Chances are, if you’ve cast a well-travelled eye over these two beauties before, you’ll know that a Singapore vs Hong Kong showdown is a pretty close call. Eastern flair, skylines that wow in every way, menus to drool over and urban adventures too numerous to fit into one stay.
But, there are times when decisions must be made. Even if that decision is simply deciding which destination to jet to first. Prepare to have your travel lust emotions torn in every direction, let the Hong Kong vs Singapore showdown begin…
Let’s waste no time here deliberating. Hong Kong is a foodie’s paradise and wins hands down in just about every possible cuisine category you can think of. Go-to benchmarks include the lofty Michelin-stars. Hong Kong not only has a whopping 73 Michelin-starred restaurants, but you can also bag one of the world’s cheapest Michelin meals here.
But, before you do pack your best elasticated waistbands and head for Hong Kong, Singapore shouldn’t be discounted. As you might expect in Asia, there are some absolute cracking Malaysian restaurants to book a table at. Singapore’s a global leader in the Chinese and Indian food stakes too.
Hong Kong still has the edge in one very important area, though… Instagrammable food in Hong Kong borders on the ridiculous. Your feed will be full of gloriously presented, steaming ramen bowls, haute cuisine classic, new wave cooking and, best of all, dim sum dishes that look like they’ve hopped straight from a Japanese kawaii store. Irresistible in every way.
Winner: Hong Kong – the sheer choice (more restaurants per person than anywhere else in the world), standard and variety of food will always be hard to beat.
You might not expect this category to get controversial. Hong Kong vs Singapore could seem a close tie. After all, both boast shimmering cityscapes.
Hong Kong architecture – with its hidden Feng Shui vibe – could just edge out Singapore’s futuristic vision. Depending on how much of a deep dive you want to take into angles and storeys – it’s a close call. So, we’re going to have to zoom out with our binoculars and see what else is on the horizon.
At this point, Hong Kong starts to really wow. Cable car rides treat you to an eyeful of forest – served with a giant Buddha. Hiking trails in Hong Kong are on bucket lists for a reason and the surrounding islands and sunsets get ‘grammers filling their feeds over and over again.
Winner: It’s a tie. Both have award winning architecture, eye-melting waterside spots, sky high observation decks and cultural temples to swoon over.
Neither of these cities sleep. Jet in to either location and you’re guaranteed a stellar night out. There’s just one small problem when weighing up Singapore vs Hong Kong – you could be enjoying a sidecar in a rooftop bar in Hong Kong… but is there anything to differentiate it with a rooftop bar in Singapore? Not really. Which isn’t necessarily a bad thing, as standards are high in both. So you could then switch to unique spots to weigh up the two.
Problem is … both places are peppered with speakeasies and hidden bars that take some sleuthing to find. Which is more of a delight than a problem. But you get the picture. Sky bars, cocktail lounges and gentleman’s clubs more than serve the luxe side of life. And both have enough casual drinking holes to nip to when you’re not in the mood to glam up.
Night markets, comedy clubs, gigs – we’re still no closer to calling it. Hong Kong does have the nightly Symphony of Lights … but it would be remiss of us to give it that much sway – impressive as it is.
Winner: A tie. In THE best possible way.
For unique experiences
Even in this category, our Singapore vs Hong Kong comparison continues to lead us on a merry dance through some wonderful ways to spend time in either city.
Straight out the gate, both places are awash with unique experiences. Hong Kong weighs in early doors with the giant Buddha we mentioned earlier. It’s the world’s largest and is impressive however you look at it. The big name experience is obviously Hong Kong Disneyland. Which is grand if you’re looking for things to do in Hong Kong with family – but perhaps not so much if you’re looking at a cultural escape.
Hong Kong’s got some quirky travel options – including a rather odd outdoor undercover escalator. And while it might also boast a world beating stat, Singapore’s futuristic slant probably gives it the edge here.
Architects have built in some jaw dropping features. Those iconic supertrees are unlike anything you’ll see elsewhere, then there are those little unexpected details you could so easily miss. Here, we are of course talking about the world’s first salmon ATM. Nordic salmon from a vending machine. If you’re talking unique experiences, that’s what to expect in Singapore.
Winner: Singapore – the futuristic vibe gets us every time.
For overall affordability
We’ve already given a nod to your wallet with our mention of the cheapest Michelin meal. Perhaps one of our favourite – and tastiest Hong Kong facts. But it’s not just gourmet eats that are cheaper in Hong Kong. When it comes to money, Singapore looks on shaky ground in the Singapore vs Hong Kong standoff.
Overall, all restaurant meals are around 15% more expensive (like for like) in Singapore. That’s not the only measure of an affordable holiday though. It’s worth noting that groceries tend to be cheaper in Singapore. Handy if you’re considering a self-catering stay. It will cost you more to move around the city, though. And while walking is the cheapest mode of transport of all – the humidity in either city rules out too much schlepping from A-B.
Souvenir-wise, well those are going to be a mixed bag. Top tip: clothing is cheaper in Singapore – so that’s your stop for big brands and a wardrobe revamp.
Finally, the real measure of a country’s finances, a common or garden pint. Yes, it’ll cost you a smidge more in Hong Kong, but the difference is measured in pence, not pounds.
Winner: Hong Kong – dining out is a travel must for us, and the savings are too big to ignore.
Hong Kong just about nabs this one. Being a world-leading gastro-hub was always going to put any location going up against it on the back foot. That said, both cities are packed with plenty to do, awash with Eastern cultural experiences and both deserve a place on your must-see travel lists.
Decision made? We get it. Singapore vs Hong Kong is a tough shout. If you need a little more inspo, the Orbzii app not only has hotels and luscious shots of each destination, you can plan and book your ultimate trip to Hong Kong … or Singapore.