[Featured destination] – Things to do in Hong Kong

With its various malls, stores and street markets Hong Kong is best known as a shopper’s paradise. But Hong Kong is so much more than just shopping. This former British colony has a wealth of cultural attractions including some great museums, walks, temples etc

Photos of Hong Kong Museum of Art, Hong Kong
This photo of Hong Kong Museum of Art is courtesy of TripAdvisor

The Hong Kong Museum of Art is located at 10 Salisbury Road, near the Hong Kong Cultural Centre and the Hong Kong Space Museum, in Tsim Sha Tsui. First established in 1962, it’s the main art museum in Hong Kong. The museum’s collections include some 15,700 art objects, including Chinese paintings and calligraphy works, antique Chinese treasures, paintings of historical significance as well as creations by local artists. The highlights of the collections are on display in the exhibition galleries.

Photos of Symphony of Lights, Hong Kong
This photo of Symphony of Lights is courtesy of TripAdvisor

A Symphony of Lights – This event is named in the Guinness World Records as the ‘World’s Largest Permanent Light and Sound Show’. Every night at 8pm on both sides of the Victoria Harbor, 44 buildings light up the night sky of Hong Kong with an orchestration of music, decoration lights, laser light displays, and pyrotechnic fireworks. Accompanied by music, this symphony of lights is an impressive exterior decorative light and laser multimedia display that lasts for about 14 minutes. There are five main themes in the multimedia display— Awakening, Energy, Heritage, Partnership and the finale, Celebration. The best vantage points include the “Avenue of Stars” on the Tsim Sha Tsui waterfront, on the waterfront promenade outside the Golden Bauhinia Square in Wan Chai and on sightseeing ferries (i.e. Star Ferry) running across the Victoria Harbor. The music and narration of the Show is broadcast every night along the Tsim Sha Tsui waterfront between the Avenue of Stars and the Hong Kong Cultural Centre, and the promenade at Golden Bauhinia Square in Wan Chai. Broadcast of the soundtrack is in different languages: English on Monday, Wednesday and Friday; Mandarin on Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday; and Cantonese on Sunday. On special events and holidays such as Christmas and Chinese New Year, the Hong Kong Tourism Board will arrange to have fireworks go off with the display making this a must-see event on any visit to Hong Kong.

The DHL Hong Kong Balloon is the newest world class addition to Hong Kong’s amazing array of treats for visitors to this great destination. This tethered helium balloon is located on the West Kowloon Waterfront Promenade giving Hong Kong residents and visitors a different unique view of Hong Kong.  Floating at 100 metres high above the bustling city state, passengers can see the famous Victoria Harbour, the landscapes of Hong Kong Island, Kowloon Peninsula, marvel at the majestic Victoria Peak and its surrounding mountains, in perfect peace and quiet, not to mention the amazing photographic opportunities.

Photos of Wong Tai Sin Temple, Hong Kong
This photo of Wong Tai Sin Temple is courtesy of TripAdvisor

Wong Tai Sin Temple – Situated in the heart of urban Kowloon, the Wong Tai Sin Temple is one of the most famous shrines in Hong Kong. It is dedicated to Wong Tai Sin, or the Great Immortal Wong who was the famous monk of yore Wong Tai Sin (also known as Huang Chu-ping), who was born around AD 328 and became a deity at Heng Shan (Red Pine Hill) in his later life. This Taoist temple has a famous reputation for having many prayers answered with devout followers believing that if you make an earnest plea to the gods, “every wish can come true”. Even if you are not a believer, the temple is worth a visit. Covering over 18,000 square metres, the temple is located in a tranquil natural setting remote from the nearby housing estates and the bustle of typical Hong Kong streets. The temple is, apart from being an important religious centre, a scenic attraction full of beautifully ornamented traditional buildings. We recommend going during midday (peak period) to see the devotees worship and pray for their wishes to come true.

Photos of Happy Valley Racecourse, Hong Kong
This photo of Happy Valley Racecourse is courtesy of TripAdvisor

When you are in Hong Kong, we recommend taking a day off and spending it at the races. Located in Happy Valley on Hong Kong Island, Happy Valley Racecourse is one of the two racecourses for horse racing in Hong Kong. First built in 1845 to provide horse racing for the British people in Hong Kong, Happy Valley Racecourse is a great place for visitors to capture the essence and the vitality of Hong Kong Chinese culture. This magnificent course has been the home of Hong Kong horse racing since its very first race in December 1846.  Over the years, horse racing has become more and more popular among the Chinese residents and expatriates’ community. The racecourse has come a long way since then, today the track is modernized with computerised betting and horse races are broadcast live on gigantic screens for punters to see. There’s nothing quite like the atmosphere at the horse races in Happy Valley where visitors get to experience the sheer excitement of cheering on their bets and also having the opportunity to rub shoulders with the locals.

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