10 Things to Do in Hong Kong Other than Shopping & Eating

10 Things to Do in Hong Kong Other than Shopping & Eating

Think you've seen all there is to Hong Kong? Check out these unique things to do to spice up your next visit!

Mention Hong Kong and the all-too-familiar ‘eating’ and ‘shopping’ comes to mind. However, delve deeper and you’ll find that there’s so much more than what meets the eye! The country itself has a steep and fascinating culture – from traditional Chinese customs and natural landmarks to its steep colonial history and golden days, there is no lack of things to do and places to visit.

To experience Hong Kong in a completely different light, here are ten things to do that are guaranteed to make you forget about your retail and yum cha overload.

1. Look for lost treasure in a pirate cave

Image credit: Andreas

Tucked in the southwestern peninsula of Hong Kong is the cave of the country’s most famous pirate. In his heyday during the late 18th century, the notorious Cheung Po Tsai amassed over 50,000 followers and a humongous fleet of 600 ships! Before his untimely demise, he was known to command savage battles against the authorities’ vessels and foreign cargo ships that were passing through his claimed territories.

But he was no ruthless captain – Cheng Po Tsai was hailed as a hero by local villagers for his generous donations to the poor. Legend has it that he scattered and stowed his loot over the rocky coast of what we know as Cheng Chau Island. Now, you can step into his shoes and venture into Cheng Po Tsai Cave. Who knows, you might be lucky enough to find some of his lost treasure!

Where: Cheng Po Tsai Road, Cheung Chau, Outlying Islands
How to get there: Take a ferry from Central Pier No. 5. When you get to the island, head right along the coast for half an hour to reach the caves.

2. Ride a Chinese junk boat

Image credit: Karlis Dambrans

No trip to Hong Kong is complete without a visit to Victoria Harbour. This time, why not view the stunning city skyline and picturesque waters from a junk boat! Characterised by their red sails, the junks were once used to transport cargo in the country’s busy port. Sail down the harbour in a traditional Chinese vessel for a 360° view of the familiar skyscrapers!

Where: Around Victoria Harbour
How to get there: Hop on a junk boat from Central Pier, Tsim Sha Tsui Pier, Wanchai Public Pier or Hung Hom Public Pier

Sounds like an adventure, huh! But having to carry huge sums of cash to the island sounds both troublesome and risky. However, withdrawing cash on-the-go at overseas ATMs often include extra charges as well.

Instead, why not check out the DBS Multi-Currency Account (MCA) which will help you avoid paying foreign exchange fees on your purchases abroad? More on that later!

3. Visit a historic police station

Image credit: Exploringlife

With its distinctive porch, the old Yau Ma Tei Police Station definitely stands out from the rest of the buildings along Public Square Street. Its Edwardian-style exterior is a little piece of the past dating back to Hong Kong’s previous status as a British colony. Classified as a Grade 2 historic building in 2009, the station certainly has an interesting past no short of riots and shooting incidents. The police station was closed in 2016, but you can still view its impressive architecture along the streets of Yau Ma Tei.

Where: No. 627 Canton Road, Yau Ma Tei
How to get there: Take the train to Yau Ma Tei MTR Station and exit at Exit C

4. Hike up a trail of volcanic rocks

Image credit: tak.wing

This is one for the nature lovers! Take a hiking tour at the UNESCO Geopark in the New Territories region and immerse yourself in the natural landscape of the country. More than 140 million years ago, a supervolcano erupted in Hong Kong and created numerous hexagonal columns of volcanic rock. Whether it’s the sheer magnitude of the rock formations or the amazing view of the sea, this hike would undoubtedly give you a taste of the country’s beautiful nature.

Where: Sai Kung Waterfront Park, Wai Man Road, Sai Kung, New Territories
How to get there: Take Exit C2 at Diamond Hill Station, and change to Bus 92. Alight at Sai Kung Bus Terminus

5. Go back in time in a history museum

Image credit: xiquinhosilva

The Hong Kong we know today is a busy financial capital brimming with rapid technology to match its bustling urban life. However, the country also boasts over 400 million years of lesser-known history! Located in downtown Kowloon is the Hong Kong Museum of History, which showcases the rich cultural heritage of the country. With plenty of life-size artefacts, the museum will be an educational trip that’ll let you discover how Hong Kong’s past has brought it to the thriving success we see today.

Where: 100 Chatham Road South, Tsim Sha Tsui East, Kowloon
How to get there: Take Exit P2 at Tsum Sha Tsui MTR Station and walk along Chatham Road South  

Want to know the easiest way to pay for all these exciting activities? Open a DBS Multi-Currency Account and store a limitless amount of Hong Kong currency to fund your travels. Say goodbye to all those scattered notes and coins, all you’ll need to do is to whip out your linked DBS Visa Debit Card and you’ll be all set!

Here’s how it works:

Step 1: Wait for the right moment to exchange your currency

Wait until the value of the Hong Kong Dollar drops to its lowest to make the most out of your Singapore Dollar. You can do this with ten other currencies* as well.

*Australian Dollar, Canadian Dollar, Euro, Japanese Yen, New Zealand Dollar, Norwegian Kroner, Sterling Pound, Swedish Kroner, Thai Baht and US Dollar.

Step 2: Perform a funds transfer into your MCA to lock in your chosen rates

When you transfer funds into your MCA, it locks in at that fixed rate. You can purchase any amount of foreign currency you want at your preferred rate.

