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This is a collection of my blog entries related to short or long trips I, or Jennifer and I went on.
I have some master pages for some specific locations/trips:

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2017/11/05 4 Days in Hong Kong
π 2017-11-05 01:01 in Trips
I'm not keen on going to China for a variety of reasons, and Hong Kong was still different enough from China, that I was willing to go (by the way, it's only one country, 2 systems for 50 years, after that Hong Kong will alledgely be China 100%).

Because our flight to Brisbane went back through Hong Kong, I figured it would be a good idea to stop for a few days. We first went 2 days to Macau old town and New Town/Casinos, and then we spent 3.5 days in Hong Kong before going home.

Qantas has stupid carry on policies, but nice seats in business
Qantas has stupid carry on policies, but nice seats in business

the plane wasn't exactly full
the plane wasn't exactly full

looked smoggy as soon as we arrived
looked smoggy as soon as we arrived

the new airport area is still being built/developed
the new airport area is still being built/developed

Day 1

After arriving at night from Macau, the next morning we started next to our hotel in Koolong:


we checked out the nearby bird park
we checked out the nearby bird park






We then took a cab to Yuen Po Street, Bird Garden:



mostly men, bring their birds to 'socialize'
mostly men, bring their birds to 'socialize'

bird food
bird food

more bird food
more bird food


and yet more bird food
and yet more bird food

I found one that escaped, it became my friend for a while :)
I found one that escaped, it became my friend for a while :)



Nearby was the flower market:



We then walked around a bit:

many families seem to use low paid indonesian girls who get the day off on sundays, so they just hang around in groups to socialize
many families seem to use low paid indonesian girls who get the day off on sundays, so they just hang around in groups to socialize

Next (not on my tour, but I noticed a sign for it), was weird fish street, and weird fish indeed:









We celebrated by going to a well known michelin rated dim sum restaurant (Tim Ho Wan)


and went back on our route to check out some street markets:




We then went to Sham Shui Po market in Koolong, which had an interesting collection of street markets and computer/electronic gear:








get your cell phone fixed, in 15mn stat
get your cell phone fixed, in 15mn stat


After the Science and History Museums, we walked towards the pier for some views:



The avenue of the stars is currently closed for renovation, so all the stars were moved in a park:





After sunset, we great views from the pier, and it ends with a light show at 20:00:










It was then time to head back. Jennifer went back to the room to rest, and I checked out the nearby night market:

wired taxi driver
wired taxi driver




Day 2

For the 2nd day, we headed towards the peak tram before the crowds got there:




the tram takes a very steep route up
the tram takes a very steep route up

we then took a cab to the very top, which has a nice garden, but otherwise isn't worth the extra hike
we then took a cab to the very top, which has a nice garden, but otherwise isn't worth the extra hike


a bit smoggy
a bit smoggy





The peak tram station had some tourist attractions, including a place to take pictures:




After getting back down, we went to the Hong Kong Park and Conservatory which had a very nice walk through aviary:




two big pigeons getting very friendly :)
two big pigeons getting very friendly :)




The rest of the park was worth a quick walk. We then went to the Hong Kong Zoological and Botanical Gardens next door:






It was then time for a quick pit stop, we had french crepes and walked towards the Central-Mid-Levels Escalators that take you up quite a bit:





we eventually ended up at the Man Mo temple:
we eventually ended up at the Man Mo temple:





We then had a bit of time left over, so we went to Ocean Park, which we was supposed to close at 19:00, but sadly closed at 18:00 instead, making our visit a bit rushed (barely over 2H). Sadly, there were also way too many people despite it being a monday afternoon;














the cable car to the top had way too much of a line, so we took the tunnel train
the cable car to the top had way too much of a line, so we took the tunnel train








while we didn't have much time, Jennifer wanted to do one ride, so we did
while we didn't have much time, Jennifer wanted to do one ride, so we did

and it was then time to go back down
and it was then time to go back down



Then, after an interesting dinner at Michelin rated Ming cout (see pictures) there was a bit of time for another night market:




