Hong Kong Trip Day #4 + personal reflections

What do you guys normally do on the last day of your trip? So you have a few more hours before boarding the flight home, do you still do a lot of exploring or like us, shop till you drop?

I find that it has always been the case that the last day of the trip is to do some last-minute shopping. After all, we are to pack our luggage and by the last day, we know how much space we have left!

JH and I went to buy Wife Biscuits because our family members requested for them and we only go for this brand – HENG XIANG (HANG HEUNG). They are freshly baked and you would have to carry them on board. Yours truly did the unthinkable and packed the boxes of biscuits in the suitcase (my hands were full!) and well, you could imagine the crumbs.

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We checked in our luggage via the airport express before having lunch at Festive Walk shopping mall (Kowloon Tong MTR). JH highly recommended this restaurant – King’s Palace Congee & Noodle Bar that serves the best (according to her) Barbecued Pork with rice and we absolutely had to try it. I tell you, it is indeed delicious! The BBQ pork is tender and flavourful! We ordered some other stuff and they were all found in our stomach rather quickly. 

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We still had a few more hours to burn before we had to check in at the airport in the evening. We had wanted to have our tea at agnès b. but it was far too early for that @ 1pm. So we went over to PageOne cafe to have our caffeine fix. In the end, we didn’t have the chance to dine at agnès b. but I bought two cakes to share with my travelling companions. And what do you expect? I bake so I need to taste other cakes for research purposes. ;p Lovely cakes, I must say!

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I’m going back to HK again soon and I definitely will check into more restaurants and cafes at Festive Walk. I think I have better do some workout first before I put on weight!

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Our return flight is a bigger airbus and I must say it was comfortable travelling in it. As usual, we go the first row seat so that Faith could have some space to move about. She even had a kid’s meal which I find could be a tad healthier. ;p But that’s just me.

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Oh! By the way, the gate for SQ at the HK airport has an indoor play area for young kids. Awesome, isn’t it?

Till we meet again, HK!
Very soon!

What I’ve learnt from the trip (for reference):

1. There is no need to pack so many pieces of clothes for Faith (for fear that she would poo or get dirty often) because majority of the shopping is for her.

2. Will consider NOT bringing stroller the next time if we are not doing any trail or hiking. A carrier will do better. There are no escalators at some MTRs and it would be horrid to squeeze with the crowd along with a young kid and stroller. Get a good carrier instead!

3. If travelling in a group, can consider taking a cab and splitting the cost (it’s quite affordable). But travel during off-peak hours.

4. Late night flight is not good for Faith.

5. Bring sachets of instant coffee powder along as their local coffee is not to my liking.

6. Only introduce Faith’s favourite biscuits when the plane is about to take off, NOT while the plane is taxiing.

7. Watch the time and note when the plane is going to do the first descent (usually a few minutes after the pilot announced) as Faith could not deal with the air pressure well. Have to wake her up if she is napping and give her some food or water.

8. Wet wipes. Wet wipes. Wet wipes are very useful!

9. Don’t speak in Mandarin if possible. English is better if you don’t want to be mistaken as the mainland Chinese. The treatment is different, so I’ve heard (No offense to the Chinese; I love you).

10. Some eateries do not have (many) high chairs to go around so train the kiddo to sit on the adult chair.

Reflections:20140418_071214

Throughout the trip, Faith had been very cooperative and is a joy to travel with. I wonder whether that’s due to a new environment and she was constantly being engaged and thus less cranky. It could also be because I wasn’t on any schedule and was more at ease and thus could enjoy her more. It’s time to reflect. Have I been too busy for her that I could not enjoy her (at times) back home?

