The great Hong Kong
Hong Kong Travel Blog› entry 14 of 23 › view all entries
Hong Kong was great! We docked at another container port. I guess our ship is on the large side so it doesn't fit into many of the docks in Asia. It was 9am but we couldn't get off until 10am. We had to be back by 4pm. Fortunatly we did not have to use tenders so we were able to walk right off the boat and get onto a shuttle into town. The ship actually docks at, and we were shuttled to an area called Tsim Sha Tsui which is across from Hong Kong Island. Hong Kong the city actually is on an island to the south. We took the Star Ferry across the harbor. It's only a 9 min trip and was neat unto itself because the Star Ferry has been around forever.
We walked for a bit on the over pass where we found the Central Escalator. This is an 800 meter escalator that is the largest covered escalator in the world. During the morning it travels downhill and then in the afternoon it runs uphill. We caught it going up and rode it almost to the top. From there we wandered back down the hill back towards the main area of Hong Kong going through the Soho and Hollywood neighborhoods. This area had a lot of art to look at as we walked as well as a few shops.
The next major adventure put us on to a tram.
We only needed to travel 4 stops but we didn't notice that during that short trip the tram had packed. It was so packed it took us three more stops to get off the darn thing, squezing between people and saying "Excuse me" over and over. Finally we got off and walked back to the back.
The view was amazing. I could feel, and see, the building swaying slightly in the breeze.
Hong Kong uses the the Hong Kong dollar for currency. They set the exchange rate at $7.80HKD to each $1USD so the math was confusing for a bit and we never really knew how much anythign costs us. Things are genereally average priced here maybe a bit more expensive for some things. I spent $35HKD for a cup of coffee at Starbucks, about the same as at home. The tram costs us $2HKD so about 25 cents US.
The next site we wanted to see was the Stanley Market. A famous market that we discovered was on the other side of the island. We could take a bus for $10HKD but that would take 45min each way and it was already noon so we decided to take a cab. Actually Kim decided to take a cab. I'm still a bit gunshy about cabs ever since I paid $60 one way with a group of friends in Sacramento to go to a museum. We could have rented a car for that price.
The cab ended up costing us $130HKD. Still expensive but the trip was only 20 min instead of 45min. The market was nice and we had lunch at a little bar that overlooked Repulse Bay. They served beer in bucket size glasses. I drank mine, half of Kims, and then ordered a smaller glass. Needless to say, I used the bathroom twice was we were hurrying back to the shuttle that would take us to our boat.
The ship's captain and crew had spent time arranging for us to travel through the harbor as we left the city. That was beautiful. While we were supposed to depart at 6pm the captain stalled a bit longer and we left at 7pm. Kim and I drank beers in the hot tub at the aft of the boat and staked out a good viewing location. By the time we were travelling through the harbor, viewing the incredible skyline of Hong Kong island, the laser show started. Every night at 8pm Hong Kong lights up with a laser and light show. The buildings appear to be talking to each other accross the harbor. It was great.
My camera battery was dead so I didn't get any pictures while we were on the island but I was able to get it charged a bit before the show so hopefully those will look alright.
Dinner was good. We've met some great people from Washington DC, Scotland, and Australia so we've been partying with them at night. I don't know how they have so much energy. We saw a magic show with them and went to bed a little early.