South East Asia - Winter 2012 travel blog

Nathan Road

Haiphong St

A side street

Kowloon Park (+ next 2)



Tiny room

Tiny bathroom

I had to come back through here for my flight back home. There was no way I could fly back from Dumaguete (via Manila) and make it to Hong Kong in time for my 16:30 flight on Wednesday, so I was forced to spend another night here.

I decided to spend the night at Majestic Guesthouse, the same place I stayed in December. Granted, it takes an hour to get there by airport bus, but the bus is cheap (about $5) and leaves me almost at the door. Hong Kong is a large and expensive city, and staying near the airport would have been very expensive.

Tuesday was spent travelling, first from my hotel to the small airport in Dumaguete by tricyle, then a short flight to Manila, a 2 hour layover, a 2-hour flight to Hong Kong, then a 1-hour bus ride to the city. By the time I arrived at the guesthouse if was almost 9:00 pm! There was a definite shift in temperature, going from 30C to 17C!

I was staying in southern Kowloon near Nathan Road, and went walking down that main street looking for a modest restaurant where to have dinner. Unlike Chinatowns in non Chinese cities, most restaurants in Hong Kong are not at street level but inside shopping malls. And shopping malls tend to be vertical rather than horizontal. Noticing some restaurant ads in an entryway, I went up an escalator and found myself into a high-rise shopping mall. The restaurant I wanted was on the 7th floor and going up by escalators, it must have taken me at least 10 minutes to get up there! There were many different restaurants to choose from, running the gamut from italian, to japanese to bakeries. But of course being in HK for only one night I wanted Chinese food! The place I picked specialized in congee and noodles, but I had neither. I picked rice with BBQ pork, and a dish of green vegetables whose name I couldn't tell you (the waiter helped me pick).

The streets here are easy to cross, with clear pedestrian signals and cars obeying them. But the traffic goes fast and you have to remember that people drive on the left, something I had grown unaccustomed to since leaving Malaysia (Cambodia, Laos and the Philippines drive on the right).

Wednesday morning I got up late and whiled a couple of hours in a coffee shop, then walked for a bit in Kowloon Park, realizing that it would be almost 2 months before I saw greenery again! At noon I checked out of my guesthouse and took the bus back to the airport.

It was a long and uncomfortable flight (almost 15 hours) with no room to stretch since the two other seats next to me were also occupied. I think the flight was full. Fortunately we left pretty much on time and landed in Toronto a little after 6:00 pm yesterday (still Wednesday - that was one long Feb 29).

Now glad to be home but very jet-lagged.

Thanks everyone for following my adventures!

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