Related post(s):
– Travelling with a toddler: The packing list
– Hong Kong Trip Day #1
– Hong Kong Trip Day #2
– Hong Kong Trip Day #3

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Hong Kong Trip Day #3

After a tired day yesterday, we took it easy and started the day a wee late and proceeded for breakfast at the local’s coffeeshop called 茶餐厅. The one that JH wanted to bring us was not open so we decided any other one would do. I have to point out to you that throughout the trip, it is JH who decided on the places to eat and she ordered for us because her Cantonese is the most fluent; she sounded like a local.
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The above are some of the common ones found at the 茶餐厅. Simple food though I feel they can be healthier. Hah. The coffee and tea aren’t like those back home. It feels almost like drinking carnation milk. :p No offence but really…

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 Our itinerary for today was to take a ferry to 长洲 (Chang Zhou island), one of the islands in HK. We were expecting sunny beaches, delicious seafood and some cafes for us to bum around. We could use the octopus card to take the ferry which is really awesome. No hassle in purchasing extra tickets. No queuing!

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On the way, we came across this joint. I so wanted to purchase a cup of coffee since I didn’t feel that I had my caffeine fix in the morning but well, we did have to run for the ferry, in a way, so I had to give it a miss. The ferry ride took us about slightly more than hour, in total. Thankfully the waters wasn’t too choppy.

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When we disembarked, we had a shock. The place was full of people! Who would have thought? It was a workday, after all. Hello!!! The sun was really harsh that day but explore, we did!

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Apart from the crowd, it’s quite fun exploring 长洲. You won’t get to see swanky buildings or upmarket shopping malls. It’s a village life here. Slow, simple and relaxing. Since I didn’t bring the stroller along (thankfully, I didn’t due to the crowd), I put Faith in the carrier which she was okay with it (she didn’t need to walk!).

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 We stopped by a B&B to have our caffeine fix. This is one place that had the coffee machine so we thought the coffee shouldn’t be anything bad. I had the latte but there’s not latte art on my cup. 😦 长洲 is one place that does not provide changing area for young children in their toilets and I realised that bringing along diaper pants would work better in this case. So the next time, it’s diaper pants I’m using on Faith!
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One of the many reasons why people visit 长洲 is to enjoy the beach. Sadly, we forgot to get dressed for this and in the end, just sat around to enjoy the sea breeze.

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It wasn’t long before we turn back to where the seafood restaurants were located. When you visit 长洲, this is one thing you have to do. The seafood is fresh and affordable! As we were on our way to the restaurant, we saw troupes of lion dance and we later realised from the locals that they were celebrating some Chinese festival (something to the effect of warding off evil). One group was doing their dance in front of our eyes as we consumed our seafood. Faith was apparently not affected but was entertained by the whole thing, the noise and all.

For the past few days, Faith had the opportunity to use various modes of public transportation and some being her first attempt – bus and MTR. #firstworldproblem. She was obviously intrigued by them so I guess this trip did her some good in terms of such exposure.

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On our way back, we decided to pack roast goose (my first time) home for dinner. But oh, what a lot of oil! I don’t think my stomach would allow more of them though!

Zzzzzzz…..

Related post(s):
– Travelling with a toddler: The packing list
– Hong Kong Trip Day #1
Hong Kong Trip Day #2

Hong Kong Day #2

This trip must have been the most stress-free one that I have ever had. Gone were the days when I woke up early to hit the streets. Now, I wake up early too but that’s because Faith decides to start the day early. My friends were still sound asleep when we woke up and we had our breakfast albeit quietly in the living room as JH roamed in lala land. To pass the time, Faith and I read or played with stickers until my friends woke up. I realised I actually enjoyed doing these things with her. Bliss!

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We set off, eventually, at around 10am to Shanghai Street (just a street down to where we were staying) where you can purchase baking stuff! Oh my goodness! I was so tempted to buy but knowing that we would be out the whole day, decided to control my excitement and noted mentally to go back.

It’s time for Dim Sum and JH suggested that we took a cab to Grand Century Place for our brunch. According to her, Jade Garden serves good food at affordable prices. When we reached the restaurant, there was already a queue but thankfully we didn’t have to wait too long before we get a table. 

