There’s no shortage of things to do in Hong Kong, so why not get into the holiday spirit by mixing up your usual festive routine and trying something different? Whether you’re entertaining out of towners, or simply want some time to yourself, here’s our round-up of Christmas alternatives.
Just because junk season has ended, doesn’t mean you can’t hire a boat in the cooler months too! Find a juicy turkey and also ask your friends to bring along their favourite holiday dish. Then tuck into a potluck feast on the water, complete with the Hong Kong skyline as a backdrop for the ultimate display of lights.
Read more: Your Junk Trip Guide
For a peaceful getaway head on over to Lantau Island and visit Tian Tan Big Buddha via cable car. Aside from the serene surroundings, you can also check out Po Lin Monastery once you’re at the top. When you’re finished taking in the view, catch the bus down to Tai-O fishing village for a night spent on stilts. Poke around town sampling yummy seafood from street stalls – we highly recommend the cuttlefish!
Then, why not spend the night at Tai O Heritage Hotel, a non-profit colonial style inn (fun fact: it was built in 1902 under British rule and originally served as a Police station). And if you’re up for a local culinary experience sign up for one of its salted egg yolk cooking classes (Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays) or rice dumpling-making classes (Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays), available to all room guests.
Read more: Your Neighbourhood Guide to Tung Chung
Embrace your inner child, pack your bags and head off for an enchanting weekend indulging in Disney’s Christmas magic! Treat yourself to a night at the Hong Kong Disneyland Hotel and take part in the park’s festive celebrations – including the annual Christmas show! On Christmas day itself, book in for brunch with your favourites Disney Princesses and get a selfie with Mickey and Minnie. This is a great way to turn back time and remember how Christmas felt as a kid!
You’ve made it through yet another chaotic year in the 852, so its time to #treatyoself. Why not consider a staycation at a high-end hotel and enjoy a luxurious Christmas spa day? The Bliss Spa at the W Hong Kong offers an array of relaxing and rejuvenating opportunities, whether you prefer soaking it up and sweating it out in the steam room, deep tissue massages, mani-pedis (the Head-to-Toe ‘Glow’ Treatment in particular sounds like a winner!), or even a combination of them all, Bliss has you covered. Depending on the package you choose, you can also snack on cupcakes and cheese while sipping on bubbly throughout the day. Yes, please!
Read more: The Best Staycation Deals for HKID Holders
Santa Claus is coming to town! Or is he? Create your own version of Christmas by hosting a mystery dinner party. Essentially a life-size game of Cluedo, make sure everyone dresses up, follows their script and attends dinner in character. Whether it be a masquerade ball or a 1920s boardwalk mystery, these dinner parties are loads of fun and give you the opportunity to be someone else for the night. A little friendly competition solving a “whodunnit” never hurt anyone, plus, a feast is always involved, and hence, lots of booze.
Read more: Sassy Social: The Murder Mystery Dinner Party
Get out of the city and immerse yourself in the great outdoors. Think hiking, beach partying and camping – with lots of food and bevvies in tow. Trek to Sai Kung and over to Ham Tin beach/Tai Long Wan, where you can pitch a tent and crash for an evening (or two) under the night sky. Board rentals and camping equipment are available for rent too, so be sure to bring some cash, snacks and, of course, lots of drinks (must keep hydrated!). Enjoy epic panoramic views and a night with your toes in the sand. It’s the perfect way to refresh and recharge.
Read more: Top 5 Night Hikes in Hong Kong
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Grab the girls (and guys!) because the Hong Kong Ballet is performing a Christmas favourite, The Nutcracker. This is the perfect excuse to get dolled up for a glitzy evening out! Make sure to make a night of it by starting with cocktails and dinner before settling in for some quality entertainment. Buy your tickets here.
Whether it’s volunteering at your favourite doggy shelter, doing your part in reducing waste, or helping rehabilitate refugees, get out there this Christmas and spread the gift of love! Give back by joining a volunteer network like HandsOn Hong Kong, which hosts an array of charitable events throughout the year. Check out its calendar so you can get involved and give back to a cause you’re passionate about this festive season! Find details on how you can get involved here.
Read more: Get Involved in Giving Back: Where to Volunteer in Hong Kong
Ever feel like you’re stuck in a routine? Make the most of your Christmas break and visit a part of the 852 you’ve never been to before! Embrace your inner tourist and take a few day trips. It’s so easy to hang around the same spots and forget how much else there is to see and do in Hong Kong (and some of the best activities are free!). Whether you choose to wander around buzzing districts full of history, like Kwun Tong and Wan Chai, or visit an outlying island, countless adventures lie just beyond your doorstep!