After boarding off the ferry, we crossed the street and took a taxi in front of the hotel. Haniff asked the hotel lobby attendant if it is okay for us to take a taxi there. He said ok and called a taxi for us. A woman taxi driver pulled over and the attendant told her to take us. The lady seemed angry but nonetheless, drove on. Haniff explained that although Hong Kong’s economy is booming, there are still over a million of people live in poverty. Housing prices and food are becoming more and more expensive and they can barely make ends meet and that is why some of them always look angry.
When we arrived at our destination, all of us said thank you to the lady. She seemed OK a bit (not angry) but still not smiling. So yeah, we were happy about it.
Eh, did I mentioned where we were going just now? No? Hehe. Ok, Destination; Johnston Road. Wan Chai! We went for shopping!
Well actually, for those who know Hong Kong, the jetty is actually located in Wan Chai; Wan Chai North. ;P
Johnston Road, Wan Chai, Hong Kong Island.
Wan Chai is a metropolitan area situated at the western part of the Wan Chai District on the northern shore of Hong Kong Island. Wan Chai is one of the busiest commercial areas in Hong Kong with many small and medium-sized companies. Wan Chai North features office towers, parks, hotels and an international conference and exhibition centre. As one of the first areas developed in Hong Kong, the area is densely populated.
One for the album; Yassin and me posing amidst the busy city.
So we went shopping at Johnston Road; one of the major streets in the area that is famous for shopping that offers some of the best value in Hong Kong.
Johnston Road was named after Alexander Robert Johnston, the British Deputy Superintendent of Trade during the First Opium War. The road is built on the margin of the oldest building cluster in Wan Chai. Many Hong Kong residents are trying to preserve the old buildings and trees from redevelopment. The century old transport Hong Kong Tramways goes through the road with its first service opening in 1904.
I stucked here for hours; buying bags, magnets and many more. It has everything that I want to buy, seriously!
Yassin got a pressie from Uncle Kanep from the toys shop.
Another shot at Johnston Road before we leave. That was our catch of the day, more in my backpack.
After shopping, we said goodbye to Haniff as he had to attend a dinner with his wife.
“Where to go next, Rayyan?” I asked Rayyan. “How about we take the tram and go to the Central side?” I agreed and off we went!
Rayyan and Sara happy to board the tram!
Yassin and me in the tram.
The tram system is one of the earliest forms of public transport in Hong Kong dated back in 1904. Since then, trams have been running from East to West of Hong Kong Island. Over the last century, Hong Kong Tramways witnessed the development of Hong Kong, and the tram remains an efficient and the most economical mode of public transport in Hong Kong. Today, Hong Kong Tramways carries a daily average of 230,000 passengers. It is the world’s largest fleet of double-deck tramcars still in service.
So, we reached Central and saw these!
And more skycrapers!
And more photos!
Central is a big area with lot of shopping malls around. Most of the items are too expensive. There are so many shops; from brand names to no name brands. We did not buy anything here except for fish burger and Coca-cola because we were famished. We actually went to Central simply to set foot there and tell people, “Hey, we’ve been there.”
While walking to find the MTR station to go back to Lantau Island, Rayyan said, “Kak Em, did you noticed how friendly the people in this area? Take example the man who asked us just know where we we from..” “Ha-a…yup”, I said. We both went into silence and I believe we have the same thought that financially secured people living in the big central business district tend to be happier, not angry. Hence politer.
If you like to have a copy delivered to your home (standard mail), complete this slogan:
“I like to own a copy of Gaya Travel 8.2 because…”
7 participants with the most interesting and creative slogans, will get the magazines. You have until 30th May to submit your slogan in my comment box . Good luck!
And thank you to Gaya Travel for the free copies!
Gaya Travel magazine cover; Lombok Traveller – Pen and watercolor.
It was great visiting Hong Kong Disneyland but I felt that it was not complete if I did not visit the city. So, as planned prior to leaving, I made appointment with a Malaysian friend, Haniff, to take us (me, my son Yassin, Rayyan and his sister Sara) around the city. Although it was short, we enjoyed it.
We met my friend, Haniff at Tsim Sha Tsui Jetty on our 2nd last day in Hong Kong. It was all confusing and we boarded off the MTR at East Tsim Sha Tsui. According to the MTR map, Tsim Sha Tsui is quite near but somehow we got lost and found ourselves wandering the street. Haha… I am really not good in direction. Lost and me are so synonymous.
