from Chiang Mai, there are many new destinations to explore. Direct flights take us daily to attractive Asian destinations like Hong Kong, being only a three hour flight from Chiang Mai (see Hong Kong Express and Air China’s schedules page 54) Hong Kong is one of the most dynamic cities in the world! This vibrant destination is a fusion of many cultures, a sophisticated mix of the east and the west. It is under the cultural influences of Cantonese, Mandarin and British, and there are also substantial communities of Hakka, Fujian and Shanghainese people. There are 6.8 million Hong Kong people living in 1,102 square kilometers. All these cultures are unique themselves while harmoniously mixed together.
Visitors in Hong Kong will have no problem getting around as English is widely used throughout the islands and almost all the street signs are bilingual. The city offers unique travel experiences awaiting visitors. The island of Hong Kong is the real heart of Hong Kong, it is about 80 square kilometres. On the island’s North, from Central to Causeway Bay are the shopping, entertainment and commercial districts. Whereas the Southern District is the backyard of Hong Kong where you can find nice beaches, cafes and markets. The New Territories is on the other side, it consists of Lantau Island, Cheung Chau Island, Lamma Island and another 260 islands. Although Sha Tin, Tuen Mun and Lantau Islands are now developed into more modern satellite cities, the historic and natural parts of the New Territories are still preserved.
In between Hong Kong Island and New Territories is the Kowloon Peninsula. It is also an important part of the bustling city. Districts like Tsim Sha Tsui, Yau Ma Tei and Mong Kok are the most attractive, and contain all the shopping, eating, entertainment and cultural attractions, highly comparable to Hong Kong Island.
Famous attractions in Hong Kong not to be missed include:
- Victoria Harbour: You haven’t been to Hong Kong if you haven’t been to Victoria Harbour. While you take a stroll along the Victoria Harbour promenade you can enjoy spectacular views of Hong Kong’s skyline.
- Tsim Sha Tsui: famous for its shopping, eating and cultural attractions. The Harbour City shopping mall has over 700 shops! It also has a Shopping Boulevard, many garment outlets and cosmetics shops at Granville Road.
- Sky100 Hong Kong Observation Deck: a state-of-the-art sightseeing attraction where visitors can enjoy a 360-degree view of Hong Kong and Victoria Harbour.
- Horse Racing: sitting among thousands of crazy horse racing fans will enliven your senses and can be the experience of a lifetime.
- The Big Buddha is located on Ngong Ping Lantau Island and is one of the top sightseeing attractions in Hong Kong. Completed in 1993 it is 34 meters high and weight 250 metric tons.It is the second largest outdoor sitting Buddha. You can go there on the Ngong Ping 360 cable car which is another famous attraction.
- Cuisine in Hong Kong is renowned internationally. Cantonese specialities, dim sum and fresh seafood are must-tries!