Day 74 – Hong Kong

We got up fairly early today and spent the morning relaxing and updating our blog. We finally headed out just before midday and found a nice authentic restaurant to have some lunch. I had sweet and sour pork with rice, Seio had beef noodles and a sesame soup. We shared a dish of seasonal Chinese vegetables too, although I’m not sure what these were called!! It all tasted very nice – even the black sesame soup!

From the restaurant we headed on towards Kowloon Park, where the swimming and diving events for the East Asian Games were being held. The park was quite nice – there was a little bird aviary and a nice rose garden, and there were also some interesting signs!!

After walking through the park we arrived at the Victoria harbour ferry terminal, and decided to take the Star Ferry over to Hong Kong island. It was a very cheap ride (16p one way!) and only took about 10 minutes to cross. When we arrived at the other side, we decided to buy a ticket for the Big Bus tour. We bought the double ticket which gave us a tour of Hong Kong Island, a tour of Kowloon, tickets for Madame Tussaud’s, and a return journey on the Peak Tram. The Hong Kong tour took us past the People’s Liberation Army Building (also known as the Prince of Wales Bldg or the upside-down decanter) and the famous Mandarin Oriental Hotel and Koala buildings, around the Hong Kong Convention Centre (where the Hong Kong handover took place), through Wan Chai, Lan Kwai Fong and SoHo, and back to the ferry terminal.

The weather wasn’t too bad today, just a little bit cloudy, and so we decided to do the open top experience and sit on the top of the double decker bus. Some of the neon signs that line the Hong Kong streets hang very low indeed, and you feel like you might bump your head on some of them!! A lot of the buidlings we passed by were very old and dilapidated – air conditioners and laundry hanging out of the windows at various intervals!!

We did plan to take the tram up to Victoria Peak in the late afternoon and take in the evening/night view of Hong Kong and Victoria Harbour, but when we passed the Peak Tram station, the queue outside was ridiculously long (being a Sunday) and so we decided to come back again tomorrow. The Peak tram apparently carries an average of 11,000 people up the mountain every day!!

We took the ferry back across the harbor and headed back to the hotel to get changed ready for dinner. Tonight we took a stroll along Nathan Road and found a popular looking restaurant called Wu Kong that seemed to serve a big selection of dishes. We didn’t have a reservation, but we were told that we could have a table if we agreed to be finished eating by 8pm – it was 6:30pm when we arrived so it was just about enough time for us.

The menu was huge and there were so many dishes to choose from – unfortunately there were only 2 of us, and so we had to limit our choices, but we chose a nice selection of dishes – spring rolls, Dim Sum (juicy pork dumplings), fried rice and Hoi-koh-ro (pork and vegetables with chilli). Phew…very filling indeed!

We left Wu Kong just before 8pm, as promised, and headed down to Victoria Harbour again towards the Clock Tower and Avenue of the Stars. Ever night at 8pm (weather permitting) there is a Son et Lumiére Show that takes place. We arrived half way through, but it looked very impressive with all the lasers and lights dancing across the water from both sides of the harbour. Apparently the show is listed in the Guinness Book of records …I can’t quite remember why though…perhaps it was for the longest running Sound and Light show ever??

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