The day before our departure, we did last shopping and dinner with family. My grandma invited me to her bedroom to show me all her arts and crafts projects and old pictures she has. I was so touched that she invited me to see her bedroom because I know it is a very private place to anybody. Then, my dad came in too and I could tell he was also very touched. These are the type of favorite moments of my trip that a photograph can’t capture. But I thought I’d compile favorites of those memories that I did get a picture of in chronological order with a link to the corresponding blog post : )
I got to see a more relaxed side of my dad and even karaoke’d with him and his friends. I think he’s fun to hang out with and I can see how his friends enjoy his company because he’s always down to do anything. But with family, we see a more serious side of him so this was another priceless experience.
Sightseeing with my dad’s friends was fun. One of them got a calf cramp from walking up the stairs so my dad told him to sit on the floor and stretch his leg. Then, my dad kicked the sole of his foot hard and the cramp was gone. My dad starts joking around saying that he came to China just so that he could kick his friend. And what an expensive kick that was LOL Everyone was cracking up hard.
Seeing my third auntie (right) at night for dinner after she got off work was nice. On our day back from China, she came over to have dinner and I finally took a picture of her, my sixth auntie, and my dad.
One my most favorite things about my trip was seeing old pictures. I love all of them but if I had to choose one, it would be seeing my three oldest siblings riding one bike while my second oldest sister is hauling them lol
Lastly, visiting Chung Tai Chan Monastery was nice. But meeting the nuns was even better. Monks and nuns are so mysterious. They have such different energy than other people like us and I loved meeting them.
I only have one last post of my trip. I can’t believe I posted about every single day I spent there. That would be 36 days!
360 degree view of Hong Kong from The Sky Terrace.
Continuing on our quest to be the best tourists we can be, we couldn’t miss a spot flooded with other tourists. My dad’s friend took us to the scenic and popular, Victoria Peak. The only way to get to The Peak is by taking the historic Peak Tram.
On our way up, passing Macdonnell Road.
Snapped a quick shot of the historic tram. Like the Photoshop effect? :P
The Peak Tram has been in operation since 1888 and it was the first funicular railway in Asia. The tram ride to The Peak is only five minutes long and 1.4 kilometers, or less than one mile. At Victoria Peak, there is the Sky Terrace which provides beautiful 360 degree panoramic view. The Sky Terrace is the highest viewing platform in Hong Kong sitting 552 meters, or 1,811 feet, above sea level. You do have to pay about $5 to get access to The Sky Terrace.
You can find out all about the popular peak at The Peak.
Hong Kong is one of my favorite cities I’ve visited. Everything is so clean and orderly. Public transportation is very accessible. Everything is close by and there are a lot of nice restaurants to eat at. People are quiet and respectful and there is a lot of cultural diversity. But a huge con of Hong Kong is there is no space, everything is so tight. And because there is no space, everything seems to be more expensive!
A tiny apartment costs over $500,000! Imagine a 500 square feet three bedroom apartment with two full bathrooms and a balcony. Everything is perfect, except it’s shrunken into a space that would fit two 10-year old sized adults. You can only stand in the balcony, no chairs or coffee fit there. My dad and I stayed in a guestroom that accommodates three people – one bunk bed and one bed by the window that looks like a perfect spot for a cat who is sunbathing. Not sure where clothing and accessories would go if three people were living in this room though. The kitchen fits two people at one time and there is almost no counter space.
Besides the small size of the apartment, I would say it’s a nice place. The building complex has one security guard at the lobby 24/7. The entrance to the lobby is opened by a security code or the guard. There is a huge pool with other amenities. The apartment is next to all sorts of public transportation (bus, metro, and taxi), a beautiful big park, and a shopping center. So it has a perfect location. But I can’t imagine raising a family in 500 square feet with having a dog… I feel almost guilty not using my space efficiently back home. It shows how wasteful we are with space in Los Angeles compared with places where space is rare to come. Even though, by American standards, Los Angeles is crammed.
While we spent the next couple of days in Hong Kong, our means of transportation were buses, taxis, and metro. Even though it’s more time-consuming that driving your own car, I love the essence of public transportation. Everyone is like a little ant, we have a destination to go to, follow common courtesy standards, pay our fees, sit quietly and avert direct eye contact, and somehow everyone knows how public transportation works. I enjoy watching how everyone has a different destination but use the same means to get where we want to go.
I also love the super courteous culture of Taiwan and Hong Kong. Everyone, without question, gives up their seat for parents with small children, elderly, disabled, pregnant women, or people that are carrying a lot of load. Nobody eats or even drinks water while using the metro and everyone pays their fees without any problem. Also, almost everyone carries on conversations quietly without disturbing others, and mostly everyone keeps to themselves. Most young people are on their gadgets anyway lol It’s absurd how we are all immersed in our electronic gadgets, 90% of teens and young adults were on their cell!
The day after we arrived to Hong Kong, my dad’s friend took us to Sai Kung Promenade and Harbour City.
Sai Kung Promenade for the Freshest Seafood
Sai Kung Pier with fishing boats lined up selling fresh catches.
