Central and Western is a district of Hong Kong Island. It is the political, administrative and financial hub and home to some fantastic skyscrapers and Victoria Peak.
The area's proximity to Victoria Harbour led it to become an early centre of trade and finance. Today it remains Hong Kong's administrative centre.
Central in this guide means the administrative district of Central and Western. It includes the following neighbourhoods that are either in or close to the Central Business District:
- Central (中環) — previously known as Victoria, this is 'downtown' Hong Kong and may be defined as the area within walking distance of Central MTR station. Head north towards the harbour and you will find modern buildings such as the IFC shopping mall. Alternatively, make your way uphill towards the mountain and you will encounter some of the oldest parts of Hong Kong.
- Lan Kwai Fong (蘭桂坊) — a small area just southwest of Central Station focused on the L-shaped street of Lan Kwai Fong and also including parts of D'Aguilar Street, Wellington Street and Wyndham Street forming a square around Lan Kwai Fong. The area is packed with restaurants, bars and clubs. Popular with expats and local drinkers.
- Soho (荷南美食區) — entertainment zone between Hollywood Road and Bonham Road-Caine Road, featuring restaurants, bars, clubs, galleries and shops. Take the elevated walkway from the IFC mall to catch the escalator up.
- Mid-Levels (半山區) — continue up the escalator to find the high-end residential area half way up Victoria Peak. In the morning the escalator moves residents down the mountain to their offices in Central.
- Sheung Wan (上環) — interesting area below Mid-Levels between Central in the east and Sai Ying Pun in the west. Although adjacent to Central, it has its own identity and is worth exploring if you are interested in small shops and remnants of the territory's colonial past.
Further afield, you might explore:
- Victoria Peak (太平山) — high class neighbourhood and popular tourist destination that looks down on Central and Victoria Harbour. Before World War II, non-white people were banned from setting foot on the Peak unless they were domestic workers in the one of the resident white families' homes, and even today, this is still one of Hong Kong's most exclusive neighbourhoods.
- Sai Ying Pun (西營盤) — traditional Chinese residential neighbourhood that is host to Hong Kong University and is populated by a large number of dried seafood shops.
- Kennedy Town (堅尼地城) — famous for being at the end of the tramline and little else. This used to be the place to find undesirable people and noxious industries. With the arrival of the MTR, Kennedy Town has become gentrified.
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Due to a land reclamation and waterfront redevelopment project in Central/Admiralty, access to the ferries can be a little confusing - take heed of signs warning about the ever-shifting arrangements.
The Transport Department provides an online directory of Hong Kong's ferry services.
- Star Ferry operates boats between Central or Wan Chai on Hong Kong Island and Kowloon. The cost is $2.5 on weekdays, $3.4 on weekends and holidays
- New World First Ferry also boats between North Point on Hong Kong Island and Kowloon
- Fortune Ferry operates one route between North Point on Hong Kong Island and Kwun Tong in, Kowloon
- Coral Sea Ferry operates two routes between Sai Wan Ho on Hong Kong Island and Kwun Tong or Sam Ka Tsuen in Kowloon.
For details of cross-harbour buses, see Hong Kong#Get_in.
Bus fares range from $8.90 to $11.10 for routes linking the urban areas in Kowloon and Hong Kong Island. Some routes to remote places have higher fares.
Central is the end of the Tsuen Wan Line and is on the Island Line. The Tung Chung Line, the South Island Line and the East Rail Line, which was extended in 2022, provide service to Central.
By airport express trainEdit
The Hong Kong Station on the Airport Express is in Central.
The tram serves Hong Kong Island from Shau Kei Wan (筲箕灣) in East Hong Kong Island to Kennedy Town in the far west.
- 1 Cenotaph (和平紀念碑), Central (between Statue Square and the City Hall, north of Chater Rd). Built in 1923 in honour of the fallen soldiers of World War I and later also attributed to the ones from World War II. It is a copy of the more famous one in London.
- 2 City Hall, 5 Edinburgh Place, Central (Central Station J Exit, Hong Kong Station A Exit). Concert hall, theatre, and exhibition space. This cultural hub is famous for its dim sum restaurant.
