong Kong
  • 14. Government House

    Central

    This handsome white Victorian was constructed in 1855 as the official residence of British governors, and is now home to Hong Kong's chief executive. During the Japanese occupation the house was significantly rebuilt, so it exhibits a strong Japanese influence, particularly in the roof eaves. The gardens are usually open to the public in March when the azaleas bloom.

    Upper Albert Rd., Hong Kong, n/a Hong Kong, Hong Kong
    2878–3300
  • 15. Hong Kong Maritime Museum

    Central

    Originally located in Stanley, this museum relocated to the old Hung Hom Star Ferry Pier in 2013. The rich collections explore Hong Kong's 2,000-year maritime history, one of the gems being a 59-foot-long scroll painting called Pacifying the South China Sea, which chronicles the nine-day Battle of Lantau against Hong Kong's most famous pirate, Cheung Po Tsai, in the early 1800s. The scroll has been digitized and transformed into a 360-degree animation experience.

    Central Pier No. 8, Hong Kong, n/a Hong Kong, Hong Kong
    2813–1723

    Sight Details

    Rate Includes: HK$30, Weekdays 9:30–5:30, weekends and holidays 10–7
  • 16. Hong Kong Zoological and Botanical Gardens

    Central

    This welcoming green space includes a children's playground and gorgeous gardens with more than 1,000 plant species, but the real attractions are the dozens of mammals housed in the zoo. If you're a fan of primates, look for rare sightings like the golden lion tamarin and the black-and-white ruffed lemur. Buses 3B, 12, and 13 run from various other stops in Central; the walk from the Central MTR stop is long and uphill.

    Albany Rd., Hong Kong, n/a Hong Kong, Hong Kong
    2530–0154

    Sight Details

    Rate Includes: Free, Daily 6 am–7 pm
  • 17. HSBC Main Building

    Central

    The spectacular strut-and-ladder facade of this Lord Norman Foster building makes it one of the most important structures in 20th-century architecture. Look up into the atrium through the curved glass floor, or duck inside for a view of the building's mechanics.

    1 Queen's Rd. Central, Hong Kong, n/a Hong Kong, Hong Kong

    Sight Details

    Rate Includes: Free, Weekdays 9–5:30, Sat. 9–12:30
  • 18. International Finance Centre

    Central

    One building towers above the Central skyline: Two IFC. The slender second tower of the International Finance Centre has been compared to at least one—unprintable—thing and is topped with a clawlike structure. Designed by Argentine architect Cesar Pelli, its 88 floors top a whopping 1,352 feet. Opposite stands its dinky little brother, the 38-floor One IFC. The massive IFC Mall stretches between the two, and Hong Kong Station is underneath. If you wish to see the breathtaking views from Two IFC, visit the 55th-floor Hong Kong Monetary Authority. While there, take a quick look at exhibits tracing the history of banking in Hong Kong. Upon arrival, you might need to register your passport with the concierge.

    8 Finance St., Hong Kong, n/a Hong Kong, Hong Kong

    Sight Details

    Rate Includes: Free, Hong Kong Monetary Authority weekdays 10–6, Sat. 10–1
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  • 19. Jamia Mosque

    Central

    The Mid-Levels Escalator zooms by the first mosque in Hong Kong. Commonly known as the Lascar Temple, the original 1840s structure was rebuilt in 1915 and shows its Indian heritage in the perforated arches and decorative facade work. The mosque isn't open to non-Muslims, but it occupies a small, verdant enclosure that's a welcome retreat.

    30 Shelley St., Hong Kong, n/a Hong Kong, Hong Kong
    2523–7743
  • 20. Jardine House

    Central

    Just behind the IFC is a notable '60s skyscraper recognizable by its many round windows. The 52-level building is home to Jardine, Matheson & Co., the greatest of the old British hongs (trading companies) that dominated trade with imperial China. Once linked to opium trafficking, the firm is now a respected investment bank.

    1 Connaught Place, Hong Kong, n/a Hong Kong, Hong Kong
    2500–0555

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