Things to Do in Hong Kong with Kids – Free or Cheap

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Can you have fun in Hong Kong on a budget? This city is know to be anything but cheap! Still, in our 2+ years of living next door in Shenzhen, we have found quite a few things to do in Hong Kong with our kids that are both fun and affordable. Check out our list!

1. Hong Kong Botanical and Zoological Gardens

Cost: free!

Hong Kong Botanical-Zoological Garden
There are several things to see and do

Why we liked it: This place is downtown and easy to get to. The grounds are beautiful, the zoo is small (perfect size for young children, really) but neat: I don’t think I’ve seen such active monkeys before in my life! They were swinging around, chasing each other, and having a great time altogether. There is a good-sized playground, the bathrooms are clean.

Toddler at Hong Kong Zoo
Are these real, mamma?

2. The Aviary at Hong Kong Park

Cost: free!

Black-Capped Lories enjoying their lunchbirds at Hong Kong Aviary

Why we liked it: You cannot beat the central location. The aviary was beautiful! Visitors walk on suspended bridges high off the ground and get to see all kinds of birds flying around, perching on the branches nearby or nibbling on the snacks (the feeders are hanging more or less at eye-level).

Edward Youde Aviary
This dove (?) didn’t seem to be bothered by the visitors.

While inside, it’s easy to forget you are in the middle of a crazy, bustling city. There is a superb multi-level playground near the aviary that includes a giant sandbox.

Unfortunately, this part of the park isn’t very stroller-friendly.

3. Victoria Peak

Cost: Peak tram is HK$45 per adult and HK$25 per child (3-11) for a round-trip ticket.

Our view from Victoria Peak
It’s better in person!

Why we liked it: It was a great value for the money. The funicular was great fun for the kids. The view from the top was breathtaking! We enjoyed walking on the shady paths on the mountainside, our preschooler loved exploring the moss 🙂

Mossy slope
He loved discovering (and gently touching) different kinds of moss

If you are up to a little hike, there is a lovely park and a playground about 10 minutes away towards the Peak Garden.

Playground at Victoria Peak
A necessary stop with young children!

We took a stop there on our way up and later wished we didn’t bother going any higher: the view wasn’t that amazing, the garden seemed rather unkept and the mosquitos were vicious (think 30+ bites per ankle). If you (and especially the children!!) need the bathroom, I would strongly suggest avoiding the one you enter from the outside and looking for one in the Peak Tower itself (I believe, it’s on the 2nd floor, there are signs).

IMPORTANT! If you arrive at the Peak Tram station before 9am, there will hardly be a line (at 8am, there were 3 people in front of us). If you arrive at 10, it will be a 2-hour wait. Plan accordingly.

4. Science Museum

Cost: HK$20 per person, children under 4 years old are free. If you want to stretch your budget even further, on Wednesdays, admission is free for everyone.

Preschooler at HK Science Museum Exploring electricity at HK Science Museum

mirrors science museum
The mirror of invisibility 🙂

Why we liked it: I always seek out a good child-friendly museum, maybe because there weren’t any hands-on museums in my childhood. We chose to go on a Wednesday so it was quite busy (seeing how it was a free admission day in the middle of a school break) but not so much as to be uncomfortable. We didn’t get to see half the things they had to offer. My kids, quite predictably, enjoyed the Transportation exhibit and the dinosaur skeleton the most. I loved the Home Technology section (I mean, you get to see what a washer and a dryer look like inside!) and the Hall of Mirrors. We also caught a science show (maybe 15-minutes long) on liquid nitrogen. Really cool stuff! Don’t miss the Puzzle Room on the ground floor (kind of tucked in the corner near the Mirror Hall. Let’s be clear here, this isn’t a Smithsonian, but it’s still fun. And the location can’t be beat.

5. Hong Kong Museum of History

Cost: Free!

Hong Kong Museum of History is next door to the Science Museum. Its permanent exhibition “The Hong Kong Story” is free for everyone. You get to explore the history of Hong Kong from prehistoric times all the way to 1997. There is an old junk boat on display (something Jenia was excited about). There is usually another special exhibition going on

hk history museum hong kong story junk boat museum hong kong

6. Star Ferry

Cost: HK$2.70-3.70 per adult, $1.60-2.20 per child (3 and older), Octopus card can be used.

