Written by Maci

Modified & Updated: 28 Apr 2024

Sherman Smith

Reviewed by Sherman Smith

Hong Kong Facts

Hong Kong has one of the most thriving economies in the world. From its establishment until the present, this cosmopolitan city has become a world-renowned center for business, culture, and trade. What else is there to know about it? See for yourself with these Hong Kong Facts.

  1. The official name of Hong Kong is the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region. 
  2. There are more Rolls Royce’s per person in Hong Kong than any other city in the world. 
  3. Hong Kong was founded on July 1, 1997.
  4. As of April 2020, Hong Kong has a population of 7,486,278 people.
  5. The entirety of Hong Kong’s population is urban.
  1. Hong Kong is also referred to as Hong Kong SAR.
  2. The official languages of Hong Kong are Cantonese and English.
  3. Hong Kong has the most number of skyscrapers in the world.
  4. The British forces took over Hong Kong after the defeat of China during the opium war in 1842.
  5. July 1st, 1997 marks the day that Hong Kong became a Special Administrative Region of China.
  6. The Sousa Chinesis of Hong Kong means the Chinese White Dolphin.
  7. A bun festival is organized yearly by the residents of Cheung Chau Island during April and May.
  8. Architects from Hong Kong always take note of Feng Shui when designing new buildings.
  9. Noodle Shops are one of the most common and most popular sites in Hong Kong.
  10. Hong Kong has the world’s longest road and rail suspension bridge called the Tsing Ma Bridge.
  1. Hong Kong translates to Fragrant Harbor.
  2. The Sousa Chinensis is the emblem of the reunification of China with Hong Kong.
  3. The Hong Kong dollar is the eighth most traded currency around the world.
  4. Outdoor escalators can be found in the hilly central district of Hong Kong Island. 
  5. In Hong Kong, it is considered good luck to eat noodles on your birthday as it is believed to grant you a long and good life.
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Hong Kong Facts Infographics

Hong Kong Facts Infographics

The Hong Kong government has extended the levels of free education for public schools.

Education in Hong Kong is mainly modeled after the education system of the United Kingdom. Children are required to attend and complete primary to secondary school. 

Hong Kong has also adapted to the K-12 curriculum in which students are to take an additional two years of school.

Hong Kong Facts
Hong Kong Facts

Kowloon in Hong Kong is named after "nine dragons."

The name Kowloon is made up of the Chinese words gau and long. This directly translates to ‘nine’ and ‘dragon’ in English.

Kowloon’s name comes from a folk legend about a boy who served an emperor and owned eight hills called “dragons.” However, the boy also considered the emperor to be a dragon, hence the nine dragons.

Hong Kong has the world’s longest covered escalator.

The escalator covers a distance of over eight hundred meters (2,600 ft.) long. It also travels across an elevation of over 135 meters (443 ft.) from the bottom top of the escalator. 

Hong Kong’s steep and hilly terrain inspired the need for this escalator. Apart from being a means of transportation, it is also lined with multiple restaurants, bars, and shops.

Hong Kong's Star Ferry has been running since 1880.

Originally, this business operated under the name of the Kowloon Ferry Company. This ferry company is the oldest form of public transportation found in Hong Kong. 

It is also considered as one of the most iconic parts of the cityscape. Locals even deem this as a cultural symbol of Hong Kong.

There are over 263 islands in Hong Kong.

The majority of these islands can be found within the new territories. Urban development has also allowed Hong Kong to expand its islands by linking them together with roads and bridges.

Dim Sum originated from Southern China, not Hong Kong.

Despite this, it remains one of the most popularly eaten food in Hong Kong. The unique culinary art originated from traditional Chinese cuisine from hundreds of years ago. 

Eventually, travelers introduced the many different dim sum dishes to other parts of Asia.

Many buildings in Hong Kong do not have floors with the number four in it.

This is mainly due to the common belief in Chinese superstition that the number four is unlucky. The word for number four in Chinese sounds similar to the word for death in Chinese.

Due to this, the number four is commonly linked with death and bad luck.

Feng Shui is a common practice in Hong Kong.

Many residents in the region believe that Feng Shui can attract prosperity and drive away misfortune. An example of this practice is the two famous bronze lion statues that sit in front of the main HSBC building. 

Many buildings incorporate this practice into the architecture of their facilities and skylines.

Pineapple buns are a famous Hong Kong delicacy.

Also known as the bo lo bao, these delicious pineapple buns are one of Hong Kong’s most timeless and popular snacks. They are also a central piece of Hong Kong’s lifestyle and are deemed as a part of its intangible cultural heritage. 

There are many ways to enjoy this treat. However, the most popular way is by slicing the bun in half and inserting a slice of butter in between.

