Friday, January 8, 2016

Hong Kong Getaway

My second time in Hong Kong! Most of it seemed unchanged since I last visited in 2011. We only had 2 days and didn't want to be stressed out tourists, so we just hit a few major spots.

On the bus to the hotel from the airport
Victoria Harbor
Clock tower in Tsim Sha Tsui
Night view of Victoria Harbor from The Peak
The first time I visited the Peak I loved it. Hands down the best night view I've seen, even if there were too many photo bombers for my liking. But this time the entire experience was awful. Originally the plan was to get to the Peak before sunset. That was thwarted when we had trouble navigating to the correct bus stop to take us to the bottom of the cable car. Then when we made it to the cable car, the line to get tickets took forever. Then yet another line to get in a cable car. I think it's open pretty late so would highly recommend going very late or very early.
Light show on Victoria Harbor
Last time I visited I was really sad I didn't get to see the light show since it seemed to be a highly recommended activity. We came down the Peak just in time to catch it and it was definitely over-hyped. I was expecting a snazzy, Vegas style performance. Nope, what you see above is basically what we watched for 15 minutes with some background orchestral music. Boo.
Longest cable car in Asia
The next day we headed to Big Buddha. If you don't want to do a very, very long hike or a very, very long bus ride, your only alternative is a cable car. Yes, another cable car..... It is indeed very, very long (probably like a 20 minute ride!) but the experience was better than at the Peak. I'd also argue that the view is equally gorgeous.

Being in the cable car you realize how large Hong Kong actually is....and how much is uninhabitable. I'm so surprised that so much of it looks virtually untouched.
The airport from the cable car
Big Buddha
Guess there's only one path to enlightenment (pun intended). This view reminded me of the Batu Caves in Malaysia. We had a fun day trip out here as the village that accompanies the Big Buddha is fun to walk around.

And of course, the highlight of any Hong Kong trip is the awesome food! Except we were very unlucky and actually had many awful meals. Even the much raved about Michelin star rated Tim Ho Wan was a big disappointment. Here are two that I actually liked. Yup, only two dishes out of four restaurant hopping meals made the cut. The disappointment :(

Yat Lok Restaurant

Previously mentioned in the 2011 Michelin guide, this place is famous for its roasted goose. We got lucky and arrived before the rush. I ordered the roasted goose with noodles ($48HKD). The goose meat is not as fatty as duck. It doesn't really have a unique taste. Not to say that it was tasteless though; just doesn't have a distinctive flavor like beef or chicken. Very simple, honest food.
Mak's Noodles

My Asian comfort food is wonton noodle soup, and this gave me the warm fuzzies after I finished. The price was amazing too. Only cost $39 HKD for this bowl, which is more food than it looks. I think the best wonton noodle soup I've ever had was in San Francisco's Chinatown, but this place had whole pieces of shrimp wrapped in each wonton. 

Next time I visit Hong Kong it's going to be a foodie tour. I must eat mind blowing dim sum, lemon tea, and egg noodles.

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