Easy self guided day out in Hong Kong on a budget

I’ve just got back from another fantastic trip to Hong Kong and thought I would share this idea for an easy self-guided day out on a budget (less than £1 in fact) with Your Holiday Plannerreaders. Trying to pack in too much can be exhausting, so this day out is designed to be taken leisurely (yes, it is possible even in this busy city!). The tour is good for families as there’s not too much walking and it’s GREAT value.

Getting around with an Octopus Card

Using an Octopus card is the easiest way to get around Hong Kong. Not only can you pay for all Hong Kong’s transport options with one easy swipe, you can use it in lots of shops and cafes during your stay. The outlay is HK$150 for an adult and children over 12 ($100 credit plus $50 ‘deposit’ which is refundable when you hand the card back). The initial outlay for a child’s card (under 12) is HK$70, though this only gives you $20 credit plus the $50 ‘deposit. Buy at any MTR or Rail station.

A tour for HK$10 (less than £1!) per person

Hong Kong is blessed with a super efficient MTR (underground/subway), but the best way to see the sights of any city is above ground.

Tsim Sha Tsui (Kowloon) to Central (Hong Kong)

  • Start at the Star Ferry Pier in Tsim Sha Tsui (Kowloon)
  • Pick up a map from the tourist office and use it to identify the places for further exploration on the tour
  • Take the Star Ferry to Central (cost HK$2.50; HK$1.50 for children upper deck) and enjoy this iconic Victoria Harbour crossing – a short ride, but an absolute must-do

Central Pier to Des Voeux Road

  • Once on Hong Kong island, enjoy the views across the harbour to Kowloon. Look UP and marvel at Hong Kong’s second tallest building, Tower 2 of the International Finance Centre

Views walking from Central Pier to IFC Mall

  • Take the escalators/steps up to the overhead walkway leading to the IFC Mall (opposite Central Piers 3 and 4) – no crossing of dual carriageways to worry about plus the bonus of great views

Snack or lunch at the IFC Mall (or shopping opportunity) – try frozen yogurt at Yo Mama or a traditional lunch at Tasty Congee & Noodle Wantun Shop

  • Exit at Exchange Square and follow the walkway to the right and the signs to the Mid-level escalators, crossing over Connaught Road Central
  • Continue until you get to the Hang Seng Bank Headquarters and take the escalators back down to street level at Des Voeux Road

Des Voeux Road (Central) to Wanchai or Causeway Bay


Central to Wanchai and Causeway Bay by tram

  • Take a tram heading west to Causeway Bay or Wanchai, good for outlet shops (cost HK$2.30; HK$1.20 for children).  Tip: trams can get very busy, but mid-week later in the afternoon is a good time. If the first tram is busy, just wait for an emptier one. Sit upstairs if you can at the front or the back and remember: board at the back and disembark at the front

Refreshment – try some freshly squeezed fruit or vegetable juice from the street (typically HK$10 or HK$15) or even some fish balls on a skewer!

Freshly squeezed juice!

  • Hop back onto a tram if needed to get to theTonnochy Road tramstop in Wan Chai (cost HK$2.30; HK$1.20 for children) and head north to the Wanchai Ferry Pier (further refreshment opportunities)

Wanchai to Tsim Sha Tsui (Kowloon)

  • Take the Star Ferry to Tsim Sha Tsui (cost HK$2.50; HK$1.50 for children upper deck) – another chance to enjoy the harbour crossing, and a slightly longer ride!
  • Walk to the Avenue of Stars to enjoy the spectacular laser and light show in the harbour at 8pm

Dinner at Ocean Terminal – try Café de Coral for a quick, low-cost, no booking required dinner, or pre-book a table by the window at Nha Trang Vietnamese Restaurant


This easy self guided day out in Hong Kong costs around HK$10 per person (that’s less than £1) in transport costs, which means more budget for shopping and eating!


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