Where to stay
- Dorsett Wanchai, 387-397 Queen’s Rd East, Wan Chai; +852 3552 1111; www.wanchai.dorsetthotels.com. The newly renovated rooms at The Dorsett Wanchai (previously Cosmopolitan Hotel Hong Kong) make for a cozy home away from home. They’re adequately sized and feature contemporary décor.
- InterContinental Hong Kong, 18 Salisbury Rd, Tsim Sha Tsui; +852 2721 1211; www.ihg.com. Located on the Kowloon waterfront, with stunning views of the island. Plus, it houses a slew of internationally-acclaimed restaurants, such as Spoon by Alain Ducasse.
- J Plus Hotel by YOO, 1 Irving St; +852 3196 9000; www.jplushongkong.com. This fashionable, award-winning boutique hotel is the first in Asia to be designed by Philippe Starck.
- assic afternoon tea at The Lobby.
- The Mira Hotel, 118 Nathan Rd, Tsim Sha Tsui; +852 2368 1111; www.themirahotel.com. An upscale, design-centric hotel with several renowned restaurants, including the Michelin-starred Cuisine Cuisine.
- The Pottinger Hong Kong, 74 Queen’s Rd, Central; +852 2308 3188; www.thepottinger.com. This hotel clinched the title of Asia’s Best City Boutique Hotel Award 2014, and for good reason. The 68 guest rooms and suites here are luxuriously appointed, with 300 thread-count linen sheets, 42-inch LED TVs and Acca Kappa bathroom amenities.
Where to eat
- Australia Dairy Company, G/F, 47-49 Parkes St, Jordan; +852 2730 1356. Look past the surly service at this popular cafe, and you’ll find excellent traditional fare like scrambled eggs, macaroni soup and milk pudding.
- Down the hill in Lan Kwai Fong, award-winning Coffee Academics provides free WiFi (when dining in) and lots of space upstairs.
Cong Sao, G/F, 11 Yiu Wa St, Causeway Bay. Slurp up thick, luscious bowls of sweet soups, made with ingredients like freshly ground black sesame, almond milk and egg white.
- Cupping Room, Shop LG, The Centre Mark, 287-299 Queen’s Rd Central; facebook.com/CuppingRoomHK. Speak to the baristas at this top-rated cafe and you’ll be amazed by their knowledge and dedication to the humble coffee bean.
- Dim Sum Square, G/F, Fu Fai Commercial Centre, 27 Hillier St, Sheung Wan. Each little basket of dim sum here is freshly made to order.
- Eyescream and Churros, Shop B1, G/F Whampoa Estate, Tak Man Building, 29 Tak Man St, Hung Hom, Kowloon; facebook.com/eyescreamandchurros. This little kiosk isn’t all that accessible – it’s a good ten-minute walk from the nearest MTR station of Hung Hom – but it serves up an unbeatable combination of soft-serve ice cream and piping hot churros.
- Fook Lam Moon, Shop 3, G/F, 35-45 Johnston Rd; +852 2866 0663. Order the restaurant’s signature crispy chicken, and deep fried bean curd skin with prawns.
- Longtime favorite Hazel & Hershey Coffee Roasters serves up Japanese-style drip coffee, flat whites, fresh juice and tasty breakfasts.
- Honolulu Coffee Shop, 176-178 Hennessy Rd, Wan Chai. A traditional (and very famous) cha chaan teng that’s best known for its impossibly airy and flaky egg tarts.
- Hotshot, G/F, Shop 114-115 The Pulse, 28 Beach Rd, Repulse Bay; +852 2515 1661. This American-style diner celebrates California’s surf culture, with vintage surfboards and various artworks mounted on its walls. Order any of its surf and turf specials.
- Mak’s Noodle, 77 Wellington St, Central; +852 2854 3810. Head here for what is possibly the best wanton soup in Hong Kong – think delightfully springy noodles paired with large, succulent prawn dumplings.
- Peking Garden, 3/F Star House, 3 Salisbury Rd, Tsim Sha Tsui; +852 2735 8211. For the best Peking duck in town!
- Smugglers Inn, G/F, 90A Stanley Main St, Stanley; +852 2813 8852. This iconic English pub has been around for decades, and is a great place to people-watch and to knock back a pint of cider or two.
- Sun King Yuen Curry Restaurant, 20 Spring Garden Ln; +852 2574 9172. Do what the locals do and order Hong Kong-style pork chops with light curry or sweet corn sauce.
- TAP: The Ale Project, 15 Hak Po St, Mong Kok; thealeproject.com. There’s a great range of beers on tap, including one of the city’s most successful craft beer companies of late – Young Master Ales.
- Tim Ho Wan, G/F, Shop 49, Popcorn 2, 9 Tong Chun St, Tseung Kwan O; www.timhowan.com. Enjoy delicious dim sum (we’d especially recommend the xiao long bao) at the world’s cheapest Michelin-starred restaurant.
- The Spice House, No.35 Amoy St, Wan Chai; +852 2804 2522. A simple hole-in-the-wall establishment that serves up quality Thai food.
- The Woods, L/G, 17 Hollywood Rd, Central; thewoods.hk. Head to this hip, subterranean den for inventive twists like the Oak Whisky Sour, made with French oak-infused rye and maple syrup.
- Tsui Wah Restaurant, various locations, www.tsuiwah.com. Sample local favorites like pork cartilage and dumpling noodle soup at this authentic tea restaurant.
