(This story is sponsored by the Hong Kong Tourism Board.)
Entertaining nightlife, an authentic foodie scene, and plenty of vibrant arts and culture celebrations—these are just three of the many reasons why Hong Kong is the perfect destination for your post-pandemic trip.
It’s no surprise that the majority of Canadians are itching for an international vacation, spending hours each week browsing travel blogs and booking websites. But until it is safe to do so, Hong Kong is encouraging people to explore its flourishing arts scene through virtual experiences. These events can be enjoyed from the comfort of their own home, wherever that may be—no passport required.
Arts in Hong Kong will celebrate the city’s culture while highlighting major arts events and new initiatives around the metropolitan area. Much of the festival’s programming is accessible worldwide as there are both online and in-person experiences.
“As the world cautiously looks to resume international travel and bring back events, it is fitting that art is a driving force to make this happen, with Hong Kong paving the way in the hope of safely staging large-scale events again,” says Hong Kong Tourism Board director Michael Lim.
When thinking of Hong Kong, high-end shopping and its nightlife scene are typically the first two things that come to mind. Few people are aware that the city is a major arts hub in Asia, rich in ancient history but also finding inspiration in Western influences.
“Travelling through Hong Kong is truly a multisensory experience,” says Jorge Lee, manager of consumer marketing for the Hong Kong Tourism Board. “There’s so much visual art to discover, places to visit, sounds to hear, and foods to try.”
In order to help art enthusiasts plan their upcoming holiday, the Hong Kong Tourism Board has created six itineraries that showcase its extraordinary cultural attractions.
“The Arts by the harbour itinerary highlights Victoria Harbour, which is the epicentre of tourism in Hong Kong,” says Lee. “The waterfront area is filled with heritage buildings, innovative architecture, shopping centres, and international art events like Art Basel and Art Central.”
This year, Art Basel will be launching Art Basel Live: Hong Kong, beginning on May 21. The digital exhibition invites virtual audiences to discover the city’s impressive diversity through modern and contemporary works created by emerging and established artists.
Virtual attendees can experience online viewing rooms, live broadcasts, and special events. More than 100 galleries from Asia, Europe, and America will be participating.
Another itinerary, A star-studded tour, guides tourists through some of the coolest backdrops from popular movies filmed in Hong Kong. This includes a trip through the Yau Tsim Mong District, which has served as the scene of many Hollywood blockbusters and K-pop music videos.
Those who enjoy exploring the great outdoors will greatly appreciate the Arts in the wild itinerary as it leads visitors through the countryside.
“A lot of people have been coming to Hong Kong to immerse themselves in the nature that’s found outside of the metropolis area. Only a few minutes from the big city are stunning hiking trails, cycling paths, and quaint islands that you can visit,” says Lee.
The itinerary A taste of the arts guides visitors through Old Town Central. The vibrant district is filled with hidden arts gems, historic buildings, and secreted cafés that serve excellent coffee and sweet treats.
By following the Arts down south—Wong Chuk Hang itinerary, travellers will take delight in one of the city’s most happening districts. Wong Chuk Hang is characterized by its enormous factories and humble streets littered with creative arts spaces and world-class galleries. This is the best area for gallery-hopping.
Last but not least, the Dive into arts & culture itinerary features Hong Kong’s hippest area in the city, Sham Shui Po. The charming neighbourhood has undergone a huge transformation over the past century, merging historical buildings and traditional restaurants with trendy art studios and modern eateries.
“Hong Kong is also known for its unique dining experiences,” says Lee. “There are thousands of restaurants, making it one of the most popular food destinations in the world. Some travellers plan their trips entirely around food and that’s exactly what brings them to Hong Kong. There are around 70 Michelin-star restaurants here but there’s very authentic street food and dim sum that people can’t get enough of.”
If you want to experience more than Hong Kong’s flourishing arts and culture scene, there are many other itineraries, geared toward shopaholics, foodies, and families, available online.
Arts in Hong Kong is organized by the Hong Kong Tourism Board in collaboration with fair organizers and cultural institutions.
For more information, visit www.discoverhongkong.com/arts/.