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A Lazy Traveller’s Guide To Hong Kong

Picture of Sally Gao
Updated: 9 February 2017
If you’re the kind of traveller who prefers relaxation to exploration, we’ve got you covered. This low-key guide to Hong Kong contains a host of stress-free activities that will help you avoid the crowds and get to know the city without straying too far from your hotel.

Brunch with a view

Brunch isn’t just a meal, it’s a lifestyle, and Hong Kong gets it. Restaurants like Café Gray Deluxe, Aqua, CÉ LA VI, Catalunya and Ozone offer enticing weekend brunch menus paired with spectacular views of Victoria Harbor. What better way to indulge in a long and lazy morning than to sip free-flow bubbly on the umpteenth floor of the Ritz-Carlton?

Roderick Eime/Flickr
Roderick Eime/Flickr

Tour the city from a tram

Charmingly rickety and slow, Hong Kong’s iconic double-decker trams have served the city’s commuters since 1904. Hopping on a tram is a great way to get some sightseeing done. You can even book a special sightseeing tram, which consists of an hour-long ride aboard a 1920s-style, open deck streetcar.

Tim Wadham/Flickr
Tim Wadham/Flickr

Indulge in dim sum and tea

It’s impossible to visit Hong Kong without eating dim sum. This popular meal consists of multiple dishes of bite-sized snacks served in circular bamboo steamers, accompanied by limitless amounts of Chinese tea. Fine dining restaurants like Lung King Heen and Mott 32 are renowned for their elegant, contemporary takes on dim sum. Alternatively, if you’re looking for a more traditional experience, check out Lin Heung Tea House, which has been around since 1926.

TAKA@P.P.R.S/Flickr
TAKA@P.P.R.S/Flickr

Go to a speakeasy

Hongkongers have fallen in love with speakeasies for their hidden entrances, classic cocktails and low-key vibe. The sophisticated jazz bar Foxglove is hidden behind an old-fashioned umbrella shop on Duddell Street, while Stockton, which resembles a 1890s gentlemen’s club, is located up a nondescript flight of stairs on Wyndham Street. One of the city’s first speakeasies, 001, lies behind an unmarked black door behind a market stall off Graham Street. If you’re planning a visit to one of these lounges, we recommend making a reservation ahead of time.

Listen to live jazz

If you’re in the mood for some live jazz, head to Ned Kelly’s Last Stand, Hong Kong’s oldest surviving bar. Filled with posters and sports paraphernalia, it’s got a grungy but authentic vibe. Meanwhile, Peel Fresco in the heart of Soho offers a more polished jazz experience.

Colin Aitchison/Flickr
Colin Aitchison/Flickr

Stroll in Victoria Park

Located right in the heart of the city, Victoria Park is a 19-hectare oasis of calm right next to bustling Causeway Bay. On a sunny day, it’s a great place to have a picnic on the lawn and gaze at the impressive skyline in the distance.

Connie Ma/Flickr
Connie Ma/Flickr

Enjoy contemporary art

The main museum of the West Kowloon Cultural District, an ongoing government-funded arts precinct, is still under construction, but the M+ Pavilion is already open. Alternatively, check out one of Hong Kong’s small but well-curated independent art galleries.

Gallery EXIT | Courtesy of Gallery EXIT
Gallery EXIT | Courtesy of Gallery EXIT

Relax at a spa

There’s nothing that revitalizes the body and spirit like a luxury spa treatment. The spa at the Mandarin Oriental Hotel is famous for its Chinese herbal steam room, as well as its premium range of restorative massages designed for different purposes, including a deep-tissue massage for tension, a lymphatic massage to increase circulation, a pre-natal massage for expectant mothers, and more. Alternatively, less pricey options such as the Spa L’Occitane and the Hermitage Spa offer superb full-body pampering services without being too taxing on the wallet.