We walked around 45 minutes to reach the place. I think we took the long way there. Nonetheless, we had fun taking pictures during our walk.
A street we were at after getting out of the east station.
Yassin with his Chinese hat posing in front of 1881 Heritage located at the square of Victorian-era Hong Kong, Canton Road, Tsim Sha Tsui, Kowloon.
Heritage Hotel, Tsim Sha Tsui, Kowloon.
From the 1880s to 1996, this was the headquarters of the Hong Kong Marine Police. Several buildings and artefacts of historical interest have been preserved and restored, and the site now features a shopping mall, a heritage hotel, and an exhibition hall.
Hong Kong is a Special Administrative Region of the People’s Republic of China. Following British rule from 1842 to 1997, China assumed sovereignty under the ‘one country, two systems’ principle. The Hong Kong Special Administrative Region’s constitutional document, the Basic Law, ensures that the current political situation will remain in effect for 50 years. The rights and freedoms of people in Hong Kong are based on the impartial rule of law and an independent judiciary.
Hong or He?ng góng in Cantonese, means fragrant harbour.
After walking and walking, we finally reached the jetty area. We were an hour late and Haniff was already there waiting for us. He told us a bit about Hong Kong and took us on a Star Ferry ride to Wan Chai, which is located at Hong Kong Island. We paid HKD2.50 each.
Two happy lads about to board on a ferry.
Yassin and Uncle Kanep ( he’s been calling Haniff that since he was little).
From the ferry, we got to see interesting buildings. Haniff did explained which building is what but I didn’t wrote them all down and forgot about it but I did pay attention about the HKCC building because of its interesting shape.
It was foggy at 4pm.
Hong Kong Island buildings seen from Kowloon.
The size of Hong Kong Island is only 80 Square Kilometers, but it is the heart of Hong Kong. Although it is small, it is the place that many tourists regard as the main focus. The parade of buildings that make the Hong Kong skyline has been likened to a glittering bar chart that is made apparent by the presence of the waters of Victoria Harbour.
The Central area on the island is the historical, political and economic centre of Hong Kong. The northern coast of the island forms the southern shore of the Victoria Harbour, which is largely responsible for the development of Hong Kong due to its deep waters favoured by large trade ships.
The island is often referred to locally as “Hong Kong side” or “Island side”. This style was formerly applied to many locations (e.g. ‘China-side’ or even ‘Kowloon Walled City-side’) but is now only heard in this form and ‘Kowloon side’, suggesting the two sides of the harbour.
Hong Kong Convention Center situated at Victoria Harbour.
The Hong Kong Convention Center above was designed by architect Marshall Strabala, based on the idea of a seabird with its wings as the cantilevering roof this building juts out into Hong Kong harbour. It was extended in 1997 and hosts international conferences and conventions, film shows, concerts, banquets, corporate events, press conferences and seminars.
View of Kowloon seen from Hong Kong Island.
Wan Chai Jetty. That was the ferry we boarded.
So that was our fun ride from Kowloon to Hong Kong Island.
So where did Haniff took us after this? Stay tune for the 2nd part!
I have been asked by few friends to share tips on how to plan the first trip to Hong Kong Disneyland. Here are my Top 8 tips I crafted from my experience for planning a Disneyland vacation, and related link to assist you:
Hong Kong Disneyland.
1. Read information about the resort – Hong Kong Disneyland is located on reclaimed land in Penny’s Bay, Lantau Island. The park consists of six themed areas: Main Street, U.S.A., Fantasyland, Adventureland, Tomorrowland, Grizzly Gulch and Toy Story Land. There are two themed hotels in the area: Disneyland Hotel and Disney’s Hollywood Hotel.
2. Where to stay – It is advisable that you stay at either Disneyland Hotel or Disney’s Hollywood Hotel for easy access to the parks. Shuttle bus is provided free to the parks. Click on hotel link to find out more about the room rates.
