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Wednesday, 21.11.2018
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    Hong Kong: Big-city jungle on the South China Sea

    Crowded, overwhelming, intoxicating: all apply to Hong Kong. A thicket of skyscrapers set against a jade-green sea and the odd rural village, and flanked by mountains, China’s cosmopolitan powerhouse is a place of jarring contradictions.

    At the same time, it’s a brilliant place to shop, it boasts incredible places to eat, among them the world’s cheapest Michelin-starred restaurant, and it dissolves into organised, neon-lit chaos come nightfall. A visit to Hong Kong is one you certainly won’t forget in a hurry.

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    24 hours in Hong Kong

    ListMap

    0800 a.m.: Awaken refreshed at Ovolo Southside hotel

    64 Wong Chuk Hang Road
    Hong Kong
    China
    Tel. +852/34 60 81 13
    Show on map

    Southside, the district to the south of Victoria Peak, is the tranquil heart of Hong Kong. Not as densely built and with fewer high-rises than Central, it was for a long time considered an affordable place to live. That is now changing as more and more people wish to reside in this pleasant part of town. As a tourist, you can do so at the Ovolo Southside hotel.

    All of its generously proportioned rooms are done out in industrial style. From their ceiling-high windows, you can let your gaze wander from the green slopes of Victoria Peak across sports courts and fields but very little concrete to the ocean on the horizon. If this sounds all too peaceful for you, we recommend one of Ovolo’s two fine hotels in Central.

    1000 a.m.: Bargain hunting in Kowloon

    Tung Choi Street, Mong Kok, Kowloon
    Hong Kong
    China
    Show on map

    Hong Kong’s street markets have everything: fruit and vegetables, that “hot” favorite lemon ice tea, freshly made ice cream, sweet treats and snacks. In Kowloon, Hong Kong’s shopping legends stand cheek by jowl: a market for birds, one for flowers, and another for clothes. Known as “Ladies Market,” the latter is a confusion of stands selling cheap shoes, shirts and lingerie.

    You will also find children’s toys here alongside what is currently probably Asia’s most coveted accessory: the selfie stick. Entire outfits costing the equivalent of just five euros can be had at Ladies Market, while a few blocks further down, you could well pay a hundred times that price just for a jacket.

    1100 a.m.: Designer fashion made in Hong Kong

    G/F, 13 Wyndham Street
    Hong Kong
    China
    Tel. +852/27 22 67 76
    Show on map

    The entire ABC of design, starting with Armani, Balenciaga and Chanel, are established in Hong Kong, of course, which big local designers, such as Johanna Ho, are more difficult to track down. Ho was born in Hong Kong and learned her craft at the renowned Central Saint Martins College of Art and Design in London. She launched her first designs on the European and then on the Japanese market before approaching customers in her native country.

    These days, she is back living in Hong Kong and running her own store, where she sells her playful fashion creations, some strikingly colorful, others more muted. Her style reflects her career development: avant-garde Japanese, playful Chinese and no-fuss European all at the same time.

    0100 p.m.: Lunchtime snack – the best dim sum in town

    UG/F, 60 Wyndham Street
    Hong Kong
    China
    Tel. +852 3110 1222
    Show on map

    The Dragon-i, a restaurant that morphs into a bar and club in the evening and even employs a doorman at lunchtime, is famous for its dim sum specialties. The menu also includes jasmine tea and freshly pressed orange juice. Each dim sum comes with its own particular sauce to bring out its individual flavor. Disregarded these days in many other eateries, this sauce tradition is faithfully preserved here. If you are really hungry, we recommend the daily “all you can eat dim sum” lunch.

    0200 p.m.: Outing with a view to Victoria Peak

    The Peak, Hong Kong Island
    Hong Kong
    China
    Tel: 2522 0922
    Show on map

    A steep 20-minute climb along a winding road where red traffic lights abound and traffic is more stop than go – the road up to Victoria Peak, Hong Kong’s famous observation point and a popular meeting place for tourists and locals alike. The venerable Peak Tram is a far less stressful and more convenient way to climb the mountain. In operation since 1888, the tram today carries some four million passengers up to the summit each year.

