Hong Kong Skyline
On Top of Victoria Peak
Victoria Peak is the mountain rising up above the fancy part of town – Hong Kong Island – and coincidentally offers the best view of Hong Kong from above. To get this famous view, it is best to walk along the road making a circuit around the mountain range, which takes about an hour to complete. If you’re wearing somewhat appropriate shoes that is.
On the city side of the trail (the other side only offers views of nothing but lush backcountry forests), there are plenty of great viewpoints from where you can photograph the skyline from different angles. Victoria Peak is obviously a huge tourist attraction, but most of the visitors show up in said high heels and either decide or are forced to stick around the extremely crowded tram station. The trails, on the other hand, are surprisingly calm and empty.
Allegedly, you can get a great shot from the roof of the peak tram station, but it costs a fair amount of money and there’s usually a huge crowd up there – not ideal for long exposures and trying to set up a tripod. I found a great alternative at the little pagoda to the left of the station, which offers basically the same view for free and isn’t nearly as packed. I also immensely enjoyed taking shots at the different viewpoints along Lugard Road.
Along the Avenue of Stars
Apart from Victoria Peak, the Avenue of Stars is probably the most popular spot to photograph the Hong Kong skyline. The path along the water is modeled after the Hollywood Walk of Fame, and therefore attracts plenty of tourists wanting to pose next to the handprints of their favorite Asian movie star or to get a selfie with the statue of Bruce Lee. The fact is though, that everyone visiting Hong Kong eventually ends up there and a lot of visitors are also trying to get that famous shot of the skyline. Therefore, if you plan on shooting during the blue hour and don’t want to stand on the sidelines behind the masts of several junk boats, show up 30-60 minutes early to get the spot you want.
The Avenue of Stars is located at the Victoria Harbour along the Tsim Sha Tsui waterfront. The ferry terminal is right next door and due to the constant traffic on the water, getting the perfect long exposure shot can sometimes be a bit challenging. However, if you time it right, the light trails from the boats crisscrossing the harbor make for some awesome photos.
At the Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre
While the Avenue of Stars is absolutely packed at all times of the day, nobody ever thinks of taking the ferry the short distance across the water to the Convention and Exhibition Centre. The building is worth a shot by itself, but the walkway going around the building offers some of the best angles of Hong Kong Island, as well as the Kowloon side of town. Apart from a few couples on their evening stroll, it is usually completely deserted.
Things to See
There are many things to see in the world, depending on your interests and the places you visit. Here are some of the top things to see in various regions of the world:
- Europe: The Eiffel Tower in Paris, France; The Colosseum in Rome, Italy; The Sagrada Familia in Barcelona, Spain; The Acropolis in Athens, Greece; The Palace of Versailles in France.
- North America: The Grand Canyon in Arizona, USA; Niagara Falls on the border of Canada and USA; Times Square in New York City, USA; The Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco, USA.
- South America: Machu Picchu in Peru; Christ the Redeemer statue in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil; Iguazu Falls on the border of Brazil and Argentina.
- Asia: The Great Wall of China; The Taj Mahal in Agra, India; The Forbidden City in Beijing, China; The Angkor Wat temple complex in Cambodia.
- Africa: The pyramids of Giza in Egypt; Victoria Falls on the border of Zambia and Zimbabwe; The Maasai Mara National Reserve in Kenya.
- Oceania: The Great Barrier Reef in Australia; Uluru (Ayers Rock) in Australia; Milford Sound in New Zealand.
Of course, these are just a few examples, and there are many other incredible sights to see around the world, depending on your interests and where you go.
Viewpoints for Hong Kong Skylines
There are several great viewpoints to see the stunning Hong Kong skyline from, including:
- Victoria Peak: The most popular and iconic viewpoint in Hong Kong, Victoria Peak provides a panoramic view of the city’s skyline and Victoria Harbour. It can be accessed via the Peak Tram or by hiking.
- Tsim Sha Tsui Promenade: This waterfront promenade on the Kowloon side of Victoria Harbour offers an unobstructed view of the Hong Kong skyline, particularly at night when the buildings are lit up.
- Central Piers: The piers in Central offer a unique perspective of the skyline, especially during the Symphony of Lights show that takes place every night at 8:00 p.m.
- Sky100 Observation Deck: Located on the 100th floor of the International Commerce Centre, Sky100 offers a 360-degree view of the city’s skyline from above.
- Avenue of Stars: This promenade on the Tsim Sha Tsui waterfront features handprints and statues of Hong Kong movie stars, as well as a great view of the skyline.
- Lion Rock: This hiking trail on the Kowloon side of Hong Kong provides a stunning view of the city’s skyline and is a great option for those looking for a more adventurous way to see the city.
Overall, Hong Kong offers many options for viewing its impressive skyline, and each viewpoint offers a unique perspective and experience.
Best time to Enjoy
The best time to view the Hong Kong skyline depends on personal preference and what type of view you are looking for. Here are a few things to keep in mind:
- Daytime: Viewing the skyline during the daytime allows you to see the details of the buildings and the natural beauty surrounding the city. For example, Victoria Peak offers stunning views of both the city and the lush green hills behind it during the daytime.
- Nighttime: Viewing the skyline at night is a popular choice because of the stunning light displays put on by many of the buildings. The Symphony of Lights show, which takes place every night at 8:00 p.m., is a particularly popular time to view the skyline.
- Sunset: If you can time your visit to coincide with sunset, you can experience the best of both worlds. You can watch as the city transforms from day to night while also enjoying the beautiful colors of the sunset.
- Weather: The weather can play a role in the visibility and overall experience of viewing the skyline. Clear, sunny days are ideal for daytime viewing, while cooler, drier evenings are better for nighttime viewing. However, a misty or cloudy day or night can add an interesting and unique element to the skyline view.
Ultimately, the best time to view the Hong Kong skyline depends on your preferences and what type of experience you are looking for.