Wow a big double bed, I feel like a king. As you can tell i dont stay in Hotels very often.
Hong Kong, love this place. But 5 days is enough, for the average backpacker on a budget to see and do most things. It’s a really easy city to get by in. Firstly I had no trouble with language, as everyone spoke pretty good English. Which is good, but I always feel embarrassed as everywhere I go in the world everyone seems to speak English aswell as their native language. I always try learn a few phrases and words, but they all just seem to smile at me and say, its ok I speak English. Their transport system in amazing, its so efficient and easy to use. And finally everyone is so helpful in this city. From strangers on the street, to waiters and hotel staff. They pride themselves on service. I was amazed even thought I looked like your typical pack packer, I was always given 5 star service.
Gold fish market.
Which felt a little strange at times, as I’m more of a modest type of person, I always feel strange when some one carries my bags for me, or treats me like a VIP in an restaurant.
So anyway I checked into my hotel that was in Tism ma Tsui, which according to the travel guides and reviews was a 3 star hotel. But anything with a double bed, private bathroom, bar fridge and air con is like the 5 star Hilton for me. After a long flight I had the thirst for a beer, and the 3 ice cold cans of Heineken in the bar fridge just proved to tempting. Even if thy were 60HKD a can. But I thought I would do my usual trick and replace the contents of the bar fridge in the morning, which this plan totally backfired the next day, as house keeping in this hotel were swift, like a swat team.
Thats the worlds largest TV. in the back ground.
A swat team of house keepers. I was gone for no more than 20 minutes, and in that time the made my bed, cleaned the bathroom and even folded the clothes I left on my bed which I had thrown from my suit case when I was looking for my phone charger. And yes, Bugger!!! They had restocked the bar fridge.
So anyway after breakfast I decided to check out some of the street markets I had heard about. I was about 11 in the morning. But at 11 in the morning the street are practically dead, the only people your likely to see are Fortune tellers, and Tailors. But to be honest if you have got a little extra room in you suit case I would totally take advantage of the tailors. For around 800hkd they will custom fit and make a really good suite with a couple of shirts and tie to match.
Yes i was trapped in one of those.
Next time I’m there I’m definitely getting a custom suit.
But anyway Hong Kong sleeps during the day but bursts into life at about 7pm till 4am. The first market I stumbled upon was the Gold fish market. It was totally amazing, I had never seen so many different kinds of fish for sale. Of all different colours and species. But I recognised a lot of these fish as ones probably illegally taken from coral reefs, that was the only down side to this quite amazing market.
The Jade market was quite good also, but remember to haggle the price. I was also warned about buying fake jade carving. But how to spot this I cant remember. So I hope I have two authentic Jade Dragons from Hong Kong.
But as I said at around 7pm it the best time to begin checking out the street markets.
One Bottle of enlightenment please.
You can find nearly anything. As well as nearly everything on the menu. I know it may sound gorse but I had to try some of the more exotic things like grass hopper and I’m not sure what else. Cat and Dog probably, for the best I didn’t know. And they were all to happy to give me a sample of some of these things. I think they find it quite amusing, to see the reaction on my face, after that first nibble.
The next day, I decided to go see the Tian Tan Buddha on Lantau Island is a huge 35 meter budda. I could have caught a regular bus there but I decided to take the tourist option and buy the Journey of Enlightenment ticket. And in theory it seemed like a good option. You begin the journey in a cable car, which takes you 5km up the mountain.
Finding enlightenment is hard work.
You would have some great views but unfortunately the five days I was in Hong Kong everywhere was covered in a thick smog. But anyway, half way up the mountain the cable car stopped. The wind was starting to pick up. I didn’t think much of it. But then for the next hour or so, I guess I could say it was a little worrying. As a we were caught in quite a strong storm. And when your dangling 500m above the ground and the wind is blowing about your carriage like a balloon, and lightning strcking all around us. Yes I must admit I was worried. But Buddha was smiling upon us that day, and to our relief our journey of enlightenment continued. And it never felt so good to bet my feet back on terra firma. So I had finally reached the top of the mountain what mystical delight would greet me next I wondered.
Ancient Buddhist monks praying. A great temple of worship. No it was Hong Kong’s proudest and most holy of places. Something they worship more than anything else. It was the 700th 7/11 store. I just creaked up laughing, it reminded me of an Simpsons episode when Homer and Apu travel to India to get Apus job back. Any Simpsons fans know what I’m talking about. Thankyou come again….For such a small country they have so many 7/11s.
Even after all the drama it is totally worth a visit, To see this budda. Even if I didn’t get the enlightenment I was hoping for. And yes I decided to catch the bus back to the hotel.
My next big decision was Disney land or a day at the horse races. I chose the horses as I don’t mind the odd bet here and there.
And I had already been to euro Disney. The trip cost about 300hkd but was totally worth it. The price included seats in the jockey club, which is a room for Vip guests, an awesome buffet lunch and free drinks all day. Any one who likes racing, or not you will have a totally enjoyable day. Even if you only pick one winner for the day like me….. Damn Brett Prebble. (Australian Jockey) They really love their gambling in Honk Kong.
After the races I decided to go for a walk to the harbour and check out the laser light show. They also love there light effects in Hong Kong at night the whole city is lit up like a Christmas tree. Someone must make a good living from changing all the light bulbs I think. The light show was quiet impressive and I strolled back along the Hong Kong walk of fame.
What sort of a hotel only rents rooms for 2 hours? O'h :O
There were a few film stars from Hong Kong I recognised, Bruce Lee, Jackie Chan and Jet Li. But the rest I found their names quite amusing. Check out my picks to see why.
On my final night I decided to treat myself to dinner in the hotel restaurant. I couldn’t resist the seafood buffet. I was quite cautious of what I was eating generally in Hong Kong because they tend to have a different idea on hygiene standards with food in HK. And I didn’t want to risk 5 days of Deli Belly. I totally feasted on the seafood and all else. And I was quite surprised when the chef came out and personally offered me to try his snake soup he had just prepaired. How could I refuse. What kind of snake is it I asked? 12 kind was his replied, it bring you warmth during the winter.
Hmmm That’s useful I thought, to bad I was heading to Australia for three months of summer. But anyway what ever type of snake it was the soup was good. The meat tasted a bit like Duck but more stringy.
So that’s basically all I can remember of my trip to Hong Kong and when I remember more details I’ll add them later. And yes, when I got back to Australia I did spend the first two day in bed with the deli belly.