Sunday, January 18, 2009
High rise buildings is the first thing that you notice as you drive from Hong Kong airport to your hotel. This airport is claimed to be world’s largest airport. I don’t know if it is the largest but it is really massive. HK is a concrete jungle; you will crave to see patches of greenery. In spite of hardly any trees or plants grown on the sides of roads there is no pollution. at least you don’t feel it in the air. It is all very clean. Hong Kong and Thailand offer different things to tourists and cannot be compared . HK is very well planned bu it was all very mechanical , it is like any western country which is now getting tinges of China.
Disney Land Resort was great but if you have been to US Disney World then it is a baby. Euro Disney in Paris is bigger and better than this one. If you are staying in any of the hotels inside the park Hollywood Hotel or Disney Land resort then you get one complementary visit to the park so you get two days to the park at the cost of one. If you rush up you can finish it in one day. There are no wet rides, only dry rides. Both these hotels are excellent but only Disney Land Resort hotel offers breakfast with cartoon characters, also it is quite much expensive as compared to Hollywood. If you are staying in any of these hotels then you must spend some time going around the hotel. It offers exotic locations for photo shoots, models of cars used by Hollywood actors in the hot movies are on display so you stand against them and get your pics clicked. You can spend hours together going and looking around the place. Christmas time is very colorful time and is good time to be at the park, the shows are superb you should not miss any of those, if you are in hurry miss the rides but don’t miss the shows they are awesome. The park is open from 10 to 8 pm. It was warm even in end of December but next day it snowed in China and HK became very cold so during winters you need to carry both kinds of clothes.
I love to make new friends when on a holiday. We met Praveen and Vibha and their 5 years old son Aryan, a cute happy go lucky family from Kolkata. . It happened to be Aryan’s b’day that day. Rahul and Aryan got along very well.
Ocean Park is another must on tourist list, in fact this one takes more than a day so if you are short of time, start early. Here too don’t miss the shows; if you are adventurous and love the thrill of rides then this is the place for you. There are lots of thrilling rides. Turbo drop tops the list. Do not even venture into this if you have a weak heart. It first uplifts you to a height of 100 meters and then suddenly drops you down in a free fall. Though you are fully tied and secure but it is a virtual free fall, it is worth trying once. Just the thought of it is enough to scare your wits away.
Besides Ocean Park, Peak Tram is another place which will keep you occupied for one evening, it also houses Madame Tussad museum, this one is not as big as the one in London but if you have never seen original even this one is very good. Nikhil had a great time getting photographs clicked with each and every wax statue. He wanted to post all those on orkut. In our 10 days trip we took 1500 pics altogether. I preferred the times of non digital cameras with rolls. The pics came out better coz you thought twice taking a pic but in digital you just go on and on without even anyone or anything in frame. Moreover nothing like the luxury of getting your rolls printed and watching the album whenever you want , though you can do even in digital camera but it is not a must and you end up not doing it. It is almost three weeks since we came back but still haven’t sat down to view all the pics. I hope I get the time to look at these pics before the next vacation. During our last trip to Europe we took with us seven rolls, I love to look at the colorful pics in the album. Well, advanced technology comes with ifs and buts
Coming back to HK, Ladies Market gives you a taste of India; it reminded me of lajpat Nagar, Delhi. Here you will find women selling all sorts of things from bags to clothes to souvenirs in make shift market. This market tests your bargaining skills. Living in India this is not a problem for us. They will quote $ 600 HK and give you for half of it. If you want to enjoy and soak into it, you need at least half a day or else you can pick a few things in an hour and done with it.
Night Market though it is called men’s Market but it is for all – you get lots of chunky jewellery, clothes, bags, toys. Here too negotiation is the rule of the game. If you want to savor typical Chinese food at reasonable price then this is the place. It is open till 12 midnight. I appreciated two things in HK - firstly lot of ladies are working women , anywhere you go you see ladies are manning the show. Secondly it is all very safe to be out even till 12 night. We were out till 11.30 with children roaming on the streets but can we think of staying out in NY, Paris, Delhi or even Bangalore ?
HK is a gourmet’s delight if you are a non vegetarian and is adventurous enough to try new varieties. HK is not very expensive but it is more expensive than Thailand.
If you are going all the way, you can cover a few near by places like Macau; there are day’s conducted tours from HK.
Like all other countries in South East Asia, HK too takes tourism really seriously and earns good revenue from it. There are lots of places of tourist attraction, it is best to dedicate five full days for HK.