- 3 Government House (禮賓府), Central. Originally the official residence of the British Governors of Hong Kong under colonial rule, since the handover back to China in 1997, it has been the official residence of the Chief Executive of Hong Kong. Only open to the public on specific open days that are usually published on the web-site in advance, usually once in the spring to coincide with the blooming of the flowers in the garden, and once in the autumn.
- 4 Man Mo Temple Compound (文武廟), 124-126, 128, 130 Hollywood Rd, Sheung Wan / Soho. Daily 8AM-6PM. Consists of Man Mo Temple, Lit Shing Kung Temple and Kung Sor assembly hall. Man Mo Temple was built in the 1840s and is Hong Kong Island's oldest temple. It is nestled amongst antique shops, with the air full of smoke from hundreds of burning incense coils. While you are there, pop into one of the many antique shops to see some of the best Chinese and South-East Asian antiques in the world, and the many very clever fakes for sale.
- 5 Statue Square (皇后像廣場), Central (Central Station, exit K). Public square built in the 19th century with a number of royal statues. Now the only statue is of banker Sir Thomas Jackson. It is a relaxing place with plantings and fountains. The square is surrounded by some impressive buildings, including the HSBC headquarters and the Legislative Council.
- 6 Jamia Mosque (些利街清真寺), No. 30, Shelley Street, Mid-Levels (walk southwest from MTR Central Station). Constructed in 1890, it is the oldest mosque in Hong Kong.
Museums and exhibitionsEdit
- 7 Dr Sun Yat-sen Museum, 7 Castle Rd, Mid-Levels, ☏ , fax: , email@example.com. M-W F 10AM-6PM, Sa Su 10AM-7PM. Exhibits on the life of Sun Yat-sen. $10, concession $5, free on Wed.
- 8 Flagstaff House Museum of Tea Ware, Hong Kong Park, Central, ☏ . W-M 10AM-6PM. Museum of teapots and cups, with exhibits ranging from modern to 3000 years old. Free.
- 9 Hong Kong Museum of Medical Sciences (茶具文物館), 2 Caine Lane, Mid-Levels. The neighbour of one of the earliest hospitals in Hong Kong, Tung Wah Hospital, this museum shows how the healthcare system evolved from traditional Chinese medicine to modern Western medicine, via the establishment of numerous hospitals and the first medical school (now the University of Hong Kong), of which Dr. Sun Yat-sen was a student.
- 10 City Gallery, Edinburgh Place, City Hall (see Landmarks above). A celebration of planning proposals and infrastructure projects. Interactive features and devices give visitors the latest information on planning and infrastructure developments in Hong Kong. Free.
- 11 Hong Kong Visual Arts Centre, 7A Kennedy Rd, Mid-Levels, ☏ , fax: . W-M 10AM-9PM. Offers visual arts studios for artists as well as exhibition halls.
- 12 Madame Tussaud's, The Peak. The usual Tussaud's waxworks with characters that appeal to Chinese interests.
- 13 University Museum and Art Gallery, 94 Bonham Rd, Mid-Levels, ☏ . M-Sa 9:30AM-6PM, Su 1-6PM. The oldest museum in Hong Kong dating back to 1953 has a large permanent collection of Chinese antiquities as well as modern paintings. It also host exhibitions of contemporary and ancient art.
- 14 Hong Kong Maritime Museum (香港海事博物館), Pier 8, Central Ferry Piers (follow signs to Star Ferry Pier Central, the museum is next door). M-F 9:30AM-5:30PM, Sa Su 10AM-7PM. In addition to original artifacts, cannons, scrolls, ship's models and paintings, the galleries of Hong Kong Maritime Museum have over 25 interactive screens using the latest technology to introduce visitors to the vast range of stories and topics at the heart of Hong Kong's – and the world's – maritime story. You can learn of Poon Lim, the world record holder for solo survival at sea. See how a junk is built. Trace the development of China's trade routes from the Han to the Qing Dynasty. Investigate China Trade paintings. Hunt pirates. Load a container ship. $30, half price for seniors and students.
