Hong Kong is an incredible city and is running at a very close second to Sydney. There are so many areas to this city and we had such a short amount of time (4 days) that we figured the best way to get the most out of our time here would be to use the Big Bus Company and hop on/off at different points. We weren't disappointed by anything that we saw in this city and found it to feel a lot safer than New York despite any apprehensions we had to arriving.
We stayed on Hong Kong Island in the centre of the fashion walk and it definitely has a very New York-esque feel to it. Ladies, if you're looking for somewhere to shop- Hong Kong should be in your top 5. The subway is very easy to manouver and all of the major landmarks are given at each subway exit. Hong Kong Island has a lot to offer; Victoria Park, the Tin Hau Temple, The Peak and my favourite building that we have seen other than the Opera House- The Bank of China building. The views from the 44th floor are better than those from some of the other sights I've seen during the last few months and I could have spent all day here. I don't know what it is exactly that has drawn me to it but its slanted roof and twinkly lights (at evening) appealed to my eye and I have so many pictures of it that I'm going to have to delete some of them.
On our first day we stopped at the convention centre, visited the Sogo area, Wan Chai (red light district), Hong Kong Park and the Peak. We made sure that we were at the Peak during dusk and evening so that we could get photographs of all of the lights. The whole city looks as though it sits at a 45 degree angle, its amazing to see. I would fully recommend Hong Kong to everybody as I don't feel as though we had enough time to do everything. It's a really difficult city to describe as its a fusion of so many cultures. The people are really helpful and the city itself isn't as difficult to get around as I had imagined it to.
We have visited mainland Hong Kong and paid a visit to the hostel that nearly was- Chungking Mansions. It was every bit as dirty as had been described and I think we both breathed a huge sigh of relief that we weren't staying there. Neither Heather or I were surprised that Sally and Matt hated Hong Kong- if this had been where we were staying I think we would have been on the next plane out of there! It was definitely an experience to see and it's somewhere you need to see, even if you don't stay there.
We did even more shopping (no surprises there eh) and we have pretty much bought all of our present (huge sigh of relief haha) We went for a few drinks around Hong Kong, mainly in the Wan Chai area and we figured that it's pretty similar to Thailand except it seems slightly more upmarket (well...kind of). We watched the Everton match and were amazed to see that they had won. I guess thats what happens when you disrespect the underdog- hopefully Fergie has learned his lesson after that.
I spent our last morning visiting the IFC 2 Building- for those of you not in the know this is the building where the money is made. It also has lots of info on the banking history, fiscal policy and info about there currency. I was really excited to be out and about on my own and managed to make it there and back in one piece on my own. I was also easing myself back slowly into the thoughts of work again- only 2 weeks folks and then I'll be back.
So we have made it to Beijing in one piece, after the joys of a 24 hour train ride. We had the pleasure of spending time with some very helpful VIP's without whom we would have never made it to Beijing in one piece. We would like to take this opportunity to thank them for all of their help and for the entertainment over the last day. Heather set herself a mission of finding our hostel address translated into Chinese within 26 hours and did it in a record of 2. We booked a deluxe suite which got us a set of slippers and a pull down blind...haha, as well as our very own Western toilet (theyre quite difficult to come by dont you know haha). On first observations, Beijing seems like a very nice city. We have relaxed so far and have watched 'In Bruges' which is still one of the funniest films I've seen in a long time. This evenings plans are to shower and then hopefully find a bar showing the Liverpool vs Arsenal match.
Heather has just informed me that the communal toilets here are Turkish- not pleasant at all as I've not perfected my aim like Heather has. She has also taken to stealing toilet paper wherever we go- keeping the Scouse name alive eh haha.
The days are ticking by quickly and in a couple of weeks we'll be back with you all.
lots of love
x x x