    From the top, you have a fabulous view over Victoria Harbour and the city of seven million, which has gradually expanded its limits here at the foot of the 552-meter mountain and is surrounded by roughly 250 small islands.

    0400 p.m.: Nature and tranquility on Lamma Island

    Lamma Island
    Hong Kong
    China
    Show on map

    Hong Kong consists of 263 islands, many of which are uninhabited and haven’t even been explored. But some are a real refuge, complete with sandy beaches and bays in which colorful fishing boats lie at anchor, as well as restaurants serving fresh seafood. One of the most beautiful and most popular with the locals is Lamma Island. Just a 30-minute ferry ride from the center of town, it’s perfect for an afternoon outing.

    0700 p.m.: Taking a peek over chef’s shoulder

    26/F, 11 Stanley Street
    Hong Kong
    China
    Tel. +852/51 86 32 82
    Show on map

    Hong Kongers love their chef’s tables, especially when it’s the table of someone like German-born Michelin-star chef Bjoern Alexander Panek: On the 26th floor, surrounded by Central’s tower blocks, guests can look on as the chefs pore over the edible artworks they are creating at The Twenty Six by Liberty. The restaurant has 26 places; each menu has ten courses, and every course is explained in detail. Admission only with a reservation.

    1000 p.m.: Nightcap at the Honi Honi

    3/F Somptueux Central
    52 Wellington Street
    Hong Kong
    China
    Tel. +852/23 53 08 85
    Show on map

    This tiki bar is a little hidden away on the third floor of a high-rise. Sitting at the bamboo bar, you can admire exotic artwork and sample one of nearly 200 kinds of rum. What’s really special here is the garden terrace, where you can get away from the big-city noise for a while. The bar also serves excellent cocktails with promising names like “Bounty Hunter” and “Bikini Girl.”

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    Top 10 sights in Hong Kong

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    Hongkong, China, Buddha, Buddhismus

    Victoria Peak

    The Peak, Hong Kong Island
    Hong Kong
    China
    Tel: 2522 0922
    Show on map

    Opening times:
    Daily 0700-0000

    Towering 552m (1,811ft) above the city, Victoria Peak was once the seat of British power in Hong Kong but now hosts a mini mall with an observation deck from which you can see most of the city.

    Po Lin Monastery

    Ngong Ping, Lantua Island
    Hong Kong
    China
    Tel: 2985 5248
    Show on map

    Opening times:
    Daily 0800-1800

    Home to the world’s largest seated Buddha, Lantau Island’s Po Lin Monastery is situated within a culture-themed tourist village and is close to the Ngong Ping cable car.

    Avenue of Stars

    Promenade, Tsim Sha Tsui, Kowloon
    Hong Kong
    China
    Show on map

    Hong Kong is the hub of the Asian film industry and as a result, has its very own walk of fame. Along with celebrity hand prints, there’s also a life-size bronze of Bruce Lee.

    Man Mo Temple

    124-126 Hollywood Road, Hong Kong Island
    Hong Kong
    China
    Tel: 2540 0350
    Show on map

    Opening times:
    Daily 0800-1800

    Set in the heart of Hong Kong’s cool financial district, the wood and stone Man Mo Temple was built in 1847 and is dedicated to the gods of war and literature.

    Shek O

    Shek O, Hong Kong Island
    Hong Kong
    China
    Show on map

    For a glimpse of Hong Kong as it used to be, a trip to the fishing village of Shek O on the eastern end of Hong Kong Island is essential. A whitewashed cluster of flower-covered homes, it also boasts a stunning white sandy beach.

    Hong Kong Museum of History

    100 Chatham Road South, Tsim Sha Tsui, Kowloon
    Hong Kong
    China
    Tel: 2724 9042
    Show on map

    Opening times:
    Mon and Wed-Fri 1000-1800
    Sat-Sun 1000-1900

    A whistle-stop tour of Hong Kong history; beginning with the Devonian period and ending with the city’s transfer to Chinese rule in 1997.

