The Victoria peak tram arriving at a station overlooking the skyline in Hong Kong, China
The Peak Tram takes you up to Victoria Peak, Hong Kong's 1,800-foot-high mountain. Less expensive buses will get you there, too. Once you're up top, admire the views over the city from the hiking trails. The Peak also offers an escape from the subtropical climate below — the air here is cooler and less humid.
Boats out on the harbor alongside a rocky coast in Hong Kong
Stanley Harbour, on the other side of Hong Kong Island, will give you a taste of a different Hong Kong. It's a fishing village on Repulse Bay with a lovely seaside walk (snap some photos of the fishing boats) as well as a famous street market. There's lots of British history, a boardwalk and even a few beaches. You can take the bus from Central for a scenic trip, though the express bus is faster.
Use an Octopus card for a ride on Hong Kong's iconic Star Ferry for inexpensive views of Hong Kong's harbor. The tour makes a scenic circular route between Kowloon Peninsula and Hong Kong Island, stopping at three piers. Skyscrapers are everywhere, but look closely for the smaller Golden Bauhinia near the Wan Chai Pier, a golden flower statue where the handover of Hong Kong took place in 1997.
Hong Kong is famous for dim sum, a meal of bite-sized foods with various selections brought to your table. Traditionally eaten for brunch, you'll find it at other hours, too. Choose from steamed buns, dumplings or fried rolls filled with spinach, crab or chicken. You'll likely need to share a table — but then you'll have help deciding what to order. Restaurants with lots of locals are a sign of quality and good prices.
Head to Causeway Bay for modern retail therapy: This stretch of Hong Kong is virtually covered in malls and shops. Central is the district to go to for upscale designer clothes, shoes and other items. But don't overlook the markets for local handicrafts during your Hong Kong cruise. Pick up an inexpensive but distinctive jade necklace or ornament, or look for poetry-inscribed paintings and bamboo handicrafts from the antique dealers on Cat Street.