Hong Kong

When:

13th November 2018 - 24th November 2018


Flight Details:

Operator: British Airways

Route: London Heathrow to Hong Kong direct

Aircraft : Boeing 777 (Althoug during summer months they do fly the Airbus A380)


Hotel:

Hilton Garden Inn Hong Kong Mongkok,

2 Soy St,

Mong Kok

Hong Kong

Suggested other alternative is the 'Sheraton Hong Kong Hotel & Towers' on Nathan Road

Weather:

I visited HK in November and it was comfortably shorts and T-shirt weather 24-7.

The average temperature was mid 20's and the humidity in excess of 70%. Apparently during the summer it can get uncomfortably humid.

We had a few showers but nothing to write home about and were quite refreshing if you were out and about, and ended up being caught in them; during the summer, July-August-September, the 'monsoon' rains are present.


Contacting Home:

Hong Kong as excellent mobile phone coverage, along with data coverage. My UK mobile operator was charging £6 per day to use my UK allowances while in HK. I opted not to do this and took advantage of the free WiFi which can be found virtually everywhere(!)

Getting about:

Speaking to locals, having a car is (almost) a pointless exercise. Hong Kong has a an excellent Underground/Metro/Tube system called the MTR.

The best way to use the MTR is with the purchasing of an Octopus Card. This is similar to the Oyster card you can use on the London Tube Network. This can be purchased at Hong Kong airport for 50 HK$; it is my understanding that this is refunded should you want to return the card minus a 9 HK$ fee if returned within 90 days; I ended up keeping mine for a souvenir. If not used with a 1,000 days the remaining balance on the card will expire. It should be noted that the Octopus card can be used for smaller translations at stores such as 7-Eleven etc.

The Hilton I stayed at was in a central location between Olympic, Mong Kok, and Yau Ma Tei. Each of these stations are a short 5-10 minute walk away.

For returning to the airport, there is the option for "In-Town Check-In" at Hong Kong and Kowloon stations. This is especially useful if you have to check out of the hotel but have a late return flight.

The MTR station exits are identified with a Letter and sometimes also a number. Theses can be identified on Google Maps.

Food and Drink:

There are plenty of places to eat and drink, and these can be found on street corners, big shopping complexes, or dedicated eating areas of town...

The places I ate during my stay were as follows and can't say I had a bad meal. Prices were about the same at UK.

  • Hard Rock Cafe
  • Mainson Libanaise
  • 65 Peel Street
  • PizzaExpress (Ocean Terminal)
  • Gordon Ramsay Maze Grill
  • Lion Rock Cafe (Cathay Pacific City)
  • Nara Thai
  • The Old Monk Place

If you are feeling brave, there are lot of street vendors offering food cooked there and then. Due to work commitments I decided to play it safe during my visit but I am sure they would have been fine.

Things to Do:

Upon spending a few days in Hong Kong, I though that there wasn't a lot to do, and that the rest of the time would be spent twiddling my thumbs, however after a bit more research, how wrong was I?! At first it is not obvious, but there is loads to do if you are willing to find it...

Suggestions for places to visit and things to go based on my experience:

  • The Peak
    • The Peak Tram
    • Lugard Road Walk / Lugard Road Lookout / Hong Kong Trail
    • Peak Tower
  • Hong Kong Park and Edward Youde Aviary
  • HSBC Headquarters Building
  • Bank of China Tower
  • The Hong Kong Observation Wheel
  • The Star Ferry
  • Happy Valley Racecourse / Hong Kong Jockey Club
  • The Peninsula Hotel
  • Sky 100 Observation Deck / International Convention Center
  • Temple Street Night Market
  • Ngong Ping Cable Car
  • Tian Tan Buddha
  • Sik Sik Yuen Wong Tai Sin Temple
  • Nan Lain Garden
  • Ten Thousand Buddhas Monastery
  • Happy Valley Racecourse / Hong Kong Jockey Club

Places recommended to me but unfortunately I ran out of time; there is always next time!:

  • Walking / Trekking:
    • Ngong Ping Rescue Trail
    • Lion Rock
    • Hong Kong Trail (50Km)
    • Dragons Back
  • Stanley / Stanley Market
  • Ocean Park Theme Park
  • Disney Land
  • Avenue of Stars
  • Kowloon Walled City Park

General:

As with any large city, watch out for pick pockets in busy areas; although I did not notice any suspicious activity during my stay, there were signs dotted around the place warning to look after your belongings.

90% of the population will speak some form of English - don't be afraid to ask for help or directions.