    Victoria Harbour

    Victoria Harbour
    Hong Kong
    China
    Show on map

    Hong Kong’s central harbour is a hive of activities at all times of day with everything from ferries to red-sailed junks plying its waters.

    Ladies’ Market

    Tung Choi Street, Mong Kok, Kowloon
    Hong Kong
    China
    Show on map

    Opening times:
    Daily, usually until midnight

    You don’t have to be female to appreciate this 1km stretch of colourful stalls selling every type of women’s clothing imaginable. Homeware and cosmetics are also available.

    Hong Kong Museum of Coastal Defence

    175 Tung Hei Road, Shau Kei Wan
    Hong Kong
    China
    Tel: 2569 1500
    Show on map

    Opening times:
    Fri-Wed 1000-1800 (Mar-Sep)
    Fri-Wed 1000-1700 (Oct-Feb)

    Housed inside an old British fort, the Hong Kong Museum of Coastal Defence boasts superb views of Victoria Harbour as well as a historical nature trail and a quirky selection of maritime artefacts.

    Hong Kong Space Museum

    10 Salisbury Road, Tsim Sha Tsui, Kowloon
    Hong Kong
    China
    Tel: 2721 0226
    Show on map

    Opening times:
    Mon and Wed-Fri 1300-2100
    Sat-Sun 1000-2100

    Set within a futuristic egg-shaped building, the Hong Kong Space Museum is home to the city’s planetarium as well as extensive exhibits covering everything from space travel to life on Mars.

    Flight and accommodation

    Good to know

    Country information

    Country overview

    At the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing, China presented itself as an emerging country where old traditions coexist alongside astounding new technology and architecture. China has an immense wealth of cultural treasures. Forty-seven of the sites on the UNESCO World Heritage List are in China, and these include the Great Wall, the Forbidden City and the Terracotta Army of Xi’an. In addition to these, there are Natural World Heritage sites, including the Sichuan Giant Panda Sanctuaries and the protected area of the Three Parallel Rivers, which encompasses the upper reaches of the Yangtze (Jinsha), the Lancang (Mekong) and the Nujiang (Salween) in Yunnan.

    The capital city is Beijing, which is also where the central government is based. China is divided into 22 provinces, five autonomous regions, four direct-controlled municipalities (Beijing, Shanghai, Tianjin and Chongqing) and two special administrative regions (Hong Kong and Macau).

    Geography

    In terms of area, China is the world’s fourth largest country, after the Russian Federation, Canada and the United States. With a population of around 1.38 billion, it is the most populous country in the world – China accounts for about 20 percent of the global population.

    China is bordered to the north by Kazakhstan, Mongolia and Russia; to the east by North Korea, the Yellow Sea and the East China Sea (with Macau on the southeast coast); to the south by Vietnam, Laos, Myanmar, India, Bhutan and Nepal; and to the west by Pakistan, India, Afghanistan, Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan.

    China has a varied terrain, which ranges from high plateaus in the west, at an altitude of over 8000 meters, to flatlands in the east. Mountains account for around one-third of the land. The most notable high mountain ranges are the Himalayas, the Pamir Mountains and the Kunlun Mountains. The Himalayas are home to ten of the fourteen mountains in the world that have an altitude of 8000 meters or higher. One of these is Mount Everest, which, at 8848 meters, is the world’s highest mountain.

    China’s most notable rivers are the Yangtze River, the Yellow River, the Xi Jiang and the Mekong.

    At the base of the Tian Shan Mountains is the Turpan Depression or Basin. This is the area of China with the lowest elevation. It is 154 m (508 ft.) below sea level at the lowest point.

    General knowledge

    Key facts

    Population: 1.38 billion (2018)

    Capital: Beijing

    Language

    The official language is Mandarin Chinese. A range of minority languages are also spoken, including Mongolian, Tibetan, Uighur, Turkic languages and Korean. English is sometimes spoken as a foreign language in business settings and by shop assistants, hotel staff and tour guides.

