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By Adele Wong | January 16th, 2023

With Hong Kong’s borders fully open once again, we’re hoping to see more and more visitors and tourists come back to check out our fair city! It’s been a few long years since Covid wreaked havoc on the world, and we’ve gained quite a few (and lost a few) landmarks and attractions along the way. Here is a list of the top new places you should bookmark for next time you’re in Hong Kong — as well as some iconic places we’ve had to say farewell to…

Hello, World!

M+ Museum

Photo: M+

Branded a “museum of visual culture”, this spectacular landmark, which houses 21st-century art pieces from artists around the globe, opened at the end of 2021 and sits right by the waterfront at the West Kowloon Cultural District. The museum’s permanent collection puts a spotlight on Asia and Hong Kong in particular, and everything from visual arts masterpieces to design and architecture works is showcased with equal pride. Not only is it a world-class visual arts museum, but M+ also boasts beautiful spaces both indoors and out for those who want to laze about and just soak up the atmosphere for a day. Al fresco dining options are also available here. Plus, the museum is just a short walk away from the also-new and incredibly scenic West Kowloon Art Park.

M+, WKCD, West Kowloon

Water World

Water World
Photo: Water World

Hong Kong’s got a brand spankin’ new water-themed park! Open since September 2021, Water World was built right beside Ocean Park (the city’s first amusement park), and this outdoor-indoor space is jam-packed with water slides, wave pools and floating rivers for adventurers old and young. For those who want to make it a staycation experience, the also-newly-opened Fullerton does the job with some killer views to boot. Not to mention, Ocean Park itself has now got a staycation hotel (Marriott Ocean Park) to go along as well.

Water World, 33 Ocean Drive, Aberdeen

Wan Chai Promenade

Wan Chai Promenade
Wan Chai Promenade. Photo:

Victoria Harbour can now be enjoyed on Hong Kong island side via a new, sleekly designed stretch of promenade by the Wan Chai Convention and Exhibition Centre. With an outdoor children’s playground and duck-shaped paddle boats for hire, there’s plenty on offer here besides the gorgeous waterside views. And speaking of promenades, here’s a bunch of other ones to hit up while you’re in town.

Wan Chai Temporary Promenade, Expo Drive, Wan Chai

Central Market

Central Market
Central Market

Taking up prime real estate right in the heart of Hong Kong’s financial district, the long-awaited Central Market reopened in August 2021 and is housed in an 80-year-old heritage building. Food stalls, boutique shops and a tranquil courtyard for outdoor eating are highlights at this 12,000-square-meter space that connects directly to the Mid-Levels Escalators. Want to hit up even more historic buildings? Head up those escalators to Tai Kwun, another recentishly completed heritage project converting an old prison house into a multi-purpose social grounds.

Central Market, 93 Queen’s Road Central, Central 

The Grounds

The Grounds
Photo: The Grounds

Outdoor cinema, anyone? The Grounds at AIA Vitality Park, located right beside the Hong Kong Observation Wheel, is Hong Kong’s answer to drive-in cinemas. Instead of cars, we’ve got cushy lawn chairs and champagnes to pair.

The Grounds, Central Harbourfront

(The new) Avenue of Stars

Avenue of Stars
Avenue of Stars

After several years of renovations, the new Avenue of Stars reopened in 2019, with more “green” spaces and outdoor seating along the star-studded trail. Celebrity handprints like Bruce Lee’s have been moved from the ground to the more-readily-accessible handrails. What’s more, the path now leads to numerous recently revamped projects like shopping complex K11 Musea (which houses the city’s very first Legoland), the Hong Kong Museum of Art, and The Regent Hotel (formerly known as InterContinental).

Avenue of Stars, starts at the Star Ferry TST Terminal, Tsim Sha Tsui

Palace Museum (HKPM)

Palace Museum
Photo: Palace Museum

Located just across from the M+, the even newer Palace Museum showcases close to a thousand artifacts and relics from Beijing’s own Palace Museum. It opened in July 2022, and boasted 500,000 visitors within 3 months of its debut. The Palace Museum’s construction was funded by the Hong Kong Jockey Club, and the layout is divvied up into nine separate galleries featuring different themes. Gallery 1 for instance is called “Entering the Forbidden City: Collection, Architecture; and Heritage”.

Palace Museum, WKCD, West Kowloon

The (New) Peak Tram

Peak Tram
Peak Tram

The 6th generation of Hong Kong’s iconic Peak Tram quietly debuted in summer 2022 after months of renovations, offering visitors a scenic ride up to one of the city’s most famous landmarks. The newer tram touts faster speeds, higher capacities, and just an all-round more comfy experience for everyone on board.

The Peak Tram Central Terminus, 33 Garden Road

Hong Kong Museum of Art (HKMoA)

Hong Kong Museum of Art
Photo: HKMoA

The Hong Kong Museum of Art has been around since 1962, but it shut its doors in 2015 for a major revamp — and didn’t reopen until November 2019, just before Covid shut the whole world down. General admission at the HKMOA is free for its permanent collection. The museum also hosts many children-friendly activities and differently themed rotating exhibitions.

HKMoA, 10 Salisbury Road, Tsim Sha Tsui

Castle of Magical Dreams at Disneyland

castle of magical dreams
Castle of Magical Dreams. Photo: Disneyland

The Sleeping Beauty Castle has been replaced by the Castle of Magical Dreams at Hong Kong Disneyland. Reopened since November 2020, the latest castle pays tribute more than a dozen Disney princesses and queens and also boasts a jewelry boutique and meet-and-greet area on its premises. A nightly fireworks and light show around the castle marks the highlight of each evening.

Hong Kong Disneyland, Lantau

Xiqu Centre

Xiqu Centre
Photo: Xiqu Centre

The Xiqu Centre opened in 2019, with a mission to serve as Hong Kong’s de facto Traditional Chinese theater and Cantonese Opera house. Enjoy enlightening cultural performances, seminars, guided tours and more at this 13,800-square-meter grand space, complete with lofty atrium.

Xiqu Centre, 88 Austin Road West, West Kowloon

So Long, Farewell…

Jumbo Floating Restaurant

Jumbo Kingdom
Photo: Maksym Kozlenko/Wiki Commons

After failing to attract tourists and make a profit during the pandemic, the historic floating restaurant that was part of the Jumbo Kingdom in Aberdeen was on its way to being towed away to greener pastures by its owners — only to then completely capsize in the South China Sea. But its brother restaurant, Tai Pak, is still afloat (albeit closed) and there is talk of reviving this venue in the near future.

Lin Heung Teahouse

Lin Heung Tea House
And the battle begins at Lin Heung Tea House

The 104-year old teahouse serving old-school dim sum in the heart of Central finally closed its doors during the pandemic, along with its New Territories Tsuen Wan branch. There had been talks for years about its imminent closure, but the worst finally happened when Covid hit.

Check out more City Living Guides here.

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