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Hong Kong: Travel Hacks & Free tours for quick staycation (A city guide)

HK Private City Guide : A quick Downtown Tour

Ni hao! 你好

Hong Kong is not a budget travel destination, but if you keep these rules, you will definitely save a lot on your next trip! In this City Guide you’ll find travel tips for short business “staycations”, mostly this guide composes of the following essential ideas:

  1. Personally recommended Hotel in Central Hong Kong.
  2. Location of the recommended Hotel/s
  3. Hacks on Free Tours in HK
  4. Schedule of Low cost museums
  5. Budget tips

Recommended Hotel for Business trips & short “staycations”

Blogging my stay in Novotel Hotel. I have recently had this gorgeous trip to Hong Kong for a family business trip.Our trip was extremely elegant I must say, and this was made possible by the hotel that my family have chosen to checked in for a week or more. I suggest that you choose hotels as convenient as this one if you are planning to stay in Central Hong Kong.

Location of the recommended Hotel/s

Novotel Hotel has almost 400 hotels around the world, with 15 of them in China and three (3) in Hong Kong One in Kowloon, where the shopping district is. Another in City gate Airport great for quick business trips and the Novotel Century Hotel where the beautiful Downtown is located.

Gladly, we chose to stay at Novotel Century, located in the center of Hong Kong Island-Wanchai. This place is great for business trip it has free WIFI in public areas, 1 bar, 2 restaurants (Le Café and Italian restaurant Pepino), 5-10 mins walk to metro,Star Ferry and shopping district-Causeway Bay.Covered walkway connects the Hotel & Hong Kong Convention & Exhibition Centre with 8 mins walk.

Facility

The Hotel includes a Cafe,Bar,Italian restaurant, an outdoor pool & gym in which made my stay truly amazing (Fit and Healthy despite all those mouthwatering foods). Waking up to a countless buffet menu at Le Cafe would really ruin your diet if your not that conscious…
You can even make your own pancakes!Click here for the Short clip of “make your own pancake machine!” : Pancake machine

nevertheless, the hotel has something more great to offer…

They have this outdoor pool where in I hanged out a lot during my stay back then, you know that early dip ( F.Y.I pool swimming is my first love) is priceless indeed. And off I go to the gym an hour or two after that great buffet experience in the morning (You’ll come across the”In Balance” gym first, before reaching the mesmerizing outdoor pool) . Yes! I’m definitely in to that working out thing, shout out to my fellow fit friends out there! You’d really love this hotel *seriously!

a quick dip in the pool every morning can be done here!lounge

Hi! oh and this one is the hotel’s sweet outdoor lounge area facing the pool 7 HK skyscrapers

Hacks on Free Tours in Hong Kong

Good news

Hong Kong Tourism Board offers FREE TOURS in their “Meet the People” program, you can learn about local customs, Chinese tea and the traditional Chinese culture through tours and lectures conducted by locals.

Free Parks:

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  • Kowloon Park : click the link for more about this park http://www.discoverhongkong.com/seasia/see-do/great-outdoors/city-parks/kowloon-park.jsp
  • Hong Kong Park : click the link for more about this park http://www.discoverhongkong.com/seasia/see-do/great-outdoors/city-parks/hong-kong-park.jsp

The locals get up early to do Tai Chi in the parks and anyone is welcome to join in for free.

Tip: Hong Kong museums are free on Wednesdays and a Museum Pass provides entry to 7 of the top museums for HK$30.

and now for the budget tips for my fellow budget travelers, Ni Hao!. <3

Budget vacation? I suggest in Hong Kong go take the streets, meet the people and enjoy the dynamic urban jungle, the calm harbor, beautiful parks and ancient culture of the city.

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IMG_7766Picture taken while walking our way to the malls at Hong Kong Central

tip # 1 Take the Streets

Eat to your heart’s content on cheap Asian food in Hong Kong, the street food and small Asian restaurants have reasonable prices. For cheap street food try Temple Street Market or Stanley Street Night Market.

tip # 2  Money Exchange

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speaking of Money, here’s an interior of what HSBC bank looks like in HK (yup! another stunning sky scraper)

Use credit card – For best exchange rates, minimum commission and lowest risk, use credit card as much as possible and save on credit card conversion rates by notifying the bank that you are about to spend in Euros before you travel.

Get money at local ATMs – You can save as much as 7-8% by getting Euros in local ATMs over buying Euros at home.

Tip # 3 HUNGRY? Here are some tips on Food

Look for lunch deals:  notice that most of the restaurant has some very good lunch deal menus or buffets. Organize your meals accordingly and you could save a significant amount of money.

On Tips : tips are usually included as part of the bill but you can leave an extra small amount in case you feel the service has been exceptional.

Stay away from tourist traps: avoid eating too close to the major tourist attractions. Although you could potentially find a decent restaurant near those, it is more likely that you will get into one of the many tourist traps in which you will get a lousy meal with a large bill.

Tip # 4 Never make call from the hotel, instead purchase a local pre-paid SIM card

Even with roaming charges, calling from your cell phone will most probably be a better deal. Roaming charges can be very high . The cheapest way to use your cell both for calls as well as for data would be by purchasing a local pre-paid SIM card and placing it in your phone. This will get you a local number with a pre-paid account and no unpleasant surprises by the end of the trip. Brilliant ey?!

Tip # 5 Shopping

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Shop for food in the local supermarkets with good prices for food and daily merchandise instead of local fancy street stores. Also, try to buy as much as possible in department stores instead of in fancy boutiques.

-I lied a bit here, I did visit some fancy boutiques such as Long champ, Dior, etc. – you know, Friends you can go purchase items from these fancy shops, if and only if you brought some extra cash with you. Be sure that you were able to keep track with your budget prior to spending them on things you love. Remember : Better sure than sorry! 😉

here are some of the Legit things I bought on my trip. 🙂

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Tip # 6 Free Internet

Use free Wi-Fi where it is possible! Look for it in parks, squares and museums as well as in most Cafes and Restaurants. “wifi gratuity” message is put out in any such place that offers free internet access.

I repeat Hong Kong is not a budget travel destination, but if you keep these rules, you will definitely save a lot on your next trip!

Chao!

-LEVY ANNE AMOSIN (AnneTours)

Travel writer/ Blogger

Follow my instagram account :annetours for more Travel Photos!

Sources:

 Travel China Guide, Hong Kong Tourism Board, Google Maps & Wiki-travel

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