Hong Kong in 3-5 Days – Hong Kong Itinerary for First Time Visitors
- 1 Hong Kong in 3-5 Days – Hong Kong Itinerary for First Time Visitors
- 1.1 1) Visit Victoria Peak
- 1.2 2) Ride the Star Ferry
- 1.3 3) Check out Ladies Market
- 1.4 4) Shop at Temple Street Night Market
- 1.5 5) Visit Historic Temples
- 1.6 6) Visit Hong Kong´s Version of Times Square
- 1.7 7) Relax in Parks in Hong Kong
- 1.8 8) Eat a Lot
- 1.9 9) Enjoy a Drink at the Highest Bar in the World
- 1.10 10) Visit Nathan Road
- 1.11 11) Watch and Listen to the Symphony of Lights
- 1.12 12) Pay a Visit to the Avenue of Stars
- 1.13 13) Stroll Along Tsim Sha Tsui Promenade
- 1.14 14) Do a Harbor Cruise
- 1.15 15) Ride Hong Kong´s Observation Wheel
- 1.16 16) Sky100 Hong Kong Observation Deck
- 1.17 17) Take a Selfie in front of the Clock Tower
- 2 BEST DAY TRIPS FROM HONG KONG
If you are planning a trip to one of the most exciting cities in the world, Hong Kong, you are probably wondering “what to do in Hong Kong” and about the “top things to do in Hong Kong”.
This post will give you some great ideas about the best things to see in Hong Kong – you´ll also find some important travel information for Hong Kong and some tips on solo traveling in Hong Kong.
Ready to find out the top things to do in Hong Kong? Here are 20 fun ideas for Hong Kong – my recommendations can be easily done and seen within 4 days in Hong Kong.
Last year, I finally visited Hong Kong which I had been crazy to see for a while. I am a city girl and Hong Kong´s hustle and bustle seemed to be an ideal place to experience a new mega city. I was more than happy to find out that Hong Kong was considered a very safe place to travel to – especially for a solo female traveler.
I stayed in Hong Kong for about 7 nights, but if you are wondering what you to do in Hong Kong in 4 days (or 3 or 5, as you can adjust this Hong Kong itinerary) this post will help you to find out about the best places to visit in four days in Hong Kong.
What you will find out here
- Important Travel Information for Hong Kong
- Best Things to do in Hong Kong in 3 and 4 Days
- More Things to do in Hong Kong in 5 days
IMPORTANT TRAVEL TIPS FOR HONG KONG
Find a short pre-travel guide for Hong Kong before talking about fun things to do in Hong Kong.
Visa Regulations for Hong Kong
With a German passport (or any EU passport), I did not need a visa. According to the website of the Hong Kong tourism board, most nationalities do not require a visa if they stay less than 90 days (US-Americans also do not need any visa).
Best Time to Visit Hong Kong
May through August can be really hot in Hong Kong, but for the rest of the year, the weather is mostly mild. I visited in March/April and it was lovely, though a bit humid at times. However, at that time of year, there is a huge art exhibition going on and prices for accommodations are much higher.
Disclaimer: This post contains affiliate links which means I might earn a small commission when you buy a product/service via my link (at no extra cost to you). More about it here.
How to Get Around in Hong Kong
Hong Kong has amazing public transportation, and it is very comfortable using their buses and metros.
Though taxis are not expensive, I was very happy to use buses, boats, and the metro (though I normally prefer buses and trams which allow you to see more of the city).
If you get an Octopus Card from day one, you´ll be able to save a lot of money while using public transportation.
I had a ticket for the hop-on and hop-off bus sightseeing in Hong Kong (I have been using Big Buses forever) which also included tickets for several activities.
Where to Stay in Hong Kong
I actually stayed in 4 different places over the duration of my seven-night visit.
Hong Kong has some amazing luxury hotels which are world-wide-known – unfortunately, even budget hotels cost quite a bit though and accommodation might be the biggest part of your expenses.
For the latest prices on luxury accommodation check out:
Four Seasons Hong Kong (a luxury hotel with great views)
The Peninsula Hong Kong (one of HK´ most iconic hotel with a great location)
Hotel ICON (hotel Icon was one of the hotels I stayed at, it was not the most luxurious hotel but nice and more affordable than other 5* hotels)
For the latest prices on mid-range accommodation check out:
The CityView (I loved the location, as it was very central to Nathan Road, it was quite simple though for a 4* hotel)
If you like the hustle and bustle, then I would choose a hotel on either the island or mainland, but close to Victoria Harbor.
If you prefer quieter areas, which are also more affordable I would recommend staying at Le Méridien Cyberport Hong Kong, which is farther away and is more immersed in nature.
For a full Hong Kong accommodation guide click here and read more about my tips on where to stay in HK!
