Short Vacation to Hong Kong
I went to Hong Kong! I was so excited and it still feels a bit surreal. My whole family have been and used to go on family holidays there. I finally got to go for two days. It wasn't a very long trip, but the flight hours and price were too good to miss. David originally suggested going because he wanted to go to the Hong Kong 7s. However, the price per ticket was ridiculous!! We opted to go see my family instead.
Our flight was at 10 am on the Saturday. Therefore, we had to drive up the night before. We could have waited for the 4am bus, but you never know if there would be traffic. So, on Friday after work (9pm), we drove to a hotel, which was 10 minutes away from Incheon International Airport. It was a super long drive, but it was split between the two of us. It was my first time driving that far. It was a good experience, the road was empty and we weren't in a rush. The road nearer to Seoul was scary, there were so many lanes, I didn't know which one to be in. I managed to get us there at the back of 1am.
The next morning, we got to the long stay car park, thanks to my trusty sat nav! I thought we would be driving around for ages, but we found it right away.
The flight to Hong Kong was pretty nice, I slept for a good two hours of it. I hate flying, so every time I fell asleep, I would jerk, thinking I was falling. It was weird being in Hong Kong. I understood a lot of the language. I felt no culture shock. As soon as I heard Cantonese, I felt at ease and home which is strange to say as I don't speak it or ever did. I only spoke Hakka, another dialect. Also, almost everyone there speaks English! All the signs were in English because Britain ruled Hong Kong 20 or so years ago.
We took the airport express to the central part of Hong Kong. We could have gotten a bus, but it was faster to get the express train. It wasn't too expensive, about 150HKD for the two of us. So around 15 quid. I was surprised at how easy it was to get to our hotel! We had to switch from the express train to an express bus, and managed to find the hotel without getting lost. Huzzah!
Our hotel was HORRIBLE! OH MY EFFIN' HELL! We stayed in Tsim Tsa Tsiu, one of the main areas. We were advised a million times before arriving about sketchy people and not to talk to people hanging out near the building. And what do you know, it was full of sketchy people! The majority were from Eastern Asia. The building was called Chungking Mansions. A little search on google will show you what it's like. There's so many people hanging around, trying to sell you things or scam you with fake hotels! There were even people trying to drag us into stores and selling drugs. The building was full of stores selling Indian food and the smell was great! But, it was filthy and loud. There were about 7 blocks and it's hard to navigate unless you know what you're looking for.
We checked in, and they said we could either wait 4 hours for a room in the same block as the reception or don't wait and get a room across the whole building. We opted for the latter as we were wanting to leave our bags. When we got there, we decided to not leave our bags. I didn't trust it as it wasn't manned and only had a coded lock. Anyone could know the code. The room was a sh*thole.
Anyways, it was an awful place, please don't book in Chungking Mansions guys!
On the bright side, we were only in the hotel for one night, we had such a great time! I met my Aunty Alice who I have not met since I was about 11/12 years old. It was nice to meet her again.
We spent the first day together. She took us sightseeing around the city and also took us to eat dim sum.
The Sunday was a quieter one. We had one full day before our flight at 1am. We met up with my mum's side of the family. I have 5 aunts who live together and it was great seeing them too. I used to see them in London and called them my London Aunties. I also saw my Uncle Martin and met his wife for the first time.
I'll post a bit more about Hong Kong and the different attractions in other updates as it's getting rather long.
I loved Hong Kong. I want to go back. I want to live and work there. I want to visit...it's where my family came from. I want to relearn Cantonese and Hakka...ah!
Hopefully, I will be back there soon!
Here are two videos from Hong Kong.