The metropolis of Hong Kong is an interesting travel destination. It is located on the south coast of the People's Republic of China. Since 1997 it has been a Chinese special administrative zone with contractually guaranteed autonomy. This includes a free market economy, its own currency and its own laws. More than 7,5 million people live in Hong Kong on an area of over 1100 km². The national languages are Cantonese and English.
Location and importance
Hong Kong is located in the mouth of the Pearl River. In addition to the densely populated districts of Kowloon and Hong Kong Island, the New Territories and 262 islands make up the metropolis of Hong Kong.
Hong Kong was a British Crown Colony from 1843 to 1997. In 1997 the British transferred Hong Kong's sovereignty to the People's Republic of China. According to the treaty, the democratic-market economy system in Hong Kong should exist alongside the authoritarian socialist system in China for at least 50 years.
Hong Kong is an important business location and one of the financial centers of Asia. Good infrastructure, low taxes and tariffs are the guarantors for trade and finance. The protected natural harbor has always been Hong Kong's gateway to the world. Singapore and Hong Kong regularly compete for first place as the most heavily handled container port in Asia.
Hong Kong Maritime Museum & Central Pier
Space is tight in Hong Kong. In order to accommodate the growing population, land is being reclaimed by landfills in the sea. But above all, Hong Kong is growing in height. High-rise buildings with up to 60 floors are not uncommon.
Chinese roots and traces of the English
Modern Hong Kong with its glass and steel skyscrapers is home to international corporations and banks.
Still, it should not be forgotten that most of Hong Kong's residents are Chinese. From traditional Chinese medicine to harmonious room design based on Feng Shui, Chinese culture and traditions live on in everyday life.
There are also traces of Hong Kong's 155 years as a British Crown Colony. Some colonial buildings such as the former Railway Clock Tower, Victoria Harbor or the double-decker tram are reminiscent of the British. Left-hand traffic or English as the national language are also typical.
Hong Kong - the metropolis as a travel destination
The Hong Kong region has a subtropical climate. Winters are relatively dry and mild, while summers are hot and humid. Hong Kong is regularly hit by typhoons, with the main typhoon season being from June to October. Spring, autumn and winter are considered the best travel times. Then it is not too warm and there is little precipitation.
The crime is limited. Hong Kong is usually a very safe place for travelers who are careful about their behavior.
And Hong Kong is clean. Any kind of pollution will be punished. Fines are due, for example, for graffiti sprayers and if you throw away packaging or cigarette butts.
Hong Kong's transportation
Hong Kong International Airport is located on Lantau Island. You can get to the city by train, bus or taxi. The fastest connection is the Airport Express, which takes 25 minutes to Kowloon or Hong Kong Island.
The transport network in Hong Kong is excellent. There are subways and suburban trains with high frequency, plus buses and minibuses, the trams from colonial times and not to forget the ferries from Kowloon to Hong Kong Island and the islands.
Something special is the Peak Tram, the steepest cable car in the world, which goes from the Tram Station in Hong Kong Central to Victoria Peak in 7 minutes.
There are enough taxis that use taximeters and that are inexpensive compared to Germany.
Hong Kong for crusaders
There are two cruise terminals in Hong Kong. The Hong Kong Ocean Terminal mainly handles smaller cruise ships. The location at the top of Kowloon is superb: just a stone's throw away from Tsim Sha Tsui Promenade at Victoria Harbor and the Harbor City Shopping Complex. The distances to trains and buses and the Star Ferry are short.
The Kai Tak Cruise Terminal is also located in Kowloon. It was built on the runway of the airport that closed in 1998. The fairways protrude around 3 km like a natural pier into the middle of Victoria Harbor. The cruise terminal was designed by British architect Norman Foster and is considered the most attractive in Asia. It can accommodate and handle two 360-meter ships.
We report on Hong Kong's sights in our article Hong Kong attractions.
Update March 2021