Step 3: Transact directly in that foreign currency using your DBS Visa Debit Card

During your debit card application, select the MCA as your primary account. With your DBS Visa Debit Card linked to your MCA, you can make transactions directly in Hong Kong on the go!


Make travelling much easier and pay like a local overseas with the DBS Multi-Currency Account. Save yourself unnecessary hassle on your holiday – it’s a win-win!

6. Ride the waves at a scenic beach

Image credit: Minghong

Take a break from endless shopping and try your hand at some sea sports at Big Wave Bay! The beach is a hidden gem and the perfect place to catch some waves at the Shek O beach of Hong Kong Island. For the non-surfers, you won’t be left out! You can also explore the prehistoric rock carvings in the area, or enjoy an outdoor Hong Kong barbeque at one of the many eateries by the coast.

Where: Big Wave Bay Road, Shek O, Hong Kong Island
How to get there: From Exit A3 at Shau Kei Wan MTR Station, take Bus 9 to the beach

7. Observe a flag-raising ceremony

Image credit: Tksteven

“One country, two systems”? You may have heard of the country’s unique political system as China’s Special Administrative Region. It all began at Golden Bauhinia Square where Hong Kong was handed over from the British to the Chinese. Fast-forward ten years, a daily flag-raising ceremony and a monthly enhanced ceremony commemorate the monumental 1997 Handover. Featuring the iconic Forever Blooming Bauhinia Sculpture, the square is a major landmark of Hong Kong Island.

Where: 1 Expo Drive, Wan Chai, Hong Kong Island
How to get there: Walk from Exit A5 of Wan Chai MTR Station

8. Visit a fort

Image credit: Kalatpadai

Ever wanted to get up close to an 80-metre long cannon? If the inner child in you is screaming “yes!”, then make a trip to Tung Chung Fort on Lantau Island. There are six cannons guarding the fort which was used by the Chinese government during the Song dynasty, and occupied by the Japanese during WWII.

Where: Tung Chung, Lantau Island
How to get there: Take Bus 3M, 11, or 34 from the Tung Chung Town Centre

9. Go to a fishing village

Image credit: Gavin Anderson

Instead of going to yet another skyscraper, experience Hong Kong’s rural life in an old fishing village! Tai O Fishing Village is distinctly recognised by the houses that sits on stilts above the calm waters. When you’re there, be sure to have a deliciously fresh seafood meal and buy traditional snacks from the market along the main promenade area. You may even spot some pink dolphins in the sea on an exciting boat trip!

Where: Tai O, Lantau Island, Outlying Islands
How to get there: From Tung Chung MTR Station Exit B, take Ngong Ping Cable car to Ngong Ping Village. From there, take Bus 21 to Tai O terminus and walk to the Rope-drawn Ferry Bridge at the front of the fishing village

10. Dig through a film archive

Image credit: Wpcpey

Home to famous movies like Police Story and Ip Man, the Hong Kong Film Archive is a painstakingly comprehensive collection of the local cinema’s oeuvre of work. The archive building is packed with films, movie posters and news – basically everything related to the widely-acclaimed Hong Kong film industry that will keep you engrossed the whole time during your visit. It also hosts regular film screenings and exhibitions to give you a behind-the-scenes sneak preview of your favourite Hong Kong shows.

Where: 50 Lei King Road, Sai Wan Ho, Hong Kong Island
How to get there: Walk from Exit A of Sai Wan Ho MTR Station

We bet you never knew that there’s so much more to do in Hong Kong than your usual tourist activities! These often-overlooked places are a great way to experience an alternative side to the country’s diverse culture. One other thing to take note of when travelling a foreign country is the local currency – it’s not wise to keep fanning through your money in public, nor to bring out large wads of cash as you move from place to place. Luckily, we have just the solution:

With a DBS Multi-Currency Account, travelling in Hong Kong will be much smarter and safer! Use your linked DBS Visa Debit Card to pay for your transactions and avoid having too much cash on you. With a MCA, you’ll be able to exchange foreign currency for your trip – whenever, wherever!

Here’s a recap of this awesome plan!

Step 1:

Wait for the value of the Hong Kong Dollar (or 10* other currencies) to drop to your ideal rate. This way, you’ll make the most of your money.

Step 2:

Transfer funds into your MCA at your preferred rate. When you do this, you may transfer as much foreign currencies as you require for your trip

Step 3:

With your linked DBS Visa Debit Card, make transactions directly in Hong Kong anytime on the go! Going cashless will save you the hassle and danger of handling theft-attracting wads of cash in a foreign country.

Make the savvy option and open a DBS Multi-Currency Account today! You’ll be making the most bang for your buck by exchanging at your chosen rate, without needing to pay foreign charges and conversion fees.


What are you waiting for? Pack your suitcases and start planning your itinerary to explore another side of Hong Kong today!

Disclaimer: Deposit Insurance Scheme— Singapore dollar deposits of non-bank depositors and monies and deposits denominated in Singapore dollars under the Supplementary Retirement Scheme are insured by the Singapore Deposit Insurance Corporation, for up to S$50,000 in aggregate per depositor per Scheme member by law.

Brought to you by DBS.

About Author

Stephanie Lauw
Stephanie Lauw

Stephanie is an English literature and film student who has succumbed to the occupational hazard of over-analysing her favourite TV shows. She enjoys theatre and music, and dabbles with both by writing bad plays and experimenting with her band. Her current dream is to island hop the filming locations of all the seasons of Survivor.