We had booked a flight with a budget airline, Hong Kong Express, that offers cheap flights in all of Asia towards and from Hong Kong. As our plane takes off at 7.30 a.m., woefully, we had to get up terribly early. Fortunately, there are so many taxis roaming around in Jeju, that we just could walk to the street a few steps from the Ellui Hotel to stop one. The Jeju International Airport isn’t far away, so we soon arrived. Still, it was bit stressful, as I had a battery in my bag and then, the security had me unpack my luggage to find it. It didn’t register in my brains since I’ve packed some of my batteries in my main luggage coming from Europe. I got confused as I never understood what they were looking for. Eventually, he found the “thing” in my suitcase and as far as I have understood, I had to put it in my hand-carry. They let me go through. We didn’t even have time anymore to buy souvenirs, as we had to hurry to our flight!
Upon arrival in Hong Kong, we went to the Airport Express and bought a convenient Airport Express Travel Pass, which included a return ticket to the airport and three days of free travel on the MRT. It’s a great connection to the city, and only about half an hour later we arrived at the last stop, the Hong Kong Station. It is connected to the Central Station, and we just had to take the MRT for one more stop to get to the Sheung Wan Station. From there we walked to our hotel for four nights, the Butterfly on Hollywood. Fortunately, we could check in already and be happy with our modern room, which had a flat screen TV and even a little refrigerator. Actually – after waking up that early – we were exhausted and immediately dozed off for some time. It was still early in the afternoon, so we strained ourselves to wake up as not to be wide awake come the evening!
It was much warmer in Hong Kong than in South Korea, with temperatures of about 25 degrees. So, after we did some grocery shopping in the nearby supermarket at the Queens Road West, we finally started to go sightseeing. First, we actually wanted to eat. So we took the MRT – with our MRT-Pass – to Wan Chai Station and took exit A3. You can walk through the district on a self-guided walk, but we mostly were looking for a Pinoy restaurant we saw on google maps, but we didn’t find it. Instead, we found a Thai restaurant, that was okay too. There were actually many food stalls and restaurants in the busy area of Tai Yuen Street and the Stone Nullah Lane. We took a glimpse of the Blue House, which was getting renovated, and walked through the Wan Chai Market.
When we walked back to the north, we eventually came to a walking platform, which led us ultimately to the Wan Chai Ferry Pier. However, it was a bit stressful to get there, as there was a barrage of people on the walkway. Finally, we arrived and bought tickets for the Starferry, which brings you to the other side to the Tsim Sha Tsui Starferry Pier. It was not only an exciting boat ride, but it is also cheap.
We still had problems to acclimatize. Hong Kong felt kind of stressful. There were tons of people everywhere and everyone seemed to be in a rush. Even the escalators were faster. There was kind of a slower pace before, in South Korea. However, when we were at the pier and got the view of Hong Kong, the stress was all forgotten, as we enjoyed the amazing view.
After taking some photos, there was still some time, before the Symphony of Lights would begin, a nightly light show with many buildings included. We tried to go the nearby Avenue of the Stars until then, but it was closed due to renovation. So, we returned to the Tsim Sha Tsui Promenade and later enjoyed the light-show, which was great (and free). I would say, it’s really a highlight of all the attractions, Hong Kong has to offer.
Eventually, we went back to the hotel by MRT and got some sleep, as we had many plans for the next day, among them a visit to Lantau Island, to walk up to a huge Buddha…