Workshop Information

Invited Lecturers

  • D. Arrowsmith, UK
  • S. Banerjee, India
  • A.J. Lawrance, UK
  • Qishao Lu, China
  • L. Kocarev, USA
  • M. Ogorzalek, Poland
  • W. Schwarz, Germany
  • G. Setti, Italy
  • M. Small, Hong Kong
  • L. Trajkovic, Canada
  • C.W. Wu, USA

Predicting Chaos

Inquiry and Contacts

About Hong Kong

The "" website

Clicking here will bring you to the official website of the Hong Kong Tourism Board, containing tourist information that you may wish to know about Hong Kong, its environment, culture, local events, etc.


Basic facts

In Hong Kong, the main language spoken is Cantonese, but English is also widely used. The currency is Hong Kong Dollar, which is pegged to USD at 1 USD = 7.8 HKD. Credit cards are used everywhere except at street vendors. Electricity is supplied at 220V 50Hz. Our cellular networks are compatible with GSM, PCN, CDMA, and 3G (all roamable here). To find out the weather in the next 7 days, see Hong Kong Observatory homepage.

Visa is not normally needed to visit Hong Kong. You can check the Immigration Department homepage for the list of countries whose citizens require a visa to enter Hong Kong.

In Hong Kong, telephone numbers of most companies, shops, government departments, restaurants, airlines, etc. and even persons can be looked up from PCCW telephone directory. Dial 1081 (English). Emergency (police and ambulance) number is 999.


Michael Tse's suggestions
  • Eat: Dining is certainly one of the many things to do in Hong Kong. The main restaurant districts are Lan Kwai Fong and Soho, but you'll find a restaurant in every other shop along Causeway Bay streets.

    • LAN KWAI FONG --- Situated in central district, Lan Kwai Fong actually consists of a few streets including D'Aguilar, Wyndham, and other hillside small streets, though Lan Kwai Fong is itself an L-shape small street. There you will find lots of restaurants and bars, and it is probably more interesting to see Lan Kwai Fong after dark. Transport: MTR central station, Pedder street Landmark exit, walk towards Queen's road, and then walk up along D'Aguilar street. See also the Lan Kwai Fong website.

    • SOHO --- Also situated in central district, SOHO is a newer restaurant area covering mainly Staunton street, Elgin street and the few small streets perpendicular to Staunton and Elgin. There you will find French, Spanish, Italian, Napal, ... cuisines. Transport: MTR central station, Theatre lane exit, walk along Queen's road toward west, find the Central/Mid-Levels pedestrian escalator, take the escalator and get off when you see lots of neon lights from restaurants and bars.
      Interesting facts: Hong Kong has a few of the world's longest outdoor escalators. This Central/Mid-Levels escalator is 2600 feet long, carrying 220,000 passengers a day between mid-levels and central. Also, the Hongkong Bank (HSBC) headquarters in central has two longest freely supported (without supporting walls along their lengths) escalators. The other very long ones are in Ocean Park.

    • Times Square --- In Causeway Bay area, you will find a restaurant in every other shop. On the top four levels of Times Square, there are a reasonable variety of good-quality restaurants. Transport: MTR Causeway Bay station, Times Square exit. (Note: Times Square is itself a big shopping arcade, ranging from trendy supermarkets at its basement, to electric stores, boutiques, etc.)

    • Dim Sim Breakfast/Lunch --- Most local Cantonese restaurants serving Dim Sim lunch are very crowded. If you'd like to try authentic Dim Sim in a comfortable setting, I recommend the following. City Hall Maxim's Palace (open for lunch) was the choice of Bill Clinton when he visited Hong Kong last time. It is located in City Hall, Central, right in front of the Star Ferry pier in Central. Jade Garden Chinese restaurant (open for breakfast and lunch) at Star House, right in front of Star Ferry pier, Tsimshatsui, is a tourist-friendly and yet authentic Dim Sim restaurant. Also, Serenade Chinese restaurant (open for lunch), on second floor of Hong Kong Cultural Centre, next to the Star Ferry pier in Tsimshatsui. More upscale ones can be found in most 5-star hotels.

    • Restaurants with views of Victoria Harbour --- There are many restaurants in Hong Kong where you enjoy breathtaking views as well as good food.

      • Cafe Deco (Indian tandoori & Asian fusion) --- Peak Galleria, Victoria Peak. information
      • R66 (the only revolving restaurant in Hong Kong) --- top of Hopewell centre, Queen's Road East, Wan Chai. Presumably the HK Parkview shuttle bus (tickets available at Hong Kong Parkview) will take you to Hopewell centre. information
      • Le Parisien (French & fusion) --- Level 2, IFC Mall, Central
      • Napa (American fusion) --- Top of Kowloon Shangri-la hotel. information

    • For further information about eating in Hong Kong, see

  • See: Probably, for most tourists who only have a few days to spend here, the impression of Hong Kong is like an old oriental city equiped with modern facilities. I recommend you to see some of the following:

    • Victoria Peak --- Take the Peak Tram (in operation since 1888) to Victoria Peak. The Peak Tram station is situated at Garden Road, Central, which can be reached from Central Star Ferry Pier by shuttle bus No 15C. (FYI, Hong Kong Parkview provides shuttle bus service to Central Star Ferry at a very reasonable cost.) Otherwise, from the Star Ferry Pier, it takes about 15 min walk to the Peak Tram station at Garden Road.

