Friday, May 17, 2013

Leaving Hong Kong

Hong Kong turned out to be a lovely spot in the trip, not just for an interesting city with lots to see and do (the hiking especially was magnificent!!), but it was a great time for family. Our daily itinerary varied only slightly on this theme:

9am: Wake up in our bunk beds and sleepily say good bye to Megan as she left for work (Christian usually had paddling early in the morning or an early meeting).
10am: Breakfast and coffee, and computering in bed about what's going on in the world
11am: Get ready and head out for a dim sum lunch adventure
2pm: Explore a new neighborhood or go for a long hike on top of the mountain
5pm: Head home for snuggling and afternoon drinks
8pm: Christian and Megan return home for dinner and family time, and always a cut-throat round of dominoes at the dining table
11pm: Head to bed to adventure again the next day!

Sandwich those weekdays with family hikes, brunches, and exploring on the weekends and you have yourself a happy paradise!
Sharing a fresh coconut (yum!); goofing around at Chi Lin Nunnery; goofing around in Central District; goofing around at the Maritime Museum (which is kind of a lame museum, BTW); not goofing around on a family hike

We quickly learned about the different transit methods that would get us around the city, and boy are there a lot of options! Taxis are everywhere, and though they're a lot cheaper than other western cities, it's easy to rack up the bill on $10 taxi rides. So we generally elected for the MTR (subway), buses (though without a map on the stop it was hard to figure these out without prior research), minibuses, and of course the tram (unofficially named "ding ding" or if you're me, the "clickity clack"). The tram was our favorite by far, with only one major line traveling east-west through most major areas of HK, and for a mere $.30 per ride. And with a refillable Octopus Card accepted on all forms of transit (and many stores), it's so easy to get around HK!

If you want to see what it's like to ride the tram, have no fear! Cory can show you:

Posing with the duck!

Add to our daily regular itinerary some extras: the giant yellow ducky that floated into the harbor on our last week, and practically all of China was there to see it, so on our last Sunday we elected not to elbow our way through the crowd to see a 6-story high duck. But the morning of our last day in HK, Molly really wanted to see it, so we joined the monday morning crowd and it was fabulous fun!

Nan Liang Garden
Also, our first weekend together, Christian and Megan took us to the Chi Lin Nunnery and Nan Liang Garden, a lovely (and free!) garden and temple on the Kowloon side of the harbor. It was serene and beautiful, and absolutely lovely way to find quiet respite in the middle of a busy city!

We had a lovely 2.5 weeks in Hong Kong and felt so blessed to get to spend so much time with Christian and Megan!

Total overall costs for Hong Kong: $94.65 US per day, for 17 days. The majority of this was transit and food, as we didn't have to pay for a hotel (thanks C and M!). We also did go to Ocean Park amusement park, which was $40 each (well worth it!).

Our beautiful family, sutffed after a lovely sunday brunch at Maxim's Palace

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