“A Symphony of Lights” also refers as the laser show. It is one of Hong Kong top sightseeing attractions since its launch in 2004. From the 1st of December 2017, a completely new theme of “A Symphony of Lights” was launched with new music and light illumination.
As always, the multimedia show is a daily light, laser and sound spectacle taking place along Victoria Harbour. Organized by the Hong Kong Tourism Board, “A Symphony of Lights” was awarded in 2005 as the largest permanent light and sound show by the Guinness World Records. Although the record has now been broken by the light and sound show in Jiangxi Nanchang in 2015 with 293 buildings involved, it should still definitely be standing on top on your to-do-list in Hong Kong.
1. What is A Symphony of Lights
2. Best viewing locations along Victoria Harbour with Music
3. Watch with Harbour Tours on Victoria Harbour
4. Watch from the Peak, Rooftop Bars as well as Hotel Rooms
5. The changes of new A Symphony of Lights
6. More insider tips that you shouldn’t miss
What is A Symphony of Lights?
Every evening 8:00pm, about 40 key buildings and skyscrapers on both sides of Victoria Harbour (Kowloon side and Hong Kong Island side) will start to dance with lights on and off, along with exclusively composed music. The 10-minute interactive light show paired with musical effects bans thousands of visitors every single night in Hong Kong.
All major buildings will shut down or dim their lights and illuminations several minutes prior to A Symphony of Light Show to get ready. At exactly 8:00pm the show starts after 10-second counting down on the X-Wall of HSBC building. In the past, there was a narration at the beginning to introduce the involved buildings from east to west. However, from December 2017 the new version of “A Symphony of Lights” doesn’t include the part of narration any longer.
Looking from TST, the nightly show starts from the Wan Chai area and spreads to the western district. The participating buildings are listed below.
Participating buildings on Hong Kong Island:
1. China Online Center (LED screen);
2. Sun Hung Kai Centre (53 floors, laser & searchlights);
3. Central Plaza (3rd tallest in Hong Kong, 78 floors, laser);
4. Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre;
5. Immigration Tower (LED screen);
6. Revenue Tower and LED screen;
7. Hopewell Centre (66 floor, light & laser);
8. Harcourt house (LED screen);
9. China Evergrande Center and LED screen;
10. Central Government Offices;
11. Queensway Government Offices (searchlights);
12. The Chinese People’s Liberation Army Forces Hong Kong Building;
13. Bank of America Tower;
14. Bank of China Tower (4th tallest in Hong Kong, 70 floors, LED & searchlights);
15. AIA Central and LED screen;
16. CCB Tower;
17. Cheung Kong Center (70 floors);
18. HSBC Main Building;
19. Standard Chartered Bank Building;
20. Jardine House;
21. One Exchange Square;
22. Two Exchange Square;
23. Two International Finance Centre;
24. One International Finance Centre;
Looking from Hong Kong Island, the nightly show starts from the east Kowloon area and spreads to International Commerce Center, the highest building of Hong Kong. The participating buildings are listed below.
25. International Commerce Center (the highest building in Hong Kong, 118 floors);
26. Ocean Terminal – Extension Building;
27. Ocean Terminal – Harbour City;
28. The Gateway – Harbour City;
29. Langham Place (59 floors);
30. Star House (LED screen);
31. Hong Kong Cultural Centre;
32. 26 Nathan Road and LED screen;
33. The ONE (LED screen);
34. Hotel Panorama by Rhombus;
35. Hong Kong Coliseum;
36. China Life Center;
37. Cheung Kei Center;
39. World Dream Cruise ship (every Friday);
40. Kai Tak Terminal
Buildings on Hong Kong Island that were in the show but quit now:
1. The Center
2. Hong Kong City Hall
3. The Hong Kong Academy for Performing Arts
4. MassMutual Tower
5. CITIC Tower
Buildings on Kowloon side that were in the show but quit now:
3. One Peking
4. Hong Kong Museum of Art (Under refurbishment)
5. The Peninsula Hong Kong
6. New World Centre (Under development)
7. Tsim Sha Tsui Centre
8. Empire Centre
9. InterContinental Grand Stanford Hong Kong
10. Harbourview Horizon All-suite Hotel
11. Harbourfront Horizon All-suite Hotel
12. Avenue of Stars (Under refurbishment)
Changes of New Version of A Symphony of Lights
Besides some new buildings join in and some buildings’ quitting, the music and light arrangements are also different with the old show.
The old version of A Symphony of Lights music consisted of five major themes or scenes which showcased and highlights Hong Kong’s diversity and glamorous night views of Victoria Harbour. The five themes were “Awakening”, “Energy”, “Heritage”, “Partnership” and “Celebration”. Each theme took the spectator on a unique journey and emphasizes on Hong Kong’s vibrant energy, history, spirit, diversity and power.
The new edition of music is recored and played by Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra. The music is mixed with Chinese traditional elements and contemporary flavor, a best way to present Hong Kong’s EAST MEET WEST.
