We had such a wonderful time at home for Christmas seeing as many relatives and friends as we could. It was lovely to be back and see you all and share some great times with you all. Coming back to China was not as hard as I thought it would be, I suppose we knew what we were going back to and also that we would be back again in 6 months! But what made it all that better was not only this delightful view from school one evening but after our first week back we had booked in a belated 6 year anniversary trip to Hong Kong!
We got the earliest train we could across to Hong Kong, which only takes 2 hours and is £22 each way!! We stayed at The Harbourview Hotel overlooking the harbour - surprisingly and had a lovely upgrade due to some maintenance going on. We visited The Optomist again after I was raving about it from my first visit and enjoyed pre dinner Gin bowls and then a delicious steak with a bottle of red. All within walking distance and navigated with a map and no phone - old school!
Day 1: The Peak Tram and the Big Buddha!
After a lovely walk around Victoria Park (where we pretended to be involved in the HK Marathon and walked around the festival for it...maybe next year?!) in Causeway bay we headed to another favourite from my last trip; Elephant Grounds. A yummy brunch to set us up for a busy day of being tourists in Hong Kong.
We got there for just after 11am and I am glad we did get there early(ish) as the queue when we left was so long!! We only queued for about 20mins, which included getting our tickets and then getting onto the tram. The signposts are really easy to follow from the subway and the staff down there are really helpful too, so it is easy to find.
The climb up to the top of The Peak is SOOO steep and you think that the tram is just going to runaway back down to the station! But it does make it up a track that has been running for centuries! The view from the top is incredible, we were lucky and had a clear sunny day to enjoy it as well. You look across to Kowloon Island and the harbour and on the other side to some uninhabited islands. It really makes you appreciate how diverse Hong Kong is. We paid extra to go up to the viewing platform, which was well worth it and you can even eat up at Bubba Gumps or a sushi restaurant and enjoy the views or have a wander around the gardens up at the Peak.
On route to seeing the Big Buddha and the Temples we grabbed a Pret a Manger YES THIS IS EXCITING that they have Pret in HK!! I may have had a few more before we left as well...
After a half an hour metro to Lantau Island, we got a Crystal Cabin cable car (all glass, including the floor!) up to the Big Buddha village. The views on the way up were fantastic over the hills in HK and watching the planes take off and land from HK airport!! It took about 30minutes to get up to the part of the Island you needed to be at.
You arrive at a Village with lots of restaurants and tourist shops, before walking up to the main part where you can walk up to the Big Statue of the Buddha. I don't think words and photos can quite do it justice with the presence of this statue on the Island, touring down on you from up close and being such icons on the landmark as you look out.
After walking around the incense filled temples and village feeling very zen we got our bubble car back down to the main area. A quick change back at the hotel and we headed out to Wooloomooloo restaurant for dinner and enjoy the views over the city at night! A deliciously romantic meal in the most lovely setting with Matt followed by cocktails on the rooftop bar above the restaurant :-)
Day 2: Shopping and the Star Ferry
After checking out we headed into the central area of HK to do a bit of a shopping before heading over to Kowloon to have a look around before getting the train back to Guangzhou. The ferry was really easy to get from the harbour on central island and was super cheap, we could use our Octopus cards which are like the Oyster ones in London! The view of the main Island was amazing and it was a short ride across the Harbour to get us to Kowloon. We walked along the promenade and ventured to the Avenue of stars (which is in a park at the moment whilst it is refurbished!) which was good - if you knew a lot of Chinese actors/actresses. I just liked the pig statue!!!
A great weekend together in Hong Kong and thoroughly enjoyed all the tourist things that were on offer in 48hours in HK! Cannot wait to be back there already :-)