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Hong Kong © Steve Webel|Flickr
Hong Kong © Steve Webel|Flickr

10 Things To Do In Central Hong Kong Island

Picture of Lavanya Nair
Updated: 9 February 2017
Previously called Choong Wan, the area of Central Hong Kong earned its westernized name after the establishment of the Island Line (of the MTR Metro) in the early ’80s. Currently, it holds a reputation for being more cosmopolitan even than the thriving cities of London, New York, and Dubai. For those seeking adventure and excitement while visiting, here’s a list of ten things to do in Central Hong Kong.

Lan Kwai Fong

Those craving a night of ultimate debauchery should definitely visit this vibrant party street. It’s a booming district packed with bars, restaurants and gregarious travelers seeking a haven in which to unwind and socialize among the amazing company and thirst-quenching pours. Easily accessible via public transport, this area, once a petite quarter dedicated to hawkers before World War II,  is situated right at the heart of Central Hong Kong, exuding an energetic buzz attracting tourists and locals alike. Indulge in a premium cocktail during Happy Hour or dine at one of the many restaurant options. A must-see attraction, Lan Kwai Fong is the venue that never sleeps and has been that way since its reinvention during the ’80s.

Address: Central Hong Kong, 00000 China

Peak Tram

A unique way to appreciate the Peak experience is to embark on a trip via the renowned Peak Tram (established in 1888) and soak in the incredible, panoramic views of Hong Kong from The Sky Terrace 428. Regarded as the tallest 360° viewing platform in Hong Kong, it’s an idyllic and scenic landmark that you should not ignore. Broaden your intellectual horizons and tune into the informative audio tape that provides tourists with a bucket load of interesting facts that cover the culture, architecture, and gastronomy of the spectacular city that is Hong Kong. Should you obtain a Peak Tram Sky Pass, you can revel at the breathtaking sights that include luscious vegetation and steep mountain peaks and marvel at the amazing visual illusion of the buildings appearing to tilt as the tram transports you uphill.

Opening Hours: 7 am to 12 midnight (Mon – Sun & Public Holidays)

Address & telephone number: No.1 Lugard Road, Hong Kong, China, 852-28497654

IFC Mall

Luring the self-proclaimed shopaholics and big spenders out of the wood-works, the International Finance Centre Mall offers the best of Hong Kong, accommodating a grandiose range of niches from retail to cuisine and entertainment. For those desiring more than just a souvenir to treasure, this miscellaneous paradise is guaranteed to please all. Oozing opulence and charisma, the mall boasts some of the most sought-after, high-end names in fashion, including Giorgio Armani, Givenchy and Victoria’s Secret. Sample the fine selection of dishes with roots in multiple continents and munch on some comforting popcorn while watching the latest blockbuster films in the deluxe screening rooms. The ability to cater to a plethora of preferences without spreading themselves too thin is perfectly harnessed by the IFC Mall.

Opening Hours: Mon – Fri 9:00 – 22:00

Address & telephone number: 8 Finance Street, Central, Hong Kong Island,Hong Kong, China, 852-2295330

Edward Youde Aviary

Inaugurated in 1992, this 32,000 square ft. aviary is nestled within Central Hong Kong and features over 600 birds belonging to 80 different species indigenous to South East Asia and Indonesia. The walk-through aviary can fascinate many, showcasing the winged majestic creatures of the animal kingdom, and it also hosts a peaceful lagoon habitat for several species of waterfowl as well as the Australian Pelican, the Great White Pelican, and the Radjah Shelduck. The more closed-off caged display area houses birds like the Large Hornbills. A learning center aims to deliver educational programs for school children along with guided tours, allowing the younger generation to develop an affinity for ornithology.

Opening Hours: Mon-Sun (9am-5pm)

Address & telephone number: Hong Kong Park, Central District, Hong Kong, China, +852 2521 5041

Suavis Lash Bar

Participate in a recent phenomenon taking Asia by storm: eyelash extensions. Just when you thought you’d seen all, experience the creme de la creme of beauty treatments in a serene establishment that offers a zen-like ambiance in which to relax. The eyes are known as the windows to the soul and so deserve an enhancement that looks natural and effortless. Those with sparse lashes can be treated like royalty by specialists who have mastered intricate Japanese techniques, to turn a time-consuming task into a soothing session of cathartic bliss. Ideal for those with busy schedules as the extensions eliminates the need for makeup and proves to be long lasting as well as great value for money.

