For people living in Asia, Hong Kong is a destination unlike any other in the region, whether it’s for business, or a fun getaway filled with long walks, beautiful scenery, and of course delicious cuisine.
Fortunately, with conditions around the world and region improving by the day, a return to the bliss of travel, and the relaxing vistas of Hong Kong’s waterfront may not be that far off.
Remember, it’s only a three-hour flight, so whether it’s a weekend or in the midst of a packed work week, Hong Kong is eminently accessible, and we at SSC will certainly be packing our bags as soon as we get the green light.
The highly anticipated opening of M+ Museum by the end of 2021 is due to its reputation as the first global museum of contemporary visual culture of Asia.
M+ is located in Hong Kong’s West Kowloon Cultural District that faces the waterfront of the Victoria Harbour, which is a perfect launchpad for the 20th and 21st century art, design and architecture and moving image that will be featured there. Its ambitious design includes 17,000 square meters of exhibition space across thirty three galleries.
Those who would like a bit more entertainment can visit its three cinemas, the Mediatheque, the museum shops, and the variety of restaurants and coffee bars with an incredible view of Victoria Harbour.
Location: West Kowloon Cultural District, Kowloon.
Flagstaff House Museum of Tea Ware
The Flagstaff House Museum of Tea Ware is well worth the trip, both to understand the history of tea itself, and for a unique glimpse into Hong Kong’s heritage. The Flagstaff House has been home to the museum since 1984, and provides an interactive experience with numerous demonstrations, gatherings, and lectures.
We would be remiss if we also did not mention Hong Kong’s status as a major Asian art hub, given that the city also hosts Art Basel every year.
Location: No. 10 Cotton Tree Drive, Central.
Hong Kong Museum of Art
While other smaller museums and galleries are worth visiting as well, it is difficult to rival the HKMoA’s 17,000 pieces that together weave a tapestry of Hong Kong’s heritage and status as an international hub.
Location: 10 Salisbury Road, Tsim Sha Tsui.
I know you’re too excited to visit these places. But as we all wait to be allowed to board a plane to enjoy Hong Kong, there are amazing spots in Saigon’s storied districts that hold the same cultural magic.
Mai Wo Tian Tan Buddha; Lantau Island
Those staying in Central should hop on the ferry to Mai Wo on Lantau Island to hike up to the Tian Tan Buddha, also known as the “Giant Buddha”, which is the central figure of the Po Lin Monastery.
You’ll be grateful for having hiked in Saigon to prepare for this one, as it is a bit more challenging and can take up to 3.5 hours. Both a cable car and a bus are available for those so inclined, but we strongly urge visitors to step up (pun intended) to the challenge in order to get the full experience.
Location: Ngong Ping, Lantau Island
Sai Kung Village
For a bit more of a local flavor, and for those who like to reward themselves with a snack after a long hike, we highly recommend Sai Kung Village. The village itself is up in the New Territories, but not too far from the hustle and bustle of Kowloon.
The excellent fish and seafood will make the trip worth it in itself, but between bites (or steps, if you’re being a good hiker), don’t forget to look out onto the water and the beautiful islands that surround it.
Location: New Territories.
Dragon’s Back Mountain
The name of the mountain gives you a hint of how it looks - Dragon’s Back looks like an elevated trail along the wavy hills that gives hikers the feeling of riding a dragon’s back throughout the hike.
This hike is quite popular due to the fact that it is safe, easy, well-marked with excellent cell phone signals. Not to mention the gorgeous background of the ocean, Dragon’s Back leads you to the Big Wave Bay Beach, an excellent spot to end the day.
SOHO and Elgin Street, Central
For dinner, our opinion is that the best direction to go is up. Do not be daunted by the size of the hills, there are escalators to aid in the rewarding trek into the mid-levels. We recommend a jaunt through the SOHO neighborhood, in particular a walk down Elgin Street.
Locations such as Bouchon (French), and Posto Pubblico (Italian) provide excellent cuisine as well as a tasty reminder that Hong Kong’s food offerings go beyond Dim Sum, and its flavors embody its role as a true world city.
Bouchon offers a great selection of steaks, while no visit to Posto Pubblico is complete without sampling their gigantic meatball. Importantly, both offer an excellent wine list to accompany the excellent cuisine.
For those looking to start the evening off with a relaxing sip, or for a nightcap after a nice dinner, few places can compare to the craftsmanship at Quinary on Hollywood Road. Run by Antonio Lai and named one of Asia’s Top 50 bars (2020) as well as World’s Top 50 (2017), Quinary provides a true multisensory experience.
Given its culinary and cultural proximity to Hong Kong, the city of Saigon is fortunate to boast some top-notch Dim Sum offerings at the center of Saigon’s Chinatown. And I’m not exaggerating.
Australian Dairy Company
It might seem counterintuitive to go to Hong Kong and have breakfast sandwiches, but visitors to the Australian Dairy Company in Jordan will not be disappointed.
Do not be discouraged by the line out the door, tables turn over quickly, and the egg & cheese sandwiches accompanied by milk tea are well worth it. You’ll be rushed to eat, pay, and vacate for the next eager diner, but do not forget to savor the delicious flavors.
This is a great way to start your day, and do not hurry back to Central or Tsim Sha Tsui when done; the surrounding neighborhood has its own charms and is worthy of a morning stroll.
Location: 47 Parkes Street, Jordan.
Any and all of the Dim Sum
I mean, no one goes to Hong Kong and does not taste the world’s finest Dim Sum!
We are not going to even venture a pick for best Dim Sum in Hong Kong, because as the world’s Dim Sum capital, the correct answer is typically “whatever is near you.”