I’ve been living in Hong Kong for almost two years now and I’ve been to a host of festivals in this amazing city, Here’s my top 5 festivals. These are my own opinions and also in no real order of preference, to make it easier I have put them in chronological order.
1. Chinese New Year!!
The obvious one! Hong Kong is no different to other Chinese countries and it holds many massive festivals during the annual Chinese New Year Festival. This includes the lion dance, dressing up, food stalls and just a real carnival atmosphere. The best places to head are Tsim Sha Tsui, Mong Kok and Victoria Park. Though beware – it gets crowded!!
When? – Normally January or February (changes due to the Chinese Calendar). It lasts for a whole week!
2. Dragon Boat Carnival!!
The Dragon Boat Carnival is a Chinese style one day boat race with a distinct air of coolness about it. Well decorated boats and enthusiastic teams take part in races in the waters in and around Hong Kong. You can join a team if you know the right people, or best of all – just relax and watch it with some food and drink!
Officially it’s actually a day of holiday to commemorate the death of a Chinese national hero who drowned himself in a protest, but these days it’s a fun and entertaining day out rather than anything remotely morbid.
When does it happen? – Mostly on a weekend at the start or middle of June.
3. Mid Autumn Festival!!
The mid-Autumn Festival is excellent. The weather isn’t too hot. You can sample the amazing mooncake, a Chinese style cake which is only available during Mid-Autumn Festival and it comes in many varieties. My top choice of mooncake is blueberry or the white chocolate one, but also make sure you try the original one – it is made with egg inside it! At night there is a great vibe with kids playing with lanterns in the streets and everywhere lit up. As world festivals go this is quite a novelty, and this lantern craze is best witnessed in Hong Kong, because mainland Chinese people only do the traditional lanterns. In Hong Kong these lanterns can be Pokemon, elephants or anything really!
When does it occur? – Again this is dependent on the Chinese Calendar but it’s around the end of September or early October. It’s a single day national holiday in Hong Kong.
4. German Bier Festival!!
Why on earth would you go all the way to Hong Kong to drink German Beer?? Because this is a great multi cultural party where Chinese, Germans and people from all over the world come to let their hair down! It’s a good laugh seeing the Chinese up jiving to the likes of R.E.M., Neil Diamond and Lady Gaga! What’s more is it’s a really fantastic atmosphere. Seriously who doesn’t want to try German beer and eat Bratwurst with an oustanding view of skyscrapers in behind just as the sun is setting over this mini country?
When is it? – It usually runs for a month from the middle of October onwards.
5. Hong Kong Wine and Dine Festival
If you thought the people of Hong Kong don’t appreciate the finer things in life like wine and beer then think again!! The Amazing Hong Kong Wine and Dine Festival is a wonderful place to relax with friends, enjoy live music, drink countless wines and eat a wide variety of local and foreign foods. Head over mid afternoon so you catch the incredible November sunset in Hong Kong…
When is it? – Normally November (and it only lasts 3-4 days)
Visit Hong Kong and get to these top 5 festivals – these are just some of what Hong Kong has! There are lots more festivals in Hong Kong (for example Easter, Christmas, New Year’s Eve, Hong Kong SAR Establishment Day, Halloween Party at Lan Kwai Fong). This city rocks and is a vibrant place for a mixture of entertainment.
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