Star Ferry terminal in Hong Kong

Why we liked it: Star Ferry is an iconic site in Hong Kong (here’s a good look at its history). We do the budget trip from Central to Tsim Tsa Shui or the other way around almost every time we go. It is worth it! The view is nice and it’s neat to be able to see the city from a different perspective. The ride is about 10 minutes long.

7. Repulse Bay Beach

Cost: free!

Why we liked it: Our original plan was to go to Stanley beach since it was supposed to be more secluded. However, upon arrival we realized the beach was tiny and felt crowded even with a couple dozen people already there. Also, the wind was strong and the water too rough. We got back on the bus and returned to Repulse Bay. It was great to just relax, enjoy the sun, the sand, and the warm water. There are showers/bathrooms/changing rooms at the beach. Lifeguards are present. The kids had an absolute blast. The adults got sunburned for the first time in ages.

8. Kowloon Park

Cost: free!

Why we liked it: it’s a peaceful oasis in the midst of busy Tsim Sha Tsui. We enjoyed walking through the Hong Kong Avenue of Comic Stars even though all of them were perfectly foreign to us. Our 4-year-old fell in love with the Maze Garden and insisted to go through it several times. Shon found the Chinese Garden very pretty. There is an aviary on the grounds as well as a really nice playground (partly wheelchair-accessible).

Playground at Kowloon Park, Hong Kong

BONUS! Michelin-recommended Lee Keung Kee North Point Egg Ball stall is a couple minutes away at 492 King’s Road, North Point 178 Nathan Road, Tsim Sha Tsui. The famous Hong Kong egg waffles (or eggettes) are quite a hit with our family 🙂

Hong Kong Egg Waffle
Turtle devouring an eggette

9. Hong Kong Space Museum

Cost: HK10 per adult for the exposition, another HK24-32 for the Stanley Ho Theater. 1/2 that for the kids.

Hong Kong Space Museum Space Museum in Hong Kong

Why we liked it: The HK Space Museum is spanking new, as it has undergone renovations and reopened in fall 2018. The location can’t be beat either – it’s within an easy walking distance from the Star Ferry terminal in Kowloon. There are quite a few hands-on activities for the kids to try. Full disclosure: the kids liked the Space Museum better than we did. We thought it was rather small. We did not see a show at the Stanley Ho Theater but it seems to be extremely popular.

IMPORTANT: Kids under 3 are not allowed at the Stanley Ho Theater. Also, the museum is closed on Tuesdays.

things to do in Hong Kong with little kids
Hong Kong with little kids
things to do in Hong Kong with kids

We hope you will find these ideas helpful. Do you have favorite budget things to do in Hong Kong with kids?

If you want to learn how we can travel with kids, head over here. And if you are looking for budget-friendly travel ideas, do check out this post.

22 thoughts on “Things to Do in Hong Kong with Kids – Free or Cheap”

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  • I love that all it takes is a little creativity to same a lot of money!! I don’t have kids but I also do that as an adult to budget travel as well!

  • There’s loads I’d love to do in your great guide. The aviary looks like fun, and I could be bird spotting for hours there. That pristine beach would have me captivated too, and who doesn’t love a hands on science museum. The picture of your little one with the big penguin is great: made me smile.

  • There are so many great ideas here, and that too without hitting the roof with expensive entry tickets. Every city has such options and with a little out-of-the-box thinking, its very much possible. I would give all of these a shot.

  • Wow, those are some excellent tips for how to see Hong Kong on a budget! Those attractions would have appeal for kids of all ages I think…my husband would totally freak out at the science museum!

    • Shon rather enjoys the science museum, too–he has a little factoid about the way induction cookers work that he learned there! 🙂 Actually, to be sure, we all enjoy it!

  • We loved HK when we went as well. We didn’t do some of the free activities you found , however, and they look pretty amazing. I would love the bird park.

  • This is not only for families with kids, I can totally see myself going to the botanical garden and beautiful parks. Victoria peak though is why I am considering a trip to begin with. Oh and the egg waffles of course, how could I have forgotten those. Yum!

  • My first thought: it is so kitschy! At the end it looks like Hon Kong is a nice place which can be affordable with your tips. Amazing that they can keep need places like the Star Ferry dock on the Kowloon side in the middle of all the skyscrapers.

  • I always love aerial views of a city. That tram looks amazing. If you look hard enough, it seems like it is always possible to find a mixture of paid and free activities when on vacation. Nice post.

  • Its a great read … Loved the THE AVIARY AT HONG KONG PARK … It must have been awesome to spot the birds … Kids must have loved it!

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