Summer in Hong Kong is a smorgasbord of cultural events, pumping nightlife, food festivals and incredible shopping sales. Outlying islands provide convenient travel options for a quick change of pace and a booming art and antiquities scene ensures you can take a little piece of the city home with you.
From June 21 to August 31, citywide sales across Hong Kong’s shopping malls, department stores and boutiques kick off. With a history as an international centre of trade, Hong Kong has naturally evolved into a shopping destination and offers buyers an enormous product range. From traditional wares sold at local bazaars to the latest computers and electronics, buyers will be hard pressed to not find what they want and in most cases, end up purchasing what they never thought they wanted! Fashion and beauty products have always been high on shoppers’ lists in Hong Kong. Picking up a tailored woolen suit made to measure, working with a leather craftsman to design your own luggage or stumbling on creations from the flourishing local design scene mean arriving with at least a half empty suitcase is paramount.
Festivals are synonymous with summertime and Hong Kong is well known for its annual Dragon Boat Carnival taking place this year on 21 to 23 June. Held on the city’s energetic Victoria Harbour, teams from around the world take part and thousands of spectators cheer on from the shore.
When it’s not home to the carnival, Victoria Harbour is the pulsing heart of the city and accommodates a constant flow of boats and ferries. There are a plenty of cruises running throughout the day and evening you can book that glide past colourful and historic city districts on Chinese-style tour boats.
For music and beer fans, a festival dedicated to just that takes place in Lan Kwai Fong, a small area of the city originally home to street hawkers before the Second World War. The Lan Kwai Fong Beer and Music Festival is held from 13 – 14 July and revellers delight in over 100 beer varieties, live music and performances from 1pm until late.
Looking outside the city limits, tranquil fishing villages and rugged coastlines are only a short ferry ride away. Enjoy the freshest seafood, local festivals and ancient temples as you island hop between these outlying wonderlands.
Lamma Island is a popular day-tripping destination blending the tradition of a Chinese fishing village with a relaxed western feel. A highlight includes a visit to Hung Shing Yeh Beach, a pretty white sand beach serving delicious sunset BBQs. Don’t miss exploring the island on foot on the island’s Family Trail. Starting in Yung Shue Wan’s main street amidst local and western eateries and craft shops, you pass the iconic Lamma Winds turbine, Hilltop pavilion, local beaches, and finish up at Sok Kwu Wan, a traditional fishing village.
Back in the city, the dining scene is positively explosive with unique local eateries and international dining served up at all hours of the day and night. Sample local snacks of egg tarts, pineapple buns and pitted preserved prunes and sweat it out over bowls of thick congee soups, wonton noodle soups and cart noodles. Other local delights include hot pot and claypot dishes and classic stir-fried dishes of sweet and sour pork and beef with green vegetables.
Walk off all that eating with a trip down lively Cat Street, renowned for its treasure trove of antiques, curio merchants and handicrafts. It’s the perfect spot to book end a trip to Hong Kong and pick up a little item to remind you of all that you’ve discovered.
For more information visit discoverhongkong.com.