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Hong Kong’s illustrious history stretches back thousands of years long before this shipping and trade center became a British colony in 1842. In 1997, in a globally televised ceremony, the Chinese government assumed control of this harbor city, but to this day, it continues to follow English Common Law. Hong Kong is home to one of the world’s largest and densest populations, and though getting around might initially seem daunting, the city’s public transportation system is excellent. For a throwback experience, ride the Peak Tram, which has been shuttling tourists and residents alike up to Victoria Peak since 1888.
If you hear the expression "Let's drink tea," the speaker is probably referring to getting small portions of food called "dim sum". In Hong Kong tea is often served with dim sum, and visitors should indulge in the local cuisine and tradition of "drinking tea". Dragon boat racing, which roughly looks like crew, is steeped in lore and legend. It started 2,000 years ago as an act to the worship deities of the sea. Today, you will see junks lowered into the water for races, which primarily take place between March and October. Find bits of culture like this to add to your trip, because Hong Kong is one-of-a-kind.
From Mountaintops to City Streets
Victoria Peak is, without exaggeration, one of the most spectacular panoramic views anywhere, and if you’re trying to decide what to do first here—this is an excellent candidate. From its 1,811-foot high vantage point, you’ll see Hong Kong in all its sprawling glory. Victoria Harbor is one of the best natural harbors on the planet and touring it by night on a ferry ride is another of the most memorable ways.to see the skyline and the bright lights projected from building tops at night.
Street markets are central to Hong Kong’s identity, and no stay would be complete without visiting one. Take a deep inhale once at the Temple Street Night Market to prepare you for its myriad of dizzying sights, sounds and smells. Here, you can experience Hong Kong’s culture in a microcosm: its energy, passion for trade, Cantonese food — even impromptu street performances of Chinese opera.