Asian Getaway: Hong Kong


Having an extended layover can be a traveler's worst nightmare. However, a long layover in Hong Kong is most definitely a blessing in disguise. Known for its skyline and deep natural harbor, Hong Kong is one of the world's most densely populated metropolises where "East meets West". A hub for all things dining, entertainment, and shopping means that, regardless of what time of day it is, there's always something to do. Rather than staying in the airport for twelve hours, pick up your camera, breathe in the island's humid air, and prepare to enjoy the most memorable layover of your life:

Dim Sum

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Dim sum is a ritual in Hong Kong. From traditional teahouses to the cheapest Michelin-starred restaurants, there are countless spots to get your dim sum fix. Regardless of where you decide to go, dim sum is a must when visiting the island. Looking to experience dim sum breakfast like a local? Head to Lin Heung Teahouse for a taste of Old Hong Kong. Well-loved by both locals and tourists alike, Lin Heung Teahouse is as old-school as it gets: dim sum is served using trolleys and most of the staff have worked there for decades. Beware, the staff might not necessarily be the nicest, especially to foreigners who do not speak Cantonese, but that’s just part of the traditional dining culture, no?

160-164 Wellington Street Central, Hong Kong

Tian Tan Buddha

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Hong Kong is known mainly for its stunning cityscape, but is also home to picturesque natural landscapes as well. Venture to Tian Tan Buddha, located in Lantau Island, also known as the "Big Buddha", to see a large bronze statue of Sakyamuni Buddha. It definitely is more of a trek to get to, but trust us, you won't regret it. The statue symbolizes the harmonious relationship between man and nature, people and faith, a major centre of Buddhism in Hong Kong. Don't forget to ride the Ngong Ping 360, a gondola lift, to get the full 360 experience!

Ngong Ping Rd Lantau Island, Hong Kong

Victoria Harbor

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After embracing Hong Kong's natural landscapes, head to Victoria Harbor to be amazed by the island's towering skyscrapers. Situated between Hong Kong Island and Kowloon, Victoria Harbor has been long famous for its spectacular views. Lying in the middle of the territory's dense urban region, the harbor is also the site of annual firework displays and its promenades are popular gathering places for tourists and residents. Get your cameras out for the perfect Instagram-worthy shot.

Causeway Bay

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Shopping during your layover in Hong Kong is just as important as gulping down plates of dim sum. Have your credit card ready and head to Causeway Bay, the shopping mecca of the island. From high-rise shopping centers filled with luxury designer brands, to local stalls filled with cheap souvenirs, you will get to experience Hong Kong's shopping scene at its finest. Don't be overwhelmed if you see people yelling as you walk about the streets - the loud crowd is just a part of the city's hustle and bustle. If you're adventurous enough, take a stab at bargaining.

Bubble Tea

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To replenish your sugar levels from all the energy you exerted while shopping, stop by any local spot for some classic bubble tea. Our favorite is Teakha, a teacup-sized café located in the trendy Tai Ping Shan neighborhood of Sheung Wan. The lovely interior and posh ambiance will definitely make you feel like a hip local. There's no better afternoon activity than sipping on some milk tea while people-watching, right? You can also get your tea to go and explore the area's art galleries and independent design shops. Get ready for a taste of the sweet life!

18 Tai Ping Shan Street Sheung Wan, Hong Kong