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149: Hong Kong (Revisited)

Tips For Travellers

Release Date: 08/11/2014

Gary Bembridge of Tips for Travellers shares observations, tips and advice for visitors to Hong Kong.

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This show covers among other topics:

Observations

  • Dense with multitudes of skyscrapers and people. More people live and work above 15th floor than anywhere else in the world and has most residential blocks about 40 stories high and constant development.
  • Very pretty harbour - Victoria harbour - one of deepest natural harbours in the world - Hong Kong means "fragrant harbour".
  • Population of 7 million.
  • 262 islands - Hong Kong island, Lantau Island (Airport and Disneyland ), Kowloon peninsula and Northern Territories.
  • Transforms at night - skyscrapers have light effects - 8pm light show (biggest and longest running permanent show) on Hong Kong island and at 9pm on ICC (International Commerce Building) in Kowloon.
  • English widely spoken as one off 2 official languages.
  • Very connected city lots of free wifi around


History
British colony until 1997

Getting There
Very busy airport built on reclaimed land on Lantau Island.
Cruise -  Kai Tak Terminal designed on site of old airport runway in Kowloon.

Best time to go
Hot and humid most of year
Coldest in Jan
Hottest July

Getting around
Coveted walkways and open air mid -evels escalator - worlds largest outdoor covered escalator.
Trams - kept despite modern metro system following pretty much same routes.
Busses - 5 companies run 700 routes.
BigBus Hop-on Hop-Off bus tours

General Tips
Use UK style 3-pin plugs
Good App - "Discover Hong Kong" developed by HK tourism board and Cathay Pacific Airline. Works off line and has series of suggested walks.

Must-do activities

Victoria Peak
Tram launched in 1888- 8 minutes ride to the stop with stunning views across city, also has Madame Tussards and shopping.

Star Ferry
Iconic service since 1870s - taking people 7 minutes from Hong Kong to Kowloon Ocean terminal.

Harbour Tour
Many options from Star Ferry, Sailing Junks and motorised junk boat trips.

See Hong Kong at night
Night bus tour
Light show- "Symphony of lights" - 45 skyscrapers on both sides of harbour
Walk the streets on Hong Kong side in Wan Chai and Kowloon along Nathan street

Shopping
Good prices as do no  sales tax and is a Duty free port
Stanley market
Central district- high end shops
Hollywood road - antiques and art
SoHo - galleries
Ladies Market
Temple Street Night Market

Aberdeen
Fishing village and Luxury marina

Afternoon tea at Peninsula Hotel

Flagstaff house museum of Teaware - in oldest surviving colonial building -

Beaches
Repulse Bay

Theme Parks
Disneyland
Ocean Park -see Cunard notes

Museums
Can get good value 7-day museum pass
HK museum of art
the space museum
HK science museum
HK museum of history

Further afield
Macau - high speed ferry or bus