3 Night Stays / Asia / Hong Kong / My Epic Round the World Trip

Discover Hong Kong in 3-Nights: The Best HK Travel Itinerary

Hong Kong had always fascinated me with its bright lights, unique heritage and ornate temples, and I was eager to experience this alluring culture for myself. As a child, I remember the home of a Chinese friend being adorned with pictures of Hong Kong, ornaments, tea sets and fabrics. All these objects interested me, and I hoped that one day I would get the chance to experience them for myself.

Finally, on day 65 of our round the world trip I had made it and was ready to immerse myself in everything Hong Kong had to offer me on a three-day trip.

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Getting from Hong Kong Airport

Hong Kong airport is a 30 min journey to Kowloon, in good traffic, but it took us nearly 50 mins, and although I had pre-booked a taxi this was the most expensive airport to hotel transfer I have ever paid.  There are other public transport options, but for me, a taxi is the easiest way to get to your hotel.

Where to Stay in Hong Kong

Divided into two main areas, Hong Kong Island is the home of Victoria Peak while Kowloon is the home of modern culture and the Tsim Sha Tsui promenade. I had chosen to stay at the 5* Royal Garden Hotel Kowloon as it was only a block from the waterfront and I wanted the iconic view back across to Hong Kong Island.

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Day One: Morning

As our hotel was on the waterfront in Kowloon our first stop was Tsim Sha Tsui Promenade. This iconic promenade contains the Avenue of Stars, the History, Art and Space museums and a cultural centre. Its main feature is the fantastic views of the Hong Kong skyline towering over Victoria Harbour.

Hong Kong Skyline

The Avenue of Stars modelled on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, is on the waterfront in Tsim Sha Tsui and honours celebrities of the Hong Kong film industry.  It features a statue of Bruce Lee, one of Hong Kong’s biggest stars.

The Peninsula Hotel is worth visiting to say you have been! From the supercars on the drive to the high-end jewellery shops inside, it is clear to see that this is a rich man’s playground. You can have coffee and cake in the lobby but if you feel underdressed then have a look around and vow to return another time in a more befitting outfit.

The Hong Kong Museum of History is located along the waterfront and immerses you in the history and culture of Hong Kong.

The Clock Tower is a landmark in Hong Kong. It is located on the southern shore of Tsim Sha Tsu and is the only remnant of the original site of the former Kowloon Railway Station.

Star Ferry Pier is where you embark on taking the ferry across Victoria Harbour to Hong Kong Island and near the Clock Tower.  

It is famous for having been in service since 1888, and no trip to Hong Kong would be complete without experiencing what National Geographic describes as “one of 50 great journeys to take in a lifetime.”

Once we left the waterfront, we headed into the main streets of Kowloon with shops selling everything you could imagine and sky-high blocks of flats.  

Shopkeepers will inundate you with offers to make you a suit, and with every other shop being a tailor, we had no escape. Just tell them firmly “no thank you”, and you will be left alone unless, of course, a bespoke suit is something you want!

Day One: Evening

Cruising Victoria Harbour at Night

We booked a trip tonight on Hong Kong’s only original 3-mast Chinese junk with  The trip would sail around Victoria Harbour so we could watch the Symphony of Lights show which is on every evening.  

Constructed in 1955, the Dukling was used by fishermen as a place of work and also home. There are other similar looking boats in Victoria Harbour, but this is the only original one, and when you step aboard, it feels like you are experiencing a piece of Hong Kong’s history.

We weren’t as impressed with the Symphony of Lights as we had hoped to be as we felt that after visiting Singapore where the light shows are amazing this was no match.

After enjoying a cruise around the harbour, I would recommend visiting one of Hong Kong’s rooftop bars. Sip a cocktail and enjoy the night skyline of Hong Kong from a unique perspective.

Day Two: Full Day

Lantau Island Day Trip From Hong Kong

Day Three: Morning

Today we decided to take the Star Ferry from Kowloon across to Hong Kong Island and explore what the other side of the harbour had to offer. Our first stop was to visit Victoria Peak by way of the Peak Tram.

