On our 3rd day we decided to visit the famous HK park. By this point in the trip I was feeling pretty tired and lazy so I wasn’t pleased that the park was built on a hill (as is most of HK)… However, we stumbled upon an old tower you could climb up, from somewhere I found the motivation to go up and I was not disappointed; framed by the trees, the many impressive skyscrapers and other buildings were shining through. The park also has an Exotic Bird Avery that’s not to be missed. As you walk through the well designed ‘rain forest’ an array of colourful birds fly past you and casually sit on the branch opposite as if greeting you. Just next to the park is the Zoological and Botanical Garden’s, as the oldest park in the territory it is divided in half by a main road; the right side has mostly birds such as Flamingos and Cranes whilst the left side has mammals including Orangutans, Gibbons and even Meerkats! With the vast amount of animals they have it’s basically a free zoo (which I loved!). Following this we hopped onto a Ding Ding tram as a laid back way of seeing the sights.
In the evening we went out for food, but having not planned anywhere to go we ended up having Korean food, really, really spicy Korean food! To cool our mouths down we went to Ophelia bar (which took us ages to find because we couldn’t get used to the fact everything is built up, and not just on the ground level!). The bar is themed around a peacock and as you head through the curtains into the bar your greeted by girls dressed in traditional Chinese dresses posing on extravagant chairs, beds and swings (I did wonder if we had walked into a brothel…). Being a cocktail bar they pride themselves on unusual cocktails, and they didn’t fail; I ordered a rum and coke cocktail that also contained charcoal.. And glitter, hmm.
Our penultimate day was a busy one! We didn’t get out until lunch time so we decided to head straight to McDonalds to try a ‘Create Your Taste’ burger. It was good, so good; I ordered 2 different cheeses and 3 different sauces with caramelized onions and lettuce. When it came out the chips were served in a little deep fat fryer tin, very gourmet! Once we were full and feeling a little sick we headed over to the Nan Lian Japanese garden and Chi Lin Nunnary for a walk. The area was so beautiful and peaceful with the stunning temples and serene gardens. After a lot of debate we decided to go to The Peak, and i’m so glad we did. I thought the view from our apartment was amazing but this was even better! You cant beat it, the view made me fall in love with HK. Whilst at the peak we had an audio guide informing us about the surrounding areas where we learnt about an intriguing place full of fish, bird and flower markets called Mong Kok. Despite it getting late we decided to head over there. The fish market is a small area where nearly every shop has their fish all bagged up ready to go hung on display out the front. In between some of these shops were pet shops selling expensive breeds of puppies and cute little kittens all locked up in small glass cages in the windows. It was so hard to see this, some of the dogs looked so sad, bored and frustrated, as you can only imagine (would it be possible to buy them all and bring them home?). As we walked past one shop they had a huge 80 year old turtle (that I wasn’t allowed to take a photo of… Seems pretty dodgy?); I get the impression this is the area where you can buy any pet imaginable, legal or not. Leading on from this was the flower market, a similar set up as before but with millions of flowers, i’ve never seen so many! Towards the end of the road you follow the chirps of the birds to find the famous bird market. A much smaller area then compared to the other markets but filled with thousands of exotic looking birds, some caged and some perching freely on top of their cages. Mong Kok is such a fascinating area, one that I feel really captures the spirit of Hong Kong (maybe not the pets in glass cages though..). Continuing our busy day (by this time it was 9pm, I should probably mention..) we went for a trip up the Mid Level Escalators, the longest outdoor covered escalator in the world. Unfortunately we only managed about 100 meters but the entire escalator lasts 800 meters and is a series of 20 escalators and 3 moving walkways. A community has since been built around the area as it’s so popular, with many different bars and restaurants making it a a good night out!
On the final day our flight wasn’t till late so we decided to go to Disneyland. As it’s one of the smaller ones it meant we were able to watch 3 shows (which were all amazing) and see the parade. I felt like such a big kid queuing up for an hour just to see Micky & Minnie Mouse (Rob wasn’t impressed, but I thought it was worth the wait!) and relieving my childhood as I went on my favorite Dumbo ride. In fact I spent most of the day on kids rides as I’m such a big wimp and hate roller coasters. Twice i’ve been to Disneyland Paris and both times i’ve been too scared to go on Space Mountain, but after Rob tested it out for me and reassured me it wasn’t that bad. I finally went on it – twice in a row! (And then felt really sick). This brought us to the end of our trip as it was time to catch a taxi to the airport (Boo!).
Iv’e had the most amazing time visiting Cambodia and Hong Kong. They are both places I would happily visit again and still have so much more to offer. Before we left I felt excited, nervous and even a little scared with no idea what to expect having never visited this part of the world. As we traveled from the airport to our first hotel in Cambodia I was shocked and amazed by the hectic scene around me. I developed heat rash, mild heat stroke and an addiction to Starbucks (has anyone tried a pomegranate Mocha?!!!). What really surprised me though is how quickly you become acclimatized and adapt to where you are, before long, everything seems normal – then when you return home everything feels, odd. And you suffer serious post holiday blues! But the best way to get over this? Start planning your next trip!