9 Days in Hong Kong

7:53 PM

This past May, I spent nine days in Hong Kong and it was hands down one of my favorite trips I have taken so far. My mom is originally from Hong Kong and half my relatives are still residing there, including my grandma so Hong Kong just naturally felt like a second home to me. With that being said, this trip was special to me because it was my very first time meeting my relatives and my 94 year old (!!) grandma. I've always seen pictures of my mom's family growing up and have had a few conversations through the phone here and there but this trip gave me the chance to finally meet them in person.

We stayed at Cordis Hotel in the heart of Mong Kok making our commutes short and easy. Located right above Langham Place (a shopping center), which is also above the MTR, gave us access to literally ANYWHERE without stepping foot outside. Looping through the MTR came in handy especially on rainy days. Being in Mong Kok also put us at the center of all the night markets. What's crazy is that every time we would return to our hotel around 11pm or so, the streets were busier than ever!
The best part about staying in Mong Kok is that there are restaurants everywhere and most of the surrounding ones were casual dining and inexpensive. We came across Hokkaido Katsu Sushi one night when I was craving sushi and the restaurant was right across from our hotel! It was probably the best conveyor belt sushi I've ever had.
Causeway Bay was by far my favorite neighborhood we explored. Here is where you will find the Hong Kong "Times Square". Causeway Bay had all the cool spots and lots of hidden shops. This is where I did most of my shopping too. You'll find high end shops like Off-White, Isabel Marant, and IRO to hip shops like Undefeated and Nike Lab. Also, if you're looking for cool sneakers, Causeway Bay is the spot! Although there were tons of Adidas stores across Hong Kong, Causeway Bay locations had the cooler color ways. I was able to pick up a few pairs that I've never seen in the States.
Perks of having relatives in Hong Kong was getting to eat like a local. I've always wanted to eat at a Dai Pai Dong thanks to the many TVB shows I've watched as a kid. Dai Pai Dong is an open-air food stall; it's very inexpensive and casual (and by casual I mean you're eating on folding tables on the sidewalks). If they existed in the States, I'd say they probably won't pass health inspections but it's a must-have experience! There were also a lot of street food especially by nighttime at the night markets. The street food does not compare to anything I've had in the States. Bubble waffles and curry fishballs were by far my favorite and can be found on almost every corner! I tried to have it every time I pass by one of those food carts/stalls.
We also visited Macau for a day, which is known as the "Las Vegas of Asia". With just an hour ferry ride, we were on a complete different territory. Luckily, I was able to communicate with the drivers that were parked outside the ferry terminal and got us a personal tour guide for six hours. He took us all over Macau, showing us various landmarks such as the Macau Tower, Senado Square, and the Ruins of St. Paul. We casino-hopped just like on the Strip in Vegas, visiting MGM, the Wynn, and the Venetian.
Another highlight of our trip was taking the Ngong Ping 360 cable car to Big Buddha! The ride took at least 20 minutes so if you're afraid of heights then I wouldn't recommend it. The views were breathtaking even though we went on an overcast day. We also spotted the undersea tunnel that led to Macau while we were on our ride.
On our last night, we went to Wooloomooloo Steakhouse in Wan Chai. I've made it a habit to go to at least one rooftop restaurant on every overseas trip I take just so I can appreciate the city in the evening. Luckily, the weather was perfect and we were able to watch the sunset over dinner.

What people don't know is that Hong Kong is pretty small and with just nine days, I feel pretty good with how we spent our time. I felt like we hit every tourist spot possible. If I were to stay longer, all I would've done is try new restaurants and explore some of the smaller neighborhoods.

  • Victoria Peak

  • Ocean Park

  • Choi Hung (Rainbow) Estate

The bustling streets, neon signs, and small corner shops made me fall in love with the city. Best believe this will not be my last time in Hong Kong.

All photos were shot on my Olympus PEN E-PL7

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