- 15 Trick Eye Museum Hong Kong, Level 3, The Peak Galleria, 118 Peak Road, The Peak (Take the Peak Tram and go up to the Peak Galleria Mall), ☏ , firstname.lastname@example.org. 10AM-10PM. The only Korean 3D museum in Hong Kong. It presents a magnificent collection of 3D art pieces. It features paintings on plain surfaces that magically appear to be three dimensional through the use of optical illusion. You are most welcome to touch, climb and interact with the amazing exhibits. You can also enjoy the free observation deck view of the beautiful Harbour View. Adults $150, child or senior $100.
Parks and natureEdit
- 16 Chater Garden, Central. Adjacent to the Legislative Council Building, this is the place where disgruntled Hongkongers come to protest. Named after businessman Sir Paul Chater.
- 17 Hong Kong Park, Central, ☏ , fax: , email@example.com. Daily 6AM-10PM. A great place to relax in Central. Head for L16 cafe and bar which is one of the few places where you can eat and drink outdoors away from the traffic.
- 18 Hong Kong Zoological and Botanical Gardens, Mid-Levels. A small, free zoo with reptiles, primates, a jaguar, and rare and endangered birds and plants.
- 19 King George V Memorial Park, Sai Ying Pun.
- 20 Lung Fu Shan Country Park, The Peak. Hong Kong newest and smallest Country Park. Its proximity to the Peak makes it highly accessible and one is rewarded by a pleasant hike away from the crowds nearby. A convenient place to make a BBQ with great views over Victoria Harbour. Budding military historians will enjoy exploring Pinewood battery and other remnants of the Second World War.
Get a great view of Hong Kong from the giant wok-shaped Peak Tower on Victoria Peak, one of the highest points on the island, as long as the air is clear – it can be obscured by air pollution or cloud. Views of the natural landscape are a stark contrast to views down in the city. The Peak Tower has an observation platform, and it and the Peak Galleria are full of souvenir shops and overpriced restaurants with spectacular views. There are also some museums and viewing galleries.
From the dawn of British colonisation, the Peak hosted the most exclusive neighbourhood for the territory's richest residents, where local Chinese weren't permitted to live until after World War II. The rich were carried to the Peak in their sedan chairs to escape the summer heat.
Since 1888 the Peak Tram[dead link] ($37 one way, $52 return) has run directly up from Garden Rd in Central. It stops at the bottom of the Peak Tower. It makes a few stops on the way, so it is possible to go half-way and hike the winding roads on the sloping geography. To get to the start of the tram, follow the signs for ten minutes from Central Station, or bus number 15C runs regularly from the Star Ferry pier. A more picturesque, cheaper and slower way of reaching the Peak is by taking bus 15 (not 15C) from the Star Ferry pier in Central. Not only is it cheaper at $10.30 but, as the bus snakes up the mountain, you can enjoy beautiful views of both sides of Hong Kong Island and passing the territory's priciest neighbourhoods. You can also walk to the Peak from Mid-Levels along Old Peak Road.
The observation deck of the Peak Tower offers panoramic views of both sides of the island but there are a number of nice walks around the Peak Tower that also offer good, but less panoramic, views (getting out is not intuitive as the exits are by design not well-signed; they are located on the ends of the ground floor), One of them is the Lion Pavilion Lookout on Findley Road, about one minute walk from The Peak Tower. You will be able to catch a laser show at 8PM every night. On sunny days, you can find an old man outside the pavilion, offering rickshaw rides along Findley Road. A 10-minute ride costs $100.
For the best views and to get away from the crowds, there is a circular walk along Lugard Rd and Harlech Rd. From Lugard Rd there are views of the skyscrapers of Central and Victoria Harbour. From Harlech Rd, the views are of Lamma and other Outlying Islands. The walk takes around an hour.
From Harlech Rd, you can hike into the Lung Fu Shan Country Park and explore the relics of World War II.
- 21 Central-Mid-Levels Escalator, Mid-Levels (Hong Kong MTR station). At 800 m long, this is the longest outdoor covered escalator system in the world. The escalator runs downhill from 6AM to 10AM and uphill from 10:30AM to midnight every day. Part of it near the bottom goes along Cochrane Street, and it's hard to miss. It goes from busy areas at the bottom to upscale residential neighborhoods at the top. For tourists it's not all that useful for transportation, but it's an interesting curiosity that CNN declared one of the world's coolest commutes. Free.