    • Window-shopping in Tsimshatsui or Causeway Bay --- The tourists' shopping areas are Tsimshatsui, along Nathan Road; and in Causeway Bay area. Take MTR to Tsimshatsui station, begin at Sheraton hotel or anywhere along Nathan Road, do a random-walk along Nathan Road and the side streets. Likewise, a random walk in Causeway Bay, around Paterson street, Henessy Road, Times square, etc., can be interesting too.

    • Victoria Harbour Multimedia Lighting Spectacular --- Every evening, from 8pm to 8:18pm, some 20 skycrapers along the two sides of Victoria Harbour will coordinate to put up a lighting show. Best view is from Tsimshatsiu, right in front of the Cultural Centre next to the Star Ferry pier in Tsimshatsui. Accompanying soundtrack is broadcast from FM radio 103.4Mhz and 106.8Mhz. Most tourists would like to see the show from the Avenue of Stars where the soundtrack is actually being broadcast live. The Avenue of Stars is right next to the Cultural Centre, within walking distance from the Star Ferry pier in Tsimshatsui. Alternatively, you may also enjoy this lighting show if you are riding on a ferry plying across the harbour at the time of the show. See my later suggestion also the Shining Star cruise.

    • Temple Street Night Market --- I think the Temple Street Night Market is a must-see in Hong Kong. It may disappear soon. Fortune tellers, street vendors (for all kinds of goods including watches, clothings, electronic gadgets, imitation designers' stuffs, jewelry, CDs, you name it), Cantonese opera streetside singers/performers, etc. are seen only in Temple Street nowadays. Go there only after 7pm, and before 10pm. You will find nothing there during the daytime. Make sure to go around the Tin Hau Temple in order not to miss the other section of Temple Street. Remember to bargin fiercely and check the goods if you're making purchases. Transport: MTR Jordan station, exit to Nathan Road/Jordan Road, walk towards Yue Hwa Chinese Products Emporium and walk further north for about two blocks, turn left and find Temple Street. For more information, see the Wikipedia.

    • Stanley Market and Murray House --- The old British admiralty building Murray House was originally situated in central, and was moved to Stanley (south of Hong Kong island). The building was demolished, but every stone was stored, numbered/labelled, and later reconstructed in Stanley. It is now Murray House Stanley, which houses a few restaurants and an exhibition hall. In Stanley, there is also an old market, where inexpensive clothings, souvenirs, arts and crafts, paintings, linen, washable silks, Chinese jackets, etc. are sold. It is an interesting place to visit during the day. There is also a street of restaurants and pubs joining the Murray House and the market. Transport: buses 6, 6A, 6X and 260 starting from Exchange Square Central. There are bus stops along Queen's Road East, if you would like to take the HK Parkview shuttle to Hopwell Centre at Queen's Road East, Wan Chai. But remember to walk to the other side of Queen's Road (eastbound) because you'll get off the shuttle at the opposite side of the road (westbound). Anyway, there are clear route signs and explanatory notes at all bus stops.

    • Temples --- The oldest and most important temple in Hong Kong is the Man Mo Temple (built in the 1840's), corner of Hollywood Road and Ladder Street, Western district. Taxi is most convenient; alternatively take bus no 26 from Central, along Des Voeux Road (near the Hongkong Bank Building), and get off at the second stop on Hollywood Road. The other very important and much bigger temple is the Wong Tai Sin Temple, which is a taoist temple attracting thousands of patrons during the Chinese New Year days. The temple has several halls dedicated to Buddist Goddess of Mercy and Confucius, a nine-dragon garden, a Chinese garden, and a replica of the nine-dragon mural in Beijing's Imperial Palace, replica of Yi He Garden in Beijing, etc. The temple is surrounded by huge old government housing estates, as it is the people's temple. The temple can be reached from MTR Wong Tai Sin station, exit B.

    • Antiques and Collectibles Shops --- If you have an interest in Chinese antiques, furniture (mainly Ming and Qing dynasty), arts and crafts, pay a visit to Hollywood Road area, including Cat Street. The Hollywood Road is the most famous area for Chinese paintings and antiques. But if you're not very fond of walking along streets and search for things in shops, you may visit CHINESE ARTS AND CRAFTS, which is a one-stop department store for Chinese clothings, arts and crafts. There is a branch in Wan Chai, situated at 26 Harbour Road, China Resources Building. Taxi is easiest, I think, for this case. Alternatively, you may visit the Silk Road Arcade on level 3 of zone D in Harbour City. (Note: Harbour City + Ocean Terminal + Gateway Complex is one of largest shopping arcades on the Kowloon side, right next to the Star Ferry Pier in Tsimshatsui.)

  • Do: The following are some suggested activities while you're in Hong Kong.