Day 3

For our 3rd day, we headed towards Nan Lian Garden, a very pretty garden (although in hindsight, we should have done Che Kung Temple first to avoid the crowds). The garden was quite beautiful, and attached to a temple which was also worth seeing:












Next, we went to Che Kung Temple next door, which was already packed with people by then:














From there, we took a cab towards Sha Tin Park, to rent bikes and do a waterfront ride that was recommended to me. But first, we were sadly told that it was better to not take the bike to the nearby temples, since some unscrupulous locals could try to steal them, or parts of them:









the 10,000 Buddha temple was impressive
the 10,000 Buddha temple was impressive

long way up
long way up




every little statue inside adds up to 10,000 statues
every little statue inside adds up to 10,000 statues











We then went to et our rental bikes, and ride up the river. Views weren't bad, but air was pretty bad to breathe. By the end of the ride, my throat was hurting. Jennifer also thought the whole ride was not the best use of time, and I think she's mostly right:


good luck indeed :)
good luck indeed :)




The Hong Kong Science Park was probably the highlight stop of the ride
The Hong Kong Science Park was probably the highlight stop of the ride



they even had a supercharger for all the teslas I had been seeing
they even had a supercharger for all the teslas I had been seeing

Eventually we arrived to the end our our ride, Tai Po Waterfront Park (Tai Mei Tuk was even farther but didn't seem worth going to):

people were flying kites
people were flying kites




ok-ish view from the top
ok-ish view from the top


We then tried to get into Tsz Shan Monastery, but without an invite we were left at the door, unable to enter:


they had a family of kittens, there
they had a family of kittens, there

so we used a cab to drive to a few vantage points
so we used a cab to drive to a few vantage points

in the distance
in the distance


We then took our cab to get back to the main train station in Tai Wai train station, and train to downtown Hong Kong to go visit the Google office by time square and see Jennifer's friend, Margaret:







views from Google office
views from Google office


Pictures from Google Office here, and after that I went to visit two cat caf├ęs before heading back

Day 4

Our last day, we were supposed to go see the Tian Tan Buddha and Po Lin Monastery by the airport, but sadly the cable car closed for maintenance (which happens on semi-irregular intervals it seems). As a result, the only way up was via a long bus or taxi route around. In the end, Jennifer was having enough a good time in the History Museums, that we just spent most of our time there instead.
Since the train to the airport was in the same building than their observation tower we were not able to see the first day, we stopped there on the way out:








this is where we should have gone, but didn't
this is where we should have gone, but didn't

Flying from Hong Kong back to the US has become a joke. You used to be able to check in your luggage at the Kowloon train station and then just take the train to the gate. What a novel idea. But the US prevented that a while ago. Instead, you now get this:

  • someone physically stops you from actually reaching the check in counter by asking you for your itinerary. I'm like "err, I don't carry one, I'm going to get my boarding pass" at the counter behind you, and the answer is "you cannot get to this counter and get your boarding pass before going through me"
  • "has anyone at all been in contact with your luggage since you packed it" this means better not mention if you used a courrier service to get your luggage from the hotel to the airport, because you know, they are preventing the airline from getting your luggage from town to the plane
  • then you get your boarding pass, go through immigration, then security which takes all your liquids
  • it took almost 1H between the time we entered the airport to when we were in the lounge (which was not very close either)
  • and then, before you board the plane, another level of security where they open your carry ons again and steal all your liquids, the ones you got from the secure zone.
  • In downtown Koolong, before getting on the train
    In downtown Koolong, before getting on the train


    the new train that takes you to the new Hong Kong airport
    the new train that takes you to the new Hong Kong airport


    Jennifer was very keen on checking out the centurion lounge in Hong Kong
    Jennifer was very keen on checking out the centurion lounge in Hong Kong




    I then went to check out the Cathay lounge, which wasn't bad either
    I then went to check out the Cathay lounge, which wasn't bad either

    the plane wasn't bad either
    the plane wasn't bad either




    landing in SFO
    landing in SFO

    See more images for 4 Days in Hong Kong

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