- Mount Davies. Walk up Mount Davies to see the abandoned Second World War-era gunnery fortifications. Take the steps up from Victoria Rd just west of Kennedy Town; or follow Victoria Rd until you reach the roundabout (about a kilometre), and take the mountain road up. The climb will take a while, but there are many ruins to explore, and great views. There's also a youth hostel at the top if you are too tired to make it back in one go.
- 1 Sheung Wan Civic Centre, 5/F., Sheung Wan Municipal Services Building, 345 Queen's Road Central,. Theatre and concert venue.
- 2 Wellington St, Central. Nice street with dried foodstuffs, various restaurants, majong pieces. Also check out Art Jam at 123 Wellington St. They provide you with canvas, paints and materials. From $200 to $500 depending on when you go and canvas size.
- 3 [dead link] Yan Shang Kee (嫣裳記), Flat C, 1/F, 16A Elgin Street, Central (Take Central-Mid-Levels Escalator to Elgin Street and walk northwest for 1 minute), firstname.lastname@example.org. 9AM-6PM (reservation required). Rent a qipao to wear for a day while exploring Hong Kong. $320.
- Flow, 7/F, 29, Hollywood Rd, Central, ☏ . Second-hand bookshop where you can exchange your used travel guides.
- Hollywood Road, Soho. Antiques.
- IFC Mall, Central (in the International Financial Centre complex right above MTR Hong Kong/Central stations). Sleek and impressive, this is one of the most prestigious shopping centres on the island. Here you will find one of the best cinemas with the added bonus that the film will be the English language version (if it is an animation). Go up to the rooftop and you will find yourself in public open space. The views of Victoria Harbour are good and you will find a couple of bars that will help you enjoy the public terrace on the rooftop by selling you drinks. Although the bars dominate this area, there is nothing to stop you taking your own food and drinks and picnicking on the tables and chairs provided.
- The Landmark, Central. An older shopping centre that has had a facelift to incorporate a five-star hotel. For many, it remains a focus for many of the most expensive designer fashion shops in Hong Kong.
- Pedder St and Queen's Rd, Central. One of the best locations for jewellery and designer watches at prices that can be up to 35% less than Europe. As always, shop around for the best prices and always buy from reputable dealers to avoid fake goods.
- Pacific Place and Queensway and Admiralty Centre, Admiralty. A number of interconnected shopping malls connected to Admiralty MTR. Pleasant air-conditioned shopping for mid-price to expensive branded goods and restaurants.
- Soho and south of Hollywood Rd area. Has a trendy shopping area around Staunton and Lower Elgin St with lots of local designers.
- 1 The Lanes, Central (Li Yuen St West and Li Yuen St East, between Queens Rd and Des Voeux Rd, Central). Buy silks, fabrics, Chinese dresses, watches, leather bags and many other things here. Despite its prime location close to Central MTR, these narrow streets have a reputation among locals for quality goods at competitive prices.
- 2 Cat Street, Sheung Wan. Probably the best place to buy souvenirs, lots of Mao memorabilia, porcelain, Buddha statues and "antiques". Lok Ku Rd, walk down Hollywood Rd towards the west, when you see the Man Mo temple walk down the stairs on the right hand side.
- 3 Man Wa Lane, Sheung Wan. Also known a Chop Alley a multitude of little stalls offer everything from functional modern rubber stamps to hand carved traditional Chinese seals, you can pick out a stone seal and have it personalised with your name, your name in Chinese (many stores will have on display a list of popular transliterations of Western names into Chinese characters) your initials, or even your own design. The seal will be ready to collect in a couple of days and will usually come in a presentation box together with a small container of seal paste.
Central is a world-class place to eat, with prices to match. Although Downtown Hong Kong has a reputation for posh nosh, travellers on a budget will not starve if they are careful. When it comes to food, Central justifiably feels like ‘Asia’s World City’ and has the full range of Chinese cuisines punctuated by restaurants from around the world. There is even a British-style fish and chip shop.
