I only spent a short week in Hong Kong a few years ago, I was going to visit my cousin who had been living there for a year, and it’s a place I have wanted to revisit ever since I left. It was one of the most fascinating cities I have ever had the pleasure of visiting. And here’s why:
Hong Kong truly is a unique city that has combined the best aspects of British and Chinese culture. It is modern, vibrant, extremely clean and unlike anywhere I have ever been.
Must visit places:
♥ Victoria Peak at sunset or early morning for best views. This lookout point can be reached by tram
♥ Ozone Bar – The ‘highest bar in the world’, on level 118 of the Ritz-Carlton is worth a visit (even if the drinks prices are a bit on the pricey side). The bar offers a beautiful view of the skyline and the Harbour, an alternative view of the city to the one you get at Victoria Peak.
♥ Avenue of Stars – Asia’s very own Hollywood walk of fame, it’s right on the harbour, so you can stroll along it and take in the wonderful city.
♥ Lantau Island – go and see the Tian Tan Buddha in the Po Lin Monastery, it’s absolutely marvellous, you can make a full day out of it because there are places to eat and drink and a few shops too, you can get the cable car there or just a bus. This is also the best place to buy some incense sticks if you’re looking for some gifts.
♥ Monkey Mountain – located in Kam Shan Country Park is a great nature trail with roaming macaques, a giant reservoir, snakes and some great views. I got some amazing photos of baby monkeys (see below).
♥ Star Ferry – catch this passenger ferry across the Victoria Harbour, it is also the only way to get to the outlaying islands.
♥ Explore the luxury department stores and the lively nightlife.
♥ The light show – every night there is a spectacular light show on the harbour front area near the Cultural Centre at 8pm. It’s definitely worth a watch, and the city at night looks even more wonderful.
♥ Nan Lian Garden – the first picture of this post is in this intricately designed garden featuring colourful bridges, water features, trees, fish and all together it makes a great image. A garden so beautiful almost seemed out of place in the midst of all the skyscrapers and city life. It’s a tranquil and elegant place that was quite possibly my favourite place in Hong Kong.
♥ Lamma Island – a traditional Chinese fishing village with some great walking trails and a beautiful sandy beach and crystal clear waters. You can get there via the ferry from the centre, there is no other way because another added bonus is that there is no public transport on the island, you have no other choice but to walk around and take in your surroundings.
♥ Ten Thousand Buddhas Monastery – this impressive complex sits on Po Fook Hill, there are about 13,000 golden Buddhas there. After walking up the mountain surrounded by golden statues left right and centre, once you reach the top there are some lavishly designed altars, statues, temples and a bright red Pagoda where you can pay to reach the top and get a lovely view of the city.
♥ Be daring and eat something you wouldn’t normally eat or even be able to try.
→ Tip: watch out for Banana Spiders on Lamma Island, they are the biggest and creepiest spiders you might ever come across. Can you spot it in the picture below? Of course you can it’s huge!!
→ Tip: my brother and I decided we wanted to cross the border and spend a day in Shenzhen, China whilst we were in Hong Kong, all I would say is that it was a complete waste of time, we had to sort out visas which was complicated (however it did only take about 50 mins to get there in total which wasn’t too bad), the weather was awful, it was pouring it down all day so we spent most of the day in a Chinese McDonalds waiting for the torrential rain to stop. The day spent in China was difficult, not one person understood a single word of English, not the taxi drivers, nor the airport staff. Obviously that was to be somewhat expected, but most people in HK obviously speak a bit of English as a result of its overseas British territory history. Thus it was very hard to get around, there wasn’t much to do in Shenzhen, we walked around the shops and attempted to get to the Window of the World theme park which contains replicas of all the world’s wonders and heritages. Unfortunately we couldn’t manage to explain to the taxi driver that we wanted to get there and after numerous attempts of trying and ending up at the wrong destination we gave up and went home. It was a tiring and stressful day so I wouldn’t recommend anyone else doing the same thing unless you speak Chinese or you have everything planned beforehand.
Below are some of my favourite photos I took during my short time in Hong Kong, it is definitely a place I will be visiting again.