First off, March is a great month to get outdoors while the temperature is mild. Take yourself out for an easy hike along Dragon’s Back on Hong Kong’s east side, up to the Peak on the Morning Trail – or traverse deeper into the hinterlands on Lantau Island or the New Territories. Other ideas for making the most of the weather include a beachside barbecue on Hong Kong Island’s Deep Water Bay, wakeboarding in peaceful Tai Tam Bay and wandering around Mong Kok’s technicoloured flower market.
Hong Kong’s outlying islands are also great spots to escape the crowds, and most are just 30-60 minutes’ ferry ride from Central. Sleepy Cheung Chau is a favourite for its golden beaches (and friendly beach bars), gentle hills, waterfront seafood restaurants and ancient temples. Lamma Island’s Family Trail, from Yung Shu Wan to So Kwu Wan, delivers the ultimate reward of a seafood feast at the end of it, and there are many beaches to lure daytrippers too.
If you’ve spent much time exploring the streets of Hong Kong, at some point you’ve probably seen spray painted images of two lovers kissing, plastered across alley walls, pillars and electrical boxes. That’s the handiwork of Hong Kong street artist Lousy, who takes over Sheung Wan’s Mihn Club 18-22 March for Lousy Lounge. Come for an immersive showcase of his works scrawled across the gallery walls, bathrooms and corridors – stay for the after-parties featuring house and techno DJs like Nanogram and Yadin Moha.
Later in March, Minh hosts two nights of DJs from Tokyo hangout Bonobo. Located near Harajuku, the tiny underground venue has a huge reputation for its boho vibe, friendly atmosphere and parties that last long into the night, so expect fun and festive house, techno, experimental and disco tunes from DJs Sei, Calpiss, Kota Motomura (13 March), Hobo Brazil and Desko Deska (14 March).
The opening of the first section of the MTR’s new Tuen Ma Line means that it’s now easy to get to the neighbourhood of San Po Kong. And you definitely should. Hop off at Kai Tak Station and gobble up lard noodles at Ying Kee (Shop 10, G/F, Hong Keung Mansion, 32-34 Hong Keung Street) and check out English-language books and vintage comics at Bleak House Books.
Or go gallery-hopping on Hong Kong Island’s southside in Wong Chuk Hang. Among the exhibitions worth checking out in former high-rise factory buildings are Blindspot Gallery’s Anonymous Society for Magick, which explores the self via a dreamlike reality, created by five visual artists. We dig Chen Wei’s Mushroom, a depiction of sensory overload caused by technology.
By now you’ve worked up a bit of an appetite. Good news: there are loads of dining deals and great new restaurant and bar openings around town.
Live jazz, izakaya bites and free-flow champagne are three things it’s hard to argue with, and they come together for Silencio’s Jazzakaya weekend brunch. On the menu at the LKF Tower restaurant: made-for-Instagram dishes like the ‘sushi donut’, a crispy rice ring topped with raw fish – but for us, the true standout was the short rib steak served with burnt eggplant puree, shishito, fried egg and uni soy.
Chef Taran Chadha of former Sai Ying Pun favourite Blacksalt and the team behind Brut! are back with Pondi. Named for the former French colony Pondicherry, the restaurant’s menu plates up classic Indian flavours and traditions with a dash of French flair and culinary technique. In short, a delicious good time (especially if you order the butter chicken liver terrine).
In other dining news, it’s Hong Kong Restaurant Week until 8 March. More than 130 restaurants around town are putting on special menus for lunch and dinner – with prices starting as low as HK$148 for three courses. It’s a great way into some of the city’s more expensive tables.
And in honour of International Women’s Day (8 March), Roganic Hong Kong and its chef’s table, Aulis Hong Kong, are championing all-female winemakers and cellar masters: add 6 glasses of such wine pairings to lunch or dinner tasting menus for HK$680 plus 10 per cent (through 31 March).
Hip, homegrown multi-brand fashion store I.T. is one of Hong Kong’s success stories, and continues to grow with I.T. Orange Forest, an 18,000-square-foot, two-floor flagship at Tsim Sha Tsui’s The One mall, packed with Hypebeast fantasia, hip workwear and activewear labels – everything you need to look good around town this month.