Eateries are found across Central and if you wander, perhaps looking for evidence of its colonial past, you can trust serendipity to stumble upon somewhere interesting to eat. If you are lost, the famous escalator will guide you past some of the best restaurants and will take you up the mountain to Soho. Soho (Staunton and Elgin Street) is a focus for mid-range and more expensive places to dine. Drinkers will find that the bars of Lan Kwai Fong provide a good range of international food. Adjacent to Lan Kwai Fong is ‘Rat Alley’ (Wing Wah Lane) where a selection of cheaper restaurants can be found. Despite the nickname, Wing Wah Lane is a popular place to eat, and has the advantage of having some places to sit outside in a car-free street.
The IFC shopping mall has a roof terrace where you will find a choice of bars and restaurants. The roof is public open space: here you can eat and drink outdoors with a view of Victoria Harbour.
While your here, also be sure to check out the main branch of 1 Tai Cheong Bakery (泰昌餅家), the most famous purveyor of the Hong Kong-style egg tart (蛋撻), and a favourite haunt of Chris Patten, Hong Kong's last colonial governor, during his days in office.
- Dumpling House, 26 Cochrane St, Central (below the escalator). Great Beijing-style dumplings, avoid going there during lunch hour, because it is packed. $8-30.
- Good Luck Thai, 13 Wing Wah Ln, Central (locally known as Rat Alley, off Lan Kwai Fong). Seating is both indoors and outdoors, very popular on weekends, nice atmosphere. Dishes starting from $40.
- Law Fu Kee, 50 Lyndhurst Terrace, Soho, ☏ . Popular little restaurant serving congee and noodles.
- Wai Kee Congee Shop (威記粥店), G/F, 82 Stanley St, Central, ☏ . A good place to sample some traditional Hong Kong style food. Below $45.
- XTC Gelato, G/F, 45B Cochrane St, Central, ☏ . A popular place to get your fix of ice cream or frozen yoghurt.
- Zhong Guo Song, Wo On Lane, Lan Kwai Fong. Good Chinese food, without MSG and less oil. Set dinners for two about $180.
- Lin Heung, 160-164 Wellington St, ☏ . This is one of the most authentic old world style dim sum restaurants in Hong Kong that uses trolleys to cart its dim sum snacks instead of ordering it using the tick box sheet. Be prepared for a stress-inducing experience as this restaurant is always crowded, and you have to work out the system for finding an empty seat and how to grab your desired dim sum snacks from the trolleys. It's a first-come, first-served system; no reservations are taken.
- L16 Cafe and Bar (湖心餐廳酒吧), Hong Kong Park, 19 Cotton Tree Drive, ☏ . Serves Thai and Italian food, but come for the location - not the food. A rare place to drink and eat outside away from the noise of Central.
- Maxim's Palace, 3F City Hall (just east from Star Ferry terminal), ☏ . One of Hong Kong's most popular dim sum spots, featuring harbour views if you're lucky enough to score a window table. The atmosphere and food are very much in the classical dim sum tradition, a large, noisy hall with waitresses pushing around carts laden with goodies; try the siu mai (燒賣), har gao (蝦餃) and mango pudding. Dim sum served 11AM-3PM daily, expect to queue on Sundays (when the restaurant opens at 9AM). Try to gather a few people so you can try many different kinds, and expect to pay $100-200 a head. Don't confuse this with Maxim's Restaurant on the 2nd floor.
- Pizza Express, 21 Lyndhurst Terrace. Has a nice view overlooking the Mid-Levels Escalator.
- 1 Yung Kee Restaurant, 32-40 Wellington St, Central (MTR Central Station Exit D2), ☏ . Daily 11AM-11:30PM. This is a popular place for Cantonese-style roast goose and century eggs. Come early and make reservations as they have been known to run out of geese!
Lan Kwai FongEdit
- Baci, Lan Kwai Fong. Pizza.
- Beirut, Lan Kwai Fong. Lebanese cuisine is top of the sheet. Lamb or chicken kebab and sisha. Nice decor but the food is a far cry from the real deal (particularly in taste).
- Tokyo Joe, Lan Kwai Fong. Japanese food.