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Shop 603, 6/F, Grand Century Place, 193 Prince Edward Road, Mong Kok 
旺角太子道西193號新世紀廣場6樓603號舖

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According to my two friends who are both Cantonese, the quality of a few Dim Sum items will determine if the restaurant serves good food. They are (to name a few): Steamed Chicken Feet, Barbequed Pork Bun, Shrimp 20140416_105402-1Dumplings, Pork and Shrimp Dumplings, Pork Spareribs in Black Bean Sauce, Rice Noodle Rolls, etc. They ordered those dishes and I must say we enjoyed the food tremendously. Faith was sound asleep throughout and I could have some peace, savouring these yummy food. It’s not uncommon to see folks spending a lot time having Dim Sum. For example, this couple next to our table had already been there for an hour and they were still there, reading newspaper and subsequently order two bowls of rice with one dish. They must have been spending both breakfast and lunch at the same place! For us, thanks to Faith, we spent about one and a half hours at the Dim Sum place to savour just a few items. Not bad!

After filling our stomach, the next best thing to do in HK is to SHOP! It’s to Uniqlo we went. This outlet at Grand Century Place is the biggest and you can imagine my joy! The greatest beneficiary is Faith since the collection was so much more than the ones back home. 80% of the stuff that I put in the shopping basket were hers.

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Faith was all excited too and wanted to come out of the stroller and roamed. It could get tiring since she couldn’t walk for a long period and needed to be carried. In the end, I had to strap her. Hiking in urban jungle! I must say I spend the most at Uniqlo. Ahem…

We had wanted to do some heritage trail for this trip and we decided on the Lung Yeuk Tau Heritage Trail, one of the six trails that HK offers. It is a good breather from the hustle and bustle of city life and grant us the opportunity to explore Hong Kong’s rural cultural heritage through monuments and buildings including walled villages, ancestral halls, study halls, shrines and temples.

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Thank God we brought along the stroller. I cannot imagine taking the trail with Faith in the carrier. And more importantly, the stroller survived the uneven terrain.

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Faith had some time at the playground! Who would have expected this place to have a play area for kids. Why, of course, there are still people residing here.

We spent a good few hours doing the trail. It wasn’t anything spectacular, to be honest. But it is a good getaway if you just don’t want to meet with crowded streets. We were tired after the trail. We have, after all, been out for a long time and by the time we reached our apartment, it was time for dinner. We ate at the small eatery next to our building, selling claypot porridge and cooked food. And I was introduced to the affluent prawns for the first time (not sure if this is actually the name). I realised too that some eateries in HK do not provide high chair or if they have, they have limited sets. So what they do is to stack chairs up and then Faith will sit on the improvised high chair. Thankfully, she sat through without much fidgeting. I think she knows the impending danger should she do that. ;p

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I’m not sure where we got the energy but we proceeded to shop along Temple Street after dinner. I brought along the stroller which was a HUGE mistake. It was really crowded and Faith was getting cranky since it was near to her bedtime and insisted to be carried. I had no carrier with me and had to carry her. Oh my poor back! Lesson learnt: bring carrier when going out in the evening.

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Australia Dairy Company 澳洲牛奶公司
47-49 Parkes Street, Jordan, Hong Kong
Tel: 2730-1356

We stopped by the Australia Dairy Company for our supper. According to JH, this place serves better steamed egg pudding than 义顺牛奶 and she recommended this place. We had the egg pudding but I’m not a fan of such a dessert. Perhaps, the next time I visit HK again, I’ll try the many other stuff on the menu. Heard that their scrambled eggs are good!

We finally reached home around 10 + pm with loads of shopping bags. We contributed to the economy by purchasing beauty products from Sasa. Hah! If only we could have a spa treatment then.

Related post(s):
– Travelling with a toddler: The packing list
– Hong Kong Trip Day #1