Hong Kong, just a three and a half hour flight away, is one of Singaporeans’ favorite places to visit. With kids, you’ll probably have to tone down on designer shopping and ‘cha-chan-teng’ gossip sessions. But there’s still loads to see and do in the Fragrant Harbour. Best of all, vacations here also include a transport-themed element: the kids will love bobbing aboard the Star Ferry on a harbour crossing, lying almost horizontal on the Peak Tram, watching breathtaking scenery fly by on super long cable car rides, and even the roller-coaster double-decker bus ride to Stanley (just keep a plastic bag handy). Here are six fun Hong Kong holiday recomendations that’ll please children and adults alike.
Best for educational fun
Noah’s Ark is located in Ma Wan, a tiny island between Lantau Island and the New Territories.
Highlights In the life-sized ark you can watch 2D and 3D shows promoting positive values of love for life, family, and nature. Behind this is a garden with life-like animal statues and a cast of talents dressed as a toucan, a tiger, and other characters to take photos with. Stay overnight at the Resort for more time to explore the activities at its Adventureland and Treasure House.
Getting there Take the train to Tsing Yi MTR station, then bus number NR332 going towards Park Island. Alight at the first stop, and take the escalator down. It takes less than 10 minutes to walk to the entrance of Noah’s Ark.
Tip! Turn left after the escalator down to Noah’s Ark to get to a small beach that offers a nice view – and photo op! – of the Tsing Ma Bridge.
Best for family entertainment
Hong Kong Disneyland
Hong Kong Disneyland is located on Lantau Island, next to Discovery Bay, where Hong Kong’s wealthy and the expat community live.
Highlights The latest addition to the park, Toy Story Land, consists of a Parachute Drop, the RC Racer, and the Slinky Dog Spin. The last resembles a mini roller-coaster and will be a favorite with younger children. Make your way from here to the front of the Sleeping Beauty Castle to catch the Flights of Fantasy Parade at 3.30pm or the “Disney in the Stars” Fireworks show at 8pm.
Getting there Alight at the Disneyland Resort MTR Station.
Tip! The easiest way to get a photo with Mickey Mouse and friends – and skip whines and tantrums due to long queues – is by dining at The Enchanted Gardens Restaurant at Hong Kong Disneyland Hotel. Remember to reserve your table beforehand.
Best for sightseeing
Tsim Sha Tsui Promenade
After browsing through HarbourCity shopping mall, turn right upon exit and you will find yourself at the beginning of the Promenade.
Highlights The Promenade offers an arresting view of Hong Kong Island. On your left are the Hong Kong Cultural Centre and the Hong Kong Museum of Art. The dome behind them houses the Hong Kong Space Museum, where you can try your hands at the ‘laser beams’ which simulate how satellites communicate, drive ‘robots’ in ‘space’, and even moonwalk. You can also watch Omnimax and Sky Shows here. Walking further down the path will get you to the Avenue of Stars, the best places to enjoy the Symphony of Lights which comes on every night at 8pm.
Getting there Alight at Tsim Sha Tsui MTR station or enjoy the Star Ferry ride from Central or Wan Chai. It’s the cheapest – and one of the best! – harbour crossings in the world!
Tip! On Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays, the Symphony of Lights narration is in English.
Best for a classic Hong Kong experience
Here, the 35-year-old Ocean Park in Aberdeen is a good place to start.
Highlights Attractions in Ocean Park consist of huge aquariums, a breathtaking cable car system, amusement park rides, a giant panda habitat, and an alligator marsh. Three kilometres away lies Repulse Bay, one of the most popular beaches in Hong Kong. Walk along this beach and you will get to the Kwun Yam Shrine and Tin Hau Temple. And if you go further south, you will arrive at Stanley Market. This is a collection of shops and restaurants lining the way to Stanley Plaza shopping mall.
Getting there Board Citybus number 629 from Admiralty MTR station to Ocean Park. After this, each further stretch is less than HK$50 by taxi.
Tip! There are active life guards all year round at Repulse Bay. So the kids can safely build sandcastles and swim there during warmer days.
Best for all natural fun
Off the usual beaten tourist track, in the suburbs of Hong Kong, you can feed farm animals and tiptoe carefully around strawberry patches to pick yourself some of the juicy fruit.
Highlights At Lavender Garden, the kids can feed goats, sheep, and fishes, walk between rows and rows of three different kinds of lavender, and buy small potted herbs. There’s also a playground and BBQ pits where you can cook and eat the food you buy. Adjacent to this garden is the Rainbow Strawberry Farm, where you can choose and pick all the strawberries you want.
Getting there Alight at Fanling MTR station and continue by taxi to Heung Fan Yuen.
Tip! Along the way, make a stop at Sha Tin MTR station to visit Snoopy’s World at New Town Plaza and play at the thematic outdoor playground.
Best for an eye-opening experience
Specialty Street Markets
On the northern part of Nathan Road, just off Prince Edward MTR station, there are markets offering anything you could possibly desire.
Highlights At the Goldfish Market, the lines of shops sell all kinds of fishes, crustaceans, turtles and more in row after row of plastic bags and buckets, and all kinds of aquarium ornaments. Cross Prince Edward Road West and turn right, to the Flower Market. At the end of the road is a walled garden, the Yuen Po Street Bird Garden. Over in Wan Chai, look for Tai Yuen Street, which is also known as Toy Street. As its nickname suggests, it is a place for “good and cheap” toy shopping.
Getting there Alight at Prince Edward MTR station, Exit B2, for the first three markets. Alight at Wan Chai MTR station, Exit A3, or at the O’Brien Road tram stop for Toy Street.
Tip! Upon exiting the flower market, walk along Prince Edward Road West and pop into The Supreme bakery for some of their scrumptious cakes, cookies, and egg tarts. Yum!