- Fung Shing Restaurant (鳳城酒家), 7 On Tai St, Sheung Wan (in Western Market), ☏ . Very local eatery known for its dim sum, which is cheap and good at $10 and up per serving. Open daily from 7:30AM for the dim sum breakfast crowd, but no English menu.
- Al Dente, 16 Staunton St, Soho (中環蘇豪士丹頓街16號地下), ☏ . Italian cuisine. Serving large, medium quality dishes not too different from what you would find in an Italian bistro. Their pastas and meat dishes are better than their pizzas. Often full.
- Ayuthaiya, 35 Hollywood Rd, Soho (中環荷李活道35號), ☏ . M-Sa noon-after midnight, Su 6PM-after midnight. Thai cuisine. Serving quite authentic food in a stylish, dark environment. Expect $300-500 each.
- Brunch Club, 70 Peel St, Soho, ☏ . Neighbourhood-style Western coffee shop (pre-Starbucks style) specialising in brunch and breakfast, although dinner is also served. Customers are provided with a wide range of newspapers and magazines in English and Chinese. Clientele is mainly expatriate.
- Double Happiness Cafe, 48 Staunton St, Soho, ☏ . Shanghai cuisine. Nice and simple little restaurant serving authentic Shanghainese dishes. Prices reflects that this is in the centre of Soho and comparable food can be found much cheaper elsewhere.
- Jashan, 23 Hollywood Rd, Soho, ☏ . noon-3PM, 6PM-11PM. Indian cuisine. Serves great curries and perfect naan. The lunch buffet is good value. Lunch buffet $99.
- Oola, G/F, Centre Stage, Bridges St, Soho (take the Central Escalator up to Staunton St and then turn right along Staunton until it becomes Bridges St), ☏ . Away from the crowds in Soho, but worth the extra walk. International menu in a comfortable environment. Serves as both a place to eat or drink. Drinks are expensive. $150-300.
- Paisano's Pizzeria & Sub Shop, 23 Hollywood Road, Central, ☏ . 14" pizzas $100-170.
- La Pampa, Staunton St, Soho. Argentinian.
- The Peak Lookout, 121 Peak Rd, The Peak (near the top of the Peak Tram), ☏ . M-Th 10:30M-11:30PM, F 10:30AM-1AM, Sa 8:30AM-1AM, Su 8:30-10:30PM. Serving a range of international cuisine such as naan bread, Hainan chicken, and steaks in a 19th-century heritage building. Also has a pleasant garden patio.
- Percy Bakery, Shop b, g/f, 68 Catchick St, Kennedy Town, ☏ . A high quality bakery. Take away and delivery service only.
- 2 8½ Otto e Mezzo Bombana, 18 Chater Road (in Alexandra Shopping Arcade), ☏ . Only Italian restaurant outside Italy to be awarded three Michelin stars.
- 3 Bistro Bouchon, 49 Elgin St, Soho. French bistro focusing on steaks. Mains from around $200.
- [formerly dead link] Chez Patrick, 26 Peel St, Soho, ☏ . An excellent, Parisian-style French restaurant. The proprietor, Patrick, has a delightful obsession with foie gras which extends to creative dishes such as foie gras ice cream served as a first course.
- Chilli Fagara, 51A Graham St, Soho, ☏ . Sichuan cuisine. Great spicy dishes including the favourites you will find in Sichuan Province. This restaurant's ambitions appear to go further than just making the food as the mainland original implying that some might be disappointed. Somewhat overpriced but still good.
- Luk Yu Tea House (陸羽茶室), 26 Stanley St, Central. Famous for the excellent tea and traditional dim sum. It is a popular meeting place for businessmen. They provide an English menu on request.
- 4 Yung Kee Restaurant, 32-40 Wellington St, Central, ☏ . Established in 1942, this restaurant has enjoyed unparalleled success and was once named in the "Top Fifteen Restaurants in the World" by Fortune Magazine. Previously a humble BBQ house serving its renowned roast goose, it has evolved into a world-famous Cantonese restaurant. Dim sum is also served at lunch-time. Be prepared for a noisy environment at peak times, this type of restaurant is not for those seeking a quiet meal and is best experienced in a large group.
