Hong Kong is returning to normality while stepping into the Year of the Rabbit. With the lifting of most Covid-19 restrictions and reconnecting with the rest of the world, residents and visitors finally feel some vibrancy in the city since the pandemic started three years ago. Here is where you can go to celebrate the Lunar New Year. 1. Reopening of Wong Tai Sin Temple Wong Tai Sin Temple in pre-pandemic days drew thousands of worshippers hoping to make joss stick offerings to bring good fortune, but has held the annual ritual behind closed doors for the last two years. Worshippers will be able to make joss stick offerings on Saturday night, Lunar New Year’s Eve. The temple is expected to be filled with the fug of incense once again. The temple will close at 4pm that day and reopen at 9pm. A long line of worshippers is expected outside the venue, which will operate overnight until 9pm on Sunday, the first day of the Lunar New Year. As part of the festive break, the MTR Corporation will run overnight train services on Lunar New Year’s Eve. John Lee extends Lunar New Year greetings to Hong Kong, eyes new start 2. Meet the rabbits at the waterfront In the Year of the Rabbit, the small mammal in various forms and styles can be seen everywhere in the city. From January 19 to February 5, huge rabbit installations put up by the Hong Kong Tourism Board can be seen along the promenades in Central, Admiralty, Wan Chai and Tsim Sha Tsui. A gigantic bunny, as tall as two double-decker buses, has been placed on top of Central Ferry Piers. Less than a kilometre away, you can lose yourself among more than 200 gigantic flowers in Tamar Park in Admiralty. A wave of your arms will make them light up, with the over-one-metre-tall installations becoming an enchanting sea of shimmering blossoms at night. Want to see a sea of rabbits instead of flowers? You can go to the former Police Married Quarters at Central’s Hollywood Road, where 50 colourful inflatable rabbits wait in the courtyard to delight the young and old alike. Pomelo leaves to cherries: what Hongkongers are buying to ring in Lunar New Year 3. Cruise with a rabbit During the Lunar New Year period, sightseeing experiences and rides across Victoria Harbour will offer time-limited special discounts. Star Ferry passengers may even bump into the “Lucky Rabbit” and sail across the harbour together. Discounted tickets for a one-hour ferry ride, dubbed Happy Rabbit Tour, cost HK$127.5 (US$16) for adults, or HK$102 for concessionaires if you input promotion code “CNY2023” while booking online. The tour will pass by Kai Tak Cruise Terminal, East Coast Park Precinct, West Kowloon Cultural District and M+ museum. Hong Kong leader should take it slow in Year of the Rabbit, soothsayers advise 4. Capture a moment at a “romantic” promenade A Japanese-styled spectacle, the Kochia Garden in North Point Promenade features lovely rounded blooms. The location has been officially certified by Japan’s state-run Hitachi Seaside Park. It is based on the popular Kochia flower sea in Ibaraki Prefecture, which is considered to be among the world’s top 10 romantic flower fields. You can photograph yourself in the sea of reddish-pink flowers, called bobocao in Chinese, also known as Bassia scoparia , until March 15. Admission is free. 5. Enjoy the tranquillity with the Giant Buddha The Tian Tan Buddha statue on Lantau Island, 112 feet tall and weighing over 250 metric tonnes, is another landmark to visit during the holiday. It will also feature festive lighting on the first and 15th days of the Lunar New Year. Visitors can take Ngong Ping 360 to the Buddha, with the new fully transparent cable cars offering passengers uninterrupted views. 6. Make a Lunar New Year wish On the first day of the Year of the Rabbit, those looking to make a wish can go to the famous tree at Lam Tsuen village in Tai Po. People write down their hopes for the new year and tie them to a tangerine and then throw it into the fibreglass tree. According to folklore, the higher the offering lands in the tree, the better the chance the wish will come true. Lunar New Year’s Eve signals return to form for Hong Kong restaurants 7. Spin for good fortune Worshippers are welcome to visit Che Kung Temple in Sha Tin on the third day of the Lunar New Year to pray for blessings from Che Kung – a Song dynasty general turned deity. Spinning the wheels at the temple is said by some to turn one’s luck around. According to tradition, the third day of the Lunar New Year is an inauspicious one. It is believed that people are more prone to quarrel on that day. Therefore, many people choose to visit Che Kung Temple and pray for good fortune. The temple will open at 11pm on Monday and close at 6pm on Tuesday. 8. Try your luck Tuesday is the first horse-racing day of the Year of the Rabbit. A total of HK$100 million will be on offer to celebrate, with an estimated dividend of HK$18 million awaiting the holder of a single HK$10 winning unit for the Triple Trio at the race. Punters are also snapping up tickets for the Mark Six Snowball, which has hit HK$80 million. The draw will take place on February 26.