Touching the sky in Hong Kong

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Certain cities, certain places in those cities and of course certain moments: I’ll remember them for a very long time.  One of these experiences was a visit to Victoria Peak in Hong Kong.  I thought I’d share my Hong Kong tips now as I bet some of you are thinking about where to fly off for the winter and Christmas holidays. With Hong Kong you won’t go wrong. We visited the city two years ago around Christmas time.  I’ve also been there as a child but no vivid recollections from that trip, was so young at the time.

So, Victoria Peak. It’s a mountain in the western half of Hong Kong with an altitude of 552 meters. The  trip to the top was quite memorable. We had planned to take the Peak Tram to the top but the length of the queue made us result in plan B: hiking.  Which reminds me, I really value those queue signs that indicate how much waiting time there is at a particular point. I didn’t see these posts by the Peak funicular entrance but would have wanted to.

The walk/hike was actually really nice and energizing. There is a supermarket along the way where we got some ingredients for a tasty snack and had a refreshing picnic in a park in the brisk afternoon air before continuing our way up.  The walk to the top with the pit stop for lunch took about an hour and twenty minutes. The rise is rather steep, so it definitely counts as the day’s workout.

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What waited at the top was spectacular. The views are breathtaking. We were lucky to catch the moment when the afternoon turned into the evening and all the lights of the metropolis lit. The crisp air, the slightly hazy and darkening view, the lights of  the pulsating city and the multitude of skyscrapers reaching towards the sky: something I won’t forget. The experience was one answer to the question Why do I love to travel. The admission to the open-air viewing terrace of the anvil-shaped building is $30.

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Hong Kong fills all your senses. It’s a very multidimensional travel destination and I could recommend it unconditionally to many, be it luxury, thrilling nightlife, historical temples, first-class cuisine or some serious shopping that you are looking for. The public transport system works really well.

I’ll share a few of the most memorable things. The best value for money boat ride ever was the Star Ferry. The boat trip of around ten minutes, with views of the Victoria Harbor and the coast line with skyscrapers and mountains, cost $2 for adults. A must.

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The Taoist Man Mo Temple (124–126 Hollywood Road) is one of Hong Kong’s oldest temples. It is built to the gods of literature and war. Incense coils hang from the ceiling and the air is smoky and infused.

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And some dining. One place that deserves a mentioning is Tim’s Kitchen.  They serve high-class Cantonese fare. Especially rich in flavor was the chilled marinated goose roll. It’s good to reserve a table in advance.  And the tip for the night-time cocktail with an awesome balcony view to the harbor and the HSBC building: Sevva (Prince’s Building, 10 Chater Road, Central). A stylish place with warm and very competent service.

Hong Kong fulfilled all of my expectations. Would go and want to go again. Soon.

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IMG_3426The obligatory roof-top terrace picture.

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