A city as booming as Hong Kong, makes it a must-visit destination for every traveler. I am here with Austern International and after a week full of content I am confident to tell you about my experience in Hong Kong with the Austern Program. I actually did not realize how much I have done in just a week before completing this post. I do not want to leave!
1. Amazing Race – Exploring the city
On the first day we got grouped into different teams and explored the entire city. Stinky tofu tasting, posing with Bruce Lee and bargaining at the Ladie’s Market was only a few of our tasks. I am so glad I got to do this because it made me feel more comfortable and safe to wander around the city on my own later on. It was heaps of fun completing the challenges and you can see footage from the day here
2. Star Ferry and MTR
Transportations is mostly taking the Star Ferry back and forth to Tsim Sha Tsui and navigating the MTR. It is very easy to understand and the train runs frequently. Super convenient to use the Octopus (Opal) card wherever we go too! I have taken the MTR alone numerous of times now and find the experience very pleasant.
3. Yum Cha
Yum Cha means going for dim sum and involves drinking overpriced Chinese tea and eating dim sum. We have Yum Cha almost everyday together having snack-sized portions of steamed dishes such as pork buns, dumplings and pan-fried chicken legs washed down with rose tea. The portions are collected from food trays and if you are the one collecting them you should be ready for a survival of the fittest where you have to fight for the popular dishes.
4. Ladie’s Market in Mong Kok
Ah, memories. I remember visiting the Ladies Market a few years back and how everything was so big and scary. My cousin, Ty got lost in a split second and I witnessed him all scared screaming for auntie to then make eye contact with me and we had a good laugh about it. Now that I am back wandering around the market as a loner it is surreal to think how much of a coward I used to be. Here I bought my iPhonce case and bargained for the first time. I have yet to see the flower markets, so looking forward to that!
5. Ocean Park in Hong Kong
I love visiting theme parks! Disney Land is apparently very small here in Hong Kong, so everyone goes to Ocean Park where you can take a cable car up to the adult rides. Austern International have Ocean Park as part of their Global Leadership program which is a great way of getting to know each other better while screaming your way round-and-round the rollercoaster rides. Here I went on a panda adventure and saw red pandas for the first time in my life. Wish I could cuddle them all!
6. Hiking The Peak
Approximately 1.2 hours of #LEGDAY hiking the Peak is a great start to the day! Steep hills, beautiful scenery on the way and a triumph feeling later it is absolutely worth doing. I was hoping for clear skies and good weather, but it was a little bit foggy so I might come back on a later day. However, It was amazing to see the iconic Hong Kong skyline from the Observation deck!
7. Night out in Lan Kwai Fong
Cozy suburb by day, party hub at night. This is the place everyone goes to experience the nightlife. Free entries and drinks for the ladies and “IT” clubs such as MAGNUM and Level 2 are nearby.
8. Themed cafes
Hello Kitty Dim sum and Charlie brown cafes. Hong Kong do character themed cafes so well! I can really recommend a visit to Dim Sum Icon, located on the 3rd floor inside “The One” where you get Little Twinkle Stars dumplings and the cutest egg yolk buns.
9. Tsim Sha Tsui
This is the place you go to take the ferry and see the beautiful Victoria Harbour, shopping in Darling City an enormous building possibly bigger than Dubai Mall, 1881 Heritage and visit Avenue Of Stars.
10. Day trip to Macau
We have weekends off to do whatever we like, so a bunch of the Austern family decided to take a day trip to Macau! It is only a 1.5 hour ferry ride to the former Portuguese colony and is a must visit if you have more than a few days to spare. Macau is basically Asia’s version of Las Vegas and I will (not) be the first to confirm that since I have visited Las Vegas before. I loved the region, their history and foodventures. Make sure you visit the Venetian Hotel to see the artificial canal with gondolas. It is amazing!