7 Top Places to visit in Hong Kong in one day

Hong Kong has a lot of fun things to do for families with kids such as visiting the Disneyland park, Ocean park, Peak tram ride with Sky terrace view, various other city parks and museums. Unfortunately, this time I was returning back home from Australia on a solo work related trip and sadly not on another one of our fun-filled family travels. Also, since it was a transit at Hong Kong so I only had one small day to spend at Hong Kong.  Although it was very less to feast off my senses at Hong Kong, however I was determined to make the most of however short time I had! So without much ado, I give you the suggested itinerary for visiting the top sights of Hong Kong if you have only One day in this densely-populated and lively place!

Visiting Top sights of Hong Kong in One Day for a Solo-traveller


Visiting the top sights of Hong Kong in one day is demanding. A good nights rest, bit of stamina, determination and an early start is what it will take to do so. Also, you need to equip yourself with certain tools to assist you on this quest.

Travel essentials at Hong Kong


Travel Tip #1

With a travel time of only 24 minutes, Hong Kong Airport Express Train is the Cheapest and Fastest way to get from Hong Kong International Airport (HKIA) to the Hong Kong city center. Also, the train departs in just 10 minute intervals so waiting is also not an issue. With free WiFi and device charging stations, it is worth every penny. With so much to see and do in Hong Kong, this is the one thing you need for saving precious time. If you are staying at a hotel near the airport then take the Round-trip ticket for more savings.

Travel Tip #2

Once you are at the Hong Kong city center, travelling to various other sites can be made easier with the MTR system. MTR Tourist Day Pass is the best option for unlimited travel on any MTR or MTR Light rail service throughout Hong Kong for the next 24 hours. It does not work on the airport express train. However, if you have 3 days at your disposal, then Octopus card is more beneficial as it can be used for bus services and food purchases as well.

Travel Tip #3

To stay connected and to use Google Maps for your trip in Hong Kong, you need the local 4G Sim Card which can be picked up right from Hong Kong International Airport Terminal 1 counter A13.

Klook.com

Hong Kong

Places to see in Hong Kong in One Day on a budget


Use the Airport Express line train to reach the Hong Kong city center. From Hong Kong city center Exit C, take a walk to the Central subway MRT station. Take the MRT to Tsim Sha Tsui station Exit E.

1. Hong Kong Museum of Art (Closed till Mid 2019)


Hong Kong Art Museum

It takes a cool 10-minute walk towards the Victoria harbor to reach the impressive Hong Kong museum of art which is right next to the Cultural Center. It features Hong Kong’s best collection of more than 15,000 antique Chinese treasures, fine art and historic paintings. It was closed for major renovation for 3 years in 2015 and is expected to open in mid-2019. You can spend about an hour at this museum.

Timings:- Sun, Mon, Tue, Wed, Fri: 10 am to 6 pm. Sat: 10 am to 8 pm. Thursday Closed.

2. Avenue of Stars and Tsim Sha Tsui Promenade


Just beside the Hong Kong Museum of art lies the Avenue of stars. It is a cool place to observe great views of Victoria harbor, crossing boats and Hong Kong Island. And of course the stars! You can find the statues and hand prints of celebrities like Jackie Chan and Bruce Lee among many others.

3. Star Ferry


Hong Kong Ferry

A few minutes walk to the east lies the Star Ferry Pier from where the famous Star Ferries have been offering the cheapest 5-minute boat ride in the world. Plying between Hong Kong Island and Kowloon since 1898, no Hong Kong trip can be considered completed without taking this dramatic trip across Victoria Harbour to the Central Ferry Pier No.7.

Travel Tip #4

There are 3 options to reach the Peak Tram Lower Terminal from the Star Ferry Central Pier No.7 which is about 2 km distance.

a. Open-top shuttle bus no. 15C starting at 10 am.

b. 10-minute Taxi ride costing about HK$20.

c. However for me the best option was a 20-minute walk in midst of this beautiful city’s tall sky scrappers and parks. It allowed me little time to soak in the city’s street life.