    Currency

    1 Renminbi Yuan (CNY; symbol ¥) = 10 jiao/mao or 100 fen. Notes are in denominations of ¥100, 50, 20, 10, 5, 1, 5 jiao and 1 jiao. Coins are in denominations of ¥1, 5 jiao and 1 jiao. Counterfeit ¥50 and ¥100 notes are commonplace. The Yuan is often referred to as the ‘guai’ in street slang.

    Electricity

    220 volts AC, 50Hz. Two-pin and three-pin sockets are generally in use. However, most 4- to 5-star hotels are also wired for 110-volt appliances.

    General business opening hours

    Mon-Fri 0900-1800, midday break of one hour.

    Public holidays

    Listed below are Public Holidays for the January 2018 – December 2019 period.

    Note:

    In addition to the Public Holidays listed, other holidays may be observed locally.

    2018

    Yuandan (New Year’s Day): 1 January 2018
    Chunjie (Spring Festival, Chinese New Year): 15 – 21 February 2018
    Qingming Festival: 5 April 2018
    Wuy (Labour Day): 1 May 2018
    Duanwu (Dragon Boat Festival): 18 June 2018
    Guoqing (National Day): 1 – 7 October 2018

    2019

    Yuandan (New Year’s Day): 1 January 2019
    Chunjie (Spring Festival, Chinese New Year): 4 – 10 February 2019
    Qingming Festival: 5 April 2019
    Wuy (Labour Day): 1 May 2019
    Duanwu (Dragon Boat Festival): 7 June 2019
    Guoqing (National Day): 1 – 7 October 2019

    All information subject to change.

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    Nightlife in Hong Kong

    ListMap

    The Old Town, with its seemingly endless selection of pubs and bars, is where most of the action happens although you are likely to run into a stag do or two.

    Also worth checking out is the city centre where cigar bars and chic wine spots abound.

    Aqua Luna

    Tsim Sha Tsui waterfront
    Hong Kong
    China
    Show on map

    Hong Kong’s iconic red junk is the best spot for seeing the Symphony of Light while sipping a glass of red.

    Club 71

    67 Hollywood Road, Hong Kong Island
    Hong Kong
    China
    Show on map

    Cosy and relaxed, Club 71 is an expat’s bar that attracts an eclectic crowd.

    The Globe

    Garley Building, 45-53 Graham Street, Hong Kong Island
    Hong Kong
    China
    Show on map

    A comfortable wood-panelled drinking spot with a good selection of beers.

    The BlckBrd

    8 Lyndhurst Terrace, Hong Kong Island
    Hong Kong
    China
    Show on map

    A gorgeous timbered terrace and a chic clientele make this a must-visit.

    Hooray Bar

    World Trade Center, 280 Gloucester Road, Causeway Bay
    Hong Kong
    China
    Show on map

    Ignore the silly name; this rooftop bar boasts incredible views and equally good cocktails.

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    Restaurants in Hong Kong

    ListMap

    Eating in Hong Kong is an unadulterated pleasure and there’s a dizzying array of restaurants, many of which are affordable, to choose from.

    Dim sum is a local favourite and well worth trying out, while the weirder elements of Chinese cuisine aren’t too prevalent.

    Red Almond

    Hysan Place, 500 Hennessy Road, Causeway Bay
    Hong Kong
    China
    Show on map

    Price: Expensive

    Spicy Sichuan food served at the top of a shopping centre with views over the harbour.

    Tim’s Kitchen

    84-90 Bonham Strand, Sheung Wan
    Hong Kong
    China
    Show on map

    Price: Expensive

    One of Hong Kong’s chicest eating spots, Tim’s Kitchen’s Cantonese food has two Michelin stars.

    Sushi Kuu

    Wellington Place, 2-8 Wellington Street
    Hong Kong
    China
    Show on map

    Price: Moderate

    Amazing Japanese cuisine with quirky extras such as slow-cooked eggs.