Opening Hours: Mon to Fri :  11 am to 8 pm (Last Appointment at 7 pm)/ Sat: 10 am to 6 pm (Last Appointment at 5 pm)

Address & telephone number: No.1 Lan Kwai Fong, Central, Hong Kong,China, 852-23366328

Sideways Driving Club

Hosting 15 networked simulators, Sideways acts as a virtual racing center that puts guests in the driver’s seat. Boasting fully functioning brake pedals, gear boxes, and an ingeniously crafted steering system, it allows you to ignite your competitive side and race against your family and friends, throwing the conventional norms of road safety to the wind. Bringing the graphics of racing video games to life, find all your senses stimulated as you utilize software used by F1 teams to train divers.  Sideways accommodates a trendy bar where you can refuel before trying your hand at drag racing at the safest place to drive in Hong Kong.

Opening Hours: Sun – Sat 12:00 – 22:00

Address & telephone number: LG/F, 1-2 Chancery Lane, Central, Hong Kong, Hong Kong, China, +852 2523 0983

Wanchai Heritage & Haunted Tour

Harboring a sinister and dark past, Hong Kong has too many secrets to share. Upon nightfall, discover the less commercial side of Wan Chai. Unveil hidden gems such as a haunted mansion, previously used as a brothel, streets constructed on a cemetery, and a talisman anointing a hidden bomb shelter along with a haunted school’s abandoned facility. Each heritage attraction hides riveting stories depicting the injustice of those who perished, superstitions, the war, and evil spirits. These stories belong to various historical contexts and have been passed down by word of mouth through each generation. Tourists looking for something mysterious and unorthodox, the Haunted Tour is sure to give you that rush of adrenaline and keep the hair on the back of your neck standing erect.

Opening Hours: Mon-Sun 8:00pm – 10:00pm

Address & telephone number: No.1 Prince Terrace, Midlevels, Central, Hong Kong 00000, China, 852-91627690

Graham Street Market

This gem of a market hosts a vast array of stalls exhibiting produce ranging from local fruits and vegetables to ornate trinkets. It’s a paradise for those living on a budget or staying in hostels. Immerse yourself in the more rural side of Hong Kong and eat the food that has been cherished and adored by many generations. Whatever you require, look no further as the market entices you with inviting foods wrapped up in a welcoming ambiance, enhanced by the cheery dispositions of the stall owners. Relish the mouth-watering dim sum, among other delectable street foods and dried fruits and nuts, relive the old Hong Kong, capture the sights with your camera and make memories that will stay with you for a lifetime.

Opening Hours: Mon-Sat (Till late)

Address: Graham Street, between Queen’s Road and Hollywood Road, Hong Kong, China

Parkview Art Gallery

Parkview Art specializes in Asian and international contemporary art as well as showcasing museum-quality exhibitions of modern masters. Featuring the breathtaking works of both emerging and established artists, the gallery excels in merging sophistication with rural influences and exhibitions that boast the masterpieces of genres such as the Gutai group. Regarded as eternal avant-garde, Gutai Bijutsu Kyokai was the first radical, post-war artistic group that incorporated their own individual essence into their respective works. Art lovers can flock and unite at this venue and make the most of the services available, including art consulting, art rental, advisory on art collecting and investment.

Opening Hours: Monday to Saturday 11.00 – 19.00 or by appointment

Address & telephone number: 27 Old Bailey Street | Shop n.6, Upper G/F, Sunrise House, Hong Kong, China, 852 2413 0028

Hong Kong Trail

Nature enthusiasts will adore this fun filled trail, a 50 km walking route that stretches through 5 country parks situated on Hong Kong Island. The hike is divided into eight sections, each one providing a series of walks and adventures so you can stroll leisurely and take in the incredible scenery. Each promenade consists of various lengths to meet differing stamina levels and all showcase unrivaled views that would appease any promising geographer and historian. For those wanting to challenge themselves, the Maclehose trail reaches an impressive length of 100 km and features beautiful ecological diversity.

Address: Hong Kong Trail, Hong Kong

By Lavanya Nair