4. Disneyland Transportation – Hong Kong Disneyland is located on Lantau Island, and is accessible via an array of convenient transportation options. From the airport you can take taxi for HKD100 (four passengers). If you want to experience the MTR, take the Airport Express. Buy tickets for four at a discounted rate of HKD150. Get down at Tsing Yi and take the orange line to Sunny Bay. From SunnyBay, take the pink line to Disneyland. Alternatively you can take a bus from the airport to Tung Chung for HKD3.80 for adult and HKD1.50 for a child (concessionary). Buy tickets to Disneyland at Tung Chung station at HKD13.50 for adult and HKD6.00 for a child (concessionary). From Tung Chung you have to get down at Sunny Bay and take the train to Disneyland.
You do the math and see which is cheaper.
5. Disneyland Dining Plan – For Muslim, Halal food is available at both hotels upon request and if you are not around the hotel, look for Tahitian Terrace located at Adventureland. Tahitian Terrace serves Singaporean Laksa Rice Noodle Soup, Black Lentil Set, Roasted Lemongrass Chicken Steak with Rice, Penang Fish Curry with Rice and Penang Fish Curry with Rice. All food served here are certified by The Incorporated Trustees of The Islamic Community Fund of Hong Kong.
Alternatively, you can also opt for fish, fries, tofu or vegetables at some of the restaurants available in the park. For buffet breakfast, the hotels normally have international meals like baked bean, bread, rice porridge, scramble egg, pancakes, waffles, etc for you to choose from.
6. Best Disneyland Attractions – Disneyland has a ton of attractions, and it is advisable that you take 2 days to explore all the theme parks. But if you have a 1-Day pass, here are some suggestions of what not to miss:
a) Flights of Fantasy Parade: Begins in Fantasyland, near the entrance of Storybook Theatre 3:30PM
b) “Disney in the Stars” Fireworks, Sleeping Beauty Castle, Main Street, U.S.A. 8:00PM
c) “The Golden Mickeys”, Fantasyland 12:30PM 1:45PM 4:00PM 5:00PM 6:15PM
d) Character greeting and photo opportunity: Main Street, U.S.A Town Square 10:00AM – 5:30PM, Fantasyland Fantasy Gardens 12:00PM – 6:30PM, Sleeping Beauty Castle 10:00AM – 5:30PM, Tomorrowland 10:30AM – 5:30PM, Toy Story Land 10:30AM – 6:00PM, Grizzly Gulch 10:30AM – 5:30PM.
e) Disney’s FASTPASS attractions: Buzz Lightyear Astro Blasters, Space Mountain, The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh. Use your ticket to get a FASTPASS ticket located outside the attractions.
Please check the Daily Calendar to see if the timings are the same.
Please check the park map and print it out for your guide beforehand. Alternatively, you can get the park map from hotels or from the City Hall situated at Main Street USA.
7. How much to bring for shopping – I spent about HKD1011 (Approximately RM405) to buy merchandise as below and hope this can be your guide of how much to bring for shopping:
a) Buzz Lightyear Sword – HKD125
b) Mickey Original T-shirt for adult – HKD205
c) Mickey T-shirt for kid – HKD195
d) Mickey T-shirt for baby – HKD168
e) Mickey 3D Pen – HKD38
f) Disneyland iPhone 4s casing – HKD150
g) Minnie Mouse Hair Clips – HKD50
h) Mickey Acrylic Keychains 4pcs – HKD80
8. What’s the weather like – It is important that you know the weather before packing for this trip. Here are list of seasons and the average temperature:
a) Spring (March to May) – Temperature and humidity are rising. Evenings can be cool. Average Temperature: 17oC – 26oC
b) Summer (June to August) – Hot, humid and sunny, with occasional showers and thunderstorms. The temperature can exceed 31°C but high humidity levels can make it feel even hotter. Average Temperature: 26oC – 31oC
c) Autumn (September to November) – There are pleasant breezes, plenty of sunshine and comfortable temperatures. Many people regard these as the best months of the year to visit Hong Kong. Average Temperature: 19oC – 28oC
d) Winter (December to February) – Cool, dry and cloudy, with occasional cold fronts. The temperature can drop below 10°C in urban areas. Average Temperature: 12oC – 20oC.
So there you go. Happy planning your visit to Hong Kong Disneyland!
I love windows and I have huge collection of windows from my travel. A friend told me that I should come up with an illustrated book out of my windows collection. I think that is one great idea and started to sketch out the style that I think is suitable. I am interested in illustrating in cartoon style; not too serious.
So,I am practising to get it right. These drawings below are not cartoon enough. More practise.
keep looking »