Lan Kwai FongEdit
If you want good food, a party atmosphere, or just to people watch, head to Hong Kong's traditional expat hangout of Lan Kwai Fong, a few blocks uphill from Central MTR. Dozens of bars sell pricey drinks: even basic beer costs $50 and up. The 7-Eleven store sells beer and mixed drinks much more cheaply than the bars - and the staff will even open the bottles for you. There is always something going on in The Fong, be it street festivals during the Halloween and New Year's celebrations or the Beer and Food Festivals that pop up in the summer.
- La Dolce Vita, Lan Kwai Fong.
- Insomnia, Lan Kwai Fong.
- Al's Diner, Lan Kwai Fong.
- Lux, Lan Kwai Fong.
- HAHAClub, D'Aguilar St, Lan Kwai Fong (next to C Club). For cheaper booze, you can try here.
- Works, 30-32 Wyndham St. A good place for tourists to start on the gay bar-scene. Popular with expats and tourists alike, it is easily accessible in Central. Friday and Saturday are the most popular nights but do not expect many drinkers to arrive much before 11PM.
Jump on the Mid-Levels escalator, and you'll find plenty of bars and restaurants on your way up the hill on Hollywood Rd, Staunton St and Elgin St:
- 1 65 Peel (何蘭正), ☏ . 16:00-01:00. A bar with a very Hong Kong aesthetic serving cocktails and a range of locally brewed beer.
- 2 de België, ☏ . 15:00-02:00. A bar specialising in Belgian beers.
- Club 1911, 27 Staunton St, Soho.
- Club Feather Boa, 38 Staunton St, Soho, ☏ .
- 3 Craft Brew & Co, G/F, 17 Old Bailey Street, ☏ . 12:00-01:00. A corner bar with a selection of craft beer on tap.
- 4 The Globe, 45-53 Graham St, Soho, ☏ . 10AM-2AM. Excellent beer pub, also has good menu aimed at western taste buds. It is also one of the few places that has Typhoon T8 on tap, a locally produced cask ale. Pint of beer $70, mains from $150.
- McSorley's Ale House, 55 Elgin St, Soho.
- The Spot Bar, 11 Staunton St, Soho. pint of beer $70.
- 5 Staunton's Wine Bar & Cafe, Staunton St, Soho, ☏ . A western-style restaurant with a bar on the ground floor and table service upstairs.
- Propaganda, B/F 1 Hollywood Rd, Soho (close to Works, it has an entrance that is hard to find so try and follow the migration along Hollywood Rd from Works). Famous gay club. Tends to get going after Works has faded.
- Bishop Lei International House, Robinson Rd, Mid-Levels. Operated by the Catholic Diocese. From $535.
- 1 [dead link] Cosco Hotel (香港中远酒店), Yick Fung Garden, 20-21, Praya Rd, Kennedy Town, ☏ , fax: . Listed rates from $858, discounted from $409.
- 2 Jockey Club Mt. Davis Youth Hostel, Top of Mt Davis Path, Mt Davis, Kennedy Town (free minibus from Kennedy Town MTR (10 per day see website for times)), ☏ . Great hostel almost at the top of Mt Davis, with good views over the city and plenty of fresh air, well away from the city bustle. Self-catering kitchen, with limited supplies sold in the hostel. Friendly staff. Dorm bed $180-250, double room $460-640.
- Lan Kwai Fong Hotel @ Kau U Fong, 3 Kau U Fong, Central (2 minutes’ walk from Sheung Wan MTR), ☏ , email@example.com. A boutique hotel uniquely designed with a distinctive touch of oriental style. Each room's furniture, fabrics and artifacts are meticulously chosen displaying striking individuality. Awarded as "Asia's Leading Boutique Hotel" by World Travel Awards 2009.
- 3 Ovolo Hotel – 286 Queens Road Central, 286 Queens Road Central, Central (2 minutes’ walk from Sheung Wan MTR), ☏ . Check-in: flexible, check-out: flexible. Boutique hotel that opened in 2012. 60 Rooms. Queen or twin mattresses, AppleTV, loot bag, rainfall shower, electric curtains, free minibar, free breakfast, free Wi-Fi, happy hour. $1,400.
