I begin the re-telling of my time in Hong Kong and Vietnam with a sad prologue: The phone that I took all my photos on while I was away has since died before I could get all the photos off it, so the visual storytelling of these posts will be reliant on Snapchat and Instagram posts, so bear with…
This one-month trip to Vietnam (via Hong Kong) had been a long time coming. Let’s be super dramatic and say it’s been 22 years coming. Why? Because my Mum is from Vietnam and until this trip, neither me or my two younger siblings had ever been. And considering we’ve grown up identifying probably more with my Mum’s Asian side than say my Dad’s Pacific Island side (well it’s been that way for me anyway,) it was a huge deal to finally be going to the “motherland”.
Before heading to Vietnam though, we were stopping over in Hong Kong for five days (just FYI: I LOVE Hong Kong guys). The last time I’d been to Hong Kong was at the beginning of 2015 (for 14 hours haha) but the rest of my family hadn’t been for 11 years. We have family friends who have an apartment there and kindly let us stay with them.
Auckland to Sydney to Hong Kong (Day/Night 1):
We flew out of Auckland bright and early at 6am with Qantas, had a very speedy stopover in Sydney before hopping on another plane to Hong Kong. More than 10 hours later we touched down on Hong Kong soil.
Side note it was absolutely freezing! Coming from New Zealand, which was starting summer, and having only packed summer clothes for warm Vietnam we knew we’d have to go shopping the next day if we were to survive the next four days.
The rest of the night was super chill. We were all very tired from the flight so went to bed early, ready for a busy day (of shopping) the next day.
Day 2: Shopping, eating, more shopping
It would be kind of ridiculous to go to Hong Kong and not go shopping. Ok, there are plenty of other things you can do, but seeing as we needed warmer clothes this was the plan for our first full day in HK.
⇒Fun fact: Hong Kong don’t have GST (goods and services tax/ VAT), which means everything you buy in Hong Kong is pretty much automatically cheaper than what you’d find in New Zealand (pretty much the equivalent of duty free prices).
First things first though was food. We headed to Lai Chi Kok, a suburb in New Kowloon to a restaurant called The Salted Pig. Definitely not traditional, but still super yum. I personally ordered the Sauteed Octapus, Chorizo and Potato, but we all ordered a lot and passed it around family-style.
After lunch and thoroughly stuffed, we headed to Mongkok which is known for its shopping and bustling streets (where in HK ain’t bustling though, let’s be real) – and shopped up a storm. A fave purchase was probably some plaid culottes (see below):
With arms full of shopping bags we headed out for dinner (I can’t quite remember where we went) and then continued walking through the streets of Mongkok. I really love the buzzing, busy atmosphere of Hong Kong at night. The neon lights really help bring the place to life in a way that you just can’t find in New Zealand.
And that was pretty much Day 1. Pretty low key, but the next day we ditched the “oldies” and headed to Disneyland (aka my second home). Stay tuned for more, pals.
Have you been to Hong Kong? What was your highlight? Or, if you haven’t been, what would you love to see? Let me know below!