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Getting high on Hong Kong
Everything about visiting Hong Kong is vertical. From the towering skyscrapers of Victoria Harbor to the city's jaw-dropping views and rooftop secrets, it's a destination best experienced from up above. But it's not just height that makes Hong Kong a great city for travelers. It's the mind-boggling density that comes with it: the high rises clinging to the slopes of mountains, the daily blitzkrieg of billboards and light and the hidden retreats tucked on high that taken as a whole have the power to awe and delight.
During Gadling's visit to Hong Kong last month, we had a chance to investigate some of the numerous high places that give this metropolis its unique air. From vertigo-inducing cocktail lounges to modern architectural masterpieces to heart-stopping city views, we looked low (and high) for Hong Kong's best spots. Wondering what we found? Get ready to get high on Hong Kong. Keep reading below for more...
The street level signage for Hong Kong steakhouse Wooloomooloo is unassuming and forgettable. But visitors who take the elevator to the 31st floor of the restaurant's Wan Chai location will discover some truly unforgettable city views. Hidden high above this busy downtown district is low-lit oasis of romance and luxury, with floor to ceiling windows and million-dollar views of Hong Kong's skyscrapers, Victoria Harbor, and the Happy Valley racetrack.
Wooloomooloo's main attraction is the restaurant's open air roof deck, where visitors can sip a few cocktails or a glass of wine, bathed in the glow of Hong Kong's 24-hour light show below.
A vertical masterpiece
If you've ever seen a photo of Hong Kong, you probably already know the iconic Bank of China Tower, designed by architect I.M. Pei. The beveled edges of this sky-high building make it one of the city's most famous tall landmarks - and also among its most controversial. This towering structure has been criticized for its poor feng shui, a Chinese philosophy that advocates proper "energy flow" in design. Love or hate it, did you know the Bank of China Tower has a viewing deck open to the public? Take the elevator to the 43rd Floor for a peek inside this architectural wonder and some imposing views of the city below.
The ultimate Hong Kong view
Hong Kong has some downright impressive heights, whether you're drinking at a swanky rooftop restaurant or checking out the view from one of its most famous buildings. But the most amazing way to see Hong Kong from up high is the panorama from The Peak. Located on the highest mountain on Hong Kong Island, "The Peak" offers visitors a literal bird's eye look at this remarkable city.
Half the fun of getting to The Peak is riding on the historic Peak Tram cable car, which drags passengers up the mountain's perilously steep hillside. Once you arrive at the top, you'll be treated one of the world's most unique city views, looking down from on high at Hong Kong's impressive skyline below. Though many will opt to pay for the Sky Terrace viewing deck, don't feel obligated. Instead, walk out the doors of the Peak Tower to find several free spots with equally amazing views.
Hong Kong isn't just a metropolis that "stands tall" on the world stage. It is tall - from the restaurants to the architecture to the stunning views. Stay long enough, and you might never want to come down.