Hong Kong has a highly effective system for handling tropical storms.

In terms of weather, Hong Kong is often hit by tropical storms throughout the year. As a necessary precaution for flooding and other natural disasters, Hong Kong has greatly improved its drainage and sewage systems throughout the city.

Li Ka-Shing was crowned by Forbes as the richest man in Hong Kong in 2018.

His estimated net wealth as of 2019 is equivalent to USD 29.4 billion, making him the 30th richest man in the world. Li Ka-Shing was also one of the most influential entrepreneurs in all of Asia. 

His success can be seen through his business empire in a wide array of industries which includes real estate, financial services, and transportation.

Hong Kong facts
Source: Pexels

Cathay Pacific is Hong Kong’s home airline.

This airline is known by many for being budget-friendly and safe. Since 2017, the airline has continued to receive numerous awards for its outstanding facilities and service. 

Hong Kong’s international airport is about the same size as 20 soccer fields.

The Hong Kong International Airport is among the top ten busiest airports in the world. On average, it caters to over 59 million passengers per day. 

It is also one of the largest international airports in the world.

The Bronze Buddha is one of the world’s largest seated Buddha statues in the world.

Also known as Tian Tan, the bronze Buddha statue can be found near the Po Lin monastery. This statue symbolizes the harmonious relationship between nature, people, and faith. 

The construction of the monument began in 1990 and was completed by December 1993.

Hong Kong is one of the many locations that have the highest number of restaurants per capita.

This makes it an ideal location for tourists as it gives them a wide range of varieties to choose from. Hong Kong is rich with food choices that often combine western and eastern cooking styles. 

The Peak Tram railway in Hong Kong is the oldest tramway in the world.

The Tram rises to over 396 meters (around 1,300 ft.) above sea level. Passengers onboard the railway experience the view of the buildings as if they were tilted. 

This railway is also considered to be one of the most famous and funicular railways in the world. Tourists who try the railway often regard it as one of their best experiences during their stay in Hong Kong.

The majority of the population in Hong Kong speak Cantonese.

According to the statistics from the Hong Kong government, around 90% of locals in Hong Kong speak Cantonese as their primary language. However, while many can speak English as well, only around 3% of the population speak it as their primary tongue. 

The remaining percentage of the population speaks other Chinese dialects such as Mandarin.

Hong Kong has the longest sea-crossing in the world.

This bridge spans a total distance of 55 km (34 miles) long. This bridge also connects Hong Kong to Macau and the City of Zhuhai in mainland China. 

The travel time between the cities now only takes around thirty minutes compared to the three hours it used to take nine years before its construction.

Hong Kong hosts the Hong Kong Sevens annually.

The Hong Kong Sevens is a premier tournament on the World Rugby Seven Series tournament. It is held and hosted each year in Hong Kong from late March to early April.

The Hong Kong Sevens is the seventh tournament of the World Series Calendar.

Having a male firstborn followed by a daughter is considered good luck in Hong Kong.

This belief goes back to thousands of years in the past where women were still not allowed to lead or contribute to society. This belief catered mainly towards Chinese culture which states that males should be the head of the family. 

Hong Kong’s climate is considered to be sub-tropical.

During the summer, Hong Kong receives wind coming from the South which gives warm and humid air to the area. In the winter, this is reversed and the region receives strong and cold winds from the south. 

During the summer, Hong Kong also experiences typhoons and is prone to natural calamities.

hong kong facts
Source: Pexels

The rural areas in Hong Kong are considered to be major attractions.

Hong Kong has several rural areas and greenery that are considered to be top visiting destinations amongst tourists. A few of them also include beautiful hiking trails and beach destinations. 

The founder of Fiber Optics Communications resides in Hong Kong.

Professor Charles K. Kao was a physicist and electrical engineer who pioneered the development and usage of fiber optics telecommunications. During his struggle to develop this, Professor Kao created several different methods to test the different ways of transmitting data. 

Once he was able to complete this project, he was dubbed the Godfather of Broadband. His work also earned him a Nobel Prize in Physics in 2009.

Hong Kong has one of the highest average intelligence quotients in the world.

The average IQ among the population in Hong Kong is 105.7. National statistics also state that over 66.66% of the entire student population achieve advanced scores in major examinations and national exams. 

Hong Kong is known for having the world’s largest fleet of ferries.

The largest ferry operator in Hong Kong is the New World First Ferry (NWFF) that owns both old fashioned and modern vessels to accommodate their clients. They have several networked routes that cross the harbor and travel towards the many outlying islands. 

Not all of the islands that belong to Hong Kong are habitable or reachable.