Tips for Solo Travel in Hong King – What to Do Solo and What to Know for Your Solo Trip to Hong Kong
I traveled solo to Hong Kong and (apart from one day I met an Instagram friend) I did all the activities solo. There are many fun things to do in Hong Kong solo – even as a female.
Tips for female travelers: At my first night, I stayed towards the end of Nathan Road in a tiny kind of hotel, and can definitely NOT recommend that area for solo female travelers.
I felt safe in Hong Kong and loved strolling along the streets – even in the evening – but did not like that area as there were way more men staring and trying to sell their shop items.
However, Hong Kong is a fantastic place for solo female travelers and I would definitely recommend traveling alone in Hong Kong. I did most of the mentioned recommendations below by myself.
Where to Eat (Vegetarian) in Hong Kong
I admit that eating vegetarian was quite difficult in Hong Kong, but I survived and I did not even lose weight, so check out where to find some vegetarian spots in Hong Kong.
Don´t Make These Mistakes in Hong Kong
One thing that I learned in Hong Kong is NOT to save the best for last.
I waited on my trip to Victoria Peak until the last day – and was very unlucky with the view because it was foggy/there was a lot of smog. So I have a new piece of advice that I keep telling myself, and also you: do the things you look forward to the most, first.
Also, I thought that English was widely spoken in Hong Kong, but I actually had problems communicating with people who did not work in hotels or westernized shops (which was especially difficult as I am a vegetarian and picky with my food).
So I had trouble with taxi drivers and could not buy food from stalls since it was not always possible to find out about the ingredients (in case you have allergies, are vegan, etc., you had better check out some words beforehand).
Booking Tours in Hong Kong
Lately, I have become a fan of GetYourGuide and so I started booking my own tours and activities mostly via them. So if you do not know them yet, try them out – you can book many tours all over the world via them, and they allow you (most of the time) to cancel tours for free (let´s face it, sometimes things just come in between) and they send out a reminder before your tour start. So, if you like to do some tours in Hong Kong you will find links to their website.
Wondering What to Do in Hong Kong in 3-5 Days?
Actually, there is quite a lot to do and 4 days is probably a minimum to explore this hectic and crazy city, but I think you´ll be able to see many important places and sights in Hong Kong within that time – so add these things to your Hong Kong 4 day itinerary!
Top 20 Things to Do in Hong Kong in 4 Days
This is not a typical 3 or 4-day Hong Kong itinerary – so how you plan each day it is totally up to you, but these are ideas on things to see in 3 or 4 days in Hong Kong (totally doable).
1) Visit Victoria Peak
This is probably one of the most iconic views you can get in all of Asia. If you are curious, you can read more about my trip to Victoria Peak here.
Tip: Visit this top sight in Hong Kong on the first clear day – Hong Kong can be very foggy and the view can be disappointed if you cannot see anything (believe me, I experience it).
As mentioned earlier, I had a hop on and hop off ticket, so the entry was included, if you do not get a sightseeing bus ticket, you can buy a ticket separately. You might have to plan in some time for standing in the line without a “skip the line” ticket though.
2) Ride the Star Ferry
I love all kinds of boat and ferry cruises and taking a ride on the star ferry n Hong Kong was also fun.
It connects the two parts of Hong Kong: Hong Kong Island, and Kowloon, and has been operating since 1888. The ride is pretty cheap and you´ll have a wonderful view of Hong Kong´s skyline so make sure to add this to your 4 day Hong Kong itinerary.
3) Check out Ladies Market
Ladies Market is one of the best tourist attractions in Hong Kong – a 1000-meter-long market with over 100 stalls of bargain clothing, accessories, and souvenirs. There are also things for men, but, as the name suggests, it is mainly female clothes and accessories that you can buy. I did not buy anything, but from hearsay, haggling is essential.
4) Shop at Temple Street Night Market
When the sun sets and it gets dark, the Temple Street Night Market comes to life. This popular bazaar should definitely be on your list and the best is that I even felt secure as a solo female traveler.
5) Visit Historic Temples
You can find temples all over Hong Kong, and it is a great way to learn about the religious side of the area and show respect for the Hong Kong culture and traditions – definitely a place to visit in 4 days in Hong Kong.
6) Visit Hong Kong´s Version of Times Square
I did not see as much neon lights as in New York’s Times Square, but the Hong Kong version of Times Square was still worth a visit – it was crowded like the New York version and there were plenty of shops and restaurants to discover. Another thing you have o do in Hong Kong.
7) Relax in Parks in Hong Kong
Hong Kong is one of the craziest cities I have been to – but surprisingly, to me at least, there is a lot of greenery to find. My favorite park was Nan Lian Garden where my local Instagram friend Nam showed me around.
