The pursuit of...My Favourite Cities (Part 1)

Hong Kong is one of my all time favourite cities. I have been many times now and I love it for its all encompassing culture and vibrancy.
It is a city where all your senses are stimulated at once....the sounds of the buzzing hustle and bustle of the inner city...the sights of the tall skyscrapers, bright neon lights, colourful markets...the taste and smell of the local delicacies, street food and fast food.  It is truly an amazing sensory experience.

I love places like that...It's the same reason why I love New York and Paris so feel as though you are transported into another world with a culture and vibe that is just so unique.

I don't think you can appreciate how densely populated HK is until you have seen it for yourself.  There is just sooo much people and everytime I go, whilst in the taxi on the freeway into the centre, I always look up and marvel at the high rise apartments blocks, where it seems like there are just hundreds upon hundreds of people living on top of each other.  It really is eye-watering to see, but there just isn't enough space to build lots of houses, so the majority of the population live in these types of apartments.
As you can imagine, with a population so dense and large, there is huge problems with air pollution and smog and I quickly became accustom to seeing people walking around with face masks to protect and cover their mouth and nose.

The fashion sense of the Hong Kong citizens is at both ends of the scale.  You have the super stylish, classy designer clad version and then the wacky, weird, outlandish 'Hello Kitty' obsessed extreme.  In any case, HK style is truly eclectic and is amazing for people watching and shopping.
Temple Street Night Market is one of my doesn't open until about 7pm in the evening and it feels so strange to be weaving a busy market crowd into the late hours!

There is so much to see and do in this city that you should never get bored.  If you like sightseeing and culture than HK is right up your street.
One of the best views is from Victoria Peak on Hong Kong Island.  You can take the tourist tram up to the top or get a local bus, which as it winds up the narrow roads towards the peak, gives superb views over the island and harbour.
I took this picture (below) from the peak:

Another great view is from the Peninsula Hotel in Kowloon, where you get brilliant, showstopping, panoramic views over the harbour.  Out of all the times I have been to Hong Kong, I still have not made it here to see this for myself!
Last time I went, I stayed at the Excelsior Hotel which has a rooftop bar on the 34th Floor and the views were breathtaking at night when the city was lit up (see below):

Another great thing to do is to have a meal on the Floating Jumbo Restaurant in Aberdeen Harbour.
This is really a special sight to behold, especially at night when it is all lit up and looks absolutely spectacular.
The last time I went to see the Floating Restaurant was a few years ago.  We took a little shuttle boat out to it and it was so surreal and magical as we weaved our way through the local fisherman and their boat dwellings as they were packing up for the night.  It was so quiet and ethereal, that it is one of those memories that will stay with me for a very long time (below):

Lastly, another must-see is the famous landmark of the Tian Tan Buddha on Lantau Island (title picture and below).  It is a bit of a trek to get there which includes taxi, metro, cable car and a great deal of walking (including the final 260 steps up to it!!) But it is definitely worth it in my eyes.  When you catch that very first glimpse of the Buddha in the distance as you make your way to it, is breathtaking.  I also found it to be a very calming and centering place and I didn't realise just how close you can actually get to it.

There is so much more to do and see in Hong Kong that I could go on for a great deal more...but sometimes, no matter how hard you try, some things cannot be described...sometimes just seeing is believing, so get your ticket, get out there and experience as much as you can!

That concludes Part 1 of my favourite cities that I've visited....look out for New York, Paris and Nice very soon.

Safe travels,

Love, Ivy George x

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