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A big change is soon happening in our family. Our eldest brother is getting married this coming Saturday, June 1. So before my brother finally gets hitched, I decided to take this opportunity to have some brotherly bonding with him. Plus, I haven’t yet went on vacation with him alone so I thought this was a good time to do so.
We chose to go to Hong Kong and Macau for a course of 3 full weekends. The weather forecast wasn’t exactly encouraging. Two days prior to our flight and the report showed us this:
Yep, a looming thunderstorm was upon us. And it’s bound to get worse by the day. Having learned this, I wasn’t optimistic anymore and just simply hoped for the best. We had a turbulent flight that Thursday night so that was quite a discomforting experience. To my delight, we were greeted by a bright, gleaming sun the following day! However, it soon became too hot that it made it especially hard for us to be walking around the city. We had a planned mountain hike to see the Big Buddha and a visit to Hong Kong Disneyland that day. This proved to be very challenging for us.
Before heading for the Big Buddha, we took a short stroll in the city and rode a ferry boat that took us from Hong Kong island to Kowloon island. The ferry ride was pleasant. Took about 5 minutes to get to the other island but it’s very cheap, only about HKD2 per way. My only regret was not taking more time to explore the harbour and take advantage of the bright, sunny day for some more photo opportunities. Instead, we rushed to see the Big Buddha and stupidly expecting the weather will be the same when we go back there again. If there’s one thing I learned in traveling is that not everything will go as planned.
After a short peak of the Victoria harbour, we went straight away to the Big Buddha. And boy was this a nightmare. The queue was so long it took us over 1.5 hours to buy the tickets! The cable car ride over Lantau island, though scary at times, was nice too as we got to see a different side of Hong Kong, apart from the skyscrapers and shopping centers.
After the very tiring walk under the scorching sun along the Ngong Ping village, Po Lin monastery and finally a climb up and down to the Big Buddha, my brother and I decided to take a lunch and rest for a while before proceeding to visit the Disneyland. We were so exhausted that the thought of another walkathon in the amusement park could take us over the edge. But we had to make the best out of our time so after a few hours of rest, we then went. Apparently we haven’t recovered quickly enough that we spent 2.5 hours in the banquet, eating and resting. Plus it was still too damn hot to be walking around! In short, we didn’t exactly enjoy the park as much as we would have wanted. Too tired and too hot.
After a whole day of walkathon, we headed back to the hotel struggling to our feet. It felt like a very long day and the moment our heads hit the pillows in our comfortable beds, we were already dozing off.
The following day, we had a Macau trip planned during the day and spent the rest of the night back in Hong Kong and going up the Victoria Peak. And unlike the Ngong Ping cable car, the queue, though long, took us only 45 minutes before we got our tickets to ride the peak tram. The view however was worth all the troubles.
The following day would be our last day. And we decided to take it easy this time. We opted to take the tram and get a full, slow tour of the Hong Kong island. This was my most favorite among the things we did. We took the seats on the upper deck where the windows were open. It was a breezy, cool day in Hong Kong so that made the whole experience more pleasant. And the fact that it’s only HKD2.30, it was a no brainer that we had to do this. From end to end, the ride took about 1.5 hours before we stopped at Times Square for some quick lunch.
Then we headed out to the Victoria harbour to visit the famous Avenue of Stars and strolled a bit and took some shots of the harbour.
After that, we went to the Tung Choi Street and Stanley Street to do our compulsory souvenir shopping. Boy, I hated this place! I hated the vendors specifically. They are rude, loud and disrespectful! One fat lady even hit my brother when he didn’t buy the shirt he tried on because it was too big! Unbelievable! If there was one place I will never go back to if I visit Hong Kong again, this will be it!
Then we went back to the harbour again where we spent most of the afternoon taking pictures, lounging in the decks and waiting for the nightfall for some more viewing of the Hong Kong skyline, now at a closer range.
So after spending hours in the harbour, we finally headed back to our hotel to start packing as our flight was later that night at 2am . Our trip in Hong Kong and Macau was very tiring but eventful. I’m glad I got to spend some alone time with my brother. It was definitely a first for us. Hopefully it won’t be the last.