Hong Kong holds a special place in my heart. It was the first foreign country I visited as a young child, and it was also one of the first countries I visited over a decade later as a young adult.
This past February, I had the opportunity to go back to Hong Kong yet again for the third time. The last time I went to Hong Kong 4 years ago, I was a novice traveler. I hadn’t yet found my style of traveling nor do I know what I want to see or how I would see it. This time around, I knew. This photolog is my attempt to capture this multifaceted city called Hong Kong, with my iPhone 6 in hand.
One of the high point of my Hong Kong visit was losing myself in Central district. I had planned to visit for a quick congee breakfast and then moving on somewhere else – fast forward three meals and four hours later, I found myself rushing back to my hotel as my phone battery ran flat from taking so many pictures.
Central District, as you may have guessed from its name, is far from a quiet place. By day is filled with hustle and bustle of working Hongkies, and by night it transforms into the popular party street that centers around Lan Kwai Fong.
One tip from me: Don’t forget to look up when you are getting lost here. You might miss a few things. Otherwise, just keep on walking.
Graham Street Market, Central District
Have you ever seen a market so narrow and on a steeply inclined alley that barely qualifies as a street? Then you should visit Graham Street Market, one of the oldest market in Hong Kong. You’ll find vendors selling meat, fresh fruits and vegetables, but I wasn’t here to grocery shop so I mostly just walked around and tried to blend in with everyone else.
Wellington Street, Central District
I think Wellington street is one of the most picturesque part of Central District. But more importantly, this is where the two legendary Michelin-starred wanton noodles can be found: Mak’s Noodles and Tsim Chai Kee, conveniently located close to each other on Wellington street.
With over 7 million people packed tight in Hong Kong, no one can afford to waste any space and thus you could say most accommodations were on the “mini” side. In fact, one of the hotels I stayed at in Hong Kong is called just that – Mini Hotel, and it could barely fit the queen bed. I don’t know about you guys though, I found it strangely charming and simple. It stuck out as one of my favorite accommodations thus far.
I don’t think you can ever feel lonely being in Hong Kong, even by yourself.
Kowloon side – Hong Kong from above
“Whether viewed from Tsing Yi Bridge or the deck of the Star Ferry, from Victoria Peak or Lion Rock, Hong Kong sparkles here in all its multifaceted complexity, a city forever between worlds.”Leo Ou-fan Lee – City Between Worlds. My Hong Kong
So Hong Kong has got two sides to it – Hong Kong island and Kowloon. The Central District and Causeway Bay were on the Hong Kong island side, but by strike of luck my friend had a space for me in Tsim Sha Tsui area in Kowloon, so I stayed there for a day and got to experience both sides.
What’s the difference between the two sides? You could say that Hong Kong island is like what Manhattan is to New York City. Kowloon is considered the more urban side of Hong Kong, but it definitely has its own charm and glamour. I visited some of the most glitzy cocktail bars while I was on this side of Hong Kong.
Case in point – Aqua Bar. Though it’s very touristy, I couldn’t help but gasp in awe when I walked up the stairs of Aqua Bar and greeted with the impressive view of Hong Kong island.
Ozone at Ritz Carlton is also (I imagine) a very touristy place, but check out the view from what is supposedly the highest bar in the world – it felt like I was on a plane!
And that concludes my short 4-day stay in Hong Kong! I hope to be back again some day, especially to hike their amazing mountain trails.