Ride the Ding Ding Trams on Hong Kong Island
Trams are undoubtedly a unique way to get around in Hong Kong. These double-decker trams are one of three systems in the world and are 110 years old. Serving the Northern corridor of Hong Kong Island, trams provide a unique experience of getting around in a modern, rapidly-moving city in one of the oldest forms of transport in the city.
The trams are charmingly called ‘Ding-Dings’ because of the chiming sounds they make to warn pedestrians of their presence. They run from the Eastern side of Shau Kei Wan all the way to the Western end of Kennedy Town. They also have a loop route that diverts to Happy Valley near Causeway Bay. The trams run parallel to the MTR, so it is a fairly straightforward route and an easy way to get around as you’ll never get lost.
The broad route starts from Shau Kei Wan, moving through Quarry Bay, North Point, Causeway Bay, Wan Chai, Admiralty, Central, Sheung Wan, and Sai Ying Pun, before terminating at Kennedy Town.
Trams run fairly frequently, with one arriving every few minutes, and operate from the early morning all the way up to midnight. They are a fantastic way of sightseeing Hong Kong from an elevated perspective as it passes through the major areas of Hong Kong Island, allowing passengers to get a feel of the eclectic pace of the city and its unique neighbourhoods.
With the Hong Kong Tourist Pass, you can avail unlimited rides on the tram system, so continue reading for the ultimate guide to sightseeing Hong Kong via the Ding Ding, including important stops and tips!
Hotspots Along the Tram Routes
Get your cameras out as the tram approaches Fortress Hill MTR Station. This is King’s Road, a long, wide stretch of road with tall buildings flanking both sides, ultimately making it a popular photo spot. To visit the famous Tin Hau Temple, get off at Lau Sin Street.
The tram stops right outside the major shopping areas in this neighborhood, including Times Square, Hysan Place, SOGO and Lee Gardens. Alight at Foo Ming Street on the Happy Valley loop for any shopping needs. Alternatively, when you’ve had your fill of shopping malls, alight at Victoria Park and spend an hour exploring this park.
Right next to the Swatow Street stop is The Pawn, a historical landmark that now houses high end bars and restaurants with pretty balcony views. Very close by is Ship Street, a short street of small but reputed bars and restaurants, notably 22 Ships. Fulfill all your electronic needs (phones, games, laptops, cameras, accessories, and more) at the Wan Chai Computer Center. Get here by alighting at the O’Brien Road stop.
Trams run through Des Voeux Road, which is close to IFC Mall (Pennington Street Stop), and nightlife at Lan Kwai Fong (Pedder Street Stop). Get to SoHo via the Mid Level Escalators - the longest outdoor escalator in the world.
Sheung Wan, Sai Ying Pun, and Kennedy Town
The Western end of the island houses a truly eclectic mix of old and new, with dried seafood shops lining main roads, the very aesthetic Western Market, and upcoming hipster cafes.
Tips for Traveling on Ding Ding Trams
To head to the Western areas, look for ‘Westbound’ Trams, with destinations reading ‘Kennedy Town’, ‘Western Market’, or ‘Whitty Street Depot / Shek Tong Tsui’.
Alternatively, if you’re at the Western end and want to get to the Causeway Bay area, get on the Eastbound trams heading to ‘North Point’, ‘Causeway Bay’ or ‘Shau Kei Wan’.
Get to the front seat on the upper deck for the best views.
Avoid tram travel during rush hours, where tram after tram will be packed with commuters.
Get on at the back of the tram, and exit at the front of the tram.
Use your HKTP and travel back in time for a unique, historical and cultural experience on one of Hong Kong’s most defining features!