But this is no ordinary transportation option, the rackety double-deckers have been traversing these routes for over a century.
They have been very much a part of the Hong Kong landscape and culture and are beloved by the locals who still use them to carry on their daily routines, to get to work, go shopping, or to the races! Yes, there is a dedicated loop that brings you to the Happy Valley Horse Races.
So riding on one of these relics will give you a very unique glimpse of every-day Hong Kong street life, as you are travelling literally close to the ground.
The locals refer to them as the "Ding Ding", because of the constant noisy chiming along the way.
There are several routes, spanning from Kennedy Town on the West to Shau Kei Wan in the East with over 100 stops in between the 13 kilometer stretch. If you go along the route, you will not walk a block without a Ding Ding Tram stop.
Hong Kong Trams come in handy for getting around the busy Hong Kong Island northern area. The different routes, altogether there are six that overlap each other, are convenient for exploring Hong Kong Island's northern shoreline.
Riding the Ding Ding Tram towards Central, IFC in the background
The roughly 8 mile stretch will take about an hour and a half to traverse from one end to the other. Although the most lively portions will be between Sheung Wan and North Point.
If you are in a hurry, take the MTR, the Central line goes through an identical route and can whisk you in minutes.
But of course riding the tram is more so for that unique peek into Hong Kong's authentic traditional and modern life, the trams take you through the old dry food and medicine markets, swanky shopping centers and arcades, the towering skyscrapers, ancient temples, antique galleries, neon-clad perky neighborhods and more.
Hong Kong Tram near Admiralty in front of Pacific Place, a popular Shopping Center
Trams also traverse the old neighborhood of Sheng Wan
In Sheung Wan, old traditional stores line the streets, fun to get out for a stroll
And through the Central Business District, skyscrapers frame both sides of the street
Enjoy colonial architecture as well, this is Western Market near Sheung Wan
Single Fare for the Trams is HK2.30 regardless of where you get on or off. You pay when you exit the tram.
You can use your Octopus Card to ride the trams, which will save you having the exact change needed for each ride.
Trams go through the main areas in Hong Kong Island, and are ideal to use on a hop-on hop-off route combined with walks to explore on foot some of the most colorful and lively neighborhoods.
Here are some of the main areas and points of interest in each one. As mentioned before, the most interesting spots will be between Sheung Wan and North Point:
You can download a map detailing all the routes and stops from www.hktramways.com
One of our favorite walks combines a ride on the Ding Ding Tram from the skyscrapers of Central to the lively street scene at the dried food stalls and traditional medicine shops of Sheung Wan, the antique galleries of Hollywood Road, trinket markets at Cat Street, the colorful Man Mo temple and the novel Mid-Level escalator:
New and Old Hong Kong Walking Tour: Sheung Wan District
New and Old Hong Kong Walking Tour: Sheung Wan DistrictThis guided walking tour takes you through the district of Sheung Wan, where you will be immersed in a world of specialty shops, art galleries and temples. The past and the future converge here, allowing you a peek into authentic Hong Kong life. Ride a traditional tram and sample delicious Hong Kong goodies.
The tour starts at 2:00 p.m. as you meet your guide at the HSBC Building in the Central District (by the lion statues) It lasts approximately 3 hours and includes:
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Here is to a wonderful Hong Kong travel experience!
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