More LED Screens Installed
Besides the laser beams and searchlights, new show includes more bright LED screens on the skyscrapers.
Where are best viewing locations to enjoy A Symphony of Lights Show?
1. Watch from waterfronts along Victoria Harbour with music
Since both sides of Victoria Harbour have landmark buildings involved in the laser show. It can be watched on the waterfronts of both Hong Kong Island and Tsim Sha Tsui. But there are only few locations having speakers installed and you can enjoy the laser show along with the beautiful selected music.
- On Hong Kong Island: the best location is at Golden Bauhinia Square;
- In Tsim Sha Tsui (recommended): the best location is between Hong Kong Art Museum (under renovation) and Clock Tower.
Hong Kong’s most condensed skyscrapers are on Hong Kong Island. Thus, comparing these two waterfronts, we would recommend to watch along the Tsim Sha Tsui waterfront, from where you can have a fabulous view to the Hong Kong Island side.
Furthermore, the TST waterfront promenade is quite long and there is enough space for everyone to enjoy the “A Symphony of Lights” Show. Between the Hong Kong Art Museum and the Hong Kong Cultural Centre are several options to enjoy this nightly spectacle. Try your luck and grab one of the seats on viewing platform which is located just right next the Clock Tower and adjacent to the TST Star Ferry Terminal. Make sure to come ahead of time. Usually, seats are occupied within half an hour prior to show begin.
In addition, there are additional pyrotechnic displays along the Symphony of Lights Show on special occasions (e.g. New Year Celebrations).
1. Free of charge;
2. Get to close proximity to the harbour view;
1. Always get crowded and need to get there ahead of time;
2. Can only see one side each time;
2. Watch on the Symphony of Lights Harbour Tours
Another option to watch the Symphony of Lights Show is from sightseeing ferries or typical Chinese junk boats. Watching on board gives you a chance to enjoy the “A Symphony of Lights” from both sides of Victoria Harbour.
1. With views of both sides of Hong Kong Island and Kowloon;
2. Less crowded;
1. Difficult to take clear night photos due to waves;
2. More expensive;
For the moment, there are several tour operators offer the night harbour tour during A Symphony of Lights.
DUK LING was once served as fishing boat in Hong Kong and it was restored to her original glory and re-sails on Victoria Harbour since 2005. It is considered as an icon of Hong Kong and “the only inheritant sailing junk in Hong Kong”. It represents Hong Kong’s glorious history as well as the impression of Hong Kong while Hong Kong was a fishing village.
Taking the DUK LING Chinese Junk Boat is not only a rare opportunity to ride aboard on the last authentic Chinese sailing junk in Hong Kong, but probably the most authentic and memorable way to enjoy Victoria Harbour and Hong Kong skyline. besides day harbour tour, DUK LING also offers Symphony of Lights Harbour Tour.
DUK LING Symphony of Lights Night Tour
45-min Night Tour with a free drink
Sail via TST, Central and Wanchai and watch A Symphony of Lights on board
19:30 (TST Pier No.3) / 19:45 (Central Pier No.9) (daily)
HK$ 280 for adult / HK$ 220 for child and senior
Check link to know more about all the tours offered by DUK LING and where to get tickets.
Taking Aqua Lana and sailing on Victoria Harbour is a unique experience. Aqua Luna junk is operated by the Aqua Restaurant Group and is one of the last remaining traditional red-sail junks still in operation in Hong Kong.
Although it is not the original fishing junk like DUK LING, you still can enjoy the impressive and stunning Hong Kong skyline in a sophisticated way with cocktails and nestle down in some stylish lounge beds.
Aqua Luna offers many different sails from Day Cruise to Evening Cruise. If you don’t have time for the Symphony of Lights Cruise, you can also check out their other options.
Aqua Luna Symphony of Lights Sail
45-min Night Tour with one free drink
Sail circuit via TST, Central, Wanchai and Hung Hom
Embark at TST Pier No.1 and Central No.9
19:30 and 19:45
HK$ 295 for adult
HK$ 220 for child (4-11 year old)
Symphony of Lights Cruise Discount
HK$ 295 HK$ 280
HK$ 220 HK$ 210
Check link to know more about all the tours offered by Aqua Luna and where to get tickets.
Watertours Hong Kong belongs to one of Hong Kong’s most reputable travel agency. The Watertours Harbour Tours use a double-deck boat which is quite unique and easy recognizable. You easily can spot and identify it by its traditional Chinese theme when it crosses Victoria Harbour.
Pre-dinner Sunset Cruise
1.5-hour Night Tour
(Unlimited drinks included (Whisky, Beer, Soft drinks, Cocktail))
Covers TST, Central, Wanchai, Causeway Bay, North Point and Lei Yue Mun Village
18:00 (Central Pier No.9)
18:30 (Kowloon Public Pier No.3)
HK$ 330 for adult
HK$ 240 for child (2-12 year old)
Pre-dinner Sunset Cruise Discount
HK$ 330 HK$ 288
HK$ 240 HK$ 216
Check link to know more about all the tours offered by Watertours and where to get tickets.
