5 Places to Visit Hong Kong on a Tight Budget
You don’t have to visit Disneyland or Ocean Park to experience the best parts of Hong Kong. There are so many hidden treasures in the territory that wouldn’t put a dent on your budget. If you don’t know where to start, here are a few suggestions on how you’ll be able to save money, while still have the ultimate Hong Kong experience!
Hong Kong Heritage Museum, Sha Tin
Free on Wednesdays, the Heritage Museum is accessible through the bus. Admissions are free on Wednesdays, during when you can drop by to see Hong Kong’s rich and colorful history and culture through different art collections. Some ongoing and upcoming shows you could check out include:
- Sounds in the Grass: Selected Works of Insects by Chao Shao-an. Gallery is open until 23 February 2015
- Long time no see, Victoria. Gallery is open until March 31, 2014
- The Legend of Silk and Wood: A Hong Kong Qin Story. Gallery is open until March 10, 2014
- Bruce Lee: Kung Fu-Art-Life. Gallery is open until July 20, 2018
Hollywood Road Park, Sheung Wan
Called the “poor man’s nightclub” in the 60s-70s, this place is fitting for the modern poor man—in case he wants to go window antique shopping, that is. This is where you will find local antiques and imported goods from China and other Southeast Asian countries. You can take a long leisurely walk in this small city park and interact with the locals. You can also visit the flea markets and of course, the Man Mo Temple.
The Dragon’s Back Trail, Hong Kong Island
Take a good walk along this up-and-down trail, and you’ll certainly feel like you’re making a trip down or up a dragon’s back. It will be a wonderful experience to see the greener side of Hong Kong. All you have to have is a good pair of walking or hiking shoes, a bottle of water, and you’re good to go! This is the perfect place to unwind and take a break from Hong Kong’s urban hustle.
Flagstaff House Museum of Tea Ware, Hong Kong Park
Your experience in Hong Kong is incomplete if you haven’t had tea yet. If you find yourself perfecting tea ceremony techniques, or if you’re becoming a tea master, visit this Hong Kong monument. Chinese seals, ceramics, and other historical teaware artefacts are found here, such as the Yixing clay teapot.
Temple Street Night Market, Kowloon
Best place to buy cheap and unique goods and food! This place is open from 2PM until midnight. Haggle for the cheapest prices for teaware, jade, antiques, and clothes at the night market. If you don’t really feel like shopping, just take a step back for a front seat to the super-charged life and activities at fascinating Chinese market.
Special Mention: Tim Ho Wan, Hong Kong Station, Central. This place isn’t exactly cheap, but if you want to taste the best dim sum in the world, you must give this place a shot. Known to be the “cheapest Michelin-starred” restaurant, you’re almost missing out on Hong Kong if you don’t visit Tim Ho Wan, the “dim sum specialists.” That’s pretty much self-explanatory. Their pork buns are a must-try, too!
When you get to HK, here are a few tips to remember:
- Get an Octopus Card for public transport. The best way to immerse yourself in a culture isn’t just to eat street food, but to use the public transport as well. So what does the Octopus Card do? It serves as your personal consumable card that you can use to pay for public transportation, convenience stores, and fastfood outlets. With an expiration date of three years, the Octopus Card is a must-have if you’re returning to Hong Kong.
- Roam the city at night—during the weekends. As you know, people work hard in Hong Kong, so expect them to play hard, too.
- Buy incense in temples. This is a must to show your courtesy. It’s worth a try, considering that you don’t have to pay for anything to enter temples.
For the record, these five spots are only a few of the many activities you can do in Hong Kong. Still, you can have your own adventure without hiring an expensive tour guide. The country’s main language is English, so you wouldn’t have too much trouble communicating with the locals. Have fun!