About two weeks ago I went on my second trip outside of Singapore. Destination: Hong Kong! With the protests in full swing, I was a little afraid it would interrupt my sightseeing, but luckily it wasn’t too bad.
I arrived at my hostel late on a Monday night. The surrounding area, the buzzing Tsim Sha Tsui in Kowloon, was immediately a great introduction to the city and I was looking forward to start exploring the city the next morning.
After a good night of sleep, I headed to Hong Kong Island that morning, where I went on a sightseeing bus. Unfortunately a large part of the island was inaccesible by bus because of the protests, but I was still able to do the two things I wanted to do most, visit Man Mo Temple and go up Victoria Peak.
I first went off the bus at the Temple. It was a quaint little temple and to be honest I was not very impressed. However, it did have its own charm. I just could not help but compare it though to other more impressive temples I had already seen before in South East Asia.
Next stop on my itinerary was Victoria Peak. Going up the (steep) hill in a tram, I was quickly at the top, where I had a great view over the city. Definitely a must-see.
Next, I had a stroll through the Botanic Gardens, after which I went back to Kowloon to go to the Avenue of Stars. This promenade is similiar to the Hollywood Walk of Fame. There are plaques honouring celebrities, pillars describing Hong Kong’s cinematic history and many statues. Also, this place has some great views of the harbour area.
Time being the end of the afternoon, I then went back to my hostel for a quick rest. Around 7.30pm I returned to the Avenue of Stars to see the evening Symphony of Lights show along the harbour. Though not as impressive as I had thought, it was a nice show to see.
I ended my night at the night market on Temple Street. Here I did a lot of souvenir and teacher (stickers and stamps for my kids!) shopping and had a (local) bite to eat. I had been looking for vegetarian dumplings all day but unfortunately the places I went to either did not understand me or did not have any. I finally settled for a place that had some vegetarian dishes and where they understood me. Then facing some rice and cake dishes I had never eaten before, I was left with some chopsticks and a spoon. Even though I (proudly) felt everything was going alright, halfway through my meal the waiter came up to me to ask me if I wanted to have a fork. I must have been doing something wrong…
The next (and my final) day I went to Lantau Island to see the gigantic Buddha, Tian Tan Buddha. I took the MTR to the island and then the bus up to the hill where the Buddha is. I decided to take the bus up as the queue for the cable cart was very long and it was a lot cheaper. The busride actually had a great view as well, so I was happy to have seen this side of the island too. The Buddha was really impressive. It was huge and I loved it.
Going back down I took the cable cart as there was no queue then. Some great views!
I spent the rest of the afternoon at the Ladies Market back in Kowloon (which was similiar to Temple Street market) and then it was time to go back to the airport already. A quick but pleasant stay in Hong Kong.