Having lived the majority of 2005 in Hong Kong for my exchange program and internship, I am very familiar with the city and grew rather attached to some aspects of it. Therefore, I am very happy to being going back to Hong Kong late next week.
So this post is
All the Things I Love about Hong Kong
All the Things I’m Excited to Return to in Hong Kong
- Friends! I get to see many, many friends from university study abroad programs and college, as well as former colleagues. Can’t wait to see you guys again! Hope that you will show me your version of the city so I can see it from the eyes of a native.
- Transportation! Hong Kong has one of the cleanest, safest, and most efficient urban public transportation systems anywhere in the world. You won’t find any food, gum, or bums here. Gotta love the MTR, KCR, and the widely accepted Octopus Card.
- Esprit Outlet! That’s right girls. Hong Kong has the only Esprit outlet in the world (that I know of) and its very close to TST MTR station. Its only 1 block west of Nathan Road on Kowloon Peninsula. Its 2 stories and not only has clothes (girls & guys), but makeup, perfume, shoes, bags, etc. And the clothes are cheaper than the regular retail stores in China.
- Lan Kwai Fong! About 3 blocks of solid bars, restaurants, clubs, and people drinking on the streets. Need I say more? Models at Volar, getting hit on by a USC parent, drinking in front of club 7-11, watching your friends look for you and laughing that they can’t find you, getting hit by rubber balls, walking up narrow stairs in high heels, seeing random friends you didn’t even know were in HK, and at the end of the night a line of 50 taxis waiting to take you home safely. Great times at LKF!
- Chun King Mansions & Indian Food! An entire building of companies run by indians. This means some of the best, most reasonably priced Indian food outside of India. And you don’t just go for the food, you go for the experience. Imagine: 20 Indian men running up to you with menus and cards for their restaurants say ‘you hungry, miss?, you want Indian food, miss?, my restaurant’s the best, I give you good price, I give you a discount, try my resturant, miss.’ All the while a security guard tries to beat them back so you can make a decision which fabulous restaurant to eat at. Ah, then comes the best part, riding up a rickety elevator thinking ‘oh god, where is this man taking me?’ Then ending up in a authentically decorated, rich spiced-scented restaurant, with a table of Indian people just finishing their meal. By this you know its a good restuarant but because they are leaving you won’t be distracted from enjoying your gloriously rich chicken vindaloo or curry by their loud chattering. Indian food, here I come.
- Victoria Harbor! One of the most gorgeous and recognizable skylines anywhere in the world. With a light show at 8pm choreographed to music, the view of HK Island from the tip of Kowloon Peninsula is a show not to be missed. Bring your tripod because with a pitch black sky and some of the most colorful buildings you’ve ever seen, this is a photo opportunity not to be ruined by an unsteady hand. Though I’ve seen the light show a few times and seen the buildings’ lights tens of times from many different angles, I’m still seeking the perfect photo. What a romantic way to spend a balmy Hong Kong evening.
- Food! Hong Kong has some of the world’s best cuisine and most diverse collection of restaurants (can’t say their Mexican food is anything to rave about tho). Nonetheless, I have managed to select a few favorites.
- Pho Saigon! First time I had Vietnamese food and despite having tried it many locations since then, its still my favorite Vietnamese restaurant. Noodles, lemongrass chicken, drinks, dessert, they do it all well. And its a very good value, too. Authentic, home style, & the owner chatted with my Vietnamese friend in Vietnamese. Suitable for loud meals with friends or if you’re a single diner and don’t want a high-pressure solitary dining experience. 2 Locations: Hong Kong Island b/t WanChai MTR & Causeway Bay MTR, and Kowloon b/t Mongkok and the stop north of there. (Can’t remember the exact addresses but you can google it.)
- Hui Lau Shan! Mango drinks, mango drinks, and more mango drinks. So good. And even mango drinks with sago (little white tapioca). So good. Location: Various stands and shops throughout the city, including many in Causeway Bay and 1 in the Kowloon-Macau ferry terminal.
- Crystal Jade! One of my favorite Chinese restaurants because they have all my Chinese favorites: xiao long bao (soup filled dumplings), dan dan mian (peanut sauce noodles), spicy noodles, and many other wonderful choices that basically make up my favorite Chinese foods. Their desserts are even reasonably tasty for Chinese desserts. Many locations, including Causeway Bay subway station and Harbour Centre (TST).
Wow! This has really gotten me excited to return to Hong Kong! Yay! Anyway, I hope I’ve inspired you to check out some of the unique delights Hong Kong has to offer.