    Luk Yu Teahouse

    24-26 Stanley Street, Hong Kong Island
    Hong Kong
    China
    Show on map

    Price: Moderate

    An old-fashioned dining spot that specialises in Chinese classics.

    Tim Ho Wan

    2-20 Kwong Wa Street, Kowloon
    Hong Kong
    China
    Show on map

    Price: Cheap

    The world’s cheapest Michelin-starred restaurant serves up dim sum to die for.

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    Calendar of events

    Hong Kong Arts Festival

    23 February – 24 March 2018 Website

    Venue: Throughout the city

    A celebration of all things performing arts. There are live performances and artistic events, including music, dance and drama. This is a truly international arts festival which has seen top artists from around the world. Live performances and artistic events, including music, dance and drama. This is a truly international arts festival which has seen top artists from around the world. Previous participants include: Moscow Art Theatre, Paris Opera Ballet, the People’s Art Theatre of Beijing, Pina Bausch Tanztheater Wuppertal, the Royal Shakespeare Company, Stuttgart Ballet and the Bolshoi Theatre amongst others.

    Chinese New Year

    16 February 2018

    Venue: Throughout the city

    The biggest event of the year for most Chinese residents, with a two week build-up to a day of dragon dances and fireworks. It’s a family event, with visits to temples and – perhaps most important of all – feasting on New Year delicacies such as crescent-shaped dumplings (which symbolise wealth).

    Spring Lantern Festival

    2 March 2018

    Venue: Throughout the city

    Also known as Chinese Valentine’s Day. Expect lantern parades and matchmaking games.

    Summer International Film Festival

    19 March – 5 April 2018 Website

    Venue: Various venues

    The Hong Kong International Film Festival is one of Asia’s most reputable film festivals. The event reaches over 600,000 individuals, screening over 330 films from over 50 countries. Festival-goers can enjoy world-class films, seminars hosted by film makers from around the world. exhibitions, parties and more.

    Ching Ming Festival

    5 April 2018

    Venue: Throughout Hong Kong

    On ‘grave sweeping day’, families visit the graves of loved ones and tidy them up. They also burn ‘hell money’ which is intended to give the deceased spending power in the afterlife; similarly burning status symbols such as paper cars will equip the departed with luxury goods.

    Le French GourMay

    May 2018 Website

    Venue: Hong Kong

    Le French GourMay will allows the people of Hong Kong and Macau to satisfy their craving for the best of French wines and gastronomy. Restaurants, Michelin-starred chefs, as well as wine importers and distributors in Hong Kong and Macau advocate the festival by featuring menus to go along with French wines, wine tastings, promotions and workshops.

    Cheung Chau Bun Festival

    May 2018 Website

    Venue: Pak Tai Temple, Cheung Chau Island

    This week of festivities – also known as the Tai Chiu festival – includes parades, martial arts demonstrations and Chinese opera performances. But it’s the buns which really capture the imagination: towers of them are intended to satisfy the ghosts of pirates, and on the final day a huge tower of buns is scaled by teams competing to grab as many of them as possible.

    Dragon Boat Festival

    18 June 2018

    Venue: Various locations across Hong Kong including Aberdeen, Stanley, Discovery Bay, and Sai Kung

    Dragon boat racing, as well as live entertainment, food stalls and a vibrant party atmosphere take over Hong Kong during the Dragon Boat Festival. This ancient event, also known as Tuen Ng Festival, commemorates the death of a popular Chinese national hero, Qu Yuan, who drowned himself in the Mi Lo River over 2,000 years ago to protest against the corrupt rulers.

    Mid-Autumn Festival

    24 September 2018

    Venue: Throughout the city

    Also known as the Moon Cake Festival, after the sweet treats which are eaten during the run-up and on the day itself. The festival marks a historical rebellion against Mongol rule in which, it is said, plans for revolt were hidden within moon cakes. Events include a lantern parade in Victoria Park.

