With China having invented fireworks, you can be sure Hong Kong has some of the best! And while the Chinese New Year fireworks in Hong Kong will be nothing short of spectacular, for those of you planning to try to watch the fireworks this coming Monday, there are a few things you should know.
Although this will be my first time watching Chinese New Year fireworks, it will be my 5th firework viewing overall here in Hong Kong. And thanks to gaining new knowledge each time, my ability to get good spots for watching fireworks has greatly improved from our first time trying to see them when all we saw was this…
Not a single firework could be seen, but at least the next try can only get better right?
At least we could kind of see the fireworks this time…
Perfect! It can’t get much better than this– unless we can sit with all the celebrities and news anchors, who of course are given the best seats around.
The fireworks are typically fired from boats and buildings near Wan Chai, so the best places to go are along the harbor in Tsim Sha Tsui on the Kowloon side or Causeway Bay, Wan Chai, Admiralty or Central on the Hong Kong Island side.
1. Hong Kong Cultural Centre Piazza at Tsim Sha Tsui Promenade
How to get there: MTR Tsim Sha Tsui Station Exit L6
2. Avenue of the Stars in East Tsim Sha Tsui
How to get there: MTR East Tsim Sha Tsui Station Exit J
3. Hung Hom Bypass (the highway is closed to cars and opened for pedestrians during firework events).
How to get there: MTR Hung Hom Station Exit D4
Hong Kong Island Side:
4. IFC Mall
How to get there: MTR Hong Kong Station Exit F
5. Central Ferry Piers
How to get there: MTR Central Station Exit A
6. The Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre
How to get there: MTR Wan Chai Station Exit C
7. Golden Bauhinai Square in Wan Chai
How to get there: MTR Wan Chai Station Exit A5, proceed to walk towards the waterfront.
8. The Peak
How to get there: The Peak Tram can be reached from MTR Central Station Exit J2
9. Bowen Road Park
How to get there: MTR Admiralty Station Exit C, then it’s a good 20 minute hike or a short taxi ride away.
Other Helpful Tips
- Think about what background you want. Do you want only the fireworks? Do you want fireworks and skyline? If you want the famous Hong Kong skyline as the backdrop to your firework shots, you’ll need to be shooting from the Kowloon side.
- Plan your route in advanced. Road closures begin around 6pm and then it’s up to the police to start directing people. Please listen to them and do not try to go against their directions. Sometimes you’ll need to take a detour so it’s a good idea to have a few possible routes planned before you head out.
- Wherever you’re going, go earlier. With all the road closures, police directions and mass amounts of people, it’s going to take longer than usual to get to a certain location. We left two hours prior to the fireworks and in the end, we were stuck in a crowd unable to see anything. Remember, people start lining up in the early afternoon to get good firework spots.
- Make sure your whole group goes together. Don’t try to meet up at your final fireworks destination, it’ll be near impossible. All the popular areas become gated during events. And as soon as one location gets too full, they close the gates and stop letting people in. The police won’t care if you’re only one person and all your friends are already inside.
- Plan to stand in place for a few hours. Bring whatever you need with you. Food, drinks, etc. Don’t expect to be able to go to a washroom either. You’ll basically be stuck where you’re at or else you’ll lose your spot. This is regardless if someone saves your spot. As I mentioned in the point above, the police won’t care to let you back in.
- Expect crazy crowds. Hong Kong is crowded. It gets even more crowded during holiday times with people visiting. If you don’t like huge masses of people, then you may be better off staying home to watch the fireworks on TV. Also prepare for cameras to block your views and for a lot of pushing as the fireworks start. People always try to inch closer and will tell you any excuse (oh, my friend is up in the front row!) to get a better spot.
- Plan to be out late. Obviously for New Year’s fireworks you’ll be out late, but most other firework events start at 8pm. Even though the festivities may end by 9pm, with the amount of people out, it may take quite a while to get home. During our last fireworks event (New Years), it took us 2 hours to get home– a trip that would normally take no more than 20 minutes.
As Chinese New Year begins this weekend, I’ll try to keep everyone updated with the anticipated events. So you can expect a few more posts than normal highlighting this exciting event! For live updates as it’s happening, be sure to follow me on Twitter! (@itsbesudesu)