Hong Kong is made up of 263 islands that span over 500 square miles. A few of these islands include The Flat Island and Pak Sha Chau in the North and Sai Kung districts. 

One of the more well-known islands near Sai Kung is called Yim Tin Tsai, which used to hold a population of over 1,000 Hakka people during the 19th century. However, after the Hong Kong economy began to flourish, its people moved to different locations to look for better career opportunities.

The 3rd Disneyland outside of the United States was built in Hong Kong.

The amusement park is located on the reclaimed land in Penny’s Bay, also known as the Lantau Island. The park is owned by the Hong Kong International Theme Parks. Currently, Hong Kong Disneyland is the biggest theme park in Hong Kong. 

Hong Kong received the award for the world’s best theme park in 2012.

The Hong Kong Ocean Park was awarded as the World’s Best Theme Park in May 2012. In celebration of its awarding, the Ocean Park had a show of mascot characters for its guests. 

Some of the best Kung-Fu movies loved by the world were produced in Hong Kong.

A few of these fan favorites include The Fist of Fury, The Ip Man series, and Police Story III. Many of the most popular Kung-Fu films also feature famous actors such as Jackie Chan and Bruce Lee. 

Hong Kong hosts the largest number of tourists per year.

Tourism has been an important part of the Hong Kong economy since its shift into the service sector model in the early 90s. Since then, Hong Kong has received a gradual increase in domestic tourists over time. 

Today, an estimated 5.2 million tourists visit Hong Kong annually.

Hong Kong has won the title of the ‘Best Business City in the World’ four consecutive times.

For four consecutive years, Hong Kong has been one of three cities in the world to receive this award. Hong Kong was also awarded Best Business City in Asia along with Singapore and Bangkok. 

Hong kong facts

The region of Hong Kong was ranked fourth in the global billionaire’s list in 2016.

Due to its rich tourist population, Hong Kong has become a rich economic hub for businesses all around the globe. In this city resides 79 billionaires that heighten Hong Kong’s net worth to an estimated $335.5 billion.

Hong Kong is home to one of many UNESCO Global geoparks.

The park was inaugurated in November of 2009 and has a land area of over 150 km2 across both eastern and northeastern New Territories. The Geopark is made of two geological regions, The Sai Kung Volcanic Rock Region and the Northeast New Territories Sedimentary Rock region.

The first foreigner to enter Hong Kong was Jorge Alvarez.

Jorge Alvarez was a Portuguese explorer who is recorded to have been the first European to reach China during the Age of Discovery. Alvares died in Tamao in 1521.

Hong Kong became a special refuge for Chinese exiles during the 1900s.

Upon the reinstatement of British sovereignty after the Japanese occupation of Hongkong, the Civil War renewed in mainland China. This caused several refugees in China to relocate from the capital of Shanghai to Hong Kong. 

It was also due to this relocation that Hong Kong’s economy began to miraculously grow during the early 20th century.

The region is considered to be a free-market economy.

The 2020 Index of Economic Freedom ranks Hong Kong with a score of 89.1. According to the index, this makes the city the second-most free economy among 42 countries in the Asia-Pacific region.

The toilets in Hong Kong make use of seawater to flush.

Hong Kong does not have an abundance of fresh water supply. To conserve its scarce water supply, Hong Kong has designed its plumbing system to use seawater instead of freshwater. 

Burials in cemeteries can only be held for six years in Hong Kong.

This is mainly because its residents find it increasingly difficult to secure burial spaces for their loved ones. Hong Kong does not have enough land to provide for burials.

As a result, the city now also offers burials at sea or in gardens for remembrance.

One of the most scenic walks you could take in Hong Kong is at the Peak Circle Walk.

While it may be one of the simplest hikes you can take in the city, it offers one of the most spectacular views for tourists and locals alike. It is for this reason alone that it has become one of the most popular hiking spots for both the young and old. 

The hike takes an estimate of an hour to complete, but often longer for visitors who choose to savor the scenery they come across.

Hong Kong is not a country.

In its history, Hong Kong was never an independent country. However, it is allowed to operate independently. 

The city of Hong Kong is highly autonomous as one of the two Special Admin Regions.

The ethnic composition of Hong Kong is mainly Chinese.

In Hong Kong, the Chinese population makes up 92% of the city. These people mainly originate from Southern China during the second world war. 

Other demographics that reside in Hong Kong also include Filipinos, Indonesians, Japanese, other Asians, and also some of the European and American descent.

hong kong facts
Source: Pexels

The average life expectancy in Hong Kong is 81.

Health experts claim that this may be due to the city having low smoking rates and a healthy lifestyle. The average lifespan for women span is 87 years while the average lifespan of a male is 81 years. 

