Hong Kong is full of busy bees: you can tell by our glittering skyline at night—it's mesmerizing yes, but if you think about it, it's because so many of us are hustling overtime at the office! It’s time to reward ourselves and relax, spiritually and physically. Read on for the best, easy ways to unwind in this hectic city.
1) Take it slow on the tram
Hong Kong's tram, known locally as “Ding Ding” for the chiming sound of its bell, runs on the main streets between Kennedy Town and Shau Kei Wan. It may not be the fastest mode of transport, though its glacial speed makes it very therapeutic as you watch the city roll on by as you travel between Eastern and Western. In a city where everyone walks fast, talks fast, and eats fast, don't you think it's relaxing to slow things down once in a while?
2) The healing power of Victoria Harbour
Large bodies of water always have a mysterious healing power, and Victoria Harbour is no exception. Whether if you're cruising along Victoria Harbor on the red-sail junk boat Aqua Luna or just a practical ride on the much more affordable Star Ferry ($195 HKD vs $2.80 HKD!), it always feels good to let the breeze ruffle your hair and carry away the stresses of the day.
3) Soothe the soul with art
Art therapy is not just about holing yourself up at home with coloring books, and there are lots of creative options in the city. From 'art jam' painting studios such as artjamming, Chocolart Studio and Blush HK, to cooking classes at Bon Appétit Cooking Studio, The Mixing Bowl and 6 Senses Cooking Studio, and even cheongsam workshops at Classics Anew and many more, there'll be one that is to your liking. Gitone even combines art workshop, gallery and private kitchen so you can take a quick tour to its gallery and even participate in an ceramics or painting workshop before enjoying your dinner in the same beautiful space.
4) Burn calories with quirky wellness therapies
You've got to feel good inside and out. And among all the crazy therapies available in Hong Kong, such as floatation therapy at FloatOnHK, acupuncture and cupping therapies at traditional Chinese clinics, my personal favourite is Polaris Wellness’s cryotherapy. The ice-cold treatment uses dry nitrogen gas as you stand in a body chamber, which reaches up to -130°C. It claims to encourage cell rejuvenation, stimulate collagen growth, reduce inflammation, boost muscle recovery, strengthen immune system, improve blood circulation, and regulate sleep patterns, but the most enticing is the fact that it can help burn 800 extra calories—by just standing in the cryosauna for a short 3 minutes!
5) Pamper yourself at a boozy spa
There's probably nothing more fully relaxing than enjoying a spa or massage. Hong Kong's certainly no stranger to these offerings, from the plethora of super high-end hotel spas to local foot massage parlors. But what always wins my heart are treatments that infuse booze into them: At Sense of Touch, you can choose to bathe in your favourite alcoholic beverage, from beer, wine, and even sake. Couples can even go for the couple's double martini ritual spa and relax together!
Written by Elky Siu
#1 by Abdul Rahman, via Flickr