Our Hong Kong Highlights are not a tourist list of things to see rather what we discovered, walking the streets, during our brief visit to Hong Kong in October, that stuck in our hearts and minds.
Armed with a map, we picked up at the train station, we set out each day with the plan only to discover a new area of the city of Hong Kong. Each day as we hoped, we were amazed at the colours, culture and fantastic food we discovered.
Here are our Hong Kong highlights which were overlaid, everyday and everywhere by two things; the vibrant colours and juxtaposition of eastern and western cultures.
CITY OF LIGHTS & COLOUR
An obvious highlight; the Hong Kong skyline, famed for its brightly lit skyscrapers. The nightly ‘light show’ spectacular from either side of the harbour and quite stunning from the Star Ferry.
We were more amazed also by the colours and lights in every street…
There must be almost as many neon lights as people in Hong Kong!
EAST MEETS WEST
The juxtaposition of eastern and western cultures is constantly highlighted, and for us sometimes uncomfortable, in Hong Kong; smart-dressed city types relax in the many western style bars, seemingly oblivious to the (more often than not) Chinese making everything work in the background.
Contemporary stores selling fine goods sit along side traditional Chinese stores and workshops.
High above the bustling streets, hidden away roof top bars offer breath-taking prices to match their views
whilst below in the narrow streets and alleys make-shift street cafes serve fantastic, simple local food to eastern and western people alike.
An amazing array of ingredient in even the simplest dishes…
Though the peace and tranquility is spoilt in some by camera clicking, indiscreet tourists others remain serene and sacred places the Taoist and Buddhist temples remain one of our Hong Kong highlights.
In most temples we came across I only stood close to the entrance and watched the people perform their ceremonies for a few minutes. If the temples were empty, and it felt appropriate, I took pictures.
In the smaller, less tourist visited temples the deep red of the messages to the gods, the aroma of the constantly burning incense coils particularly highlight the contrast of east and west in Hong Kong.
Even surrounded by ancient eastern culture and religion the modern, western influenced city and its skyscrapers were never far away.
APPRECIATION OF STYLE & NATURE
The of our most surprising Hong Kong highlights for us was the evident appreciation and application of style.
These two perfectly, almost eerily, coordinated girls caught my eye on Hong Kong harbour. Their use of colour perhaps not as vibrant as others but such simple, understated and elegant style made a real impression.
Even the modern shopping malls revealed an appreciation of style. These ‘retail temples’ were worth visiting to see the emphasis given to style and use of natural materials. Even the ladies rooms were spectacular!
Thankfully nature still rules in many places throughout Hong Kong and is appreciated sometimes simply for the shade it provides
and, in such a fast developing and fast moving city like Hong Kong, it’s fascinating to see nature appreciated and interwoven with a special attention to detail and effortless style.
Not for the experience of the Peak Tram which, though a wonderful site making its way slowly up the hill, we avoided and walked up to the Peak from the city instead.
Rather again for nature and the dominance of it so close to the city. On the path up to and around the peak it was wonderful and unsettling at the same time to see how quickly nature takes back over after people have cut their path and laid their mark.