My friends and I decided to set off to Hong Kong last 2017 as a mini-celebration for our college graduation. We were all on a limited budget but we wanted to go out of the country to celebrate, so off we went to the nearest and cheapest destination for our passports. It was a really fun short trip and surely one for the books. Like all my other travels, I would definitely love to come back and do a proper Hong Kong adventure when I have a little more in my pockets, and more time to traverse around and eat to my heart’s content. Next time, maybe.
Here’s a few things from my first time there:
Literally walked thousands of steps in all of five days going around Hong Kong because taxis are a bit more expensive and different parts of the small island is accessible by foot or by the very convenient public transport anyway. It is very easy to go via trains, bus and metros as there are loads of stations spread out across the city, and their Octopus card made travel seamless. We wanted to go around and see the town with our own eyes. I’m not kidding when I say I could literally feel my toe fingers pulsating through my sandals by the end of the day from all the walking.
Night markets are hella cool and there are a buttload of cheap trinkets, gadgets, clothings and whatnot. Compared to Vietnam’s easily-annoyed vendors, haggling with HK vendors is a fun experience, and you will be surprised at how cheap you’ll get the items and how much they jacked it up. Aside from night markets, there are also a lot of shopping malls around. Literally almost every corner, there is one and you will find lots of international brands setting shop in here. It’s one of the world’s cheapest shopping destination, after all.
HK FOOD SCENE IS THE BOMB. It doesn’t take a genius to know that Hong Kong, aside from being a shopping destination, has some strong food game. It’s definitely something I would love to come back for. From sticks and sticks of street food, to cheap noodles in broths cooked for hours to something exquisite and in fine dining — they have mastered incorporating the traditional flavors into the modern times well. Everything is done fresh and for a long time, and if you are like us at the time who doesn’t have much on the wallet, you could definitely have good food for cheap. Sadly I don’t have much photos of everything I’ve wolfed down from that trip but some notable dishes are: Tan Tan Mien with a side of Pork Chop, some cheap noodles, Tiger Bread, Goose from that Michelin-star restaurant, street food sticks. Have I mentioned how unforgettable Hong Kong’s milk tea is? DO NOT MISS OUT ON IT.
Little spaces everywhere. One of the most fascinating things about HK is their use of little spaces. In the hostel/apartment that we stayed at, we had bunk beds fixed to the wall for the five of us. There was an uber tiny bathroom with shower and an equally small common area outside the room. The whole place is smart-lock enabled. Spread across articles online, rent is pretty expensive in HK so it’s no surprise they make sure every square meter count while still being able to deliver the purpose. It’s not only in living spaces that this is apparent, even in commercial spaces, this is quite noticeable.
Klook app. It was my first time to use the app at the time but it was such a life saver when getting some really good deals in the city. We got our tourist sim for LTE use and our octopus card for train rides and convenience store runs. They also always have some cheaper prices for package of entrance tickets for some of HK’s tourist spots.
Hong Kong is a picturesque little island. It’s almost like everywhere you go, everywhere you point your camera, it is something worth looking at and noting. Just look at these shots my friend took from our trip.
Takeaway? Hong Kong is one of those places you’d surely want to visit at least once or maybe a few short times in your life; namely for food, shopping, fashion, architecture and whatnot. You can enjoy it in whichever budget range you have as they have so many options available for you and it wouldn’t matter if you’re a solo traveller or a group.
Special thanks as well to my good friend Nicole for letting me use her photos for this post as I haven’t been diligent in taking some while on the trip and decided to wolf down food after food and roam around aimlessly instead.