Hong Kong’s bustling metropolis packs a giant wallop of history and modernity into a dense package. A former UK colony, this Chinese city is known for sky-high glass towers, outstanding cuisine, and endless shopping options. Hong Kong’s transportation is efficient and straightforward, giving travellers ample opportunity to explore all the hidden nooks and crannies of this fascinating metropolis. Our local Hong Kong photographers give us a rundown of their favourite must-visit spots — get them on your itinerary, asap.

Flytographer Keith

EAT

My favourite places to eat in Hong Kong are Sister Wah Beef Brisket, Yat Lok Restaurant for BBQ goose, Four Seasons Pot Rice, and Shiu-Kee for Hong Kong-style noodles. If you need a Western food fix, head to the Butchers Club Burger.

SEE

If you want to get a true visual of Hong Kong’s urban density, be sure to check out the Yik Cheong Building, also known as the Monster Building. This crazy dense collection of buildings appear to be stacked on top of each other and is one of Hong Kong’s most popular architectural sights. Then, experience a complete 180 with a visit to the serene Tsz Shan Monastery, a tranquil sanctuary (water offerings are made as an eco-friendly alternative to incense or fruit) perched on a hill with stunning sea views. Tip: You must pre-book before your visit.

DO

Shop the Wet Market on Chun Yeung Street. Even if you don’t plan to haggle for your future dinner ingredients, the sights, sounds, and activity make this market worth a visit for a look at how Hong Kong locals shop.

 Flytographer Michelle

EAT

If you’re into drinking and eating, Hong Kong is the place to be. It’s hard to know where to begin. Din Tai Fung’s Taiwanese dumplings filled with a delicious broth are a must while you’re here. Dim Sum Square is my favourite local restaurant for Dim Sum. Chachawan is a great Thai restaurant, Jinjuu has delicious Korean fusion, and Limewood is a great spot if you want to escape the city and be beachside. Egg waffles, egg tarts, dumplings, and bubble tea are all delicious treats Hong Kong specializes in.

SEE

Head up to Hong Kong’s Peak either day or night for beautiful views of the city. Another great vantage point is Ozone, the tallest bar in the world. Check out neighbourhoods like Sheung Wan, which has lots of street art and antique shops. The beaches are a must-see and the views from most hikes are gorgeous. Nan Lian Garden is a beautiful oasis. You can also visit local fishing villages like Tai O.

DO

Take the Star Ferry across the harbour. Go on a hike like Dragon’s Back with beautiful views of Hong Kong and end up at either Shek O or Big Wave Bay Beach and enjoy Hong Kong’s natural beauty. Tai Long Wan is another beautiful beach. Rent a boat out in Sai Kung and enjoy a different side of Hong Kong. Visit the night markets and if you feel like experiencing a bit of chaos, head to Causeway Bay and Times Square for some shopping. If you’re searching for nightlife, head to Lan Kwai Fong.

 Flytographer Chris

EAT

Hong Kong is famous for its tasty food. If you are a big fan of street food, don’t miss out on the curry fish ball and siu mai. Siu mai and chili oil is the best combination. If you want to try some authentic local food, you must go to one of the cha chaan teng. Cha chaan teng literally means “tea restaurant.” They serve both Chinese and Western cuisine. You can try the famous pineapple bun — best served with a slice of partially-melted butter — in some of the cha chaan teng.

SEE

Victoria Harbour and the Peak are some of the must-go places if you are visiting Hong Kong for the very first time. If you love in-depth travel, you must visit Sham Shui Po. Sham Shui Po is one of the oldest districts in Hong Kong. You can see the more authentic side of Hong Kong. You can even go to the Garden Hill in the middle of Sham Shui Po and enjoy the spectacular sunset there.

DO

There are tons of things to do in Hong Kong. If you are visiting Hong Kong with your family, you can visit Disneyland or Ocean Park. These amusement parks are playgrounds for both kids and adults. If you are a nature explorer, you can go on a hike at Sunset Peak, which is the third-tallest mountain in Hong Kong, on Lantau Island. In autumn, the peak will be filled with miscanthus, or silvergrass, and the view simply stunning, especially during sunset. Remember not to leave any garbage behind and never pick any miscanthus.