Saturday, July 28, 2018

Hong Kong 2018

Last Thursday, we took the 8am train from Nanning East to Shenzhen, first class. It was nice, as on Chinese trains it is well worth the upgrade to first class. We then hopped a taxi to the HK border. Crossing took a bit of time, mostly because Chinese customs agents didn't seem to understand that, as resident holders, we don't need any card when we leave as tourists do. It wasn't a huge deal, just frustrating. We then crossed in to Hong Kong, which was smooth and efficient. After that it was a train ride to Kowloon. My coworker Charlie was with us, as he was also flying out of Hong Kong (though a few days after us).

We stayed at the Imperial. A solid 3 star hotel in a great location. The first day we headed for dinner in Chungking Mansions, a notorious backpacker/traveller place that doe not live up to reputation for danger or adventure, but certainly does for high quality Indian food at rock bottom prices.

The next day I took Yen to the Peak.  To get there you take the Peak tram, walk through a shopping mall, and exit. I've done it several times now, but she never has. It is cool, but probably the last time I'll do it unless with someone who really wants to. The views remain amazing, but I've done it. We also did a walk around Hong Kong island, which is always fun. That night we found Ned Kelly's bar in Kowloon , and had fish and chips and a pint of HK beer. 

The next day, on Charlie's suggestion, we took a harbour cruise, which took an old Star Ferry out to Lantau and back, docking at Hong Kong Disneyland. It was a very cool way to see Hong Kong, and something I would love to do again. Being that the port is the whole reason for the existence of Hong Kong, a visit does seem incomplete unless you get out on it. We also saw the Kowloon gardens and the HK History Museum. The museum was very interesting, if only for its honesty. Mainland museums tend to be big to propaganda (not a bad word in the mainland) and light on facts. It was interesting to see Tiananmen Square brought up so casually, and accurately, or the fact that many of the mainland's best and brightest fled to Hong Kong where they would be safe from Mao and the cultural revolution. I wonder if it is translated in to Chinese as honestly.

At this point I have been back and forth through that city several times, and while I love it, it reminds me a bit of when I used to get back from Seoul, or as I do with Manila or Cebu now. Always a good time, but not a lot to actually write about, as I've written about it all before. It is more of a journal entry that a blog, though I guess that is okay as well.
the Harbour

Star Ferries

From the Peak

Kowloon Gardens

Old Clock Tower.

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