Hong Kong, China: June 2016

A few months ago we booked tickets for my parents to come visit me.  In discussing things to do, we thought about other places we could visit since we’re in the vicinity of many different countries in Asia.  We settled on Hong Kong as one of those places because I felt it was a great stepping stone into Asia for Westerners, as the food is good, it’s easy to navigate, and many people speak English.

I flew home to see some friends, and flew directly to Hong Kong with them.  Back during Christmas we had already been discussing the trip, so I bought them similar luggage to mine.

A hefty delay later, we finally boarded the plane an hour after scheduled takeoff and sat for an hour before finally taking off…  For a total of two hours behind schedule.  My parents wanted to take that opportunity to practice their cell phone usage so they could assimilate into Asian society.

They seemed to have no issues adjusting to Business class travel, as I used some of my miles to upgrade their flights and used one of my Global upgrades for myself.

The meal service was par for the course of usual United fare, with the highlight being their ice cream, like usual.

A whole 15 hours later we landed in Hong Kong, made our way fairly quickly through immigration and were on the train in a matter of about 30 minutes or so, albeit later than intended.  We got checked into our hotel and were able to check out the harbor before grabbing a quick bite to eat then headed to bed.

The next morning, we decided to head over to the tram to the peak so we could beat the rush.  It wasn’t the best weather so it seemed like a lot of people stayed away, which was perfect for us.  The clouds made the view interesting enough.  The walk was different than what I took last time, I think I had chosen a different station last time, I’m not sure, so it was a bit of a chore to find the correct street to walk up.

Once at the top you have two views, one facing the other side of Hong Kong island and the other view being of Victoria Harbor and HK itself.

Given our tight schedule, we decided to head down the tram and grab a bite to eat.  In walking to lunch we got caught in a deluge, which lasted about 10 minutes then cleared up.  This happened to us several times, and certainly didn’t help the overbearing humidity… Thankfully my parents brought an umbrella!

For lunch we went to a place that has been awarded a Michelin star but is soon to be closed due to family infighting.  They are known particularly for their roast goose, which is very good, and I went to this same restaurant back in January.  While I usually like to try something new, since this restaurant won’t be around forever and this was my parents first time, I felt like it was a good place to go.  The food did not disappoint.

After lunch we decided to go on one of those double decker tour busses.  Sometimes when you have a limited amount of time in a place you want to see as much as you can, so that’s what we did.  I hadn’t done much on Hong Kong island before so it was a good opportunity to see the different sections of that part of Hong Kong.

After the double decker tour we freshened up at our hotel and headed out to dim sum for dinner, which ended up being tasty but I wish I had found a more authentic dim sum joint – oh well, next time I guess!

The next morning we had to wait for a French Cafe to open which looked interesting on Yelp so we went out to the harbor for a bit while we waited.

The wait was worth it.

Now it was time for probably the second major attraction of Hong Kong, which is Ngong Ping, otherwise known as Big Buddha.  It used to be the largest Buddha in the world but has since been replaced by another Buddha somewhere else.

Of course, that entails a cable car ride.

You can also see the airport from the cable car.

Mom and dad made their way to the base of the staircase… And made it up!  Even I was sweating buckets by the time we got to the top, it was very, very hot and humid that day.

The temple grounds.

We made our way back down and had lunch, then headed back to the area of our hotel in Kowloon and grabbed another hop on hop off bus, but this time in the Kowloon area.  The drastic difference in cityscape was very interesting to say the least, and it was nice to see compared to what I saw back in January.

By the time we finished it was near 5pm, so we freshened up at the hotel then tried for some teppan yaki.  The place we tried to go to is apparently reservation only so we headed down the street to get sushi at the Shangri-La, only to find that they had a teppan grill as well so we had that for dinner.  I think by that point we had had enough Chinese food, so that’s why we went for Japanese.

I have to say that it was the best teppan experience I’ve had, and it was well worth the price tag.

The next morning we left for the airport to fly to our next leg of our trip, Thailand!  Hong Kong was a short trip, but I think we were able to get as much sightseeing in as possible given the time we had, not to mention while dealing with jetlag and the oppressive heat.

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