News roundup: Hong Kong to have regular fireworks shows along Victoria Harbour, and more tourism stories


For PropertyGuru’s tourism news roundup, regular fireworks shows along Victoria Harbour will start in May in an effort by the Tourism Board to boost Hong Kong’s tourism. In other headlines, Vietnam’s south-central coast is perfect for adrenaline junkies and nature lovers, while tourism in the Asia Pacific is set to recover to pre-pandemic levels this year.

Regular fireworks show to begin May Day, as Hong Kong links up with mainland China influencers to boost tourism

A marine pyrotechnic display will take place across Victoria Harbour during next Wednesday’s May Day public holiday, kicking off a campaign of regular fireworks shows to boost tourism, the Hong Kong Tourism Board (HKTB) has announced.

HKFP reports that in a statement released on 25th April, the HKTB said the fireworks show will begin at 8 pm on Labour Day near the Tsim Sha Tsui Promenade. The theme will be the colour gold, showcasing the initials “HK” and a smiley face.

The government announced during the 2024 Budget that some HKD1.09 billion had been allocated to boost tourism, with the HKTB hosting regular firework displays and drone shows as well as promoting activities such as city walks and hiking.

“It’s all part of an energising effort to soft-sell Hong Kong,” the financial chief Paul Chan said in Cantonese when he delivered the budget in late February.

Sand dunes, ziplines, water rafting: Vietnam’s south-central coast is perfect for adrenaline junkies

We were perched on the edge of the treetop platform, the verdant forest below us. It’s higher than it looks. There’s a ripple of excitement in the air as the first brave soul made the leap. Soon it was my turn. Soaring through the air at dizzying speeds, it was an exhilarating ride.

This zipline canopy is just one of the many thrilling experiences you’ll find at the Kong Forest Adventure Park at Hon Ba Nature Reserve in Vietnam, a hidden haven for adrenaline junkies and nature lovers.

Most guests typically hit up places like Ho Chi Minh City, Hanoi, or Da Nang and Hoi An. But according to CNA, those seeking something less cookie-cutter might not realise that Vietnam’s south-central coast has plenty of hidden gems – from unspoiled white beaches with turquoise waters, lush mountains, quaint fishing villages, and picturesque sand dunes.

Asia Pacific’s tourism on the brink of full recovery

Tourism in the Asia Pacific is set to recover to pre-pandemic levels this year, boosting investment in hospitality real estate, and retail.

Asia Pacific was hit hard by the COVID-19 pandemic, with 2021 international arrivals in the region only 7 percent of the level seen in 2019, according to UN Tourism. Last year, this recovered to 65 percent, compared with the average global figure of 88 percent.

The biggest missing piece across the region was the absence of Chinese tourists. Outbound tourism numbers from China were down 58 percent from 2019 levels, according to Oxford Economics. However, it predicts numbers will nearly double this year, still leaving the number of Chinese tourists down 22 percent in 2019, before returning to growth in 2025.

Nonetheless, the recovery of tourism around the region has been a boon for many nations and has also benefitted real estate. Simon Smith, Head of Research & Consultancy, Asia Pacific at Savills, says: “Investors have been acquiring hotels to gain exposure to recovering tourism and some markets have also seen an improvement in the outlook for retail real estate.

“The region still has some way to go to full recovery, which means investors still have an opportunity to buy into future growth.”

The Property Report editors wrote this article. For more information, email: [email protected].