Hong Kong is incorrectly thought of by some people only as a high rise city, a veritable concrete jungle—yet well over 60% of its total land area is not built on and the recreational areas are well established and well maintained by the government.
Then, there is also a wide selection of cultural activities, far too many to list in reality.
In fact, there are 353 attractions listed on Trip Advisor for Hong Kong, quite an astonishing number given the size of the city; some of the most famous or frequented include Hong Kong Disneyland, Ocean Park, the Peak Tram and Tower and Ngong Ping Cable car ride on Lantau Island to the Big Buddha.
Sport and physical activities are high on the agenda for most of the population and the city sends delegates to international competitions such as the Olympic Games and the Asian Games, and played host to equestrian events during the 2008 Olympics. It has several major multipurpose venues such as The Hong Kong Coliseum and the Macpherson Stadium.
Particularly attractive to outdoor sports enthusiasts is Hong Kong’s steep terrain and extensive trail network, with expansive views attracting hikers, and its rugged coastline offering many coves and beaches for swimming. Three main trails include the famous, 100km long, Maclehose Trail (home to an annual challenge of the fittest), the Wilson Trail of some 78km and the Lantau Trail of around 50km.
On the cultural side, the Hong Kong government supports cultural institutions such as the Hong Kong Museum of Art, the Hong Kong Academy for Performing Arts, the Heritage Museum and the Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra. The Leisure and Cultural Services Department subsidises and sponsors international performers from overseas.
Hong Kong is the home to numerous, colourful, loud (some not so loud!) and exciting Chinese festivals probably of which the most famous is the Dragon Boat festival in early June. Then there are cultural festivals such as the Hong Kong Arts Festival or the Hong Kong Flower Show.
Examples of some of the other activities worth looking out for or searching the web to find more details of include:
Sports and Outdoors
- Dragon Boat festival
- Hiking/trail walking (see above)
- Horse Racing at one of the Jockey Clubs two international standard tracks
- Marathon running
- Rugby and Rugby 7’s
- Soccer (football)
- Swimming pools plus in the seas around the territory
- Triathlon, Iron Man
- Water ski-ing
If you feel as if you want to study, then Hong Kong is the place to do it; many public and private entities offer lessons of all types, a diverse selection as you’ll find in most major cities. Try the YMCA or the Island Evening Institute or simply seek a private tutor on line or via a notice board in your local supermarket or your apartment block
- Languages – various: you name it you can probably learn it in Hong Kong
- Languages – Mandarin Chinese
- MBA programmes
Entertainment and Arts
- Clubs and Bars – too many to chose from, from those in the famous Lan Kwai Fong or SOHO areas to the multitude of bars, karaoke and other entertainment lounges dotted around the city
- Cinemas – Hong Kong calls itself an “entertainment hub” and several Hollywood performers, notable actors and martial artists have originated from Hong Kong cinema plus a number of Hong Kong film-makers have achieved widespread fame in Hollywood
- Mahjong – not quite the national pastime, but close to it
- Music – Hong Kong is the self proclaimed centre for Cantopop style music, which draws its influences from other forms of Chinese Music and from Western genres, and has a multinational fan base
- Hong Kong Art Museum
- Television – Hong Kong has two licenced TV channels , ATV and TVB and there are three local and a number of foreign suppliers of cable and satellite services
- Theatres and Cultural Centre
Hong Kong Media
Some additional reference points for finding things to do in Hong Kong through various media publications, websites, cable channels and blogs include: