Hong Kong

[ 0 ] October 4, 2012 |

Hong Kong, a Special Administrative Region of China, is an incredibly vibrant, fast paced, bright, vertical city. It is also one of the most densely populated places in the world. The international status of the city makes it a really easy place to visit if you don’t mind a busy city. The public transportation system is phenomenal and communicating in English is pretty common.

Another blitz city visit we were in and out in 24 hours. We stayed in Kowloon in the infamous Chungking Mansions building. This tightly packed high-rise houses a mix of everything from the cheapest accommodations in Hong Kong to sari stores and curry houses. It’s unofficially known as the African quarter of Hong Kong. We even read that over 70% of all cell phones that are being used in Sub-Saharan Africa have passed thorough this building. Quite the marketplace.

Our room was the smallest we have ever found. The mattress was squeezed between two walls and was so short Pat had to sleep with his knees bent. It was hysterical- and exactly how we wanted to experience Hong Kong.

We had the pleasure to meet up with some family friends for dinner. Phil and Irene Bennett are ministers in Hong Kong. Previously ministers in Georgia- they have been in Hong Kong for the past 6 years. A seriously inspiring couple, at a point in life when most people would retire, they decided to move to Hong Kong and tackle a now massively growing and thriving church. Rock stars.

They treated us to an amazing dinner of Peking Duck and all the trimmings at Peking Garden in Tsim Sha Tsui. It was absolutely delicious and we got to try things we would never have known to order. Sharing a meal with locals always makes it so much better- food and conversation.

Peking Duck

After dinner we all took a stroll along beautiful Victoria Harbor. The harbor is between Hong Kong Island and the Kowloon Peninsula in Hong Kong. The view of the skyline against the water at night was definitely my favorite Hong Kong sight.

Bennetts- Wilsons Victoria Harbour, Hong Kong

There have been numerous reclamation projects on both shores trying to create just a little more land for Hong Kong. The iconic Star Ferry carries passengers between the two shores on a brief nine-minute boat ride.

Avenue of Stars- Pat and Bruce Lee

With food as a central theme for our time in Hong Kong, the following day for lunch Pat and I made our way to the cheapest Michelin starred restaurant in the world- Tim Ho Wan- famous for dim sum. Dim Sum is a style of Chinese food that is prepared as small bites or individual portions and usually served in small, stacked steamer baskets. When we arrived at the unpretentious, unsigned (in English) address there was a long line waiting outside. We joined the crowd and figured out the system. We were in line to get a number that would give us a time to come back and wait again.  When we were given our number, the seating time was three hours later- we took it. Because our name was on the list, we left for the next three hours and just came back when we knew we’d be called- it was a great system.  We spent the next few hours roaming the streets of Hong Kong and lounging in coffee shops.

When we went back to eat, waiting outside we were given a menu to mark our choices. When we were seated we sat across from each other at a shared table elbow to elbow with other patrons. Our dim sum was brought almost immediately and every dish was fantastic. Our favorite dish was the BBQ Pork Buns. We also had classic pu’er tea with the meal. The most intense part was working chopsticks seated so closely to Asians! (I don’t think they judged us too badly for our sloppy form.) For two fledgling foodies, our meal here was completely and totally worth the wait.

Michelin Dim Sum

Working the Chopsticks

Back to the mansion to pick up our bags and shortly thereafter on an airport bound bus, we were off.

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Category: Alison's Blog, Blog, Destinations, Hong Kong

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