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Where to get the
best views of Hong Kong

From natural harbours and lit-up cityscapes to green outlying islands, Hong Kong boasts spectacular vistas by day and by night

From sunrise to nightfall, Hong Kong’s harbours and coastal areas offer visitors a multitude of diverse sights and activities.

Take a day trip outside of the bustling urban core to explore idyllic landscapes on a bike or on foot. Then, come evening, marvel at the bright lights of Hong Kong’s iconic skyline and how they look different, depending on where you are.

Here are some tips on how best to experience the coastal and harbour views of Hong Kong.

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During the day

Cycle from Tai Wai to Tai Mei Tuk along Tolo Harbour

Navigating Hong Kong on two wheels might seem daunting. That is, until you escape to the peace and greenery of the New Territories in the northern part of Hong Kong. With designated bicycle paths along a flat route, the journey from Tai Wai to Tai Mei Tuk makes it easy to admire the clear views across Tolo Harbour, surrounded by mountains. It can get busy on weekends, but the experience of biking on the narrow strip of land connecting the mainland to Plover Cove, flanked by stretches of glistening water, makes it all worthwhile.

During the day

Visit an outlying island

You don’t need to leave Hong Kong to enjoy the charm of a traditional Chinese village. Explore one of the outlying islands to visit centuries-old temples and shrines, say, on Peng Chau, where local women pray for fertility and a long, healthy lineage of descendants. Head farther afield to Hong Kong UNESCO Global Geopark’s Tung Ping Chau to view unique rock formations, such as wave-carved shale and stacked layers of sedimentary rock, as well as triangular coastal formations that look like a dragon’s back descending into the water and are aptly named Lung Lok Shui (“dragon entering water”).

During the day

Take a hike

Many visitors are impressed to learn that Hong Kong, known for its soaring skyscrapers, has well-maintained and well-marked hiking paths. Dragon’s Back, one of the most popular and approachable, winds along the southwest corner of Hong Kong Island. The route begins at Shek O Road and ends in the village of Tai Long Wan with its stunning vistas over the southern peninsula of islands in between. If you’re an experienced hiker, take on the challenge of climbing Lantau Peak, the second-highest point in Hong Kong, at 934 metres (3,064 feet). During your ascent, you can spot small villages to the south and the Hong Kong International Airport to the north.

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During the night

Watch the Symphony of Lights from the Aqua Luna

Every night at 8 o’clock, buildings overlooking the water on Hong Kong Island and on Kowloon light up in a dazzling display choreographed to music. And while the harbourfront areas of Tsim Sha Tsui and Wan Chai afford excellent vantage points to enjoy the show, the best way to take it all in is from the centre of the harbour itself. Hop aboard the popular Aqua Luna, a traditional Chinese wooden junk boat resplendent with red sails, for the Symphony of Lights cruise that takes you into Victoria Harbour. Viewing the lights-and-laser show from either harbourfront is an amazingly surreal way to experience Hong Kong’s skyline at night.

During the night

See the city lights from West Kowloon

For a unique perspective over both Kowloon and Hong Kong Island, venture to one of the newest and most vibrant hubs – West Kowloon Cultural District. At nightfall, ascend 118 (yes, 118!) floors up the International Commerce Centre (ICC) Tower, the tallest building in Hong Kong, to reach the Ritz-Carlton’s Ozone Bar for a jaw-dropping true bird’s-eye view of Victoria Harbour. Revel in the magnificent sight of shimmering skyscrapers below from the bar’s terrace – with a craft cocktail in hand, of course.

During the night

Gaze out over Victoria Harbour from the Kerry Hotel

Prefer staying closer to terra firma? View the towers of Hong Kong Island, reflected in the waters of Victoria Harbour, from the outdoor terrace on the ground floor of the Kerry Hotel in Hung Hom Bay. Anyone can visit the Lobby Lounge and gain access to the spectacular view, but if you have the opportunity to be a guest, don’t pass up the chance to gaze out over the skyline from the hotel’s outdoor infinity pool.

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