4. The Peak Tram ride and Victoria Peak Sky Terrace 428


You haven’t experienced Hong Kong until you have boarded the peak tram and seen the city’s iconic skyline from the peak tower. The breathtaking and mesmerizing panoramic 360-degree views of the Hong Kong Island from the Victoria Peak (Sky Terrace 428) is a feast for the eyes. Even the 8-min funicular ride on the Victoria Peak Tram keeps you engaged with amazing views of city’s vibrant skyline. If you have the time, you can also visit Madam Tussads at the Victoria Peak. There are various restaurants offering a meal with a view such as the Peak Lookout and Peak Galleria. In February 2019, Gordon Ramsay has opened – The Bread Street, Kitchen and Bar at the Victoria Peak.

Peak Tram Hong Kong

Travel Tip #5

With online tickets, you can skip the normal queue and join the queue specially for Pre-Purchased Ticket Holder.

Timings for Peak Tram are Monday-Sunday: 7:00am-12:00am and for Sky Terrace 428: Monday-Friday: 10:00am-11:00pm; Weekends and public holidays: 8:00am-11:00pm.

However to avoid the massive queues at the entrance, it is advisable to visit peak tram outside of the peak hours (4:00pm-7:00pm) and also better to avoid visiting on weekends, if possible. In any case, do not miss the night time views of Hong Kong city form the Peak tower which are just spectacular. If you have the time, energy and the motivation, then walk the 1-hour circular hike around the Peak. 

Travel Tip #6

Using the Peak Tram Round trip ticket, take the Peak Tram back to Central. Reaching Central MTR station on foot only takes another 10-min walk. Board the subway for Tsim Sha Tsui Station.

5. Shopping at the Golden Mile of Nathan Road


Hong Kong Nathan Road

After alighting at Tsim Sha Tsui station, you land in this iconic shopping street on the Mile of Nathan Road stretching from the Victoria harbour to Yau Ma Tei Station which is nicknamed the “Golden Mile of Nathan Road”. Known for its endless string of shops selling probably a million items, Kowloon’s most famous street is always thronged with tourists. What’s most interesting to see here is the harmonious amalgamation of the most luxurious Peninsula hotel along with bargain shopping and Hong Kong’s cheapest hotel Chungking Mansions nearby in close proximity to each other.

Travel Tip #7

Take good care of your belonging at the crowded parts of Nathan street and also near the Chungking Mansions. Also sale of fake electronic goods and substandard items to foreign tourists is rampant in these areas so best avoid high value purchases here. More about bargain hunting in a bit.

6. Temple Street Night Market


The Temple Street Night market is a 5-Minute walk from Jordan MTR Station Exit A. It has become the Hong Kong’s foremost tourist shopping attractions. Vehicular traffic is stopped on the lane at about 2PM. Stalls open at about 4 PM and close at around midnight. By 8 PM, the market turns lively with mostly foreign tourists thronging here for bargain hunting of Chinese souvenirs, clothing and various accessories.

Best time to visit: 8-9 PM.

7. Ladies Market Mongkok


The Ladies market is a 5-minute walk from station Exit E2. Although known as the Ladies market, I found same amount of products for men and kids as well. Personally I found better bargains at Ladies Market compared to the Temple Night Street Market.

Travel Tip #8Bargain Hunting at Hong Kong Street Markets

Golden Mile Nathan Road

Whether it is the Temple Street Night Market, Golden Mile of Nathan Road or the Ladies Market, bargain hunting is a must. Don’t get fooled with the “famous brands” with cheap price tags as basically they are just fake copies. I was looking for a bag for my better half and found one stall selling “cheap PRADA bags”. On a closer look noticed it was labelled RRADA. 

