Neither a part of China nor completely independent, Hong Kong is a fascinating city which hovers between two worlds. With many remnants of British colonization existing alongside Chinese traditions, these two components collide and mix to create a completely unique cultural atmosphere. As well as a complex history, Hong Kong is now a cultural, gastronomical and natural hot spot for tourists from all over the world. With everything from traditional Chinese temples, to every kind of cuisine you can think of, to hikes and beaches just a train ride away, Hong Kong really has it all.
Nature- Hiking Victoria's Peak and visiting Repulse Bay
Hong Kong is a colossal city with towering skyscrapers and a skyline which has been compared to toothpicks because of its mish mash of soaring apartment blocks. But looking at those immense buildings, you wouldn’t have thought that you could be in total solitude and surrounded by nature in just half an hour. With several hiking trails and beautiful beaches, Hong Kong is the ultimate blend of city and nature. Take the bus to the south side of Hong Kong island where you’ll find the relaxed Repulse Bay. This popular beach is lined with stylish restaurants. It also sits in its own secluded bay, hence the name, with a view of Ocean Park, the incredible cliff top theme park.
For active adventurers, there are countless hiking options including Dragon’s Back and Victoria Peak. Each hike offers something different to suit different levels and preferences. For the solitary hiker, Dragon’s Back is a long sloping trek with views of the ocean all around. For causal walkers, Victoria Peak can be reached by walking from Hong Kong University or by the Victoria Peak tram from Central. Both options take you up above the skyline for an incredible view of the city during night and day. There’s even a mall at the top of this popular hike where you can visit the viewing platform or grab a snack before heading back down to reality.
Food- Eating dim sum, bubble tea and bubble waffles at Oddies Foodies
No trip is complete without local cuisine and with such an interesting mix of culture, Hong Kong has something for every taste. If you are looking for a traditional option, nothing compares to dim sum. At dim sum restaurants, you can get a whole range of small plates ranging from BBQ pork buns to chicken feet. You’ll always be served complementary hot tea with your meal and will be pleasantly surprised by the bill at the end.
If, like me, you have a sweet tooth, bubble tea and bubble waffles are unmissable. Bubble tea is a sweet tea drink with tapioca bubbles at the bottom which give the tea a satisfying chewy element. As for bubble waffles, they taste just like waffles but are in the shape of big bubbles stuck together. The bubbles can be filled with all sorts of treats, including Oreo cookies or peanut butter, and you can even get your bubble waffle with ice cream at popular spots like Oddies Foodies in Central Hong Kong. If you are visiting Hong Kong anytime soon make sure to check out all the beaches and hiking routes you can and when you’ve tired yourself out head to Central where you’ll find all the local food you could wish for.