My daughters and I have been planning an overseas holiday for about a year. Originally we were going to Florida in the middle of December as part of a gymnastics event. Unfortunately that fell through. As an alternative we agreed on Hong Kong. There are a lot of good reasons for Hong Kong. Food. Hong Kong Disney. Food. Ocean Park. Food. No jet lag because it’s in AWST. Food. It’s only an eight hour flight from Brisbane as opposed to more than double that to Florida. Food. Shopping at markets. Food. Photography. Food. Mostly importantly, I’d have much more time with my daughters than if we all went as part of a large gymnastic team event. Did I mention food?
So my part of this adventure started when I flew to Brisbane (BNE) from Canberra (CBR) on Christmas day to enjoy a day with my parents and brothers. I didn’t eat dinner! When I woke up on Boxing day (Saturday 26 December) I still felt full.
I greeted my daughters at my parents’ place early in the morning and we all hugged in a huge amount of excitement. I may have squealed.
The flight from Brisbane (BNE) to Hong Kong (HKG) was pretty uneventful. We flew Qantas (QF97). We managed to get the A and B seats in rows 23 and 24. Sweet! Unfortunately my entertainment console didn’t work but I wasn’t upset. I had lots of books and podcasts on my iPad to keep me going as well as yam biscuits and Mum’s almond shortbread biscuits.
On arriving our passage through the border agencies was trouble-free. The only hitch was the ground transport to the Cosmopolitan Hotel. We had booked a shuttle bus with Buffalo Tours and our arrival gate wasn’t where the tour operator was. There was a moment of “what do we do?” but then I just called the operator and sorted it out. I’m grateful for my Vodafone international roaming feature. An extra $5 a day and I keep all the features I use back home.
We got to our hotel feeling quite tired. Miss14, Ms18 and Ms20 all collapsed into bed after they showered and were down and out for the count.
As part of our accommodation package, we had breakfast included. The hotel dining room was utilitarian.
I went for deep fried potato (not quite a potato gem [tater tot] but it was deep fried so it was good anyway), scrambled eggs, a variety of dim sum, waffles and condensed milk. There was also plain congee, cereal, pastries and fruit.
After breakfast, we walked to Causeway Station and had a few goes at finding it. From there we caught the MTR (mass transit railway) to Central Station. We found the Hong Kong Station and caught the number 6 bus to Stanley Market. The double decker bus was fun. The twists and turns created a little nausea but it was pretty much a roller coaster ride. Watching how close we got to walls and other vehicles was hair raising.
Stanley Markets was fun. We bought little handbags. I bought a black one for a lens. Ms20 and Ms18 bought robes. Ms18 laughed at me but the little zip up bag at only AUD5 was perfect.
We went for a walk to Blake Pier and shot some photographs.
We had lunch at Toby Inn. It was a local cheap and cheerful Chinese restaurant. Everything was sticky and nothing looked clean. One of the staff tossed crockery onto the table with a deft hand. All the plates and bowls seemed to magically find its spot without anything breaking.
Miss14 chose deep fried crispy skin chicken, Ms18 chose salty chilli squid, Ms20 chose beef with rice noodles and I chose deep fried pork with sweet and sour sauce. It was a pretty good meal with generous serving sizes. We shared everything and enjoyed the meal.
After lunch we caught the number 6 bus back to Central Station and caught a train to Mong Kok station and walked to Ladies Market. These markets were really busy. We bought T-shirts, USB sticks and earphones plus a tooth brush cap.
We made our way to Langham Place to rest our feet after about three rounds of the Ladies Market. We then had an early dinner at The Dining Room. I think it’s a chain. Miss14, Ms18 and Ms20 all had the noodles with prawn and pork wonton soup. I had the chilli noodles with chicken fillet. We were all pretty satisfied with our dinner, especially after we received spoons to load up with our chopsticks. After dinner we had ice cream for dessert. We walked to Mong Kok station and when to Admiralty Station to catch another train to Causeway Bay station. From there we walked back to the hotel.