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What to Do with a 7-hour layover in Hong Kong?

Dear Editors,

I have a seven hour layover in Hong Kong. What can I do while I’m there?
Pam in Chicago
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Hi Pam,

A seven hour layover sounds great, but let’s say you need to be back at the airport two to three hours before your next flight to check in: that would really only give you four or five hours to explore Hong Kong outside the airport. Still, there’s quite a bit you can do!

You’ll be coming in to the Hong Kong International Airport at Chek Lap Kok. Ground transportation from there is pretty good, so you could easily get the MTR into the city center (get off at Admiralty or Wan Chai) — it should only take about half an hour.

Walk around, admire the architecture, do a little shopping in Central (Pacific Place is a large luxury-type mall, or you might want to try The Lanes for faux designer goods), and ride a tram down Des Voeux Road. Take the (free) elevator up the outside of the Hopewell Center in Wan Chai and you’ll get a fantastic view of the city. For another excellent view, take the Peak Tram up to the top of Victoria Peak (you’ll catch it in Central) — it’s astounding, and the ride itself (sort of like a funicular) is a lot of fun too.

Try and make time for a quick ride on the Star Ferry if you can — you’ll catch it downtown in Central (Admiralty MTR stop) and you’ll likely have change from a dollar. It’s only a ten-minute crossing but the ferries are from the 1940s and 50s, and it’s a fun time. Once you’re on Kowloon side, you can admire the Hong Kong skyline from across the water (there’s a free laser show every evening if you’re there at night) and maybe have a look around the markets of Nathan Road or the western-style shopping centers at Tsim Sha Tsui.

Hope you have an amazing time! You can certainly see a lot of Hong Kong in 4-5 hours.

– Holly

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Comments

Orlandy
Reply

Wow! There is certainly a lot you can do if you put your mind to it, thanks for the great tips. It just goes to show that you don’t have to mill about in the airport when you’ve got a few hours in between flights.

Nathan Rodriguez
Reply

Take a time to buy some electronics wouldn´t be a bad idea, in my opinion, as the variety and the prices should be good there.

Gillian Chambers
Reply

Just like to say that there are also options closer to the airport if you don’t fancy going into the city or are worried about time. For instance there is the new terminal two building, which has an impressive cinema complex, lots of shops and restaurants. You can also take a spectacular cable car ride up to Ngong Ping from Tung Chung, which is five minutes from the airport, to see the huge buddha statue near the summit of this beautiful mountain. Nearby there is an interesting buddhist monastery which serves delicious vegetarian food and is open to the public. There are also trails and paths through the country park surrounding the buddha if you feel like some exercise although the steps leading up to the statue are quite taxing especially on a hot, humid day. In addition, another short train ride from the airport will take you to Disney World.

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