How to spend 24 hours in Hong Kong

Your guide to spending just 24 hours in the urban jungle of Hong Kong.
How to spend 24 hours in Hong Kong - Pat Kay Away

Hong kong has one of the greatest city skyline views in the whole world.

It’s a chaotic metropolis. A concrete jungle of hustle and bustle, filled with some of the cheapest Michelin Star eats, crazy hikes that surround the city, and a plethora of urban life to document for the keen street photographer.

There’s only so much you can do in 24 hours, but with Hong Kong being such a common layover destination, you might just find yourself with some time to spare here.

Here’s how I'd spend 24 hours in Hong Kong.

  • Tai mo shan - How to spend 24 hours in Hong Kong - Pat Kay Away

    Sunrise at

    Tai Mo Shan

    Of course, depending on your time of arrival.

    Tai Mo Shan is the country’s biggest mountain, with a winding, easy-to-hike trail and a rewarding view of the city.

    It’s easy to get to and from - taxi’s as a worst-case (or lazy case) scenario are actually a decent option since they’re somewhat affordable in this country. Busses will have you covered too.

    The hike is easy, and going the shorter route will only take you 1.5 hours one way. And of course, the view is worth it.

    Here’s a guide all about it if you’re interested.

  • Yick Cheong Building - How to spend 24 hours in Hong Kong - Pat Kay Away

    Mid morning at

    Yick Cheong building

    This is probably the most Instagrammed building in Hong Kong, but hey, if you’ve only got 24 hours, you might as well go to the big locations, right?

    The Yick Cheong building in Quarry Bay staked its claim to fame by appearing in the movie Transformers: Age of Extinction. Since then, the colourful, stacked residential apartments have become a huge tourist location - perpetuated by none other than Instagram, of course.

    Although it’s done to death, it is a unique place to visit, and definitely still worth a quick drop in.

    Do it in the morning, sooner rather than later, as its popularity sees this place getting packed out with tourists lining up to take shots. Yeah, it’s that touristy.

  • ...and for lunch

    Michelin Star pork buns

    Of course, it wouldn’t be a good guide without a spot to eat, hey?

    Hong Kong has some of the cheapest Michelin Star eats in the world, and the pan-fried pork buns from Cheung Hing Kee Shanghai Pan Fried Buns are definitely my favourite.

    Cheung Hing Kee's is a charming, hard-working, local shop. Essentially a 5x5m hole in the wall; you order your pork buns and eat them on a windowsill on the outside of the shop, on the street.

    It’s a local experience with local food that just happens to rock a Michelin Star. Highly recommended.

  • Man mo temple - How to spend 24 hours in Hong Kong - Pat Kay Away

    Early afternoon at

    Man Mo temple

    For a real, cultural experience, visit Man Mo temple.

    Filled with the strong aroma of incense and candles, this temple dedicated to the God of Literature and the God of War. It's the largest of its kind, and it’s a nice break from the urban density and craziness that is Hong Kong.

    That being said, sometimes it does get a bit insane with the amount of people trying to pay their respects, but hey, it’s Hong Kong, and you can’t always get away from people.

    If you’re into photography too, at the right time of the day (usually early afternoon), the hole in the roof aligns with the sun, streaming in god-like rays of gorgeousness if you're lucky.

  • Victoria peak - How to spend 24 hours in Hong Kong - Pat Kay Away

    For sunset:

    Victoria peak

    But of course, you can’t visit Hong Kong without going to Victoria peak.

    This is really where you get to understand just how jaw-dropping Hong Kong’s skyline actually is.

    If you’re interested in reading a comprehensive guide all about Victoria peak and Lugard road, check out this write up all about it.

    The tldr? If there’s only one place you visit in Hong Kong, it’s here. Period.

  • Neon lights - How to spend 24 hours in Hong Kong - Pat Kay Away

    And at night...

    Neon hunting

    Walking through the streets of Mong Kok and Jordan, one thing you’ll notice is the insane amount of neon lights that hang over the street.

    These neon lights in Hong Kong have been a staple of its nightlife since the 1950’s, but due to their age, they're slowly being removed due to safety concerns of them falling down onto the street.

    Some reports say that over 90% of the lights that used to be up have been removed over the last 20 years. A sad story.

    Better go and see the rest while you can, then.

What would you do over 24 hours in Hong Kong?

These are the things I loved doing, what about you?

Let me know what you’d do in 24 hours in Hong Kong down in the comments or over at Instagram.

Happy travels.

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