El Salvador has a similar pier in La Libertad, where you can buy fresh seafood off boats. But Hong Kong’s Sai Kung Pier took freshness to a whole ‘nother level. There was a row of boats nicely displaying the freshest catch of the day (or maybe the week?). The selection of seafood was amazing; there was so much variety of exotic sea life. They looked like the sea life you would want in a salt water aquarium. I still can’t believe that anybody can just buy these beautiful fishes, crabs, squids, octopuses, etc…, and we just eat them right then and there.
Take your pick of these exotic sea creatures and get them ready to be cooked.
Interesting crab flipped upside sound. Made me sad…
My dad’s friend’s wife selected a variety of super duper fresh seafood off a few boats docked at the pier. Then, we walked around to choose a restaurant to cook our fresh catch while providing an ambience. It was one of the most delicious seafood meals I’ve had in my life. We had a feast of different types of seafood – which reminds me, I wish I had taken photos of each feast we had while in Taiwan, Hong Kong, and China, but I didn’t, sorry.
Anyway, part of me felt so bad enjoying the crabs, shrimps, fish, snails, clams, and whatever else we had… It felt like I was so inhumane but I kept thinking that it’s no different from buying packaged meats at the grocery store and cooking it at home. Just because I don’t see a cow getting slaughtered for a piece of New York steak on my plate doesn’t make it any less inhumane to eating this fresh seafood. I was having inner conflict – should I feel bad or should I enjoy this buttery piece of fish in my mouth? I felt bad and enjoyed it at the same time.
This trip made me consider giving up eating animal products. But… I can’t. Not yet at least.
Here are some pictures while we strolled around the promenade:
There were lots of tour tents that offer little trips but not sure where to…
One of my favorite photos.
This fisherman had 2 boats – one filled exotic sea creatures and second one filled with octopus!
Cute spoiled white Pomeranian being lugged around in a stroller lol
This little dog was proudly sporting his little booties! So adorable!
Ahh! I have a soft spot for corgis because of my Scooter <3
Sedov, Where Did You Come From?
Sedov docked at Victoria Harbour.
After the Sai Kung Promenade, we headed to Harbour City. A big surprise was docked at one of the Victoria Harbour piers! The world’s largest and oldest sailing ship, Sedov, made a stop to Hong Kong! What a lucky day! I’ve never seen a sailing ship anywhere besides Disneyland. This ship is so intricate. It’s amazing people know how to navigate this ginormous thing full of ropes.
What an intricate and sleek sailing ship.
Sedov is a 92 year-old Russian windjammer and was originally owned by Germany but surrendered to Russia in 1945. This ship is 117.5 meters, or 385.5 feet, long. Back in World War II, Sedov was used as an auxiliary fleet supply ship by Germany. Then after surrender, it was sporadically used as a training and research ship by Russia. Sedov is in the middle of a 13-month first voyage around the world as a training ship and in commemoration of the 1,150th anniversary of Russia’s statehood. On another note, the captain married a couple who is part of this world voyage on Valentine’s Day. They got engaged on the ship AND got married on the ship by the captain. How romantic is that?
A Symphony of Lights
View of Hong Kong skyline from Victoria Harbour.
After marveling at Sedov, we headed to a building structure where there is a huge open balcony and my dad sat somewhere with his friend while I went off on my own. It was so crowded! I had no idea what I was supposed to be waiting for. I was just following the hordes of people. A lesson I learned while learning how to use the metro in Taiwan – just follow the people.
Hong Kong skyline from Victoria Harbour.
After what felt like an eternity of waiting because I had no idea what I was waiting for, the music started. These lights coming from skyscrapers from across the Victoria Harbour started synchronizing. Now I know that this huge light show is called “A Symphony of Lights” and is displayed every night for over 10 minutes starting at 8 pm.
It was difficult to take a photo of the lights so I took a short clip instead:
The panorama of the buildings lit up at night is already a beautiful view. The LED lights show was just a bonus to the view. It is a great reminder of how a metropolis looks like. It’s a double-edged sword, on one hand technology is crazy advanced but at the cost of the environment and nature. So while buildings and concrete structures appear, nature disappears. Where do we set the boundary of technology advancement versus environmental degradation? Enjoy the convenience of everyday living at the cost of our health?
Which reminds me, a DIY I’ve been keeping on my to-do list is a recycling section at home. That will ease my guilty conscience a little bit of the harm I contribute to the environment : )
After the “A Symphony of Lights” show, we headed back to the fancy shopping center at Harbour City and had yummy sushi. Now you can put a face to my dad’s friend, his wife, and super hyperactive three year-old boy. I had to whip out my cell phone at each meal so he would sit still. My unprofessional diagnosis is that he has ADD. Or maybe all toddlers have the attention span of a pigeon? Never met an extremely hyperactive boy who loves puzzles, numbers, and singing so much.
Having sushi right by Victoria Harbour with a view of the skyline.
Meet Howard! Smart little cookie – really good with patterns and numbers.
Daddy and me having sushi.
Who’s Cleaning Junkie?
Hi, I'm Judy. I'm a huge fan of DIY projects but never thought I could take on a project myself. This year, I'm finally taking on DIY projects and I'm sharing my learning experiences with other DIY-ers. I also enjoy sharing my little travels here and there.