2 June 2014

Hong Kong - Round 1, Impressions and Thing to Do

I really didn't know what to make of Hong Kong but I'll admit that my lack of sleep affects things. I only had two nights and one full day there on my way to Fiji, but I felt like I got to see quite a bit of the city. It's easy to navigate as road names are in English and there is only a relatively small area to cover, so sticking around Hong Kong Island I moved on foot. So what did I notice?...



The People

I had a warning from a native who I met in Osaka that the people may seem rude and unfriendly. She wasn't lying. After getting used to the Japanese who are quiet and polite to the extreme, the loud blunt people of Hong Kong do not do pleasantries. Apparently it's 'inefficient'. Someone once told me it took more muscles to frown than to smile, but I'm sure the Hong Kong residents have done their research to prove smiling unnecessary...



Urbanity

The roads and number of skyscrapers in Hong Kong is phenomenal. You may question how this is so, but every few metres they have found space for lush greenery and landscaped areas. The bursts of green amongst the glass make me happy despite the towering blocks rising above.





Hong Kong Park

I decided to take a shortcut through the park on my way back to the hostel and I'm glad I did - wow!! You may be able to hear the traffic but you can also hear bird chorus. The trees rise up around you and are labelled with their names. The slopes of the park get your glutes working and the waterfalls and ponds make a good spot to sit and pause.






The Peak

This seemed to be the main 'attraction' of Hong Kong and after a quick googling using the plentiful free wifi (I'm looking at you Japan) I figured I could just walk to the base. Not entirely sure of my options I went for a return tram journey plus the viewing platform. At less than £8 (80 HKD) it's good value and includes an audio guide. I only wish the visibility were better so I could fully appreciate the views, but they were still a fine sight to see.





You don't need to go up to the viewing platform and if it weren't for the extensive audio guide I would have felt I had wasted my money as there are plenty of options to take in the views. Enjoying the view from a restaurant one floor down or with a coffee outside the building may not have the treasured "highest 360 degree view of Hong Kong" status but you certainly still get the picture, if you pardon the pun.


http://www.thepeak.com.hk/en/2_1.asp




Horse Racing in Happy Valley

Living near the world famous Ascot Racecourse, I've been to horse racing before, but only during royal ascot with pimms, dresses and sunshine. There are races twice a week in Hong Kong, Wednesday and Saturday and I happened to be there for Wednesday's races in Happy Valley.

http://www.hkjc.com/english/racing/Fixture.asp

Rooftop Drinks at Wooloomooloo

A fellow hosteller knew of this bar and we had just enough time to squeeze in a cocktail before the horse races. The views were breathtaking and the cocktail was expensive, but worth every cent.



http://www.wooloo-mooloo.com/hk/wan-chai.aspx



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