Essential travel tips: Hong Kong

City view of Hong Kong, Kettle mag, Fiona Carty
Written by admin

The former British Colony and financial hub has some pretty amazing tourist spots if you know where to look, there is a never ending list of amazing sites and activities to see if you are traveling solo or with other people. While there are too many to list on one article, here are some of my tips for Hong Kong:

Getting around

Buy yourself an octopus card- these allow you to get the MTR (train system similar to the London underground), the buses and the ferry’s cheaply. That said, DO NOT travel on the MTR during peak times, it is a nightmare, trust me. Never again *shudders*

At 6 o’clock every evening there is a light show called the symphony of lights. This multimedia show uses lights on the buildings on each side of Victoria harbour, you can also download an app to listen to music during the performance. To see both sides of the harbour get the ferry at 6 and you will be in the middle of the water during the show. 

Forget the tourist information; trust me.

Ignore the guide book advice and go to the markets when they are setting up at least once, I managed to get first customer discount and barter down the price again after that. That said, the markets at 8-9 o’clock at night are loads of fun and really busy.  

Haggle, it is expected and even though we are not used to doing that in the UK some vendors may try and take you for a ride when they realise you may agree to any price they give you. 

Learn a language

Learn at least a few words of Cantonese before you go – yes, it is scary to speak a new language (especially one so tonal as Cantonese) but if nothing else, you trying to say thank you may just give the locals a laugh! Also, it’s polite.

Go to the Po Lin monastery (the Big Buddha), the steps are exhausting but the view is worth it when you get to the top. Word to the wise, if you do not fancy going by cable car there is a bus route that can take you up there. 

Play Travel Roulette!

If you are unsure about what to do one day, hop on the MTR, pick a random line and then google each stop on your phone until you find something you are interested in. Yes, the underground has free Wi-Fi!

They have Haagen-Dazs shops like we have Starbucks. Just saying.

Some restaurants have their menus in English and Chinese, if you find any remember where they are. Do not be put off if they look a little run down and scruffy, the food is amazing. You can get a healthy hot meal for about HK$25 (about £2).

Street Etiquette

Beware people handing out leaflets or cards in the street advertising their business. Taking a card means you are interested and they WILL grab your arm and drag you inside the shop. This can be a little unnerving so be wary of that. Unless you’re in the mood to get tailored clothes, you may have to put up with a lot of sales tactics before lying your way out of there. 

I could have written pages and pages of things to do in Hong Kong. The city is an amazing place to visit and there are so many things to do you will never be bored whatever time of day (or night) it is. 


Like this article? Check out Jessica Crisp on how to be eco friendly whilst travelling. Have any more travel tips? Have your say in the comments below. We’re looking for more top tips for travelling the world, tweet our World  editor @MissGuscoth with your suggestions!