As a city girl through and through, Hong Kong City has my heart with its breathtaking skylines, bustling life, shopping, and its balance between the old and the new.
In November 2016, my siblings and I took a short trip to Hong Kong before ringing in Christmas and the new year. It was our first time flying Emirates since we got good deals, we flew business class for the first time. Since it was a morning flight, we grabbed a quick breakfast at the Emirates lounge in Suvarnabhumi before boarding. Airbus 380 was nothing like any other flight I’d been on. It was two floors with an onboard bar, personal minibars, and amazing entertainment. The flight duration was about 2 hours and 50 minutes which honestly flew by (pun intended). I spent most of the time snacking on finger food and drinkin mocktails at the bar, enjoying my meal and movie that when I finally got around to sleeping the pilot announced our touchdown in Hong Kong.
As soon as we landed we took a bus to Tsim Sha Tsui to check-in our hotel, Best Western Grand. Unluckily, it was drizzling and we had to dash from the bus station to our hotel. Thankfully, we weren’t drenched! I highly recommend staying in Tsim Sha Tsui, since it’s the central area making it easy to get around. The nearest train station to our hotel was Jordan. The MTR is the fastest and most accessible way to get around Hong Kong. I’d highly recommend getting a tourist Octopus card to use for transportation, shopping because this all-in-one card was a life saver for me. As soon as we settled in, we decided to experience Hong Kong’s famous bustling nightlife.
One thing Hong Kong’s famous for is its shopping so logically speaking we had to empty our pockets first. Our first stop was the Ladies Market, one station away from us right at Mong Kok station. The Ladies Market isn’t just for ladies, in case you were wondering if men were allowed. We got so busy shopping for bags, shoes, and souvenir for friends back home we didn’t realize how fast time was going by. I was kind of disappointed when the market closed at 11 PM, we hadn’t even covered a quarter of it. My tip, put your bargaining skills to full use because prices are marked up for tourists, so spend some time getting the best deal!
The following morning we had a planned day trip to Macau. We took a ferry from Sheung Wan terminal to Taipa terminal Macau. The ride on the Turbojet ferry was about 50 mins. As soon as we arrived in Macau we took a shuttle bus to fisherman’s wharf. At that time, the Fisherman’s Wharf was fairly new so not many of the stores were open. Fisherman’s Wharf is European themed entertainment complex with a few hotels, shopping, restaurants, etc. It was great for pictures even though construction was on going. We had lunch at a Thai restaurant, “Talay Thai” which I have to say surpassed my expectations and satisfied our Thai cravings with its authentic flavors. We left Fisherman’s Wharf and took a free-shuttle bus to explore Macau’s world-famous hotels, the Venetian, Parisian, and Wynn. We didn’t get a chance to visit the Ruins of St. Pauls and Senado Square but I would totally pay a visit. These hotels are known for their architecture. We then had dinner at Venetian’s food court and headed back to Hong Kong.
The next day we had our itinerary ready and headed for Victoria Peak. The original plan was to take the tram up to the peak, but the line for the tram was over 2 hours long. To avoid such crowds, I recommend booking tickets online ahead of time. So as an alternative, we took the bus to the peak. The peak wasn’t so crowded but it was definitely difficult to get a good shot of the skyline.
After the peak, we made our way to 1881 Heritage. Formally the headquarters of the Hong Kong marine police but now has transformed into a shopping complex with high-end brands. The lights were beautiful and the Christmas decorations were the cutest! The famous Tsim Sha Tsui Promenade was not to be missed so that’s where we went next. The view was spectacular, the waterside with the unique lit up skyscrapers. The clock tower was nearby so we took pictures and admired it. We were so exhausted by the end of the day so we crashed.
Our final day in Hong Kong was mainly to shop. We went to the famous Times Square and Causeway Bay for shopping. The streets are super busy and happening. I was craving bubble tea and found this amazing rich bubble tea stall, “Share Tea.”
We went directly to the airport for our flight back to Bangkok. This was the first siblings trip we took, I would love to visit Hong Kong again because I feel I like there’s much more to see!
Original source: HONG KONG: PEARL OF THE ORIENT by Preet. Pray. Love.
Hi! This is Preet Sachdev, a Social Science student at MUIC. She currently lives in Bangkok, Thailand. Always looking at the brighter side.