There is much to see and do in Hong Kong, and while there are so many things to visit no matter what time of year you go, there are a few exciting things to consider to help you make the most of this exciting area of the world.
Winter is fairly warm here, but Christmas and the celebration of the New Year celebrated Hong Kong style are like nothing you’ve ever seen. Western-style decorations appear across the city, as do Santas and some amazing sales at shops. New Year’s Eve brings one giant party, though most celebrations are wholly devoid of alcohol. Fireworks go off at the harbor, and the MTR and buses run all night to shuttle you from party to party. The end of January brings the Chinese New Year, and while shops remain open, the festivities that surround it are quite exciting.
As spring approaches, the humidity begins to increase, but so do the number of exciting events. Don’t miss the Spring Lantern Festival and the Ching Ming Festival, both of which are culturally significant.
Summer brings rain and heat, but it also brings Dragon Boat races as well as some amazing foods visitors will love.
Like almost in place in the world, the cost of a trip to Hong Kong can get out of hand at times. Because the number of tourists is increasing each year, so too is the price of the trip. As with most destinations, though, there really are lots of things to do if you look. One thing you may want to do is take advantage of the beauty of the area itself.
You can also visit the street markets for both an exciting atmosphere and some cheap shopping. From beautiful jade jewelry to freshly cooked seafood, there are few things like a street market to help you soak in the culture and save a bit of cash in the process.
Don’t forget to take part in a tea ceremony while you’re here. Tea is an important part of the culture, and the chance to participate in this important aspect is essential to the overall experience.
Dotted with beaches, Hong Kong is a great place to catch a few rays and enjoy the quiet of the sand and surf while cooling off and escaping the humidity for a day. If you wish, you can rent equipment for water sports such as snorkeling or wind surfing gear, but just enjoying the beach isn’t a bad idea either. For a very small amount of money, you can purchase island-hopping tickets on the ferry and wander among the beaches you like best.
There’s quite a bit to do throughout the city that can get costly, but there are also some good ways to enjoy inexpensive fun while you’re here.
Cheung Chau Bun Festival (May)
On the island of Cheung Chau is this fun festival that would be an exciting excursion for the day. A veritable showcase of traditional cultural aspects, it lasts for seven days. For three of these days, the entire island becomes vegetarian. During the festival, towers of ‘buns’ (actually steel structures) are climbed in competitions, and parades are held.
Ching Ming Festival (April)
Locations throughout Hong Kong
This festival is similar to religious holidays in the West where residents go to grave sites to show respect for the deceased by cleaning up the area and clearing it of weeds and debris. Also called grave sweeping day, food is left around ancestors’ graves and paper money is burned. Families kneel around graves to show their respect for their ancestors.
Chung Yeung Festival (September/October)
Locations throughout Hong Kong
Also called Autumn Remembrance, this is the autumn grave sweeping festival similar to that of the Ching Ming Festival in the spring. Food is again brought along and left at the grave, particularly cakes called ko. Beliefs suggest those who consume the cakes will be promoted.
Hungry Ghost Festival (August)
Locations throughout Hong Kong
According to local tradition, the gates of hell open during the 7th month of the Chinese calendar allowing the hungry ghosts to wander. During this period you will see many locals making offerings of food and burning paper as well as special performances of the Chinese opera. There are some similarities with the Mexican El Día de los Muertos, and many visitors call this ‘Chinese Halloween.’
Mid Autumn Festival/Moon Festival (September/October)
Locations Throughout Hong Kong
On the 15th day of the 8th lunar month be prepared for "moon cakes" prepared with lotus seed paste and duck egg yolks during the lantern festival. If that is too difficult for you to enjoy fear not, there is a Westerner-friendly ice cream version.
Spring Lantern Festival (January/February)
A beautiful festival at Victoria Park, this is typically referred to as Chinese Valentine’s Day. Colorful lanterns are displayed all over the city, and singles tend to gather to see if they can ‘catch’ a lover for the upcoming year.
Tuen Ng Festival (June)
Shing Mun River
Held in memory of a national hero, this festival features dragon boat, dim sum, and a festive atmosphere. Games and activities surround the races, and it’s a national holiday, so few shops and offices are open.
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70 Mody Road, Tsimshatsui East, Kowloon, Hong Kong, People's Republic of China
Description The InterContinental Grand Stanford Hong Kong Hotel is nestled in the heart of lively Tsimshatsui East, commercial and entertainment hub of Hong Kong. Located just a 40 minute taxi ride from Hong Kong International Airport and close to many...
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18 Salisbury Road, Kowloon, Hong Kong
InterContinental Hong Kong Hotel is among the internationally acclaimed best hotels for business or leisure travellers to enjoy. Located in the unique Kowloon waterfront, InterContinental Hong Kong Hotel features a variety of hotel services and facilities of unsurpassed...
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33 Sharp St. East, Causeway Bay, Hong Kong, China
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Pacific Place 88 Queensway Hong Kong
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1 Harbour Road, Hong Kong, People's Republic of China
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Salisbury Road, Kowloon, Hong Kong, SAR
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310 Gloucester Road Hong Kong SAR People's Republic of China
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