Strict anti-smoking rules are implemented in Hong Kong.

Smoking is banned in most public areas with only a select few to accommodate those who do smoke. Since its implementation in 2007, the rate of smokers in Hong Kong has gradually decreased over the years.

The plant life in Hong Kong is noted for its lushness and diversity.

The transitional climate found in Hong Kong ranges between subtropical and warm maritime humidity. The lands excluding the badlands have a herbaceous growth that spans over its swamps and mangroves. 

Hong Kong’s woods also consist of essential native forest trees of which some have potential values for those residing near the area.

The Majority of the population does not share the same religion.

While the Chinese populace still practices Chinese folk religion in Hong Kong, the rest of the population follow other forms of religion. Taoism, Buddhism, and Catholicism are divided by the rest of the population. 

Only a small part of the population in Hong Kong do not observe religion.

Car ownership rates are low in Hong Kong.

For an overly populated city, Hong Kong has a low dependence when it comes to cars. Statistics state that there are only around 48 cars per 1000 population which is low compared to other countries such as Japan or the United Kingdom. 

Because of its low demand, it has now become fairly easy to acquire a vehicle of your own at low prices.

Hong Kong has developed a sophisticated communications network.

These communication lines include radio, television, telephone, and over the internet services. The telecommunications systems in Hong Kong are sophisticated enough to provide excellent domestic and international services.

Hong Kong practices a limited democracy and is based on English Common law.

Out of its 60 incumbent legislators, 24 are directly elected. Most Hong Kong residents agree that a democracy allowing them to elect all legislators should be allowed. 

Hong Kong's main exports are electronic goods.

Hong Kong is considered to be the 33rd largest export economy in the world. Its main exports mainly consist of electronic goods such as appliances and accessories.

Hong Kong largely depends on imports for the majority of its resources.

Its main imports consist of minerals, fuels, and other chemicals. Hong Kong’s main import partner is Japan along with China and Singapore.

Apart from materials, Hong Kong imports 90% of its food from other countries as well. 

The world’s largest double-decker tram system can be found in Hong Kong.

The Tram system is one of Hong Kong’s earliest modes of transportation. The city also holds the world record for owning the world’s largest double-decker tram system in the world. 

This system is solely used for public commuting. However, it is also a popular way for tourists to travel all over the city.

Hong kong facts
Source: Pexels

On Wednesdays, admission to museums is free in Hong Kong.

Several museums found in the city do not charge admission to its visitors on Wednesdays. Of these museums, the list includes the Museum of History, the Museum of Art, and as well as the Exhibition Halls of the Space Museum.

Visitors can come in and out as they please until the museum closes at the end of the day. 

Apart from its plant life, Hong Kong is also popular for its shopping attractions.

The top shopping areas in the city include Tsim Sha Tsui, West Kowloon, Causeway Bay, and Sham Shui Po. Each area specializes in different types of goods such as clothing, electronics, and jewelry. 

Tourists are also able to grab a hold of luxury items in the Central district.

Hong Kong has one of the most relaxed Visa policies in the world.

For most travelers, a Visa is not required to enter the city of Hong Kong. Over 170 countries are allowed entry without a Visa, as long as they have a valid passport. 

Some nationalities are even allowed to stay for as long as six months in the country.

The most affordable Michelin-star restaurants are located in Hong Kong.

The Tim Ho Wan found in Hong Kong is reportedly the cheapest Michelin-star restaurant in the world. This restaurant specializes in dim sum and is known for its barbecue pork buns. 

Tourists can enjoy a meal for two at Tim Ho Wan for under $33.

Groceries in Hong Kong cost approximately 31% more compared to cities like New York.

Most of the food found in Hong Kong are imports that come from other countries, hence the price difference. Food expenditure is always the highest cost when traveling around Hong Kong.

Jose Rizal has two commemorative plaques in Hong Kong to honor him

These plaques commemorate the time the Filipino hero lived in Hong Kong to practice ophthalmology. One of the plaques can be found at his former clinic which had been made to accommodate the Century Square Building.

Hong Kong’s service sector provides 92.7% of its economic output.

This is possible because Hong Kong shifted towards higher valued services during its early growth. Over the years, its service sector expanded incredibly, creating an abundance in business opportunities. 

Cantopop emerged from Hong Kong during the 1970s.

The name refers to the cultural context of this music genre and as well as its production. This music genre grew in popularity during the 80s and 90s before slowly scaling down in the early 2000s.

In sports, Hong Kong represents itself separately from China.

During the 1952 Olympics, Hong Kong represented itself and competed in 14 games in total. In 1996, Hong Kong had won its first medal.

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