We decided to stay 3 nights in Hong Kong at the end this trip. We haven’t been here together for a long time, and the airfare to return to Chicago was $100s less than other places in Asia. The sights of Hong Kong are some of the most unique in the world. The city is built on seemingly uninhabitable mountains and rock. The skyscrapers grow from the side of the mountains, and although the city center is steel and glass, 80% of Hong Kong is forest, mountains and beaches. It is a breathtaking place and you constantly walk around in awe. On top of all this, flights between Hong Kong and Chicago are among the cheapest of any Asian city. Those of you with a spare $500 for round-trip airfare and a week free are missing out on one of the world’s most unique places if you don’t come here.
Hong Kong hotels vary from elegant and expensive to simple and cheap. The key thing is location, location, location. And we want super clean! So eLog Inn at $45/night is perfect for us. Room is very small but the bed is comfy, room is spotless and the location can’t be beat. In the heart of Kowloon, at Jordan, near subway, buses and night markets. And it’s about 30 minutes from airport to the door!
Arrival day, temperature is in the low-70s (day) and high-60s (night). We went to the shopping mall just for kicks, saw Garrett’s Chicago popcorn and an ice skating rink. We went to the night market and dinner “on the street”. This means authentic chinese dishes and large bottles of beer brought to tables and stools set up on the street and in the alleys. We had an awesome stir-fried Udon pork noodles.
Our first full day , the weather turned to low-60s (day) and high-50s (night) with sometimes a light drizzle. We took subway/bus/boat to the members-only, swanky Royal Hong Kong Yacht Club at lunchtime. A bit of an issue with my “membership” but that was solved easily with politeness and courtesy, and we had a drink looking over Repulse Bay. We then went to Stanley Market, which has been enhanced and modernized a bit in the last 30 years, but it still retains the same feel. The highlight of the day was the bus ride back. One of the most awesome ways to see Hong Kong is from the top deck of the #6 bus from Stanley Market to Central Hong Kong. It’s a 45 minute ride that winds through the mountains, along narrow roads, no guard rails, brushing tree branches as it goes. It’s unique and this alone is worth the time it takes to fly 16 hours to Hong Kong! The 1-minute video snippet is in the phot gallery. Rode the Star Ferry back to Kowloon …. 25c to cross the harbor.
At night, we went to La Taverna Restaurant. We came to Hong Kong on our honeymoon 30 years ago because it was cheaper and more interesting than Hawaii (which is still true!) and the one restaurant we remember was La Taverna. In the gallery is a “then and now” (30 years ago and now) picture at La Taverna. We finished up with beer at Ned Kelly’s Last Stand, a bar we also remember from 30 years ago.
Our last full day, we went to Shek O Beach. Shek O is a small village that is at the end of one of the steepest, mountainous roads in Hong Kong. Many people go hiking up and down huge inclines here. We walked through the narrow streets of the local village (video in first comment), visited the beach, and saw groups grilling in a tailgate-like area. Cool! Another scenic bus ride back to Shau Kei Wan and we visited the local fish market there. Live fish being prepared for the restaurants and dinner tables of the locals. (some pics and video are in the gallery.
In the evening, we had a very good Nepalese meal and a beer at one of the restaurants on Temple Street. Morning, 30-minute bus back to the airport for our flights out. A short visit to one of the world’s great cities … very nice.