Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Hong Kong for a night

Flying at midnight with a child at any age let alone a 3 year old is downright hard. We had been telling Kien he was going to sleep on the plane to Hong Kong, so he tried really hard to keep awake until we boarded. But alas he could not keep his eyes from closing and by the time we had gone through the departure area he conked out. We got on the plane and he was completely out for the count.

He remained asleep for about 5 hours, although extremely restless for the last couple of hours. During the dinner service though we had some peace and quiet.

Once he was awake he just wanted to make noise and talk and laugh. So I put the "Cars" movie on to keep him amused. This is the first time a movie has held his interest until at least half way. The headphones were too big so I had to be creative.

6am - we arrived in Hong Kong and breezed through immigration and customs quickly - the fastest I've ever experienced. This is such an amazing airport; well organised and easy. We knew we had time to kill as it was so early - too early for checking in to our hotel. So we hung around at the airport and used their free wifi for a bit.

We jumped on the Airport Express train that took us to Kowloon station, and from there we caught the K1 (route) shuttle bus to our hotel. Actually it wasn't to our hotel exactly, but to the 5 star joint close by. We walked a couple of blocks to our flash hotel.

It's actually termed a guesthouse/inn, and all I was looking for when I booked was a) that it was clean and b) close to the action. I can concur it is both, and budget (and I already knew that). This place definitely feels authentic and real.

We also get a cool view out of our window on the 11th floor.

It took ages for Kien to wind down, and finally at 12:30pm local time (6:30pm NZ time) he passed out.

Six or so hours later we finally headed out to explore the city.

We stopped at the playground across the street.

Across from that is the famous Temple Street night markets. There is an interesting array of stuff you don't need and cheap knock offs of stuff you would like, and no price tags on anything so you need to batter well or be taken for a ride.

After wandering rows after rows of vendors we got to the "main" drag of eateries; by day they are normal roads and by night they are street diners. We found a place we liked the look of and stopped for dinner.

Kien was being his spritely little self and decided to wash his chopstick in my beer, but of course he was just compelled to drop it in the process.

It was such a good meal which came to only $1HKD154 (~$NZD23).

We then headed down Nathan Road, one of the more expensive areas of town - a strikingly high contrast of wealth compared to the parallel and side streets we were just in. We came across a seafood restaurant that attracted many tourists looking for photo ops with all their lovely creatures up for sale.

This guy will cost you $NZD305 served up on a plate.

We wandered the Hong Kong streets in the light rain and enjoyed the experience of being in a different city for one night.


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