It’s April and things are heating up in Hong Kong. Pack a picnic and explore the city’s best urban parks, head up hilly trails to catch blockbuster views or hop on a ferry to one of the outlying islands – including southern Po Toi, where you can explore ancient rock carvings and enjoy a seafood feast.
Earth Day falls on 22 April, which is a reminder to cherish the nature we have in Hong Kong. Mark it with a visit to Mai Po Nature Reserve in the New Territories. The WWF organises eco-tours of the area, including a popular half-day birdwatching tour. The 60-hectare Hong Kong Wetland Park offers another serene day of birdwatching in the New Territories.
You can still spot cherry blossoms in Hong Kong this month: try Tai Po Waterfront Park and Tseung Kwan O’s Hong Kong Velodrome Park, which has 11 cherry trees from Taiwan and Japan, as well as pretty lawns and artificial lakes.
Feast on Seasonal Menus
Take yourself out for an indulgent meal with Spiga’s new chef’s tasting menu (HK$688 per person), which fuses Italian and Asian ingredients with flair and panache. Dishes include Hokkaido scallop carpaccio, served with carrot and ginger purée and topped with Oscietra caviar and puffed fregola; and a Piedmontese beef tenderloin tartare, served with tonnato sauce, sun-dried tomatoes, cured egg yolk and polenta chips.
The Drunken Pot continues Year of the Ox celebrations until 30 April, with a Lavish Ring of Beef menu (HK$488) at its restaurants in Causeway Bay and Tsim Sha Tsui. You can also choose between three new broths for your hotpot – or stick to the classic tastebud-tingling Sichuan stock. Take the edge off the heat with a two hour free-flow of wine and sake or bubbles (additional HK$98 or HK$258, respectively).
Modern Japanese izakaya Silencio rolls out a spring menu from new executive chef Sato Kiyoshi. Expect a refreshing twist on favourites like the ham-aji – a tartare of hamachi mixed with salmon roe, daikon sheets, cucumber, persimmon and ginger ponzu; and light, bright desserts like the Cheers (yuzu granita with seasonal pear, champagne jelly and lemon lime foam). There’s also a new Mizuho tasting menu (HK$978 for eight courses), served before the resident live jazz band.
The Ritz-Carlton’s Café 103 has launched a special Art of Italian Afternoon Tea (from HK$428 for one; HK$728 for two, available until 31 May) with a spread of savoury and sweet treats paying homage to luxe jeweller Pomellato’s Italian roots. Dine as a pair and you’ll also receive an invitation to an Italian jewellery experience at Pomellato’s Elements boutique.
American barbecue specialists Smoke & Barrel are putting on a spread with all-you-can-eat ribs washed down with free-flow Pabst Blue Ribbon beers on Monday and Tuesday nights until the end of the year (HK$388 per person, for 90 minutes). Chef Chris Tuthill is also running meat smoking classes, which include lunch and your own smoked meats to take home (HK$1,200 per person).
Cool Off with Refreshing New Cocktails
If you’re wilting in the heat, stop by Zuma for one of its new Nitro Espresso Martinis. Served chilled, the new caffeinated concoction will keep you refreshed – and buzzed – through the evening.
Hang Out at Tong Chong Street Market
Taikoo Place’s Tong Chong Street Market is now running all year on weekdays from 8am-3pm. This month it celebrates a Tea Festival (until 30 April). Among the stalls you’ll find Green Ginkgo Tea, Hong Kong’s first hand-brewed tea bar (try its craft fizzy tap tea for a refreshing, sugar-free alternative to soft drinks); and tea expert BASAO’s delicate tea-infused minty jasmine tea and Gardenia Dancong ice cream. Visitors will get a HK$5 discount at all F&B stalls by bringing their own cups (and why not bring your own food containers for extra karma?). You can also pick up sustainable products such as retro backpacks by Handmadeship.
DIY Snacks at the Cup Noodles Museum
You can’t travel to Japan right now, but from this month you can celebrate one of its most famous dishes at the newly launched Cup Noodles Museum at Tsim Sha Tsui’s China Hong Kong City mall. The third museum from Japanese ramen giant Nissin Foods is its first outside Japan, allowing Hongkongers to customise their own personalised pots – from cup to broth to toppings. You can also try your hand at making noodles from scratch and check out exhibitions on the branding and history of ramen.
Stop and Smell the Flowers at Tai Kwun
Check out floral creations, sustainable products and more at Tai Kwun’s sun-dappled In Bloom flower market on the Parade Ground over the Easter weekend (2-5 April). You’ll also be able to pick up floral decorations at Origami Florist and sustainable local honey and other produce at FarmShare. Participating restaurants are also offering seasonal treats until 18 April – swing by Statement for its Botanical Afternoon Tea to tuck into savoury nibbles and desserts infused with, and inspired by, fruits and flowers.
Check Out Exhibitions
How better to celebrate International Art Day on 15 April than by checking out a show? Not a Fashion Store interrogates the time-honoured connection between fashion and art through works related to clothing, shoes and accessories from the Hong Kong Museum of Art’s four core collections. You’ve got until 5 January 2022 to catch the exhibition at the Tsim Sha Tsui museum.
Central gallery Aishonanzuka continues to show Akos Ezer’s first solo exhibition in Hong Kong, Let the Time Pass, until 18 April. The Hungarian artist’s latest pieces were created during the COVID-19 pandemic, so naturally explore issues of isolation and introspection against a canvas of playful Technicolor backdrops.
Catch a Screening at an Outdoor Cinema
The Grounds has reopened with a packed programme of outdoor film screenings, gigs, yoga and wellness classes in a socially distanced space by the Central Harbourfront. Get your pals together to catch cult classics on the big screen and tuck into food and beverage from nearby BaseHall, delivered straight to your seats on the lawn.
Splash Out on a Staycation
While you’re waiting to take off on that next overseas adventure, you can still take advantage of staycation offers at top hotels right here in Hong Kong: among them the Four Seasons, the Langham, The Ritz-Carlton and the Gold Coast Hotel.