From Seoul we flew to Hong Kong to get our first dabble into Chinese culture. While Hong Kong is officially part of China, you can tell it still straddles the knife edge between Western Culture and a Chinese one. The city itself is extremely modern and caters well to foreign travels which isn’t surprising as it was under British rule until 1997. It’s such a unique place and we haven’t been to another place where we felt it was having the identity struggle that Hong Kong is. During our stay, a new president was elected and many people were devastated as he is clearly a puppet for the Chinese government and not who the people really wanted. Hence the struggle between communism and democracy on a day to day basis in the country.
We stayed on the Kowloon side of the city which is a great option for slightly cheaper lodging but you’re still close to everything. The city skyline across the water to the Hong Kong side is the best we have seen in all our travels. If it wasn’t for the smog, it would be one of the most beautiful cities due to the striking contrast of skyline, mountains and water.
Our time there was spent as usual exploring via walking tours, food tours and by metro. We covered a lot of ground and still could have had weeks more in order to see it all. The only hard part is the city is expensive and being on a budget limited our to-do list much more than regular travelers. For example, our budget hotel room was only as wide as my wingspan. I could touch both walls with my fingertips. The bed was just long enough to where I could lay down straight, but my toes and top of my head would touch the top and bottom. These are the sacrifices we make to stay for $50 US/night in a big city like HK.
While there we had the chance to eat at a few well-rated restaurants and crush some seriously good Dim Sum. For those not familiar, it is a style of food made popular in China which is kind of a tapas-style of ordering. You get numerous dishes instead of just one main one which are typically steam cooked, fried or baked.
Katie decided to take a night off so I tackled the local food tour on my own. Little did she know but she dodged a major eating bullet as the food tour was all about the strange, crazy and weird cuisine of HK. Which is totally my jam. Here is just a smattering of the things I put down that night: bird saliva Jello, 3-year-old soup, rotten tofu soup, liver, intestine, skin, heart, claw, snake soup, two-month old egg, snake penis wine and even a frog vagina (not joking). Let’s just say I expanded my culinary borders pretty drastically that night.
Finally, we found time to hike up Lion’s Rock which gave us some exercise plus killer views of the city from above. I highly recommend it to anyone going there as the hike itself only takes about an hour and a half. Accept that there will likely be smog, but the views are still worth it.