This Under-the-Radar Destination is a Culture Hunter’s Paradise

Hong Kong Star Ferry

If you think you know Hong Kong, think again. Things are ever-changing in this harbour-straddling city; a vibrant metropolis of varied landscapes, ancient rituals and frenetic energy. It’s this constant evolution that keeps Hong Kong exciting, especially for culture buffs who thrive on the new. Ready to explore engrossing museum exhibits, stay in a super-sleek hotel or sample some of the city’s traditional treats? Here’s where to start.

See art (and harbour views) at M+ museum

Hong Kong M+ Museum

The playful sculptures of Isamu Noguchi. The blinding brightness of the city’s reclaimed neon street signs. The treasured photographs of its colourful surrounding streets. These are just some of what’s to uncover at M+ Museum, a space dedicated to modern and contemporary visual culture. It’s a case of “choose your own adventure” on a visit to this enthralling museum: join a weekend workshop exploring new exhibitions, stop in for a screening of a new release film in the evening or learn about exhibitions direct from curators as part of the ongoing Open Up M+ Series

Follow an independent gallery trail

Rossi & Rossi Gallery

Hong Kong’s independent art scene is booming. From big name galleries tucked into corners of Central (highlights include Gagosian and Galerie du Monde) to the many visual displays littered through the gritty, up-and-coming Wong Chuk Hang neighbourhood, there are plenty of creative goods to gaze at around the city. Dedicate an afternoon to exploring the latter, wandering from Rossi & Rossi through to the Art Statements and Ben Brown.

Stay in new-world design hotels

The Fleming Hotel

Sure, there’s the classic old-world-style hotels in Hong Kong… then there’s the glitzier contemporary cohort. Hong Kong’s extensive history has had only a cursory influence on some of the city’s newest accommodation options: at The Fleming, a hip hotel in Wan Chai, the design nods to the city’s iconic Star Ferry, with maritime motifs and leading colours of green and white, resulting in a Wes Anderson-esque boutique hotel. At The Upper House, there’s a deliberately calm ambience that complements the minimalist design, balancing the city’s characteristic energy (and noise!) several floors below. The hotel’s complimentary yoga classes help to drown out the figurative noise, too.

Discover historic treasures at the Hong Kong Palace Museum

Hong Kong Palace Museum

The architecture alone of West Kowloon Cultural District’s Hong Kong Palace Museum is reason enough to visit. Based on the principle of the “vertical central axis” of Beijing’s intricate Forbidden City palace complex, the interior structure of the museum is a meeting of three atriums stacked on top of each other, leading visitors vertically through the 900 treasures displayed throughout the museum. Interspersed with glimpses of the harbour views that surround the structure, it’s a truly new world museum, brought to life by ancient artefacts that date back as far as the Qing dynasty. 

Take a food tour in Sham Shui Po

Sham Shui Po Street Food

Food lovers will struggle to sample something from every facet of the countless gastronomic experiences that Hong Kong serves up. Start your tasting journey in Sham Shui Po, an area that brims with traditional, family-run eateries, each offering signature dishes including breakfast buns, handmade egg noodles, plump dumplings and all manner of tofu-based dishes. Tread the trail on a tour – there are more than a few in the area. 

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SEE ALSO: 23 Experiences You Can Only Have in Hong Kong

*Commencing June 2023 subject to government and regulatory approval.

Image credits: Hong Kong Palace Museum

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