So I finally made it to Hong Kong after all these years, however it was just for a short weekend trip. I do believe that’s the right amount of time for Hong Kong after having seen it. There were a few things I noticed, that made me wish I came more prepared though so I’m going to try and do my best to pass that along!
If You Can’t Beat Them, Join Them!
If you catch yourself travelling during rush hour, it will get really frustrating, especially at the subway stations. There tends to be huge rush and crowd, and a decent amount of pushing and shoving. If you don’t join them, you’re probably going to be pushed aside and having to wait for a couple of trains. As soon as the trains arrive, its customary to barge right in before letting the passengers exit the train. Don’t be shocked by it or question it, just go with it! (because that’s just how it is here). The other solution would be to avoid commuting anywhere during rush hour! It’s at experience for sure, but not one I’d want to experience more than once! Haha.
Getting to the Other Side
When crossing the roads, its really car vs. humans. You kind of have to be a bit dare devilish about it. Yes, they do have marked pedestrian crossing zones, but those only work if its regulated by the red light system. In other instances, you kind of just have to make a run for it and hope to get to the other side. In Thailand, I have mastered the art of raising my hand up to stop the car, but this does not work in Hong Kong. Also, the cars stop so close to each other, that there is barely any gap for you to even walk through (of course, this is when you’re trying to jay-walk, which seems perfectly acceptable in the smaller streets)!
So, its a hot country and a lot of us are used to navigating these countries in flip flops, sandals, etc. Surprisingly, Hong Kong is not very flip flop friendly. I didn’t notice any of the locals wearing flip flops or sandals to be honest, and I quickly learnt why. There are random pools of water along the streets and side walks (aka puddles), and it rains a lot in HK (or at least the entire time I was there, so maybe it was just my bad luck!). So unless you love stepping in them and kicking water up behind you, it’s really advisable to wear loafers, flats, or some form of close-toed shoes, so make sure to pack them with you!
Bring a Fat Wallet
As I tend to travel on a budget, I really struggled with this one. I found it extremely difficult in Hong Kong to find any activities that were somewhat free, that would allow me to explore the country.Also, all the shopping that surrounds you at every corner can be really tempting. Everything, literally everything costs money in Hong Kong. So if you plan on visiting, be prepared to spend! In fact, I even found it to be much more expensive compared to Japan (especially in terms of dining), so that was quite shocking to me.
Heels and Hills
I do not like to wear heels, but when I do, they are extremely high. I’m obviously overachieving on the “all-in” or “all-out” mentality. Considering HK is built on hills, at least the downtown LKF part of it, that makes it even more daunting of a task for me to be in heels. So this is more of an advisory to the ladies out there, that if you do plan to go clubbing, wear your flats and go, and change to heels when you arrive to the location if you must. Some places, depending on where you go, might actually let you in with flats, and I would highly recommend this. Trust me, coming down steeeeeep slops in heels ain’t fun, especially when you feel like you’re about to face plant forward the entire time! haha… Clearly, I’m projecting a lot of what I experienced on here, but you get the point 😉
So that’s some advice from my end! If you have anything else to add as a reader of this, on what would be worth preparing for, please share your knowledge 🙂