Few big cities in Asia have made my heart flutter like Hong Kong. We couldn’t have visited at a better time, either. It was cool, crisp weather and Chinese New Year festivities were under way. (I was so excited to wear a jacket!) It felt like the day before Christmas with people rushing out to get the last of their gifts, bouquets of flowers and other goodies. Everything was buzzing with the excitement of preparations and the new start of a new year. I instantly loved the vibe of the city and fell in love with the fact that mountains, sea and city merge in the most perfect way possible.
There’s endless things to say about the world’s most visited city. What won me over is that HK is a city of both new and old, past and present; it really feels alive. All I could think was that Singapore felt soulless in comparison – too young and too perfect. But here, at every intersection and corner, retro and modern coexists perfectly; it’s a dynamic forward thinking, modern city that hasn’t forgotten it’s colonial past. HK is efficient and clean where it wants to be, and gritty and dirty like even the best cities are. It’s paradise for those who appreciate the luxuries in life because HK is full of oppulence, world-class dining and stunning sights. I’d always heard HK was a foodie’s heaven, so I made sure to plan a few delicious stops along the way. We spotted every type of cuisine imaginable on display in trendy restaurants peppered throughout each up and coming neighborhood. From Nepalese to Mexican, HK has it all.
As our taxi wove in and out of small streets and climbed steep inclines to our Airbnb in Soho, I couldn’t help but notice how limited space was. Everything in the city reflects the tremendous size constraints. Buildings reach up to the sky with their narrow frames as if to make room for the rest. Skyscrapers tiptoe to the waterfront’s edge and at night the dazzling lights bring on an entirely new dimension. That’s just from the ground. If you can get to any bird’s-eye view of HK (Ozone bar, Victoria Peak etc;) you’ll see how breathtaking the fusion of land, water and city really is.
The city’s transport is incredibly efficient and within 25 minutes you can either come or go from HK island. As it’s a tourist hotspot, it only makes sense that getting around is this effortless. Going for a quick weekend trip is as seamless as it gets. As we reached the airport, I felt a twinge of sadness come over me. This could very well be our last trip within Asia, and I kept wishing we had discovered it sooner.