I finally went to Hong Kong in late January. This trip has been in the works for 3 years. After all the ups and downs, I finally managed to enter Hong Kong on 24 January 2023! If anyone remembers the ATB and inaugural flights! Hi-5! This is my first trip to Hong Kong after almost 8 years! I am super excited to be back in this city once again and to all the amazing food I am going to eat. I will be covering all my food recommendations in the next post since this is kind of lengthy already. This is also partially a work trip where I will be checking out a couple of properties in the cities. Check out some of the hotels I stayed at on this trip, AKI HK, Hilton Garden Inn, The Park Lane Pullman and The Hari. I will be mainly based in HK Island this time around. I am keen to check out some of the more unique places in Hong Kong like Cheung Chau and Stanley. Read on to check out my stay in Hong Kong.
Transportation in Hong Kong
Octopus Card is the one single thing that you have to get when you want to take public transportation in the city. This is like the Ez-Link card that we have! It is super handy to have one as besides public transport, you can also use it at Cha Chaan Teng, Restaurants, Convenience Stores and even supermarkets. You can load it with money and then just tap wherever you go. I will recommend all visitors get one. Do note that you can only get an Octopus Card and top up with cash. You can get one for 200 HKD which comes with a 50 HKD refundable deposit. I took the Airport Express from HKIA to the city. I got the return ticket to Hong Kong Station for 205 HKD.
The train runs frequently and this is the fastest way to get to the city. A ride takes only 24 mins. This is the best and most cost-effective way to travel to the city if you are in a group of 2 or fewer. A taxi will cost around 300 to 400 HKD per way. For the typical tourists, you will be alighting at either Kowloon or Hong Kong Station. From here you can transfer to the MTR or just a taxi. I was staying in Wan Chai and just took a taxi from Hong Kong station which cost around 50 HKD. The train is very comfortable and comes with plenty of storage area for your suitcases. They have wifi available and even USB outlets.
To get around Hong Kong, you have a plethora of options. You can take the Bus, MTR and even Trams and Ferries. The last two things are more for the vibe and fun. They aren’t as efficient as the other two if you are just looking to get around places. To take the Bus and MTR, you can simply use the Octopus Card. It is very convenient and Google Maps is a great way to plan your journey. I will share more on the trams and ferries later.
There are a ton of places to visit. You can usually classify Hong Kong into two parts. The Kowloon side and Hong Kong Island, separating them would be the amazing Victoria Harbour! This is another highlight of the city and the crown jewels. The places that I visited this time around might not be fitting for the typical tourists. I went out of the usual touristy spots and visited neighbourhoods that I did not visit before. Coming back to Hong Kong after a good 8 years also meant that many places have changed. For example, the entire Avenue of Stars and Tsim Sha Tsui promenade have changed so much! Here are some of my favourite spots. Wan Chai is one of my favourite area. It has so much character.
Elements Mall! This is directly connected to Kowloon Station. The huge fancy mall has all sorts of shops and brands! You can also find the W Hotel and the world-famous Ritz Carlton here. I visited during the lunar new year period and there was this amazing Chinese orchestra performance then.
Head up to Ritz Carlton for one of the best views in Hong Kong! The jaw-dropping view of Victoria Harbour is amazing! I can’t wait to stay here once in my life!
K11 is another new mall that you should check out. It is super glam and gorgeous. It sits right by Avenue of the Stars. I love this mall.
Tsim Tsa Tsui Promenade is revamped and open after a 3 years renovation. The promenade commands a panoramic view of Victoria Harbour. This is also a popular viewing place for the Symphony of Lights display.
I took a lovely stroll from K11 to the Tsim Sha Tsui Clock Tower. It is such a lovely sight. I stayed till it gets dark and I love the vibes here with music in the background and watching the city lights up.
This time around I managed to check out Sheung Shui Po! This retro local neighbourhood is full of authentic Hong Kong culture. Take a walk thru the neighbourhood. You should also hike up Garden Hill. It is an easy hike up the stairs and you are rewarded with an amazing view of the surrounding areas. Check out the sights of the “Gong Wu”. This place will be amazing in the late evening with the sunset.
Star Ferry is one of my favourite thing to do in Hong Kong. This is hands down the most classic and scenic way to cross Victoria Harbour! I love it. It is also the cheapest way to take a cruise on Victoria Harbour. Perfect in both the day and in the evening. Do one each. The views are amazing.
Let me come to Hong Kong Island side. You can get a really lovely view from the Wanchai promenade around Golden Bauhinia Square and HKCEC! You can easily walk to this area. Check out the hues!
Don’t miss out on Central Market in Central as well as the mid-level escalators.
Tai Kwun is another great spot both day and night.
I love the Central District and Soho. Here are some random shots of the place. I love to wander around aimlessly here.
Bustling Causeway Bay in the evening.
LKF or Lan Kwai Fong! It wasn’t as exciting as I expected!
Lee Tung Avenue
Last but not least! Riding on the trams! The trams or commonly known as Ding Ding my love! This is hands down my favourite activity to do on HK Island. It is such a vibe and is so affordable. A ride on the trams only cost 3 HKD no matter how many stops you take. I took the trams all the time when I was on HK Island. It is super easy since they run in an east-west direction. The routes are more or less the same besides where it terminates. You can pay with cash or an Octopus card. To ride on the trams, you board at the back and pay only when alighting. Head upstairs and grab one of the seats at the front. It is the best seats. I love it when the cool breeze runs through your hair. Visit my IG for more pictures and videos Amazing!
I also visited Stanley! It is easy to access from HK Island and you can take a bus here. The vibes are totally different over here. The bus took us around winding roads to the south of HK Island. You will pass by areas like Repulse Bay and also the Deep Water Bay where all the tycoons live.
This place is famous for its beach and water sports! I even got a sight of the legendary Stanley Prison!
Cheung Chau is another offshore island that you can visit easily. Just head to the Central Ferry Piers and you can get a ferry here. It is affordable and ferries run frequently. It is different from the mainland. It is about an hour away. This is the popular place for the Pao event in the summer. When in Cheung Chau, you got to get some seafood and the famous mochi!
Pro Tip! Try your luck at the Mark Six Lottery! You might just win another trip back to HK to collect your winnings.
TVB Filming Sites Tour of Hong Kong
Do you find these locations familiar? Court of Final Appeal!
Wan Chai Tower and Law Courts
Wan Chai Police Headquarters
Central Ferry Piers
The place where they always film people doing confessions, breakups and suicides
Hong Kong Fire Service Station
Villain Hitting Under the Bridge
Yau Ma Tei Police Station
Yau Ma Tei Fruit Market
Sham Shui Po where Ghetto Justice was filmed and Armed Reaction Cha Chaan Ting
Well well! The famous Stanley Prison
I love Hong Kong! I thoroughly enjoyed the week that I spent in the city. I can’t believe how much I miss it. The food and the places. It just has a sense of familiarity to me. I particularly enjoyed it so much since the weather is amazing during my time there. The cold weather makes it so lovely to sightsee and walk around. I always love travelling during the cooler season. I am sure all Singaporeans will agree with me. I already have plans to be back later this year. I won one of the free Hong Kong tickets that the Hong Kong Tourism Board is giving out. I also feel that the people seem to be much more friendly this time around. The next time I am in Hong Kong, I hope to visit some other neighbourhoods like Yuen Long and Sai Kung and perhaps even do some hikes as well.
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