Our first week: Hong Kong / Macau

Our big journey began on 1st of December 2015 at 7:05pm in Zürich. We flew with Finnair and the plane departed on time and brought us safely to our first destination: Hong Kong. Mikael would like to note me that he never wants to fly long distances with Finnair again. This because there is not much space and the multimedia-infrastructure is from the last century :) We are used to more luxury so we have to scale down our expectations – we learn this every day over and over again. After our arrival at the airport in Hong Kong, Mikael had to throw away almost all of his cigarettes because the import limit is only 19 pieces. So the day Mikael will be smoke free is coming nearer :)

From the airport we caught the Airport-Express to Hong Kong Island where our Hotel was located. Luckily the Airport-Express provides free Shuttle-Bus-Services, which made it easy for us to find our hotel. To minimize the Jetlag, we stayed up till the evening even though we were really tired. On this first evening in Hong Kong we visited the roof of the ifc Mall where we had dinner and some drinks while enjoying the great view of the skyline.

After the first day we summarize this:

  • Hong Kong is HUGE. Definitely too big, also for us coming from the city
  • It’s quite cold here in Hong Kong and even though we have a lot of baggage we don’t have enough warm clothes with us.
  • Hong Kong is expensive. A lot of things are on Switzerland-Level and this even though the citizens from Hong Kong only earn around CHF 2000.- / month.

On the second day we went out for sightseeing. In Hong Kong there are many nice things and places to see so that we could easily extend our stay here. Anyway, when you are in Hong Kong you need to ride with a tram at least once – so we did. The tram’s in Hong Kong are two-leveled and quite narrow and not very spacy. Very special is also that you always enter the tram at the back and exit it in the front. So you have to go through the whole tram. To pay you have to give the exact amount, otherwise you won’t get any change.

Even the weather was not the best we decided to visit “The Peak”. It’s a hill similar to Gurten where you could see the whole city if the weather is good. The view was nice even though we couldn’t see that far. Because it was very cold and windy we didn’t stay up there for too long. Back down we took the Starferry over the famous Victoria Harbor to Kowloon. The Starferry is an old ship and called the cheapest sightseeing in whole Hong Kong.

The rest of the day we spent in Kowloon on the other side of the Harbor. At the moment it is Winterfest in Hong Kong, so we loved to see all the nice Christmas lights and decorations everywhere. For dinner we visited a traditional Chinese restaurant. In the evening we went back to Hong Kong Island and visited SOHO which is famous for going out, having drinks and food. Because SOHO is located a bit higher up on the hill, you can take the Travellator (like a long escalator) to go up there.

On our 3rd day we moved on to Macau. Because the Ferry-Terminal was only 400 meters from our hotel, none of the taxis would take us there, so we had to walk. Unfortunately, it’s not the easiest thing to cross a street in Hong Kong which has 6-8 lanes. Lifts are usually nowhere to be found. This way we will stay fit :) So we took the Turbojet-Ferry to Macau (1h drive). In Macau we stayed at the Hard Rock Hotel which we can highly recommend. Macau is called the Las Vegas from Asia which we cannot confirm to 100%. We didn’t have the Las Vegas-Feeling at all. Other way round we had a little Casino-Shock as we saw which amount’s the people play here. That was why our gambling tries stayed little. When we talk about the hotels you could name it the 2nd Vegas. Most of the hotels are the same as in Las Vegas, only bigger. Unfortunately, that makes it harder to go around which is why you have to take the shuttle buses to hop from hotel to hotel. On our first evening we enjoyed burgers like in America and free welcome drinks 😉

On the next day we had the worst weather since we travel around and the first time we faced the rain. This day we basically saw the hotels from inside and visited the ruins of St. Paul. It was the biggest church of all churches in Macau and burnt down in 1835. All what’s left is the big facade. It took us a while to find the ruins because we didn’t know which bus to take and the people in Macau barely speak English. So we ended up walking which was also a nice experience. On the way to the ruins we passed many bakeries which sell delicious cookies and also meat in the same store :) On the way back we visited Starbucks like so often.

Last day in Macau. We visited the rest of the “must see” hotels on the Island and quickly stopped by at H&M. This is the cheapest store in whole Macau by far. Mikael bought a new shirt for going out. I, myself didn’t find what I was looking for. My goal was to find nice shoes as I have only Flip-flops and sneakers with me. Unfortunately, the sizes here in Asia often only go till 40! That’s why I still have no nice shoes. In the evening we visited the show “dancing waters” in our hotel. It was like an acrobatic, dance show in a theater with water. The show was very fascinating. That evening, Mikael finally smoked his last cigarette :)

Yesterday, on the 07. December 2015 we travelled back to Hong Kong as our next flights to the Philippines go from there. Back in spring when we booked the flights we didn’t know yet when and how long we are going to stay in Macau. So we enjoyed our last day in the big city of Hong Kong. In the evening we went to Lan Kwai Fong – Hong Kong’s Nr. 1 spot for nightlife and entertainment. For us it looked about the same as SOHO.

Now we will move on to the Philippines where we will stay 3 weeks. We are looking forward to many beautiful days with warm weather, sun and a lot of fun 😀