Sunday, January 9, 2011

Hong Kong Tourist Action - Day 1

So I spent the day playing tourist in Hong Kong.  The high level overview of the day was a trip to Victoria Peak.  The mode of transportation was the "tram" from the bottom to the top, and return after doing the expected touristy things at the top.

After the Peak, it was bus trip to the other side of the island to visit the Stanley Market.  The bus trip was almost as enjoyable as the market itself.

Now for some of the details...

The trip out to Victoria Peak was my first foray into the Hong Kong area in general.  Luckily, there's a pretty substantial train system that can get you to all of the major points of interest.  Having previously mastered the NY City Subway system, I found the "MTR" System to be pretty simple in comparison.  There's just enough signs in English to keep me from getting lost.

The trip had me navigate three separate train lines, and about a .5 mile walk to the Tram station.  The tram ride itself to the top was pretty breath taking.  It also is VERY steep ride up and back, and you feel pretty pushed into your seat during the trips.  You can't help but wonder what mayhem it would be if the Tram was to lose it's cable connection, and it was left to free fall down that hill.  Not a pretty picture indeed.

The Peak itself was a great outlook over much of Hong Kong.  Unfortunately, the smog was pretty heavy today, so the photos I shot are not as clear as I would have liked them.  But I think it gives you an idea of how breathtaking it could be if it were clear outside.

After the Peak, it was back down to the Central Station Area to catch a bus to the other side of the Island so I could walk through Stanley Market.  When you think about "stuff" from China, then Stanley Market is probably similar to what your thinking about.  Knick Knacks, trinkets, cheap goods, knock offs, etc. etc, etc...  But Stanley is actually right on a bay, and there's a pretty interesting walk the waterfront along with  people watching that can be done there.

There are some interesting things I noticed in Hong Kong that I can't exactly explain.  For one, I noticed that there are a LARGE population of women who congregate near the main HSBC Bank area, as well as near Central Station.  From the way they're gathered, you'd think that they might be homeless, but at the same time, I saw my fair share of cell phones, and what could be considered some really trendy clothing.  Yet they're sitting around on broken down cardboard boxes, or taped down throw blankets.  Generally they were mostly eating rice or noodles.  I'll be investigating this further, and if I find out the answer, I'll post in a future blog.

For today's photos, click HERE.  Stay tuned for more.

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