This week one of my closest friends emailed to say that she decided to take a job in Hong Kong after doing a 9 month law program there [check out her blog – http://icmbasia.tumblr.com/]. And after visiting her in January, I completely understand why. Before I went, I actually didn’t know what to expect and was nervous that things would be too hectic and crowded for me to have a good time. Part of me went just to check Asia off my travel list, but I actually found it to be a spectacular city, and here’s why…
Subtle tourism: Many cities revolve around tourism and their core focus is getting visitors to various sites. Hong Kong was quite the opposite. I found it refreshing to walk around the city and stumble upon a temple without blatant signs, tour buses and pamphlets urging me to go there. Everything felt very natural and like true valued pieces of history – that just happened to be in the bustling city. Of course there were things like Big Buddha which were located in touristy areas, but when we went to see 10,000 Buddhas we could barely even find the entrance!
Clean and efficient transportation: One of the things I absolutely hate about NY is the subway system. It is disgusting, and I swear every time I take it, something semi-traumatizing happens to me. I wish I was exaggerating. In stark contrast, the Hong Kong public transportation system was reliable, clean, fast and easy to use. I truly don’t understand what’s going on here in NY, but someone should go over there and take some notes!
Diverse topography and activities: Within 30 minutes I was able to go from gorgeous city views, to beaches, to amazing hiking trails. I was really impressed with the diverse landscape and general layout of the city.
Quality food: I haven’t eaten Chinese food in years. As I got older, I gradually switched to Thai/Japanese/Korean. Most places in NY just don’t deliver quality Chinese food in my opinion. However, I couldn’t get enough of it when I was there! Everything was extremely fresh and tasty!
Cosmopolitan and upscale city: People in Hong Kong love their brand names, and I love that they do too! Walking around any block was great for people/fashion watching.