When we arrived there was a long queue to get on the tram, and in the heat of the day, it was quite a long uncomfortable wait.  I would recommend having plenty of water with you.  After a lot of pushing and shoving, we finally made it to the front of the queue and boarded the tram to make our way up the hill.

Riding on The Peak Tram

One of the world’s oldest and most famous funicular railways, the tram rises to 396 metres (about 1,300 feet) above sea level. It goes quite fast, and you are at a real incline in your seat as it goes up the hill, so the buildings you pass look like they are leaning.  

The residents still use this tram as a way of reaching their homes, so you do get to stop a couple of times during the journey should you wish to get off and walk the rest of the way.  We chose to stay in our seats!!

The Peak

Before you can get out to the viewing platform of the Peak, you have to walk through an entertainment complex including Madame Tussauds, a 3D photo area, many food outlets and souvenir shops.  

My son who was travelling with me had promised to bring something back for his friends, so we seized the opportunity to buy 15 (yes 15!) golden cats with the waving paw, the Chinese symbol for luck. It’s worth bargaining as we got quite a few souvenirs at low prices.

We exited the complex and were blown away by the iconic view that confronted us. Being able to have a view of the city spread out below us was one of the reasons we wanted to visit The Peak and it sealed our opinion that Hong Kong is one of the best places to visit in China.

We wandered around The Peak taking in all it had to offer. There is a walking track that we started to investigate which leads all around the Peak and there are maps on the walls to tell you where you are going. It’s good to see some of the original houses dotted around despite everything else being so modern.

Man Mo Temple

Our next stop was to be Man Mo Temple, so we jumped in a taxi and headed to Hollywood Road, yes it is called that, the first-ever street in Hong Kong.

Located between the towering skyscrapers along this iconic road is one of Hong Kong’s oldest and most acclaimed temples. Constructed in 1847, Man Mo Temple pays tribute to the God of Literature (Man) and the God of War (Mo) and is one of the top temples to visit in Southeast Asia.

When we entered, the thick smoke took my breath away, and I couldn’t stop coughing!  Giant incense coils line the roof having been lit and hung by worshippers; they are considered food for the spirits and purification of the surroundings. The temple should be on your Hong Kong itinerary as it is a fascinating place to visit and steeped in tradition and beliefs.

After World War II Hollywood Road and its surrounding streets became the centre for antiques and curios and remain the same today.  We had a look in the shops and found a curio store that was a treasure trove of antiquities. Inside it was dark and dusty and felt almost magical, and we wondered just what stories these objects could tell us.

We also came across carvings made from Mammoth tusks! Where were they getting these protected items from in the 21st century? Surprisingly the answer was Siberia. From tusks still buried deep in the ice, intricate carvings are crafted from ivory. The sculptures are beautiful but come with a hefty price tag.

Day Three: Evening

Street Art

We carried on wandering along the adjoining roads to head towards the world’s longest escalator called the central mid-level escalators.  On our way there we noticed how much street art was all around us. There are so many cities in Asia to see street art, but for some reason, I was surprised to see so much of it in Hong Kong.

Mid Central Escalators

We finally reached the famous mid-central escalators and entered them to take a ride to the top. It is a long way to the top, that’s because they are the longest escalators in the world, but you can exit at different points to visit restaurants and bars. We stayed on to the top before realising the only way back down was to take the steps!

We were both unanimous that this was not an option and jumped into a taxi to take us back to the port to catch the Star ferry home. The sun was setting, and we both agreed it was the perfect end to the day.

Our incredible 3-day adventure had finished, and we would leave Hong Kong with fond memories along with ten gold lucky nodding cats, a silk kimono, incense sticks, silk make-up bags and hundreds of photos!

My honest opinion of Hong Kong and Kowloon

What month did I travel? March

How was the weather? It was hot and dry.

Would I recommend the hotel? The Royal Garden Kowloon offers 5-star luxury, and a separate review is here.

Would I recommend three nights in Hong Kong and Kowloon? Definitely. They both have a different vibe which is good. Kowloon is modern with its ultra-sleek museums and luxury hotels, while Hong Kong Island is more traditional. A trip to Lantau Island should also be high on your trip itinerary.