- Via Tokyo, 1A-1B, G/F Leishun Court, 106-126 Leighton Rd, Causeway Bay; +852 2895 1116; facebook.com/viatokyocafe. For matcha- and milk tea-flavored confections, such as soft-serve ice cream, pastries and lattes.
- Wing Hop Sing, 360 Des Voeux Rd West, Sai Ying Pun. Try the best-selling claypot rice with minced beef and egg at Wing Hop Sing. The tender beef and the rice topped with raw egg make for a rich and filling combination. Have it for breakfast or lunch, and round out the meal with a cup of warm milk tea.
- Over in Kennedy Town, Winstons Coffee has a spacious new location. The Aussie-style spot offers excellent flat whites, tasty sandwiches and free WiFi.
- Yat Lok, G/F, 34-38 Stanley St, Central. A classic Cantonese-style barbecue shop serving up roast goose and pork, and chicken poached in soy sauce.
- Yue Hing, Shop 82, Stanley St, Central. Famous for its chaan daan ji – sandwiches filled with scrambled egg, lettuce, peanut butter and luncheon meat.
- Yung Kee, 32-40 Wellington St, Central; +852 2522 1624; www.yungkee.com.hk. For world-famous roast goose, prepared on a charcoal-fired oven.
What to do
- Cat Street and Hollywood Road, Sheung Wan, Hong Kong Island. Sniff out rare pieces at this antiques haven, which is bursting at the seams with curios stores and art galleries.
- Central, Hong Kong Island. Shop to your heart’s content in Hong Kong’s skyscraper-filled Central Business District, which is home to numerous high-end fashion brands.
- Chi Lin Nunnery, Chi Lin Rd, Diamond Hill; +852 2354 1888; www.chilin.org. Admire the Zen-inspired landscape at this Buddhist temple complex, which also contains hostels and a vegetarian restaurant.
- Comix Home Base, 7 Mallory St, Wan Chai; +852 2824 5303; www.comixhomebase.com.hk. This cluster of revitalised pre-war Grade Two historic buildings houses a public space for comics and animation artists, a “Comix Salon” that collects print and digital comic publications, a retail space for comics and related merchandise, as well as several F&B facilities.
- Dragon’s Back, Hong Kong Island. This 8km-long mountain trail affords hikers great views of Shek O, Tai Long Wan, Stanley, Tai Tam and the South China Sea. The terrain isn’t all that challenging, making it suitable for novices.
- Duk Ling, Public Ferry Pier No.3, Tsim Sha Tsui; dukling.com.hk. Take in the sights of Victoria Harbour from on board the Duk Ling, a traditional Chinese junk. Foreigners get to ride for free.
- Hong Kong Disneyland, Lantau Island; +852 3550 3388; www.hongkongdisneyland.com. Take the kids to this Disney extravaganza, which features seven themed areas, including Adventureland, Fantasyland and Tomorrowland.
- Hong Kong Science Museum, 2 Science Museum Rd, Tsim Sha Tsui East, Kowloon; +852 2732 3232; www.hk.science.museum. Explore educational and interactive exhibits on robotics, virtual reality and more.
- Kowloon Walled City Park, Tung Tao Tsuen, Kowloon. This historical park sits on the site of what was once an ungoverned settlement and one of the most densely populated places on Earth. Relive the “darker side” of Hong Kong, a place where triads ruled over this lawless enclave.
- Lan Kwai Fong, Central. Head to Hong Kong’ premier entertainment district – home to over 90 restaurants and bars – for a night of non-stop partying. The proximity and diversity of the venues mean that if you don’t like one place, you can just drink up and move on.
- Lantau Island. On Hong Kong’s largest island, beautiful beaches, old temples, steep mountains, pretty parks and even a town on stilts beckon.
- Ngong Ping 360, Lantau Island; www.np360.com.hk/en. Take a ride in a glass-bottomed cable car, before exploring Ngong Ping Village and the renowned Big Buddha statue.
- Ocean Park, Wong Chuk Hang, Hong Kong Island; +852 3923 2323; www.oceanpark.com.hk. It’s fun for everyone in the family at this marine mammal park, with its array of animal exhibits, exciting rides and live shows.
- Sai Wan, Sai Kung. While Hong Kong is best known for its cityscape, it also boasts pretty beaches like Sai Wan, a relatively undiscovered gem with white sands and clear waters.
- Stanley. Once a quiet fishing village on Hong Kong Island’s south side, Stanley is now a bustling district filled with bargain souvenirs and lovely alfresco restaurants. The shopping action centers on a few easily-negotiable narrow lanes.
- Tai O Fishing Village, Tung Chung South, Lantau Island. Discover another side of Hong Kong at this picturesque village with traditional stilt houses.
- Take a cruise. Hop on a Star Ferry (www.starferry.com.hk) from Hong Kong to Kowloon – you’ll get to admire the remarkable landscape of the world city from just HK$3.
- Tsim Sha Tsui Promenade. Drink in spectacular views of Hong Kong Island’s skyline from the waterfront. The view is especially stunning during the Symphony of Lights, a sound-and-light show that takes place every night.
- Victoria Peak. You’ll get the best views of the city from this popular vantage point. While you can take the tram or a mini bus, you can also try proceeding on foot. There are many routes up the peak, but the most direct way is via Old Peak Road.