    • "Shining Star" Harbour Cruise --- Even for locals like me, riding the double decker "Shining Star" ferry is a pleasant thing to do. This boat is a re-creation of those old Star ferries that served Hong Kong in the 1920s. Nowadays, Star ferries (see picture on right) are still plying in Victoria Harbour between Central and Tsimshatsiu (main route). The Shining Star is a special tourist ferry. You can get on board from Central or Tsimshatsui (or from any of the Star Ferry piers), and get off at any Star Ferry pier you like. You may, for example, get on at Central and get off at Central to complete a round trip. The Hong Kong Parkview shuttle will take you to the Star Ferry pier in Central. Details of tour choices can be found in The Star Ferry homepage.

    • Hong Kong Museum of Art (and Space Museum, and The Avenue of Stars) --- The Hong Kong Museum of Art is the most important art museum exhibiting a huge collection of Chinese antiques and paintings. The old painting gallery is particularly interesting as it describes how Hong Kong has changed from an old fishing village to what it is now. Also, this gallery has the whole Victoria Harbour outside its window as its backdrop! The Hong Museum of Arts is right next to the Hong Kong Cultural Centre which is 1 min walk from the Star Ferry pier in Tsimshatsui, Kowloon. For see the museum's homepage for details.
      Note: In the vacinity, you'll also find the Space Museum, The Avenue of Stars (where you'll find Jacky Chan's and Chow Yun Fat's handprints.) Regrettably, I have never been to the Avenue of Stars and was only told about it by visitors.

    • Ocean Park --- The Ocean Park combines education and amusements. My (and my son's) favourite is the Atoll Reef which has over 2000 fish from 300 species, including the little clown fish and 7-ft long giant grouper. The dolphin and sea lion show in the Ocean Theatre is also an attraction. Besides the park has Hong Kong's largest cable car system and is currently the biggest amusement park (with roster coaster rides, turbo drop, etc.) before the opening of Hong Kong Disney in September this year. See the Ocean Park homepage for more information.

    • Live Music (Jazz, blues and folk) --- Many restaurants and bars offer live music. Some levy a cover charge, some don't. Probably the best known venue is the Fringe Club, located at 2 Lower Albert Road, Central, reachable from MTR Central station (walk through Lan Kwai Fong). It is open until 2am. Also, the Jazz and Blues Club and Bar is a popular venue, located on 2nd floor, California Entertainment Building, 34-36 D'Aguilar Street (Lan Kwai Fong). The Captain Bar in Mandarin Oriental Hotel, Central, is also a popular venue for travelers. Probably the best known upscale multientertainment complex is the JJ's, which is located in Grand Hyatt Hotel, Wan Chai (next to the Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre).

    • Hiking --- There are 23 country parks in Hong Kong, covering >40% of Hong Kong's space. Our government has a strange policy of only developing a small part of the territory in order to keep the land price very high. But this gives us lots of hiking trails, nature trails as well as family trails. Serious hikers may consider MacLehose Trail in the New Territories area, north of Kowloon. There are also comparitively easy ones such as the Hong Kong Trail and some parts of the Wilson Trail. A possible entry point of the Hong Kong Trail is just a few min from Hong Kong Parkview. It usually takes a whole day to do this activity. See the country park homepage for details.

  • Shoppings:

    • Shopping Arcades and Department Stores --- There are many huge shopping arcades in Hong Kong. Pacific Place (MTR Admiralty station), City Plaza (MTR Taikoo station), Times Square (MTR Causeway Bay station), Festival Walk (MTR Kowloon Tong station, next to City University), Habour City/Ocean Terminal/Gateway connected complex (MTR Tsimshatsui station or Star Ferry Tsimshatsui), are among the largest shopper arcades in the city centre. Local department stores are Wing On (one within City Plaza) and Lane Crawford (one within Ocean Terminal, Tsimshatsui). Japanese department stores are SOGO (MTR Causeway Bay station), Mitsukoshi (MTR Causeway Bay station), Seibu (within Pacific Place, MTR Admiralty station, and also in basement of Windsor House, Causeway Bay).

    • Computers --- On the Hong Kong island side, I recommend Windsor House in Causeway Bay (near Victoria Park). On the 10th to 12th floors, you find only computer shops. Windsor House can be reached by MTR Causeway Bay station. The other one is Wan Chai Computer City which can be reached from MTR Wan Chai Station. Also, the 298 Mall (298 Hennessey Road, Wan Chai) is in Wan Chai, within walking distance from the MTR Wan Chai station. The oldest (historical) computer shopping arcade is probably the Golden Shopping Arcade, which can be reached from MTR Shamshuipo station. This old arcade used to be notorious for selling pirated CDs and softwares.

    • Chinese Craft Emporiums --- A quick one-stop shop is Chinese Arts and Crafts. There is one branch in Wan Chai, situated at 26 Harbour Road, China Resources Building. Taxi is recommended. Another recommendation is Shanghai Tang, situated in Central (near MTR Pedder Street exit). I also recommend Yue Hwa Chinese Products, which carries a range of products of varying prices. The main store is on Nathan Road, near MTR Jardon station.


Links to Ron Chen's photo galleries of Hong Kong


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Last updated 22 March 2005. For reporting technical problems in this website, please contact Michael Tse.