Monday, October 24, 2016

Hong Kong & Macau 2016 - Day 1

Hong Kong has always been my favorite city to visit for a short getaway. The iconic skyline, signature dim sum, local desserts and mouthwatering international cuisine just make me wanna go back again and again! Don't forget to mention, it is such a shopping paradise!! ^_^

Although many has assumed that travelling to Hong Kong is very expensive, this is however very much depending on your itinerary. There are actually many places of interest which tourist can visit for free!

Location
Hong Kong is one of the two Special Administrative Regions (SAR) of China (the other being Macau). It is located on the southeast coast of China, facing the South China Sea. It is about 4 hours by air from Singapore and 3 1/2 hours from Beijing. Hong Kong consists of Hong Kong Island, Kowloon, the New Territories and a group of 260 outlying islands.

Image result for hong kong map english

Visa-free Travel
Hong Kong offers visa-free access for passport holders from about 170 countries including Singapore and Malaysia (for stays up to 90 days). The duration ranges from 7 days to 180 days, depending on nationality. Check out about Hong Kong's Visa Policy.

When to visit
The most popular time to visit is during autumn, which is around September to November.

Weather
The typhoon season in Hong Kong normally runs from April to October. Monitor the progress of approaching storms and follow the advice of the local authorities.

Language
Cantonese is widely spoken in Hong Kong. Most people understand Chinese. English is widely spoken too especially in tourist areas.

Time Zone (GMT)
Hong Kong Time Zone - GMT +8

Essential tips ^_^

1. My Hong Kong Guide by Hong Kong Tourism Board 香港-我的智游行程
- Available on App Store

2. MTR system map 
a. Hong Kong City Maps - Discover HKG with MTR, bus, and travel guides
    - Available on App Store



b. Download here.
MTR System map


3. Octopus Card 
- Purchase at Hong Kong International Airport or any MTR station
- $150 - with $100 value + $50 refundable deposit
- Upon leaving Hong Kong, you may get refund of the deposit and remaining value at Hong Kong Airport
(Refund fee: $9)
- More info: Visit www.octopus.com.hk/

Image result for octopus card


4. SIM card
We purchased our Discover Hong Kong Tourist SIM Card ($88 for 5 day pass) at CSL outlet in Hong Kong Airport.
More info: https://www.hkcsl.com/en/Discover-HK-Tourist-Prepaid-SIM/

**as of October 2016

Our itinerary for Day 1:

- Arriving at Hong Kong International Airport
- Check in Bridal Tea House Hotel (Yau Ma Tei)
- Victoria Harbour/Symphony of Lights (Tsim Sha Tsui)
- Dinner at Serenade Chinese Restaurant 尖沙咀映月楼
- Nathan Road shopping around

So in love with this view from the departure hall!


Boarding at Terminal 3

Cactus garden at the airport

Walk way by the cactus garden

 Such an amazing view on a nice clear blue sky day ^_^

Riding an endless sea of clouds!

Bridal Tea House Hotel at Yau Ma Tei

  Image result for bridal tea house hotel hong kong yau ma tei

This is the picture on our booking website
Our room was similar to this but much smaller lol
Aircond, TV, hair dryer available
  Image result for bridal tea house hotel hong kong yau ma tei

Small bathroom. Basic amenities such as shampoo, soap was provided. 
Image result for bridal tea house hotel hong kong

Location: Very good. It's very near to MTR Yau Ma Tei station (3 minutes walk) and Mong Kok shopping district. There are many foods and shopping street around.

Space: The room is extremely small. SMALL.really SMALL. Especially for the bathroom (only fit a person standing). However, considering that we are only there for a very short stay and we spend most of the time outdoors, this hotel is quite a good option for us.

Hotel service: Hotel service was satisfying. Housekeeping clean our room for all the 4 days that we are staying ^_^

Hotel room: Room was comfortable. Air-conditioner, TV and heater all works fine. Perhaps after a long day of walking which makes the room even more comfy for us haha.

Meal: No breakfast included. We didn't go to the hotel's cafe either because there are just so many food stalls around! Delicious local foods =D

Review vid: There is a review vid on Youtube if you would like to check out. The room we got was smaller than the one featured in the video.

Overall rating: 6/10

Recommended for: Budget traveller / Traveler seeking for strategic location

Contact details:
Website: http://www.bthhotel.com/BTH/en/Room.jsp
Bookings: Reservation can be done through telephone, fax or e-mail
Charge : Payment by Visa Card Service acceptable 
E-mail : info@bthhotel.com 
Tel : (852) 2780 6113 Fax : (852) 2781 0367

Going to Tsim Sha Tsui after a nice hot bath ^_^




Victoria Harbour!! Originally called "Hong Kong Harbour"
Named after the British Queen Victoria after Hong Kong became a colony of Britain
Never fails to amaze me with the spectacular views of Hong Kong's skyline!
Reminds me of the scenes in TVB drama! ^_^


So beautiful!


Can't take my eyes off the scenery!



Happy us!


Next stop!
Dinner at Serenade Restaurant Tsim Sha Tsui
Yum Yum!

Golden prawns


Serenade Chinese Restaurant
Address: 1-2/F, Hong Kong Cultural Centre, Restaurant Block
Tsim Sha Tsui, Kowloon
Tel: 2722 0932
Opening hour: Monday to Sunday
9am - 4.30pm; 5.30pm - 11.30pm
Cuisine: Cantonese

Dinner was so satisfying!
We walked around Nathan Road after dinner ^_^



And went for our first tong sui (sugar water)!
Dessert culture is huge in Hong Kong
We decided to pop into the local stall for a bowl of black glutinuous rice


That marks the end of our first day in Hong Kong. We took MTR back to hotel for an early rest after a long day of travelling haha.

Stay tuned for Day 2! - Lantau Island Ngong Ping Tian Tan Buddha, Tai O, The peak!

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