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Why I love Christmas in Hong Kong

By: Orla Breeze

So, you’ve been in Hong Kong for a little while and, based on what you’ve seen, you’re probably thinking it’s not the place to spend the holidays. Busy city, lots of people – that’s got to be a recipe for a festive disaster, right? Wrong! If there’s one thing I’ve learned about this place, it’s that it’s always full of surprises. And Christmas in Hong Kong is no exception.

OTT displays are just one of the fun things about Christmas in Hong Kong
OTT displays are just one of the fun things about Christmas in Hong Kong

Five years ago, we made the decision not to travel “back home” for Christmas, not to add another level of stress to an already stressful time, and definitely not to cart the same Christmas morning pressies back and forth across the world. And we quickly discovered that staying here was a lot more relaxing than you’d expect. Yes, there was the usual rush but the day itself and the week leading up to New Year’s positively brimmed with seasonal cheer!

No fighting through airports, no crazy relatives to entertain, and no running from house to house making sure to spend the “right” amount of time with everyone meant that the spirit of Christmas was given a chance to appear in our home. We actually got to spend time as a family, review the year, and talk about our hopes and dreams for the next. Yes, I know that sounds like a scene from a Christmas movie but it actually happened! And it’s happened every year since. Honestly!

But that’s not all the Hong Kong holiday season offers. Oh no! Just when you think you couldn’t possibly fit one more minute of relaxing in, it hands you the gift of Chinese New Year. Or, as I like to call it, The Five-day Holiday to Recover from The Holidays. So, you’re staying, right?

For more from Orla, visit her website, orlabreeze.com

Related: 5 ways to have a merry Christmas away from home

This article first appeared in Expat Living’s 2017 CityGuide. Subscribe to get an issue.