The whole object of travel is not to set foot on foreign land; it is at last to set foot on one’s own country as a foreign land.” – G.K. Chesterton

Friday, 29 June 2012

Out and about in Hong Kong

Last Saturday was Tuen Ng festival (aka Dragon Boat festival), and my friend - the lovely Stephanie of The Travelling Tastebuds - crossed the border from Shenzhen to visit Hong Kong. Her dad had flown in the previous night from California, so it was like a little reunion, and they could also meet hubby and son. Unlike the last time we met up in HK and I could only hang out with Steph in the morning, this time we had the whole day to do some sightseeing and eat (of course). First we headed to Hong Kong Park for a stroll and a look at the walk-through aviary. On the way to the aviary, we came across two heavily fruiting jackfruit trees - a rather unusual sight in this park. There was talk of grabbing a few of these fruits, but rest assured that it wasn't actioned upon (nobody was willing to lug these great big spiky things around).

Two tall jackfruit trees with many large jackfruits, inside Hong Kong Park of all places:

We wanted to head to The Peak next but the queue for the Peak Tram was prohibitively long, so instead we walked to our next destination to have yum cha at our favourite teahouse in HK: Luk Yu. Once again the food didn't disappoint, and our tummies were kept full until dinner time rolled around some six hours later.

Some of the delicious dim sum dishes at Luk Yu Teahouse. The mashed date tart remains my favourite item at Luk Yu (which I'd discovered on our first visit), and Steph enjoyed it so much she requested for another plate:

After the delicious yum cha lunch, we took the bus to the south side of HK Island, for Stanley where the Stanley Dragon Boat Championships was being held. The line for the express bus at the bus stop in Central was very long and it seemed that everyone had the same idea as us. The normally 30-minute bus ride took 1 hour because traffic was horrendous getting into Stanley. Then we had to battle hordes of pedestrian traffic when we got off the bus, and the viewing platforms were uncomfortably crowded that we stayed for only one race. At least now we can say we've seen dragon boat racing!

Racing towards the finish line. There were many boats and yachts parked on the outskirts of the racing area, which granted great views of the races for those sitting on them:

The Stanley Market was likewise packed, but it wasn't terribly unpleasant. I got some productive clothes shopping done for our fast-growing boy.

Coming down the road towards Stanley Market:

We were on the bus again less than 1.5 hours after getting off the first bus, and it was 6pm by the time we got back to the Elements mall. We brought our guests to have dinner at one of our two favourite restaurants in the 'neighbourhood', a Singaporean/Malaysian restaurant called Katong (the other being Mexican, which Steph's dad requested not to have since he "can get it all the time" at home).

There was char kuey teow, chai tau kueh, beef rendang, satay, sambal kangkong and special prawn laksa - some of our favourite Malaysian dishes. That's Steph doing what I was doing:

And then it was time to say our goodbyes again. We had a fun day out with Steph and her dad, and I'm sure we'll be seeing them again. By the way, Steph and I met in the blogging sphere, and we would never have met if not for my blog. Making new friends and meeting interesting people is one of the great reasons why I'm still blogging after more than seven years!

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