What a huge city !
02.10.2014 - 13.10.2014 30 °C
First, I advise to everybody to go to discover this wonderful city.
I never thought go there one day but I'm so glad I did.
We stayed only 10 days but had the impresstion of being there for 1 or 2 month.
We had 4 different experiences; maybe this is the reason why we felt lived there.
The first one was to stay in a horrible hostel (harbour guest house in the building King Mansion) the room was small and the building was not very safe.
Something to know: the price for the accommodation in Hong Kong is very expensive.
In addition, we arrived in the gold period: Public Holiday, so we paid for this tiny room 40 $ each per night.
We were in Hong kong during the Protest against China, it was very safe, not as pretend the international TV,only the transport got affected.
We wanted to leave and go to my Mum’friend but we needed to pay anyway so after reflection we decided to stay.
This hostel was in Nathan Road ( center of Kowloon)
Hong kong is split in 2 big parts:
- Kowloon : in the north, which is the old HK with lot of markets, few shopping centres, we can say more “ typical of HK”
- HK Island: the new Manahtan with plenty of building, shops, tramway, cars everywhere;it’s also the business district.
I prefer HK Island, there are more things to do even if I think it’s necessary to see Kowloon.
Things to do in Kowloon:
We started to walk in Nathan Road district where you can find a lot of shops, especially the big shopping center : Harbour city.
Kowloon Park is a beautiful thing to see if you are around.
Then we’ve been to Temple Street which is in Jordan district, here you can find a night market and eat fresh fish in a small restaurants.
I really recommend going.
The Avenue of Star is in front the river and you can get a nice view on HK Island.
You can also catch the star ferry to go in HK Island not only the MTR.
In Hong kong, everybody eat usually only fresh food : you ll find a lot of live fish and crabs even in the supermarket and then they will kill it for you.
There are a lot of dry fish food, the smell is very strong.
Dim Sum is very famous in HK,it looks like a dumpling and the Pekin duck is also something to try if you go there.
They have desert like a soup but sugary: I didn't like it.
Cafe de Coral is a big food group in HK and the food is cheap and good,I recommend it.
The company DeliFrance make nice French food.
We bought some cheap sushi around Mon Kok for only 3 hk dollars.
Mon kok is an amazing district, in the north of Nathan Road,with public transport is very quick to go.
You can see the “gold fish market”: find gold fish but also turtles and this is the street where you have to go if you’re looking for to buy a pet, all along the way there are shops which sell animals (dogs,cat,rabbits,lizard...).
Then you will see the Ladie’s market where you can buy bags, jewellery and imitation of big brands.
All around Mon kok you can find things to buy this is a huge shopping area; you will find the big brand but also some Hong kong brand like Baleno which looks like as the Japanese shop :Uniqlo.
My 2nd experience was on couch- surfing in Kennedy Town in HK island.
Our host was amazing, we discovered nice restaurants only in Chinese and he ordered food for us.
In China and most everywhere in Asia, people take different dishes and share it between themselves.
We had a great time with him, he showed us Hollywood Road, which is the expat area.
There, there are antiques things to buy, cafes, this is a nice place to chill around with Soho just close by.
In Soho, you will find small shops: our host had one there; but also some nice bars/restaurants with different type of food.
On our 4th day, we’ve been to the “PEAK”, we catch a bus from central but there is a tram to go as well.
The view is impressive up there!
We were surprised to find a shopping mall again, but we understood that there are malls everywhere in HK.
If you decide to go, don’t pay to go up on the roof of the big building, just behind you will find a small temple with a beautiful view too and it’s free.
If you like rooftop bars, here some of the best :
- The Peninsula in Kowloon, one of the oldest building in HK
- Ozone, the highest bar in the world, in Kowloon as well, in the Carlton hotel
- Wooloomooloo, rooftop on Hennessy Road in HK island
- Rooftop on the IFC mall
- There is SEVAA and Sugar but I haven’t try it
If you like shopping the best area is in HK island and I could say Causebay.
Time Square Mall
We discovered THE PLACE to party : Lan Kwai Fong
There,you will find all clubs and bars you need.
Everybody buys alcohol from 7Eleven and then drink in the street before going to a bar.
Our 3 th experience was in New Territory of HK, in the north.
Our host was nice and helpful, she gave us tips and showed us a snake soup lol.
We took the ferry there to go to Lantau Island, direction Tai O : fish village.
It was chill and landback there with lot of fresh food.
We took a tour of 20 min boat to try to see some white dolphins but we haven’t seen any.
In Tai O,there is a small Cat Cafe where they sell jewelry ( http://www.faz-jewelry.com/pages/about-us ) so if you feel like to get a drink and you like animals go there
Lantau Island is split in different areas: you have Tai o in the West, the Big Buddha in the South ( just catch a bus to go around) and Tung Chung where you have the train to go back to HK island or Kowloon.
In Tung Chung, there is a good outlet where you can find some good bargains,depend of what you like but I bought a jacket 90 Euros instead of 300.
My 4 th experience was in my Mum’friend and it can’t be compared with anything else.
She was really nice with us,we had our own room and bathroom, she helped us a lot,we had 2 times a frenchie dinner “ wine-cheese”.
She lives in Repulse Bay which is in the south of HK Island,to go there you just need to take a bus from Central or Wan Chai.
This is the beaches area with Stanley market at only few minutes by bus.
There is a buddist temple just next to the beach.
- Zoo garden : free
- Dragon’back : 2 hours walk
- Ocean Park / Disneyland
- Race Course on Wednesday night
Macao: the Las Vegas of China
To get there just need to take the ferry which is only at 1 hour away.
You will arrive in Macau where is the Portugese area
and then take a bus to go to Taipa to see all the biggest casino ( especially the Venecian)
Other Tips :
Airport to City, you can take the Airport express train (100 $ one person, 160 for 2 ) or bus for 33 $.
Don’t forget Air Asia, the cheapest flight company to go around Asia.
When you arrive in HK, buy an Octopus card, it’ s very useful and cheaper than a single ticket.
You can have your deposit back when you ll leave at the airport and you just need to go to a counter or in 7elever to recharge it.
MTR is the name of the train in HK, it is very quick and you can go everywhere for cheap.
So in Hong Kong, we used most of the time MTR and Bus with our famous Octopus card.
Taxi are cheap as well, start at 15 or 22 HKD and then you pay per meter or per minute, but in average you will never have to pay more than 100 HKD ( 10 euros) for 20 min.
Money and exchange:
Then, for the money, if you’re European, we usually think 10 HKD is 1 euro ( in average).
If you have to change money go on Nathan Road in Kings Mansion ,you ll find a lot of exchange offices with very good rates.
HSBC is visible in almost every street; if you have a French HSBC card you don’t have fees if you remove money from the HSBC ATM everywhere in the world.
Next trip : Thailand, direction Chiang Mai :P ( only 100 euro flight)