Harbour Cruise – Bauhinia is the only harbour tour that provides meal on board. If you would like to sail on Victoria Harbour while having dinner with the stunning Hong Kong skyline, it is your right option.
Like other harbour tour operators, they offers more other tours than Symphony of Lights Dinner Cruise.
“A Symphony of Lights” Dinner Cruise
2-hour Night Tour with Dinner Buffet
(live performance included)
Sail via TST, Central and Wanchai and watch A Symphony of Lights on board
19:30- 21:30 (from North Point Passenger Ferry Pier) / 20:00 – 22:00 (from Hung Hom Ferry Pier) (daily)
HK$ 470 for adult / HK$ 300 for child (2-10 year old) (plus 10% service charge)
“A Symphony of Lights” Dinner Cruise Discount
Check link to know more about all the tours offered by Harbour Cruise – Bauhina and where to get tickets.
Taking the iconic Star Ferry is actually a no-brainer. It’s the most convenient and cheapest Harbour Tour available in Hong Kong. We highly recommend taking Star Ferry at least once to cross Victoria Harbour during your stay in Hong Kong.
Besides the daily transportation task, Star Ferry also offers different harbour tours, day and night, as well as Symphony of Lights Harbour Cruise.
ICC Light Show & Symphony of Lights Harbour Cruise
40-min Night Tour
Sail via only TST and Central and watch A Symphony of Lights on board
HK$ 205 for adult / HK$ 185 for child (3-12) and senior (above 65)
A Symphony of Lights Star Ferry Discount
HK$ 205 HK$ 194
Child & Senior:
HK$ 185 HK$ 175
Check link to know more about all the tours offered by Star Ferry Harbour Tour and where to get tickets.
More to Know
There are more options and different discounts of harbour tours. Refer to the article about Harbour Tours for more information about these options.
3. Watch from the Peak, rooftop bars as well as hotel rooms
Alternatively, you can enjoy the Symphony of Lights Show from e.g. the Peak, stunning rooftop bars, even your hotel rooms. But you cannot enjoy the “A Symphony of Lights” with the synchronized music from these locations since there are no speakers. It is turned to boring lights on and off without the exclusive music. The show, feeling and experience is simply incomplete.
From The Peak:
The Peak is another popular location for viewing the laser show. You can overview Victoria Harbour as well as Hong Kong city from top. However, you should be aware that you are not the only one with that idea. At night the Peak is usually quite crowded. In addition, there is usually some haze at Hong Kong’s sky at night which can influence the visibility.
From Rooftop Bars and Hotel Rooms:
Same issue like from the Peak, from rooftop bars or hotels cannot hear the music which is an important part of A Symphony of Lights.
No matter from the Peak or other higher location or far distance, the light effects such as the laser beams are not strong enough to pass long distance. Thus they cannot be clearly seen from the Peak or other higher observation spots.
Insider Tip: In case you decide to watch the Symphony of Lights from locations without speakers, you still can enjoy the music by downloading mobile app “A Symphony of Lights” (AOL).
1. Different views;
2. Form hotel room will not be crowded;
1. Cannot hear the music;
2. Affected by the distance and weather;
Special arrangements for A Symphony of Lights
The Symphony of Lights Show is suspended if the red/black rainstorm warning is issued on or after 3:00pm. In addition, on Earth Hour Night, the Symphony of Lights is also suspended (please refer to our related article to know more about Earth Hour and Hong Kong’s participation).
Do You Know
“If you decide to watch along the waterfronts, especially in Tsim Sha Tsui, get there at least 30 minutes ahead of time if you would like to have a nice spot on the viewing platform.”
“The performance of Symphony of Lights is synchronized with the composed music. Do watch the show with music.”
“If you watch from Tsim Sha Tsui waterfront, DO NOT stand close the public piers where passengers hop on and off during the show. It will disturb your viewing experience.”
“The visibility in Hong Kong will always change. Please be aware that when the visibility is very low, you can hardly see the lights or the laser beams. If you have a choice, do come to watch Symphony of Lights in a clear weather.”
Highlight: Laser beams on Cultural Center, IFC Tower 2 and ICC
Plan to Stay: 30 minutes
General Info and Details
Along Victoria Harbour (both Hong Kong Island and Kowloon)
English (Mon,Wed & Fri)/Mandarine (Tue,Thu & Sat)/Cantonese (Sun)
8:00pm and last 13 minutes (Daily)
How to get to watch A Symphony of Lights ?
By Subway: Take MTR Railway / East Railway to Tsim Sha Tsui (on Kowloon) or Central, Admiralty and Wanchai stations (on Hong Kong Island)
By Star Ferry: Or take Star Ferry to TST, Central or Wanchai Star Ferry Piers.
Attractions Nearby Victoria Harbour
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