This destination is continually evolving and has been doing so since the Chinese regained it from the British. It is a vibrant place which will be an assault on your senses with sound and colour all around you. It will also delight you with its traditions and history.

Follow my Round the World Trip to Hanoi in Vietnam
About Author

Angela Price

Angie is a full-time travel writer with over 30 years of travel experience. She has always had a passion for travel, and after a 3-month world trip with her 18-year-old son, she created her popular travel blog to share her adventures with a wider audience. When Angie is at home in the UK, she enjoys exploring the English countryside, visiting castles and gardens and planning her next big adventure. Her motto is "Live Life Wandering not Wondering".

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2 years ago

[…] your stay in Hong Kong check out this quintessential area near to the famous Hollywood Road – yes that really is […]

2 years ago

Hong Kong is a beautiful city to visit. Its skyscrapers and star ferry pier look impressive. I love that well-made statue of Bruce Lee in action! Your pictures are stunning. 🙂

Reply to  Jan
2 years ago

Hong Kong was definitely an assault on the senses and somewhere I am pleased to have visited. So much to see and do including the Avenue of Stars where the Bruce Lee statue takes pride of place

2 years ago

Yes, we were lucky that we had clear blue skies as I believe it can be very foggy up there. I guess we travelled at a good time of year. I hope you get there one day.

Wendy Lee
2 years ago

I’ve been to Hong Kong twice, but never explored the street art–what a great idea! But this city really does have lots to see. I also enjoyed the food in Hong Kong, I could eat dim sum all day.

Reply to  Wendy Lee
2 years ago

It is such a city of contrasts and I got hooked on noodles !

2 years ago

Great post! I’ve wanted to go to Hong Kong for a while now as I love the combination of different cultures, modern skyscrapers and historic buildings. It looks like such a fascinating city to visit!

Reply to  Helen
2 years ago

Yes it certainly is 😃

Jenn | By land and sea
Jenn | By land and sea
2 years ago

Cruising Victoria Harbor at night seems like such an iconic thing to do in Hong Kong! I’d love to make it here some day!

Reply to  Jenn | By land and sea
2 years ago

If you ever do then make sure to book the original Dukling junk for your cruise. Magical.

2 years ago

From the photos, Hong Kong is such a beautiful city. The guide too is thorough. I love how you narrowed down the itinerary to 3 days and you got the most of it

Reply to  Sharon
2 years ago

I’m so glad you enjoyed the post.

Slowly Anywhere
2 years ago

When you think of such a big city you do not imagine that it may have beautiful places like Man Mo Temple, it seems surreal.

Reply to  Slowly Anywhere
2 years ago

In such a bustling city it is a joy to find a peaceful haven like the Man Mo temple.

Sinjana Ghosh
Sinjana Ghosh
2 years ago

The murals are outstanding. Lovely guide to HongKong. Hope peace prevails in this beautiful part of the world.

Reply to  Sinjana Ghosh
2 years ago

Yes, I hope peace returns to the city.

2 years ago

Those highrises don’t even look real! What an amazing city. The nighttime photos, with so much color, surprised me, too!

Reply to  Sharon
2 years ago

At nighttime, it was buzzing. Neon lights flashing everywhere. An assault on the senses.

2 years ago

A great read Angie, brought back some wonderful memories of my time in Hong Kong a few years ago. Plus I’ve learnt about a few locations that I would like to see, should I have the opportunity to revisit.

Reply to  Marilyn
2 years ago

I had wanted to visit HK for as long as I can remember but it was very different from how I imagined it to be. I couldn’t quite put my finger on it but I still found it a fantastic experience.

2 years ago

Wow Hongkong is such a big city with so much to offer… how did you narrow it down? I mean, how could you choose what to do with your days?

Reply to  Ann
2 years ago

I take a long time researching what are the things I have to see and do and then I plot them out in order of where they are so I make sure one area is covered each day. I do pack a lot in when I travel. No time for sitting around and relaxing 🤣

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