In September, the Hong Kong weather almost imperceptibly takes a turn for the better. While the humidity remains slightly above comfort levels—it is substantially lower than in the summer months—the rain also begins to ease off. Therefore, September is one of the better months to make a trip to Hong Kong. Not to mention, events like the Mid-Autumn Festival, sometimes called the Mooncake Festival, also make this a fun month to be in Hong Kong. The city doesn't have much of a distinction between low and high tourism seasons and September tends to be quite a busy month with many events, expos, and trade fairs taking place in addition to the festival at the end of the month. This means hotels may be a little busier and likely more expensive.
Hong Kong Weather in September
With average highs of 87 degrees Fahrenheit (30 degrees Celsius) and average lows of about 75 degrees Fahrenheit (25 degrees Celsius), September in Hong Kong marks the end of the oppressive heat of the summer months. Consider this your last chance in the year to visit one of Hong Kong's beaches, because this is as warm as the water gets.
The humidity in September remains relatively high, at 80 percent. It will feel muggy outside, but it should improve as the month goes on. By the end of the month, it should be comfortable enough to spend a substantial amount of time outdoors, whether you hike some of the trails in the surrounding forests or go for a walk through the city. September sees an average of about 11.8 inches of rain, which falls on an average of 12 days in the month. Unfortunately, September lies right in the middle of Hong Kong's typhoon season, meaning you may encounter one of these tropical storms.
What to Pack for a September Trip
September weather can be unpredictable, so you should pack a balanced mix of summery clothes and layers, in case the temperature does drop. Light cotton or moisture-wicking clothing will keep you cool in the heat and humidity. Wear clothes that allow your sweat to evaporate, instead of soaking it up. You'll also need appropriate shoes like sneakers, flats, or anything comfortable for walking, plus leather shoes if going to a luxury restaurant.
September weather brings both sudden rain and bright blue skies. Pack a small umbrella to keep on hand, which you can use to protect you from the sunlight or rain. It will be too hot to wear a raincoat in the city. You'll also want to bring a water bottle when you walk about, so you can stay hydrated in the heat.
September Events in Hong Kong
There's always a lot going on in Hong Kong, but one festival dominates Hong Kong’s calendar in September. The Mid-Autumn Festival—the biggest festival in the city after Chinese New Year—commemorates the Chinese expelling their Mongolian overlords. In 2020, the festival officially begins on October 1, but there will be a lot going on before the official start. Like many great Chinese festivals, it involves plenty of parades and the festival's signature fire dragon dance.
In Tai Hang Village in Causeway Bay on the eve of the Mid-Autumn Festival, you can see the starting point of a 220-foot-long fire dragon that leads a procession from the village to Victoria Park. Burning incense sticks cover the dragon from end to end—blazing a smokey, fragrant trail as hundreds of performers lead the dragon to the parade’s endpoint.
During the festivities, be sure to try the mooncakes, which are pastries about the size of hockey pucks with a salted egg in the middle. They're are sold all around the city during the festival, and are a must-try if you are in town. Also, keep your eye out for the lantern carnivals, typically found at Victoria Park and the waterfront of Tsim Sha Tsui, which feature traditional lanterns of all sizes.
September Travel Tips
- First-time visitors should be wary of the humidity, which will leave you soaked in sweat after 30 minutes of walking. Be sure to take on plenty of liquids to battle against dehydration.
- September is luckily free of clouds, but this also means intense sunlight exposure. Be sure to slap on some sunscreen, even if you're only outdoors for 20 minutes or less.
- To avoid the worst of September’s typhoon season, keep your eye on the Hong Kong Observatory website’s typhoon monitoring page to see if any storms are expected, and what category storm to expect.
- If traveling to the countryside, bring mosquito repellent. Hong Kong itself isn't overrun with mosquitos, but if you're near any body of water, they can be a nuisance.