Hong Kong Travel Guide

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Hong Kong is a magic place where Eastern culture meets and greets Western culture, an impressive and steamy city which has evolved in the last couple hundred of years into Asia’s most cosmopolit and lovable traveling destination, boasting its incredible skyline, part steel and glass and part neon lights, part towering hills, making for one of the most majestic cities in the world.

But what makes Hong Kong what it is is its incredible life-pulse, the vivid city life which is basically a twenty four hour flurry of non-stop activity. Hong Kong can be described as the city that never sleeps, boasting its boat buzzed waterfront and its fully packed dim-sum (these are Chinese pies, dim sum means little food actually) restaurants, clattering tea-houses and incense smoked temples, incredibly lively street markets and century old hotels with many stories to tell its visitors. All these features make for Hong Kong to be a traveling destination like no other, teeming with high-energy and a breathtaking diversity.

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Hong Kongs sits on a very interesting piece of land, being basically part of mainland China, on the south-western coast at the mouth of the Pearl River, making for an incredible melange of Western and Eastern influences. If you’re a traveler to Hong Kong, my best advice would be to go with the flow and forget everything else.

The city was under British rule for centuries and in 1997 the territory was handed over back to China, but the English legacy is still there, tangible in all sorts of aspects of life, ranging from the architecture to the local’s obsession with tea and horse racing.

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Victoria Harbor is the centerpiece of Hong Kong and even this moniker harks back to the British era. Today, Victoria Harbor and Hong Kong overall are a world class tourist destination due to their nightlife, gastronomy and shopping resorts, which are unique and flabbergasting, especially if you’re visiting here for the first time.

The heartbeat of the city is Hong Kong Island, something like what Manhattan is for New York, boasting its impressive high end shopping malls and glistening sky scrapers, but if you’re getting down to “street level” sort to speak, you’ll discover traditional Chinese haunts and wet markets, which will always remind you that Hong Kong is a melting pot of cultures and civilizations, and together with the “millionaires and billionaires” the city relies on a working-class populace, which still makes ends meet in the “old school” way, which is often pretty hard.

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Visiting Hong Kong is also much more than it meets the eye. Besides the incredible lively and cosmopolit city-life, the city offers tons of natural attractions, ranging from volcanic landscapes, hiker friendly ranges, sleepy islands, pristine woodlands, miles and miles of golden beaches and protected marine parks.

Macau is not a part of Hong Kong technically speaking, but it’s very similar in lots of respects, i.e. it’s a Special Autonomous Region, just like Hong Kong, which was also returned to China in 1999 (former Portugal colony) and if you’ll be visiting Hong Kong, you must take a trip to Macau also. For example, Macau made a fortune and a name for itself via its incredible casinos (there are none in Hong Kong where gambling is illegal except for horse racing) and it’s a hugely popular destination for weekend breaks and/or day trips.

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If you want to mingle with the crowds, Hong Kong’s Mong Kok is arguably the world’s most densely populated region and an excellent place to eat exotic fish and all sorts of sea foods.

And speaking of foods, Hong Kong’s cuisine is the perfect place to sample authentic Chinese food from all regions including Northern, Cantonese, Shanghai, Chiu Chow, Hakka and Szechuan. You can also enjoy these foods in exotic locations, i.e. on Aberdeen’s floating restaurants or on a sampan in Causeway Bay, on a street market or in a Kowloon restaurant. Chinese people love food and the dishes are by the hundreds.

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