Oversea, Travel

Hong Kong Day 1: Airport Express, Thematic Lantern Exhibition & Heritage 1881

Warning: Overloaded with pictures. πŸ™‚


I went to Hong Kong during the last few days of Chinese New Year this year. This was my 2nd visit to Hong Kong. What can I say? This place still rocks! Though I have to say there’s 1 big difference I experienced now from 3 years plus ago. Especially in Tsim Sha Tsui area, I was mistaken as a tourist from China because every time I want to order or pay my food/stuff, they would speak to me in Mandarin first. WTH??? Thank God every thing was good elsewhere. If not I would scream man! I no longer feel like I belong there (which I said I once was)

This 6 days 5 nights vacation is sort of a flashpacking trip in terms of accommodation and mode of transportation. Though it’s a 6 days 5 nights trip, we actually only have 4 full days. Our arrival was late evening while our departure from Hong Kong was early morning. Food wise I found some new and good ones and also got a little disappointed from the ones I re-visited. My main aim in Hong Kong this time is to visit one of my childhood dream place and sample more Hong Kong food! So come now, follow me on the joy ride. πŸ™‚

Our AirAsia flight to Hong Kong was 30 minutes late (biasa la ya). The flight duration from Malaysia to Hong Kong is 3 hours 50 minutes. I got my ticket for RM400 return/pax (inclusive of everything; flight, airport tax, 2 meals, pick a seat & the stupid convenience fee).

This was my first time stepping into Hong Kong International Airport. In my previous HK trip, I flew to Macau first and then later took a ferry to HK.

We took the Airport Express train which was comfortable, fast and cheap. Only 25 minutes from HKIA, Lantau Island to Kowloon Station. Train frequency is 12 minutes.

From Kowloon Station, we took the Airport Express Shuttle Bus to our lodging; a complimentary add-on service provided for Airport Express passengers. Melbourne’s Sky Bus has free transfer service too. Why can’t Malaysia do the same? This would be a great convenience to visitors.

Saw this beautiful wall painting of Hong Kong while onboard the bus. It’s somewhere near HK China Ferry Terminal.

By the time we reached YMCA of Hong Kong, our lodging it was nearing 8pm. Quickly we checked-in, left our stuff and head out for dinner. I’ll give you a sneak peak of our room in later post.

Our ‘hurried’ dinner is at McDonald’s in Peking Road, Tsim Sha Tsui. Been here twice in my previous HK trip. This place is always jam-packed. Love the hot chocolate! Price wise an ala carte McCrispy Chicken Burger cost HK$15.80 (RM6.30).

After dinner we walked to Hong Kong Cultural Centre which is just opposite our accommodation. Though it’s just opposite, there’s no way to cross the road. We need to take the underground route.

Esprit flagship store which is situated behind YMCA. Funny Esprit Outlet of Hankow Road is no where in sight. This was an outlet loved by bargain seekers like me!

Finally we arrived at Hong Kong Cultural Centre.

Some of the lanterns seen at Hong Kong Cultural Centre’s park.

Walking further we come to the viewing deck. I’ve been to Avenue of Stars but not this viewing deck which is located at the tip of Kowloon Peninsula. Guess what? Saw many locals ‘paktor’ (dating) here. Haha

Harbour view of Hong Kong. It was very foggy and cold. The night temperature was about 9oC. You can still see some Christmas lightings from the buildings at Hong Kong Island.

Clock Tower @ The Piazza, Hong Kong Cultural Centre, Kowloon.

Finally we reached our main destination… Lunar New Year Thematic Lantern Exhibition 2011 @ The Piazza, Hong Kong Cultural Centre, Tsim Sha Tsui, Kowloon. This exhibition is still on until 6th March 2011. So if you’re going to Hong Kong in these few days, you will still be able to catch it. Admission is free.

This is the scene viewed from viewing deck.

The main entrance… silhouette shot.

Basically this lantern exhibition includes participation from Asia countries like Singapore, Thailand, Cambodia, Vietnam, Japan, South Korea and Hong Kong. No Malaysia. Kekeke

This is Korea’s participation. 2 girls dressed in hanbok playing sea-saw.

From Japan.

From Cambodia if I’m not mistaken.

Lovely yeah?

Our next stop is to look-see-look-see at Heritage 1881.

What’s so special about Heritage 1881? It was the headquarters of the Hong Kong Marine Police from the 1880’s to 1996. Today it houses luxury shops, fine-dining restaurants and bars, a heritage hotel and an exhibition hall.

Luxury shops like Cartier, Tiffancy & Co, Rolex, Piaget, etc can be found here.

Two loves. Behind is a maze-like garden.

A horse-carriage on the right. Many tourist taking pictures here.

Heritage 1881 is so beautiful that we planned to visit again in day time. But it was not meant to be even though we stayed just beside this building. I did take some picture from my window though. Will show ’em next time.

After a short toilet break, we head out again to Aji Iciban and 7-11 to buy some snacks.

So that’s it for now.

Stay tuned for day 2. πŸ™‚

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  • Reply Kelly March 2, 2011 at 2:41 pm

    I hope I get to visit HK & Macau one day.

    • Reply Che-Cheh March 3, 2011 at 9:07 am

      Hi Kelly, I’m sure you will get to visit both places soon. AirAsia is having sales. Hehe

  • Reply foongpc March 2, 2011 at 3:41 pm

    Wow!! Your Hong Kong post just came in at the right time!! I’m going Hong Kong for the first time later this month!! Can’t wait to read the rest of your HK trip!!

