Ok, so after my blog post on what to do in Kowloon when it rains it’s just logical to suggest a few things to do on a wet day on the Island.
You could start your day with some Dim Sum to share with friends or family. My personal favourite is North Garden (Address: 1-3/F Hung Kei Mansion 5-8 Queen Victoria street, Central, Tel. 2526 3163), which has a few outlets but I prefer the one close to the Central Market. Other options are the Tsui Hang Village on Queen’s Road (2/F, New World Tower, 16-18 Queen’s Road, Central, Tel. 2524 2012), which has been recommended by the Michelin Guide 2013, or Maxim’s Palace, in City Hall. You’ll most likely have to queue for a while, but once you’re in, the atmosphere is really different with old ladies pulling trolleys full with dim sum – you just pick from the trolleys and eat until you are full (Address: City Hall, 2/F, City Hall, 5-7 Edinburgh Place, Central, Tel. 2521 1303). Those three suggestions are all in the Central area. If you are in Wan Chai I recommend 8 Happiness (Address: 2/F, W Square, 314-324 Hennessy Road, Wan Chai, Tel. 2838 6998) or Tai Wing Wah Village Cuisine (Address: G/F & 1/F, 1 Stewart Road, Wan Chai, Tel. 2511 1663).
So after you’ve had your dumpling fix, what could you do? Let’s skip the Shopping Malls, you’ll eventually pass through them or end up in one. Instead, you could visit some art galleries. There are a few in the Pedder Building (just enter to the left of the Abercrombie & Fitch store and ride the lift to the top and walk downwards), for example Gagosian Gallery on the 7th floor or Pearl Lam on the 6th floor. Just make sure it’s not a Sunday, as that’s the only day the galleries are closed. If you want to explore more galleries, you’ll need to make your way along Hollywood Road and Sheung Wan – only trouble is if’s raining you’ll get wet. There are no covered walkways in Sheung Wan (or just very few).
Let’s assume you’ve stayed at the Pedder Building. After that, take your umbrella and walk the short distance to the Des Veux Road. Catch one of the double-decker trams and I suggest you ride it to Wan Chai or Causeway Bay in the East. That’s only 20 minutes, but you’ll see a little of the surroundings, a few markets and tiny shops in Wan Chai and lots of traffic on Hennessy Road!
You could get off at the Southern Playground and walk around this area, but the problem is that everything is really crowded and it will be difficult to walk with an umbrella in your hands. So maybe you ride the tram until you get to the Times Square area. Just behind it is the Bowrington Street Market, which is partly indoors and outdoors.
At least you could walk through the indoors part without getting wet. There’s not much to explore in Times Square and Causeway Bay area (just lots of shops, the smallest IKEA I’ve ever seen and a few cinemas) – so you could then take the tram or MTR back to Admiralty.
Exit at Admiralty, Walk through Pacific Place (another huge shopping mall) and follow the signs to the Hong Kong Park. While the weather might be miserable and the park empty, there is a nice Teaware Museum and a great tea house where you can sit and wait for the rain to pass.
In the Hong Kong Park is also an Arboretum with lots of trees and different plants – it’s small, but free of charge and another dry place on a wet day.
Depending what you are interested in, you might want to head to the Maritime Museum at the Central Pier, next to the Star Ferry. It just opened in January 2013 and I’ve only been recently – but it was an interesting afternoon with 2 hours well spent.
Or if you want to treat yourself, go to one of the hotels for an Afternoon Tea – and actually a lot of coffee shops offer that as well. If you want to go fancy, head to the Mandarin Oriental for amazing pastries and desserts, or just have some macarons at the newly opened Pierre Herme at the IFC or my old-time favourite (at least for birthday macarons) is Le Gouter Bernardaud, also in the IFC.
Finally, if you’re not tired yet – check out what concerts are on in the City Hall (you might get some leftover tickets for the same day, just check out Hong Kong Ticketing) or head out for some drinks. If the sky has cleared up by the evening, Sevva, Armani Prive or Red would be my choices in the Central area. But if it is still raining you’ll be better off somewhere inside, maybe in Lan Kwai Fong or SoHo (the Globe has a huge choice of different beers) or you could just go for a nice dinner somewhere in the SoHo area, there are so many choices – almost any cuisine in the world is available.