    All information subject to change. Please check the dates on the relevant event organizer’s website.

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    Hotels in Hong Kong

    ListMap

    Compared to other Asian cities, Hong Kong is expensive.

    Regardless, this is a good place to come if you’re looking for luxury – something that Hong Kong’s hoteliers do extremely well.

    The Peninsula Hong Kong

    Salisbury Road, Tsim Sha Tsui, Kowloon
    Hong Kong
    China
    Show on map

    Category: Expensive

    The huge Peninsula is one of Hong Kong’s most glamorous hotels and is unusually spacious.

    Mandarin Oriental Hong Kong

    5 Connaught Road, Hong Kong Island
    Hong Kong
    China
    Show on map

    Category: Expensive

    Ultra luxurious with a spa, large well-appointed rooms and a very central location.

    The Mira Hong Kong

    118 Nathan Road, Tsim Sha Tsui, Kowloon
    Hong Kong
    China
    Show on map

    Category: Moderate

    Edward Snowden’s bolthole of choice is modern, stylish and conveniently located.

    Butterfly Hotel

    33 King's Road, Causeway Bay
    Hong Kong
    China
    Show on map

    Category: Moderate

    Close to the shops and restaurants of Causeway Bay, the Butterfly is nevertheless an intimate boutique sleeping spot.

    Bishop Lei International House

    4 Robinson Road, Mid-Levels
    Hong Kong
    China
    Show on map

    Category: Cheap

    The rooms are tiny but the views over Victoria Harbour are sensational.

    Flight and accommodation

    Good to know

    Best time to visit

    Today: Wednesday, 21.11.2018 12:00 UTC

    overcast

    temperature


    23°C


    wind speed

    25 mph

    7 days forecast

    Thursday

    22.11.2018

    24°C / 20°C

    Friday

    23.11.2018

    24°C / 20°C

    Saturday

    24.11.2018

    25°C / 22°C

    Sunday

    25.11.2018

    25°C / 21°C

    Monday

    26.11.2018

    23°C / 20°C

    Tuesday

    27.11.2018

    23°C / 20°C

    Wednesday

    28.11.2018

    21°C / 19°C

    Climate & best time to visit China

    China’s extreme size means it has a great diversity of climates, but being located entirely in the northern hemisphere means its seasonal timings are broadly comparable to those in Europe and the US.

    The northeast experiences hot and dry summers and bitterly cold harsh winters, with temperatures known to reach as low as -20°C (-4°F). The north and central region has almost continual rainfall, temperate summers reaching 26°C (79°F) and cool winters when temperatures reach 0C (32°F). The southeast region has substantial rainfall, and can be humid, with semi-tropical summer. Temperatures have been known to reach over 40°C (104°F) although this is highly unusual, but during summer temperatures over 30°C (86°F) are the norm. Winters are mild, with lows of around 10°C (50°F) in January and February.

    Central, southern and western China are also susceptible to flooding, and the country is also periodically subject to seismic activity.

    Early autumn around September and October, when temperatures are pleasant and rainfall is low, is generally seen as an optimum time to visit. Spring is also popular, for similar reasons, and the many tourists visit in March or April.

    Be aware that if visiting during Chinese New Year a large number of businesses will be closed and public transport, in particular rail routes, can be enormously busy.

    JanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec

    26 °C

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    33 °C

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    35 °C

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    35 °C

    18 °C

    34 °C

    13 °C

    31 °C

    6 °C

    28 °C

    4 °C

    JanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec

    23 mm

    48 mm

    67 mm

    162 mm

    317 mm

    376 mm

    324 mm

    391 mm

    300 mm

    145 mm

    35 mm

    27 mm

    JanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec

    4 h

    3 h

    3 h

    3 h

    5 h

    5 h

    7 h

    6 h

    6 h

    6 h

    6 h

    5 h

    JanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec

    71 %

    78 %

    81 %

    83 %

    83 %

    82 %

    80 %

    81 %

    78 %

    73 %

    69 %

    68 %

    JanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec

    18 °C

    17 °C

    18 °C

    21 °C

    25 °C

    27 °C

    27 °C

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    26 °C

    23 °C

    20 °C

    absolute maxabsolute minØ absolute minØ absolute minrelative humidityØ precipitationdays with deposit > 1mmsunshine duration
    Jan26 °C0 °C18 °C13 °C71 %23 mm44.9 h
    Feb27 °C2 °C18 °C13 °C78 %48 mm53.5 h
    Mar30 °C4 °C21 °C16 °C81 %67 mm63.1 h
    Apr33 °C9 °C24 °C20 °C83 %162 mm83.6 h
    May35 °C15 °C28 °C23 °C83 %317 mm115.0 h
    Jun35 °C19 °C30 °C25 °C82 %376 mm165.4 h
    Jul35 °C21 °C31 °C26 °C80 %324 mm147.5 h
    Aug36 °C21 °C31 °C26 °C81 %391 mm156.7 h
    Sep35 °C18 °C30 °C25 °C78 %300 mm126.1 h
    Oct34 °C13 °C27 °C23 °C73 %145 mm66.3 h
    Nov31 °C6 °C24 °C19 °C69 %35 mm46.1 h
    Dec28 °C4 °C20 °C15 °C68 %27 mm25.9 h
    year36 °C0 °C25 °C20 °C77 %2214 mm1035.3 h

    Flight and accommodation

    Good to know

    Phone calls & Internet

    Telephone/Mobile Telephone

    Country code: +86

    Emergeny calls

    Police: 110

    Fire service: 119

    Tourist phone line (contact in emergencies, English is spoken): +86-10/65 13 08 28

    Telephone

    International direct dialing is possible at large hotels, but these calls are expensive. In large cities, there are card-operated public pay phones and phone booths that can be used to make cheap international calls. To make calls significantly cheaper, it is advisable to purchase an IC card for public phones or an IP card (prepaid) for use with all other telephones. The cards can be purchased at the airport and at a variety of convenience stores.

    Mobile Telephone

    GSM 900 signal for sending and receiving is available in Beijing, Guangzhou (Canton) and Shanghai, as well as in most of the other urban regions in the east and southeast, including Chengdu and Chongqing. If you want to make frequent use of your mobile phone while in China, you should buy a SIM card from a local network provider when you arrive in the country, or have one sent to you prior to your visit.

    Internet

    Internet cafés can be found in larger towns and cities, and Internet access via Wi-Fi is being offered by an increasing number of hotels and restaurants.

    Free Internet access via Wi-Fi is possible in many busy tourist spots, too. When using public Wi-Fi networks, it is a wise precaution to ensure encryption of all passwords, credit card details and banking credentials entered. Use of a VPN app or security software to check the safety of a hotspot is recommended.

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    Shopping in Hong Kong

    Key Areas

    From markets to designer boutiques, Hong Kong is a shopping destination par excellence and there’s no VAT, although international high-street chains such as Zara do tend to hike their prices. Nevertheless, there’s plenty to choose from, whether you head to Mong Kok and its markets or to Causeway Bay’s quirky Chinese shopping malls. Kowloon is the place to go for high-end malls and luxury boutique brands.

    Markets

    The Ladies’ Market is amazing for women’s clothing, while the Bird Market is interesting to say the least.

    Shopping Centres

    Harbour City is home to most of the big designer names, while Hysan Place is great for quirky names.

    Flight and accommodation

    Good to know

    Traveller etiquette

    Social Conventions

    It is recommended that vacationers conduct themselves with appropriately polite manners – although Chinese people tend to be broad-minded in the event that cultural differences cause misunderstandings. In business settings, it is worth finding out exactly what is appropriate (for example, in terms of attire and the type of car, hotel and restaurant chosen for business dinners). After all, these factors do play a significant role when evaluating the importance and credibility of a business partner. Generally, Chinese people are friendly but reserved. It is best to err on the side of politeness rather than of familiarity. Critical comments about China’s political leadership should avoided, as should comments concerning Taiwan.

