Only one day in Hong Kong? Our 1 Day Must See itinerary will let you get to all the Hong Kong highlights so you can truly experience this amazing city
Hong Kong Sunset © mikebehnken
Our one day in Hong Kong itinerary includes panoramic views of the city, world class shopping and casual dining, a trip across Victoria Harbour and even a pleasant stroll through the Hong Kong Zoological and Botanical Gardens.
Ready to start? If you’re staying in Hong Kong overnight, we recommend staying in a hotel in Tsim Sha Tsui, which will put you right beside one of Hong Kong’s best harbour views and a short walk away from the MTR.
If you’d prefer to be on Hong Kong Island, anywhere between Sheung Wan and Wan Chai is a convenient place to stay, although Central is where you’ll want to stay to be right in the heart of the action.
Morning: Tsim Sha Tsui and Exploring Kowloon
I saw Bruce Lee!!! © bensonkua
- If you’re flying into Hong Kong in the morning, take the Airport Express into town to avoid having to pay the taxi fare. Get off the train at Kowloon Station if you’re staying in Tsim Sha Tsui, or at Hong Kong Station if you’re staying on Hong Kong Island.
- Our one-day itinerary starts in Tsim Sha Tsui — one of Hong Kong’s top entertainment, shopping and tourism areas. You’ll want to drop your suitcases off at the hotel before you get started, as it can get hot, tiring and sweaty exploring Hong Kong on foot.
- If you’re staying on Hong Kong Island, you can use the Star Ferry to get across the harbour. The ferry leaves from Central Pier and Wan Chai Pier and makes for a quick journey across to Tsim Sha Tsui.
- Tsim Sha Tsui Promenade. Starting from the iconic Clock Tower, take a walk down Tsim Sha Tsui Promenade and enjoy the amazing view of Hong Kong Island.
- Shopping in Kowloon. If you’re in Hong Kong for shopping, you’ll find a great selection of shops along Nathan Road in Tsim Sha Tsui offering everything from luxury clothes, watches and bags to bargain items of all types. This area is also home to several popular shopping malls, such as Harbour City.
Pork Buns © scaredykat
While Hong Kong Island is home to most of Hong Kong’s glitzy buildings and high-end dining, Kowloon is where you’ll find the best authentic Cantonese food.
There are several great dim sum restaurants in Kowloon, many of which offer great low-cost local dining. Some of the best local lunch options include:
- DimDimSum Dim Sum Specialty Store. This popular local dim sum restaurant is listed in the World’s 101 Best Places to Eat. A good option if you want to try a local Cantonese lunch in a clean, comfortable setting.
- Tim Ho Wan. Known as “the world’s cheapest Michelin-star restaurant, Tim Ho Wan has grown into a huge Asia-wide business over the last 10 years. The Sham Shui Po branch is easy to reach from Tsim Sha Tsui and offers a great range of cheap and tasty dishes.
- Canton’s Dim Sum Expert. If you don’t want to travel far from Tsim Sha Tsui, this small dim sum restaurant on Humphreys Avenue is a good choice with cheap, fresh and tasty dishes and a range of non-dim sum options.
Afternoon: Museums, Gardens and Victoria Peak
The Peak © eugenelimphotography
After you’ve finished dining, it’s time to visit some of Hong Kong’s top cultural attractions. Our afternoon itinerary includes a museum and the Hong Kong Zoological and Botanical Gardens, both of which can be squeezed into an afternoon.
If you prefer a more relaxed schedule, feel free to pick one attraction and skip the other.
- There are several museums in Tsim Sha Tsui, the best of which is the Hong Kong Museum of History.
- The museum’s exhibits cover 400 million of history, with a great selection of displays and artifacts showcasing Hong Kong’s unique geography and culture.
- After you’ve finished in Tsim Sha Tsui, it’s time to go across (or back across) Victoria Harbour to Hong Kong Island. From Tsim Sha Tsui, you can take the Star Ferry back to Central Pier or use the MTR to Central.
- The Hong Kong Zoological and Botanical Gardens are located right in the centre of Hong Kong, a short distance from the Peak Tram. To get there, you can take a taxi from Central Pier or use the Central–Mid-Levels escalator to get there on foot.
- From the escalator, it’s a short walk down Robinson Road to Albany Road, where you’ll find the entrance to the gardens.
