The island of Chek Lap Kok is home to Hong Kong International Airport. Opened in 1998, the airport is 21 miles northwest of Hong Kong. Terminal 1 is the third-largest air terminal in the world. The airport handles several hundred flights each day.
Renting a car allows travelers to explore this Chinese city on their own schedule. It takes some effort to rent a car, though. Hong Kong Airport does not offer rental car services on site and driving is hectic.
Car Rental Agencies Near Hong Kong Airport
Rental car services are available on Hong Kong Island, about a 30-minute taxi ride away. The closest options are Hong Kong Car Service and Crown Motors (Toyota Rental Car). A longer taxi ride to Kowloon will offer more choices such as Hertz and Avis. Taxis will charge extra fees for tolls and luggage.
Some providers such as Crown Motors will deliver a car to the airport for an extra fee. Bus and rail options are available from the airport to Hong Kong too. The Airport Express rail runs every 10 minutes to the center of Hong Kong.
At most rental agencies a driver's license provides enough documentation to rent a car. It's a good idea to get an International Driving Permit also to speed up the rental process.
Most cars in Hong Kong have automatic transmissions. Note that steering wheels are on the right and cars drive on the left side of the road, which can be a challenge. Gas stations are available near the car rental agencies if drivers need to fill up the tank.
Navigating Hong Kong Streets
Hong Kong is a small city packed with over seven million residents. Once travelers have their rental car, they should be ready for constant traffic. Real road warriors should be comfortable navigating heavy car and foot traffic on local streets.
Driving is reportedly chaotic and stressful in Hong Kong. Tunnel and bridge toll back-ups cause traffic jams. Major roads near the airport are routes 8 and 9. Outside the city, the driving pace slows down. Drivers must be careful not to cross into China without permission from the Chinese government.
Activities Near Hong Kong Airport
Theme park enthusiasts can arrive at Hong Kong Disneyland Resort in just 15 minutes from the airport. Classic rides include the Jungle River Cruise, the Mad Hatter Tea Cups, and Dumbo the Flying Elephant. The park caters to guests of all ages, offering family entertainment and character experiences.
A more serene attraction is the Ngong Ping 360 Cable Car. This Aerial tramway glides over the airport and harbor offering scenic views on the way to Lantau Island. Crystal cars with a glass floor offer a truly magnificent ride. Buy tickets and arrive early since lines can get long.
In Lantau, meet Tian Tan Buddha, known as Big Buddha. This bronze seated statue of Buddha Shakyamuni was completed in 1993. Big Buddha is 114 feet tall. On hot and humid days, climbing the 268 steps to get to the platform can be challenging, but worth it.