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Your go-to guide for public holidays in 2019

Work hard and play hard, baby! Despite the competitive and fast pace nature of Hong Kong’s work environment, one of the many perks of working in Hong Kong is the whopping amount of public holidays. Not only that, but you can escape the hustle and bustle of the gritty city and find yourself on a serene beach, a scenic hike or in the midst of a fishing village, just an MTR or ferry ride away.

 

Once you’ve worked up a sweat on the mountain ridges overlooking Tai Tam, Shek O or Big Wave Bay, it’s time to beat the heat and head for the water! If you can’t get your fix at one of the many laid-back beaches around the island, Victoria Park Swimming Pool is affordable alternative with tickets priced at $17 ($8 for kids) and caters to big groups and families with massive indoor and outdoor pools, a deep-water diving pool and a children’s pool.  The pool at Kennedy Town has just been refurbished and it’s an absolute gem. Not one, but four different pools, including the rooftop outdoor pool, perch above Victoria Harbour, and again there’s a fun kids’ pool with mini waterslide too.

If it’s space you’re craving, head to the 17,000 sqm of lawn at Tamar Park, the ideal spot for a picnic, a spot of yoga, or just somewhere to chill out and relax. To experience something more traditionally Hong Kong, wander through the Yuen Po Street Bird Garden in Prince Edward, taking in the chorus from songbirds. On a busy day, Yuen Po Street Bird Garden is a sight to behold. Or, wander through the quirky seaside markets in Stanley, also home to the historic Murray House – one of the oldest buildings in the city.

 

While there’s no shortage of great places to eat in HK, when the weather’s turning warm on a long weekend, the tastiest way to beat the heat is ice cream. At Eat Darling Eat you can get Chinese ginger vinegar ice cream topped with crunchy pork crackling or Sichuan pepper topped with shards of candied bacon. Hipster haven Elephant Grounds doesn’t just make one of Hong Kong’s best coffees, they also offer a delicious selection of artisanal, home-churned ice creams, with flavours ranging from Earl Grey Cookie to Japanese Taro, and you can also enjoy them in sandwich format, packed between two cookies or macarons!

 

If you’re looking for something off the beaten track, then lightsaber fights in Cheung Sha Wan might be just what you’re looking for. From just $225 per person, you can Star Wars on with friends and battle it out, or try your hand at bubble soccer, archery tag or dodgeball.

 

If you’d simply prefer to kit up and smash things to pieces, then Ikari Area is the perfect outlet to let go of all your pent-up rage. $300 gets your 15 minutes and $500 gets you 30, where you literally grab a bat, piles up some breakable junk and smash it apart.