A couple of weeks ago, some of my most favorite people came to visit me in Hong Kong. My best friend from work (Wait, I don't work there anymore, huh? Must get used to that.), Jaimi, and her husband, Ryan, made a pit stop in Hong Kong on their way to Thailand. I was thrilled, to say the least, to share this city with them.
We basically had a perfect day exploring Hong Kong. If you had one day here, this is what I would recommend...
Shopping in Central. The Central District has lots of choices for the avid shopper, from little alley stalls where you can find $10 pashminas to stores that host clothes made by the most famous (and expensive) designers in the world. Ryan was very patient with Jaimi and me as we participated in one of our most favorite past times, shoe shopping.
Riding the Mid-level Escalators--the longest, outdoor, covered escalator system in the world. They take you to the heart of the Soho District where there are a lot of fun restaurants and antique stores.
Taking the Star Ferry. Time to go to Kowloon side of Victoria harbour. I think the Star Ferry is one of my most favorite things about Hong Kong. For less than a US dollar, you get a 7 minute ride on a historic ferry and see some of the most amazing views of Hong Kong from the water.
Having afternoon tea at the Peninsula. It's in a 1,000 Places to See Before You Die for a reason. Indulging in afternoon tea at this fabulously historic hotel, is a perfect nod to the deeply entrenched British influence in Hong Kong. Plus, finger sandwiches are so darn cute! How could you resist?
Bargaining at the Jade Market. While on Kowloon side, you HAVE to visit the Jade Market. It is stall after stall of goodies and treasures. This is the place where you really get to show off your bargaining skills. And yes, I totally bought that necklace I am trying on. Jaimi is such an enabler.
Watching the Symphony of Lights. Before going back to the Hong Kong side of the harbour, you should watch the laser light show from the Kowloon shore. They do this show every night at 8 pm, rain or shine, smog or no smog. It is kinda fun to see the entire Hong Kong skyline dance.
Finding nightlife in Soho. We were tired, suffering from jetlag, but Jaimi was determined to go out. So we headed to Soho and found the Feather Boa. It's so cool it has a secret location--there are no signs outside, just two ominous wooden doors. Once you step through, you are transported to a romantic French salon in the early 1900s, who knew this wormhole existed in the middle of Hong Kong? It is definitely the place to go for chic atmosphere, cool people to meet, and apparently killer strawberry daiquiris (As a non-drinker, I wouldn't know, but the bottled water was to die for!).
There you have it, a perfect day in Hong Kong. But what makes it truly perfect is sharing it with close friends. [Cue Dionne Warwick's "That's what friends are for."]
If you have a second day to spend in Hong Kong, I do have a few more suggestions, so stay tuned.