- Hotel Jen (formerly Traders Hotel) (香港仁民饭店), 508 Queens Rd West, Kennedy Town, ☏ , fax: . Rooms with free internet and views of Victoria Harbour and nearby mountains. Business centre, fitness and outdoor swimming pool available. Chinese and Western restaurants as well as bar. Listed rates from $1,243, discounted from $600, breakfast $152 (included for more expensive rooms).
- Mingle Place On The Wing, 105 Wing Lok St, Sheung Wan, ☏ . Full sized suite provides separate living/work and bedroom areas. Rates start at $1,280.
- Ramada Hong Kong, 308 Des Voeux Rd West, Sai Ying Pun (on tram line), ☏ . Generally from $900, can be discounted to $600.
- Conrad Hotel Hong Kong, Pacific Place, 88 Queensway, Central, ☏ , fax: . One of three elegantly appointed 5-star hotels at the conveniently located Pacific Place complex. 513 rooms, swimming pool, and health club. Amongst the five restaurants is Nicholini's. From $2,500.
- Four Seasons Hotel Hong Kong, 8 Finance St, Central (next to the IFC), ☏ , fax: . One of the most prestigious in Hong Kong, opened in 2005, 399 rooms, wall-to-wall windows with view of Victoria Harbour or Victoria Peak, two outdoor infinity pools, a 22,000 ft² (2,000 m2) spa, and a fitness centre. The only hotel in the world with two 3-star Michelin restaurants. From $4,200.
- Island Shangri-La, Pacific Place, Supreme Court Rd, Central, ☏ , fax: . One of three elegantly appointed 5-star hotels at the conveniently located Pacific Place complex. The hotel comprises 531 rooms and 34 suites decorated with Asian-accented European furnishings. Facilities include a health club and swimming pool. From $2,800.
- JW Marriott Hotel Hong Kong, Pacific Place, 88 Queensway, Central, ☏ , fax: . One of three elegantly appointed 5-star hotels at the Pacific Place complex. Features 577 rooms, a swimming pool, 24-hour fitness centre, and six restaurants. From $2,800.
- Landmark Mandarin Oriental, The Landmark, 15 Queen's Rd Central, Central (a few minutes walk from Lan Kwai Fong), ☏ . Boutique hotel, opened in 2005, 113 rooms, 25,000 ft² (2,300 m2) Oriental Spa. From $3,900.
- Mandarin Oriental, 5 Connaught Rd, Central, ☏ . The chain's original and prestigious flagship. 502 rooms, spa, indoor swimming pool, and fitness centre. Michelin 3-star chef Pierre Gagnaire has lent his name and inspiration to, Pierre, the hotel's French restaurant. From $3,900.
- The Mercer (尚圜), 29 Jervois St, Sheung Wan (1 minute walk from Sheung Wan MTR Station), ☏ , firstname.lastname@example.org. Opened in 2011, 55-room boutique hotel, outdoor swimming pool, 24-hour fitness centre with complementary minibar, coffee and tea.
- 4 Ovolo Hotel - 2 Arbuthnot road, 2 Arbuthnot road, Central, ☏ . Check-in: flexible, check-out: flexible. Design boutique hotel with Apple TV, free 1Gbps WiFi, free breakfast at cafe, full wash and dry services, free mini bar, free local calls, 24-hour gym and flexible checkout. Smoke free. Free access to 9000 citywide hotspots From $3200.
A list of many free Wifi hotspots in Central is provided on Wi-Fi.HK, courtesy of the Hong Kong Government. Besides, five complimentary sessions of 15 minutes each are available in the Hong Kong MTR station. The IFC mall above the station provides free Wifi as well, and so does the large Apple store inside the IFC, with Apple computers to surf the internet with.
- An interesting way to spend your day is by taking the tram to Wan Chai and Causeway Bay in the east.
- The shopping mecca of Kowloon is just across Victoria Harbour; take the Star Ferry for the experience or the MTR for speed.
- Take a ferry directly out of the hustle and bustle to the relaxation of Mui Wo or Lamma, Cheung Chau and many other outlying islands.