    The full title of the country is ‘The People’s Republic of China’, and this should be used in all formal communications.

    People greet one another with a handshake. Foreign guests are sometimes welcomed with applause – it is customary to applaud in response.

    In China, the family name comes first. If you are invited out socially, it is polite to arrive a little early and bring a little gift with you, such as fruit, chocolates or a souvenir from your home country. Stamps are also a popular gift. If you are invited to the home of family or friends, money may be left for the children. It is customary to offer a reciprocal invitation.

    During mealtimes, diners raise their glasses to one another as each course is served. Formal, ceremonious meals have twelve courses. Offense is not taken if a guest only eats a little, but a polite guest will have a taste of every course that is served. You should leave a little on your plate and in your glass because otherwise, your plate or glass will immediately be refilled. If you are invited to a traditional Chinese celebration, it is advisable to find out what kind of gift is traditionally given to the host.

    If you are traveling without a Chinese-speaking guide, it is a good idea to always have the address of your hotel and any other destinations on hand, in Chinese characters. Alternatively, you could mark them clearly on a map. This is because there may not always be someone nearby who speaks English.

    Conservative casual wear is appropriate attire, and revealing clothing should be avoided. At some social occasions and some restaurants, formal clothing will be expected.

    Smoking is generally permitted, and no-smoking zones are marked.

    For most service professions, tipping is not commonplace in China. In areas with large amounts of tourism, taxi drivers and waiting staff are often given 10 percent; hotel room service staff are often tipped 2-3 ¥ and tour guides often receive around 1 US dollar per person. If you are traveling with a group, one member of the group should collect up all the money and present it to the tour guide in an envelope.

    Photography

    Photography is prohibited at airports and inside temples. It is also best to avoid taking photos of military installations or government buildings unless you have been granted official permission.

    You should not take photos of unknown people without their explicit consent. This applies to work environments (e.g., people who work outdoors) and to leisure settings (e.g., people playing sports).

    Flight and accommodation

    Good to know

    Health

    Main emergency number: 110

    Food & Drink

    All water used for drinking, brushing teeth or freezing should first be boiled or otherwise sterilised. Bottled water, widely and cheaply available, is the most advisable way of getting around this. Be especially careful when eating at small street-side stalls or restaurants where standards of hygiene may not be high. Pork, salad, scallops, snails and mayonnaise may carry increased risk. Vegetables should be cooked and fruit peeled.

    Other Risks

    Vaccinations against tuberculosis and Japanese encephalitis are sometimes advised. Bilharzia (schistosomiasis) is endemic in the central Yangtze river basin. Avoid swimming and paddling in fresh water. Hepatitis E is prevalent in northeastern and northwestern China and hepatitis B is highly endemic. Sporadic outbreaks of avian influenza (bird flu) have resulted in a small number of human deaths. Rabies is present. If bitten, medical advice should be sought immediately. There are occasional outbreaks of dengue fever. In 2010 China lifted its restrictions preventing HIV-infected visitors from travelling there.

    Contractual physician of Lufthansa

    Dr. O`Tremba,, Frank
    11/F.
    Kaiseng Commercial Centre
    4-6 Hankow Road
    Tsimshatsui
    Kowloon
    Hong Kong
    Tel. +852-2369-3329
    Emergency Tel. (after office hours)
    +852-2810-9718

    Please note that Lufthansa accepts no responsibility for the treatment nor will it bear the cost of any treatment.

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    Visa & Immigration

    IATA Travel Centre

    The IATA Travel Centre delivers accurate passport, visa and health requirement information at a glance. It is a trusted, centralized source for the latest international travel requirements. The IATA Travel Centre is the most accurate source available because it is based on a comprehensive database used by virtually every airline, and information is gathered from official sources worldwide, such as immigration and police authorities.

    IATA Travel CentreIATA Travel Centre

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