Ah, January. Month of the extra kilograms of wine weight, when everything feels a bit flabby and corpulent. And we’re not even talking about our waistline…
Which is why we’re using Hong Kong as our health, fitness and wellbeing playground this month. Here’s what we’re putting on our fit list.
For gym-goers: Try The Trip at Pure Fitness in Central’s California Tower. It’s possibly the most enjoyable spinning class we’ve ever had, partly because we were so engrossed in peddling through the virtual obstacle courses on the 270-degree wraparound screen we didn’t even notice we were sweating.
For adventure-hunters: Climb, dangle and do lots of other exciting verbs at Verm City, an indoor rock climbing gym in Quarry Bay. For those of you/us that work in Taikoo Place it’s an easy lunchtime clamber. (Seeing as you’re in the area: Ryze, the trampoline park, is in the same building. Come and bounce off the Christmas overindulgence.)
For spa-lovers: The Grand Hyatt in Wan Chai has partnered with French sound engineer Devialet to roll out an intriguing sound-based spa treatment in its Plateau Spa. Set to the gentle sounds of rural Hong Kong (like the wind over Dragon’s Back and the waves on Lantau Island) dripped through sexy bronze and white Devialet speakers, the Voyage des Sens massage is both immersive and incredibly relaxing. Plus, there’s a pot of tea waiting for you at the end, which could be the first time you enjoy a traditional Hong Kong teahouse experience in a dressing gown.
For cheapskates wanting to trim the fat: There’s always the world-class hiking in Hong Kong’s abundant rural parkland. This month we’re going as far north as we can go in Plover Cove Country Park and Pat Sin Leng Country Park. In town, there are free bi-monthly yoga sessions run by HK Outdoor Yoga in Admiralty’s Tamar Park – just turn up with your mat and smile for the group photo. Plus, every Wednesday evening there are free group harbour runs in different locations – find details on the Hong Kong Harbour Runners Facebook group.
Unfortunately (or should that be fortunately?) it’s too late to sign up for the Hong Kong Marathon (21 January), but even idly watching the 70,000 runners makes us feel motivated to kickstart that languishing health and fitness resolution…
Early Jan-early Jun: Strawberry picking, Osaka, Japan
Various strawberry farms in the Osaka area open up their doors starting this month, offering visitors this family-friendly activity and delicious all-you-can-eat strawberries.
2-10 Feb: Dhaka Art Summit, Dhaka, Bangladesh
This biennial extravaganza is one of South Asia’s biggest non-commercial art shows, featuring collaborations with powerhouse institutions around the world. dhakaartsummit.org
2-12 Feb: Ramen Matsuri, Nagoya, Japan
Famed ramen restaurants from across Japan gather at this event, where attendees get to try the country’s regional varieties of the classic soup noodles in one place.
9-11 Mar: FINA Diving World Series, Beijing, China
One of the globe’s premier diving competitions, a series of four meets featuring plenty of Olympians, kicks off in Beijing, followed by events in Japan, Canada and Russia. fina.org