I found its best to avoid stalls and shops near the entrance of main streets which is mainly visited by foreign tourists. Best bargains are found by those who venture a bit inside these markets as the same items can be found there too. Also, be ready to walk away if you are not happy with the price. More often than not you will be called back and asked to quote your price. I found that some stalls considered my quote even when I went 30~40% of original price. However some stall were more adamant but then they were already selling at a price which I was found just right. Apply commonsense before committing to a purchase and be prepared to walk off if you are not happy.

Best Times to Visit Hong Kong


Months from April to May and from October to December are the best times to visit Hong Kong, when the weather is moderate and travel expenses low. However, if you enjoy snow and freezing climates, you’ll want to visit during January and February, but this is the time when the tourist season picks up and the prices for everything are escalated. It’s definitely best to avoid the summer months between June to September during which Hong Kong is uncomfortably humid and typhoon prone.

Hong Kong

The View of the Jetty From My Room

Where to Stay at Hong Kong?


Since I was to fly home the next day in the morning, I chose to put up at the Mariott Sky city at Hong Kong International Airport. The hotel’s free shuttle service from level 3 of terminal 2 at Gates 29/30, made it extremely convenient to move to and from the hotel.

Hope you find this blog post of use to you. Do let me know how you spent your day at Hong Kong or if I am missing something, please contact us or comment below and I will update this blog post soon. Your comments and/or feedback are most welcome.

In case you found the above read interesting, you might also like the following:

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About Manish Samtani

Namaste! A passionate traveller at heart and now a blogger as well. Thanks to my sailing career, travelling has always been an integral part of my professional life. Eternally fascinated by the World of Travelling be it either meeting new people, learning new cultures, experiencing their customs or just trying out some new cuisines. Off late, I’ve been exploring places with my family where my job has not taken me. Mail me at manishsamtani@laidbacktraveller.com

8 Comments

  1. Thanks for this easy travel guide for 1 day in Hong Kong. This will be very helpful even if we visit HongKong for a business trip. The Victoria trip sky terrace is my favorite place from this post.I love such watch towers.

  2. I love the tram, I still remember it from when I first went to Hong Kong. The star ferry and avenue of the stars is another must see too. Thanks for the tip on the express train from the airport, I can’t remember it from when I was last there.

  3. Angelica Kajiwara

    My kids would go nuts over that ferry. What a gorgeous way to travel! Is Hong Kong family-friendly? My mom would never brave the tram, but I would, for sure. Thanks so much for sharing.

  4. Jane Dempster-Smith

    I love Hong Kong! You have covered all of my favourite spots and yes you can visit them all in one day. Thanks for the great transport tips as well.

  5. I wonder for how many people, the very first encounter with Hong Kong happened because of a layover? Indeed, it was true in my case too. Since then, it became one of the places where I come over and over again. RPada? Hehehe, maybe this merchant can start a new label? I would like to add a few tips, if I may. 1) SIM card at the airport – since almost every tourist coming to HK is looking to get one, the counter you mentioned could be crowded. If you do not want to stay in line, you can get a SIM card elsewhere, for example, at 1010 store; 2) although, there is no transit hotel at HK airport, the Regal Hotel is directly connected to the arrival area of Terminal 1 by an enclosed link bridge. Cheers!

  6. The tram. Ride is something that I have done and enjoyed in Hong Kong, albeit years ago. I see that it is still charming. The ladies market definitely interests me . Maybe just window shopping. I loved the little nuggets of useful travel hacks that you have given

  7. One can do so much in a layover. The travel tips allover, are the best thing about this post. I would love to take the express train ride, visit a museum, visit a market, and lastly do a ferry to get a feel of the country. Hongkong is on my list.

  8. I visited Hong Kong with my family and must say was really excited to visit it and so much on offer for both adults and children. You cant complete a visit to HK without crossing the harbour and this was one of my favourite ways to travel with great views of the skyline. A trip to Victoria peak followed by the night markets for some great bargains. You have covered this very well and brought back memories I must say. I preferred living in Kawloon in the middle of the madness.

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