Hong Kong: Asia’s World City

Hello guys! Here’s my first blog entry for 2017! So we recently went on a Hong Kong trip to celebrate hubby’s birthday. It was just a short 3-day trip and looking back, I wish I booked more days because there were still so much more to do and see. Oh well, maybe next time.

We went on a Thursday morning via Tiger Airways. The flight took around four hours. HKIA consists of 2 terminals, we landed on terminal 2 and needed a quick train ride to get to immigration and the main arrival hall. Meanwhile, departure took 2 train rides and airlines require you to be at the boarding gate 15 minutes before boarding so that’s something to consider so you won’t miss your flight back.

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Things to get at the airport:

  1. Octopus card (150 HKD) – it’s like our EZ-link here in SG which you can use for buses, MTR, convenience store purchases. It is pre-loaded with 100 HKD while the remaining 50 HKD serves as deposit you can refund when you return the card.
  2. Sim card (50 HKD) – I highly suggest you get this from klook, they offer the cheapest price compared to getting one in the airport or in hostels. It would normally cost 60-80HKD.
  3. Hong Kong Dollars – exchange some currency. Buses do not give change so you have to have small HKD bills ready.

Getting out of the airport:

  1. Airport Express (60-100 HKD single journey, depending on location) – Convenient and fast. It can take you to the city center in 24 minutes.
  2. CityFlyer Bus (33 HKD single journey, 55 HKD return) – being the cheapskate that I am (LOL) I chose this over the Airport Express. We boarded bus A21 to Jordan Road which took more or less an hour. I actually enjoyed the scenic ride from the greens and mountains in Lantau Island to the cityscapes in Kowloon. It was also a plus that our hostel was just across the bus stop. Octopus card and cash are accepted.

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Accomodation

Hong Kong tops the list of world’s most expensive cities for housing so expect hotel rates to be stiff. I didn’t want to spend so much on it as we will usually be out but at the same time I am a bit fussy on cleanliness and appearance so I spent a lot of time looking for hostels and reading reviews.

After much thought, I booked Alohas Hostel and it turned out to be a great choice. Location was just beside Jordan MTR and bus A21 bus stop, room is clean, staff are helpful, there were free toiletries and it even has a tub. Definitely great value for money.

Kowloon Park

Located near Tsim Sha Tsui MTR, this park may serve as a place to rest after non-stop shopping from all the malls surrounding it. LOLs.

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Victoria Peak

The best way to get here is by the iconic Peak Tram. However, be prepared to queue for 30 minutes to 2 hours specially during peak hours as it is extremely popular with tourists. It costs 32 HKD for single ride and 45 HKD for return, entire ride takes about 10 minutes.

Another option is to take bus 15 from the Central ferry pier 5. It costs 10 HKD, almost no need to queue, but takes longer to get to the peak.

There’s a free viewing deck at The Peak Galleria’s 3rd floor. You can also head over to Sky Terraces 428 for better views but with a fee of 43 HKD. Discounted rates for Peak Tram and Sky Terraces are available.

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tram queue

Harbour and Garden of the Stars

Perfect place to stroll around in Hong Kong’s sunny-but-cold-January-weather.

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Avenue of the Stars was temporarily closed for renovation so the statues and hand prints were relocated to Garden of the Stars just within the same area.

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Hong Kong Disneyland

My second Disneyland experience. I highly recommend boooking this via Klook as well. I got our tickets for 499 HKD instead of the 589 HKD regular rate and we didn’t have to queue to get the tickets.

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the newly opened Iron Man ride, kinda like USS Transformers ride

Nan Lian Garden and Chi Lin Nunnery

One of my favorite places in Hong Kong. I love how it is nestled between high-rise buildings and skyscrapers. Indeed, East meets West in Hong Kong.

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Temple Street Night Market

Place to get cheap souvenirs. Nothing special though, just the generic stuff like ref magnets, fake bags, paintings, jade accessories, keychains, etc.

There’s a lot of food options in the area as well.

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Food

I loved the breakfast sets the most. There were a lot of restaurants but most of them don’t have English names and menu so we were hesitant to go in. Nevertheless, the ones we tried were great. Meals were a bit pricey, around 50 HKD each meal.

Australian Dairy Company

Mak’s Noodle

Yoshinoya (from Japan)

Cafe de Coral

Street food

If ever I had extra days to spend in Hong Kong, I would have gone to:

  • Repulse Bay
  • Tian Tan Buddha in Lantau Island
  • Macau
  • 10000 Buddhas Monastery

 

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