- The gardens are free to enter and provide a great break from the incredible hustle and bustle of Hong Kong’s central business district. While the zoological section of the gardens isn’t as big as most commercial zoos, the botanical gardens are home to several species of rare plants.
- After spending some time at the Zoological and Botanical Gardens, it’s time to enjoy an amazing view of Hong Kong as the sun sets.
- There are several ways to get to the top of Victoria Peak. The fastest and easiest is to get a taxi from Central, which takes 15 minutes and shouldn’t cost more than $125 HKD.
- The other option is to get the Peak Tram, which takes seven minutes to get to The Peak. Add in the time you’ll spend queueing for a ticket and the Peak Trak is usually a little slower than a taxi, although the experience can be fun.
- If you’re feeling adventurous, you can also walk to Victoria Peak from Central. The easiest route to The Peak goes up the Mid-Levels escalator to Cain Road, through the Botanical Gardens and up Old Peak Road.
- If you decide to walk, expect to arrive feeling tired and sweaty, especially in summer. Although the view from The Peak is spectacular, you won’t see very much on the way up due to the high rises built around Mid-Levels.
- You can also take bus 15 from Exchange Square bus terminus, which goes right up to Victoria Peak and has only a fraction as many tourists as the Peak Tram.
- Once you make it to Victoria Peak, there are several ways to enjoy the view. The easiest (but most crowded) is to enter the Peak Galleria shopping mall and make your way to the viewing area, which is accessible free of charge.
- For a much quieter, less crowded experience, walk along Lugard Road and follow the trail for a few minutes. You can stop along the way to enjoy the view, or continue for 15-20 minutes to get to Lugard Road lookout, which is a popular photo spot.
Neon © jayneandd
- Feeling hungry? After you’ve finished enjoying the view from Victoria Peak, you have several great options for dinner:
- If you’re staying overnight in Central, make your way to SoHo, where you’ll find some of Hong Kong’s best international restaurants and a great selection of happy hours.
- Feel like staying out late? Lan Kwai Fong, Hong Kong’s main international bar district, is just a short distance from The Peak on the Mid-Levels escalator.
- For a more local experience, make your way back across the harbour and stop at Jordan MTR station for a visit to Temple Street Night Market, where you’ll find a great selection of Chinese and international street food stands.
Where to Stay in Hong Kong
Peninsula Hotel – Hong Kong © dicksonliu
Hong Kong is a dense, compact city with great public transportation, meaning you can stay at almost any hotel in Kowloon or on Hong Kong Island and get around relatively easily. However, for the best level of convenience, you’ll want to stay in Tsim Sha Tsui or Central.
Luxury Hotels in Hong Kong
- The Peninsula Hotel Hong Kong
One of Hong Kong’s most iconic luxury hotels, The Peninsula Hong Kong opened in 1928 and has been one of Hong Kong’s top places to be seen ever since. Benefits of staying here include stunning harbour views, luxurious rooms and an optional extra Rolls Royce limousine service.
- Four Seasons Hotel Hong Kong
The Four Seasons is located right in the centre of Hong Kong’s central business district, a short walk from the MTR. Rooms here are luxurious and extremely comfortable, with great views over Victoria Harbour or of Hong Kong’s incredible skyline.
Mid Range Hotels in Hong Kong
- Hotel Butterfly on Wellington With a great location in Central, this four star hotel on Hong Kong Island is a great choice if you want a luxurious, comfortable room with more space than typical Hong Kong accommodation.
- Hotel Butterfly on Prat
Another option from the Butterfly Boutique Hotels group, this mid-priced hotel on Prat Avenue is perfectly located in the heart of Tsim Sha Tsui, a short distance from the MTR and close to many of the area’s best cafés and restaurants.
Budget Hotels in Hong Kong
- Urban Pack
Located inside Haiphong Mansion, this budget hotel offers dorm beds and private twin rooms in the heart of Tsim Sha Tsui at fair prices.
- Hang Ho Hostel
Just one stop from Tsim Sha Tsui, Hang Ho Hostel offers inexpensive, clean and extremely cosy rooms in a busy area of Kowloon. A good option if you want to be close to public transportation.
Feel Like Staying Another Night?
Enjoying your time in Hong Kong? If you want to extend your trip, make sure you check out our Two Days in Hong Kong itinerary for an idea of things you can do on your second day.