Two weeks ago I found myself in a precarious situation, Typhoon season had begun in Hong Kong and the rain came in with fury. I was also traveling without my husband but with my daughter. During each of the last half-dozen visits to Hong Kong we had been blessed with mostly sunny skies, so when the rain started to pour (for every single day of a six-day trip) it was time to improvise over mostly outdoor plans.
I was so excited to show my little sister and her boyfriend around one of my favorite cities but with the weather, I was feeling a bit discouraged. So much of what we had planned to do involved being outside. Victoria Harbour, The Star Ferry, The Peak, and The numerous markets all involved us walking and exploring out in the open.
As we tried to force ourselves to walk around Mongkok soaking wet, I realized we needed to come up with a new plan. Instead of trying to see as much as possible and planning each day, we would need to take advantage of the dry days and prioritize. I could tell that the city wasn’t impressing my, now drenched, guests so I lead them into a dry place where we could sit and eat and laugh about the misfortune of the weather.
Duck-in for Dim Sum
Xiao Long Bao or maybe a Cat Cafe…
There are so many worthwhile places to eat in this city, many of them Michelin starred and favored by both locals and tourists alike. Is it worth it to wait your turn for the hyped-up dim sum at Tim Ho Wan? The quick answer, yes, even if just for the BBQ pork buns alone – this spot is worth your time.
With five locations across Hong Kong you can easily find a location to pop into. Make it a quick and simple stop, order a few pieces of dim sum, eat up and get out. There is so much more to eat in Hong Kong you wont want to fill your boots here.
Xiao Long Bao
You can visit a famous Din Tai Fung chain for steamed dumplings and noodle soups (and I have many times) but try also Paradise Dynasty, a Singapore brand that offers their soup dumplings in eight different flavors. Our favorite flavor was Sichuan, but also worth mentioning was their Spicy Won Ton Noodle Soup.
If you are aren’t sure where to look in Hong Kong, try looking up. The buildings are full of shops and restaurants and they aren’t all eye level. We were trying to find a specific place for ice cream but discovered it is now permanently closed. Still wanting something sweet? We looked around and noticed a “Cat Cafe.” I had never been to one and knew my three-year old, cat-loving daughter would probably go nuts for this. She did. I’m still not sure how I felt about the little cafe with cats wandering all about, but the milk shake was delicious.
Afternoon Tea at the Peninsula Hotel
I have yet experience this personally, but I have seen the lovely offerings from the iconic Peninsula Hotel at Victoria Harbour. The Afternoon Tea served in the Lobby is something I hope that I will experience with my daughter on a future trip to Hong Kong.
There are so many places to eat great food in Hong Kong that even when it is pouring outside, you can enjoy the variety of cuisines found in this city.
If you’re not much of a Foodie…
Hong Kong is one of the best cities for shopping
With massive shopping centres in Hong Kong, some with over 700 stores, there is something for everyone. We enjoy popping into anywhere with A/C in the heat of the day, or taking a break from the rain and shopping some of the more popular brands found in Asia that we can’t find closer to home. Uniqlo, Muji and Mini So were favorites on our trip. During this particular stay, we were staying at the Hyatt Sha Tin not far from New Town Plaza mall (just off the Sha Tin MTR Stop) and took advantage of the LUSH Store for bath bombs to take back to the hotel. Other favorite shopping centres include Times Square, IFC, Harbour City and Pacific Place.
Hong Kong’s museums are also worth a mention here and while I did not get a chance to visit any during this stay due to a stomach bug, my sister and her boyfriend ventured out to check out the museums in the city. The Hong Kong Space Museum located in Tsim Sha Tsui is currently closed for renovations and due to open back up in September. Instead, check out the Hong Kong Heritage Museum or the Hong Kong Museum of History.
Fortunately, I have been to Hong Kong a number of times and didn’t mind taking solace from the rain and recuperating at the hotel, one of our favorites for its isolation, during our few days away. My daughter and I took advantage of the luxuries our hotel offered such as DVD rentals, room service and LUSH baths in a large soaking tub. I also enjoy the spa, pool and Camp Hyatt available at the Hyatt Regency Sha Tin.
What did I miss? Do you have any must see, must do recommendations for when it’s raining in Hong Kong?