Our first full day in HK and we woke up with a general plan of exploring a few of the areas on the south side of the island. This soon escalated into so much more!
First on the list was the Golden Bauhinia Square and surrounding comic book statues. We arrived just before six or seven coachloads of tourists(!), so grabbed pictures in the scorching heat (27°C).
We then walked our way south and east towards the Causeway Bay neighbourhood and Hong Kong’s Times Square. Walking in this area of HK is fairly easy to coordinate as they have walkways above streetlevel and pretty clear signage. For comparison: imagine Toronto’s Path system on the outside of buildings about 20m above the roads.
We found our way into a giant mall and after much deliberation, and unable to find a Starbucks, settled for refreshment in a lychee lemonade tea (that was beyond super sweet).
In the afternoon we jumped on the Hong Kong MTR subway system, Octopus Card in hand, and navigated about 4 stops west to “Central”. You’re not allowed to eat or drink anything after tapping into the transit system, and it keeps it all very clean.
We met up with Jane’s parents (they somehow spotted me above the crowds of people on the concourse) and stopped for lunch at Tai Ping Koon Restaurant to sample some pigeon (yum!).
Following lunch, we ventured onto the Mid-Levels Escalator, the world’s longest escalator system at 800m in length (across 18 escalators) and 130m high. Up and up and up we went, into the depths of the southern hills.
The simple 20-minute escalator ride turned into quite an adventure, as we had to find our way back down through some winding streets. The whole thing takes you so much further and higher (altitude) than you’d expect!
Fun Fact: The escalators run north in the morning (until 10am) to aid commuters and then switches to south for the rest of the day.
At the very end of the system we found ourselves at what felt like the top of the city, yet still dwarfed by hundreds of giant apartment-blocks rising above the trees.
After a solid hour of walking back north towards Central we stopped for a drink and a traditional Hong Kong pineapple bun, which was delicious!
Fun Fact: There isn’t actually any pineapple in a Pineapple Bun. The name comes from the design on the top.
Next up was a walk to the IFC building rooftop gardens and some stunning views north across the harbour, just as the sun began to set.
At around 6:30pm we all hopped on the MTR again to go north for dinner with Jane’s family.
Jane is organising our current food pictures and will post a gallery very soon!
Fitbit says we did 16,000 steps today. My feet are certainly feeling it!
Tomorrow, we’re off to Macau for a few days, where the food and photos will continue in abundance.