  • Reply foongpc March 2, 2011 at 3:42 pm

    9 degrees? That’s very very cold!! Will be it less cold now?

    • Reply Che-Cheh March 3, 2011 at 9:10 am

      Yes I think so. The temperature is climbing. Averaging 15oC to 20oC.

      • Reply foongpc March 9, 2011 at 12:12 am

        Ooh! Still colder than Genting! I need my jacket then : )

  • Reply foongpc March 2, 2011 at 3:45 pm

    LOL @ the AirAsia’s stupid convenience fee! But now they provide options to pay via bank account right? No charges there!

    Love the lantern exhibition and the Heritage 1881! : )

    • Reply Che-Cheh March 3, 2011 at 9:20 am

      Oh I didn’t know now they provide that option. Good news then!

      I think HK will be my one and only vacation in 2011. Need to save lots of $$ for next year.

      • Reply foongpc March 9, 2011 at 12:11 am

        Wow! Where will you be going next year?

        Smart move!! I will also stop at Hong Kong for 2011. According to feng shui experts, 2011 is not a good year to travel. Too many risks associated with natural disasters and accidents.

        • Reply Che-Cheh March 9, 2011 at 6:03 pm

          Hopefully EU.

          Ohh not good to travel eh. Ic ic. πŸ™‚

  • Reply Freddie March 2, 2011 at 9:13 pm

    wow, u went during CNY? Were there many people on the street? Won’t it be a little cumbersome to travel during cold season?

    • Reply Che-Cheh March 3, 2011 at 9:21 am

      Hi Freddie! I went there during the end of CNY. So everything’s normal. As for people-traffic… Hong Kong is always full of that. πŸ™‚

      Cold season is okay. I like cold season coz this is the only time I can dress up in winter clothings. Hehe

      • Reply Freddie March 4, 2011 at 12:34 am

        I used to think of visiting certain countries during their cold season. But because I was backpacking alone, I chose to visit during summer instead as i didn’t really want to carry so much burden i.e. winter clothings.

        Well, T-shirt + jeans is the best dress-up to me!

        • Reply Che-Cheh March 4, 2011 at 9:13 am

          Ahh I see. I find I have no problem with that even though I carry a backpack. True we’ll be wearing few layers of clothes but thing is I can interchange them. Outer one wear inside and vice versa. A little problem if I’m going to sub zero places. Need thick sweater. πŸ˜›

  • Reply tekkaus March 2, 2011 at 9:23 pm

    OMG! Harbour view of Hong Kong looks brilliantly beautiful even though it was foggy. πŸ™‚

    • Reply Che-Cheh March 3, 2011 at 9:23 am

      Still pretty ya. Hong Kong is magical. πŸ™‚

  • Reply Dawn March 3, 2011 at 2:08 am

    Love the pics you took. Over here I, too, have the experience of the locals identifying me in a different nationality especially when I am in the Asian grocers. They will start jabber with me in their language. I hate it to the max!!

    • Reply Che-Cheh March 3, 2011 at 9:27 am

      Thanks! If they do it once in a while I’m okay with it. But I had to deal with it the whole day. Issshh If they mistaken me as Jap or Koreans… don’t think I would mind. Hahaha

  • Reply keeyit March 7, 2011 at 8:13 pm

    Seeing all those colorful lanterns, I thought is Jenjarom Fo Guang Shan le… Hehe…
    How come night shoots only got 1 picture? I am looking forward to see your night view pictures le…. up up up pls… hehe..

    • Reply Che-Cheh March 8, 2011 at 10:15 am

      All are night pictures. You mean you wanna see pictures of harbour at night?
      I didn’t take many. That one above is the only one I took without obstructive view. Others I took of the harbour is from my room but not very nice. Got buildings ka-ka-cau-cau. Haha

  • Reply keeyit March 7, 2011 at 8:14 pm

    Night view pictures >>> Night view with lasik lighting at Jim Sha Tsui habour or from the Peak….

    • Reply Che-Cheh March 8, 2011 at 10:17 am

      Ohh Symphony of Lights ya? I took photos of the laser show from my room. Wait wait ar. But they’re not really nice. My pictures come out blurry and noisy. πŸ™

  • Reply xin March 8, 2011 at 10:29 am

    would love to visit hk next year too! (hopefully) πŸ˜€

    • Reply Che-Cheh March 9, 2011 at 6:02 pm

      I’m sure you’re gonna love it! πŸ™‚

  • Reply Adino March 10, 2011 at 8:48 pm

    Wow Hong Kong has changed a lot since I visited 10 years ago

    • Reply Che-Cheh March 11, 2011 at 11:23 am

      In what terms? buildings?

  • Reply jam March 25, 2011 at 11:19 am

    You can actually save on convenience fee if you pay via maybank2u and other online banking.

    • Reply Che-Cheh March 26, 2011 at 7:51 pm

      Okay cool. During my time, it hasn’t started yet I think.

  • Reply Swee San @ TheSweetSpot February 14, 2012 at 1:26 pm

    wah… good.. just in time for me to plan my hk trip for july.. hehe .. 6 days too but we’re taking the early flight to and late flight back.. πŸ™‚ how’s the place in ymca ?

    • Reply Che-Cheh February 14, 2012 at 3:57 pm

      It was a 50-50 good/bad stay at YMCA. The place is pleasant but not the service plus it’s quite $$. Do read my review on this place in my Day 5 post. It was a nice experience staying close by the harbour and ferry terminal but once is enough. I prefer staying at Yau Ma Tei area (stayed there in my 1st visit to HK – posts are available too… check out 2007 in my travelougue) coz food is abundance. Yumeeh!

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