Less than a year living in Sweden and we were on our way again to visit the Philippines! We could have went all the way straight but we thought that it could be fun to visit at least one Asian county before Cebu so we decided to stay in Hongkong for 3 nights. Travel time wise there was not much of a difference, we still had to endure 20+ hours of flying and waiting to get to Hongkong from Sweden. When we arrived, we immediately bought the octopus card for it is apparently very useful in Hongkong and the remaining balance can be refunded after the trip for a fee of 9%. We took A21 bus from the airport going to our hotel and we were told by the driver that our stop has passed when we asked so we went down and started walking with our luggage. Along the way, a lot of foreign people (non Chinese) were offering us a room to stay and they were everywhere in Nathan road. After going through what felt like a maze, we finally reached our hotel.
What we did:
We played lost tourists as usual. We had 2 full days in Hongkong and as always we do not have a detailed itinerary of the trip. We set 1 or 2 places to visit and we are done, the main goal is always just to get a feel of the city we are visiting, try local food and not be stressed with a piece of paper.
“It is in getting lost that we sometimes see the beautiful unknowns.” – #thegumbschstravel
The first day was wet. It was raining and not just raindrops but it was as if somebody was pouring buckets of water from the sky. We went out for breakfast and was a bit disappointed because of the heavy rain but to make the most out of the situation we thought we do indoor activities instead. After breakfast we bought a tram card day pass and headed to the Central. We were walking around the mall called Landmark and were feeling poor with all the branded and expensive boutiques we passed by. We checked the window and noticed that the rain has stopped. Since the tram peak was walking distance (everything is if you have the time) from where we were we took the chance.
- Took the tram to Victoria Peak – We were lining like everyone else to the ticket counter to buy the ticket only to be told to go directly to the entrance because we had the octopus card. We proceeded to the entrance, tapped the card and took the tram all the way up. Half of our view was covered by fog though, I bet it looks a lot better on a sunny day.
- Walked to the Avenue of the Stars – Our hotel was not too far from the Avenue of the stars so it was easier to visit. We managed to be here before and during the dark sky.
- Rode the Ngong Ping 360 Cable Car – I am scared of heights, just looking at the cable car and imagining myself in there makes my heart beat faster and my knees shake. I was not so convinced of the idea but the assurance from my ex boyfriend that it will be fine because the cars are from an Austrian company (yes this is true) helped me get over the fear by an inch. We took a one way ticket just in case I chicken out after the first ride. It was not bad, not at all. In fact, I enjoyed the cable car I can ride it again!
- Climbed 268 steps to get up close and personal with the Big Buddha – It was not too high but I still had to take a few stops to catch my breath. After the Big Buddha, we took the bus going to the tram station and it was fun to try another route going back.
- Shopped for my new iPad – I have always wanted to buy a newer one for my 2nd hand iPad mini before was getting slower for my games and it only had 16GB of memory. I have checked out stores in Sweden and was only aiming for a 32GB because it was affordable for me but decided to buy it when we are back from the holiday. When I checked the apple store in Hongkong, the amount it costs to buy a 128GB iPad is the same as that of a 32GB in Sweden so of course I took the chance. Apparently, it is tax free there that’s why it was a lot cheaper
- Wandered around the streets of Hongkong and got lot lost a few times – This is why we do not have an itinerary, we end up getting lost anyway :P.
Hongkongs skyscrapers are fun at the same time scary to look at for someone who has fear of heights like me. It seemed like there is always a tall building everywhere we looked.
Where we stayed:
We stayed at Butterfly on Prat for 3 reasons:
- Good reviews online.
- Reasonable rate.
Review: We love the hotel. Should we decide to go back we will stay here again. They did not have the breakfast option but it is not much of a deal for they are located to where a lot of food shops are.
Butterfly on Prat has:
- Friendly staff.
- Beautiful, clean rooms.
- Close proximity to a lot of restaurants and small eateries.
- Close proximity to the tram stop.
- Close proximity to the bus stop going to the airport.
- A mobile phone with internet for their guests to use in going around the city.
Where we ate:
In this trip, never in a fancy restaurant. Food in Hongkong can be expensive but it can also be affordable if you aim for the cheaper places like we did. We loved our food and we did not have to pay too much. Dimsum is heaven!