So if you need to unwind, plan to visit some parks in your Hong Kong itinerary 4 days.
8) Eat a Lot
Okay, this is not a place to visit in Hong Kong but eating a lot in HK is a must do. I know that Hong Kong is a foodie heaven, but, unfortunately, not for vegetarians. However, I enjoyed great waffles, a lot of vegetarian burgers (read about vegetarian dining in HK here), and vegetarian dim sums though and recommend trying them out as well.
9) Enjoy a Drink at the Highest Bar in the World
The highest bar in the world is at the luxurious, five-star Ritz-Carlton in Hong Kong and, of course, you´ll have wonderful views over Hong Kong.
The staff was friendly, the view great, the bar interesting, and the drinks expensive (even non-alcoholic drinks)– but having a drink at Ritz-Carlton is still one of the top things to do in Hong Kong.
Despite the fact I looked tired the staff was wonderfully nice and did not look at me like I was an alien that did not belong there. (Yes, I went to do in Hong Kong solo and though I normally never go to a bar by myself, it was actually okay – the view was worth it).
10) Visit Nathan Road
As you know, I love crazy places, and Nathan Road is the craziest road of all. With tons of shops, restaurants, and people, it is surely worth a visit. On my first night, I even stayed there – though I would be more picky with my accommodation there (some houses are kind of dodgy) this is one of the best places to visit in Hong Kong. Even though this place is crazy, it is one of the best things to do in Hong Kong at night alone.
11) Watch and Listen to the Symphony of Lights
Another great to do at night (whether by yourself or with people) is to witness the Symphony of Lights, a beautiful multimedia show of lights at night from across Victoria Harbor. No skyline in the world is as astonishing as Hong Kong’s (check out my post about the 10 best skylines in the world) and the lights and sounds make it even prettier.
If you like to see the Symphony of Lights from a different perspective you can book your boat cruise and be totally amazed by looking at it during an evening cruise tour.
12) Pay a Visit to the Avenue of Stars
At the time of my visit, the Avenue of Stars in Tsim Sha Tsui was closed for repair and improvement works. Until they are done (which should be in 2018), some statues are in the Garden of Stars and Starry Gallery in the meantime.
I grew up with an older brother, so I got used to watching all of Bruce Lee’s movies. He became our childhood hero and seeing him there was kind of a highlight (now, it is not with Victoria Harbor in the background) in Hong Kong.
13) Stroll Along Tsim Sha Tsui Promenade
The city´s charm consists of, among other things, the beautiful Victoria Harbor. Strolling along the Tsim Sha Tsui Promenade – while looking at the harbor! It was one of my favorite activities in Hong Kong
14) Do a Harbor Cruise
You can never do too many boat tours. Do a harbor cruise on one of the cute and iconic Hong Kong boats – at almost any time of the year. There are not many more iconic ways to see Hong Kong.
15) Ride Hong Kong´s Observation Wheel
I kept this activity for my next Hong Kong trip – which I actually regret so do not make the same mistake and make sure to take a seat in one of the 42 gondolas of the Hong Kong Observation Wheel and see Hong Kong from above.
16) Sky100 Hong Kong Observation Deck
Enjoy the view from Hong Kong´s tallest building and soak in the view with a 360-degree view of Victoria Harbor (if you book the hop-on and hop-off bus tour, the entry for the observation deck is already included, but you have to choose between Victoria Peak or this one.
17) Take a Selfie in front of the Clock Tower
The Clock Tower is one of the main tourist attractions in Hong Kong, so make sure to add it to your four-days itinerary for Hong Kong.
Pay a visit to the Clock Tower, which celebrated its 100th anniversary 2 years ago. While I was there, the clock was covered since there was construction work going on (seemed like bad timing for my trip), but this clock has become a famous landmark of Hong Kong and snapping a selfie in front of it seems like a must.
BEST DAY TRIPS FROM HONG KONG
Lantau Island and Lamma Island
My recommendations for day trips are Lantau Island or Lamma Island.
Lantau Island is the biggest outlying island and has beautiful beaches, Buddhist architecture, a cable car, and much more.
I, unfortunately, did only one day trip and visited another island, which I recommend.
Lamma Island is a beautiful island with beaches, hiking options, and a cute fishing village.
Though I do not regret having visited this island, I would love to visit Lantau Island on my next trip. I did go there by myself without a guided tour.
What to do in 5 Days in Hong Kong
Macau Day Trip
If in Hong Kong, a day trip to Macau should be on your itinerary. While I stayed bit longer than 1 day, you can see most important travel sights in one day – getting there from Macau is not difficult, and a wonderful day trip.
Hong Kong on a budget? If you are looking for safe hostels in Hong Kong read Claire´s post to find out more.
Here are more ideas on how to spend money in Hong Kong.