{Japan: Plan} Our Itinerary For a 2-Day Side Trip to Hong Kong

view of Hong Kong from the Peak

It’s amazing how fast time goes by.  In a little over a month M and I will be leaving for our Hong Kong/Japan trip!  

The very first post I made on this blog was a bare bones itinerary of our upcoming trip.  In my spare time I have been working diligently to put together the details of where we’ll be going, what we’ll be doing, and (most importantly!) what we’ll be eating.  Because this will be our 4th time to Japan, I already have a stack of guidebooks and bookmarked websites/blogs to help me plan that segment of the trip.

However, this will be our very first time to Hong Kong (and only the second country we’ll have visited in Asia).  I have to admit that I knew nothing of Hong Kong except that they’re supposed to have some of the best food in the world.  Oh yes, and that they have a Disneyland!  I’m a huge Disney fan and the fact that there was a park in Hong Kong was one of our main reasons for going.  But when I started doing research on traveling in Hong Kong, I was delighted to see that there a number of other fun things to do in this country.  So without further ado, here is the itinerary I have cobbled together for our 2-day trip to Hong Kong:

September 24, 2013: Day 0

I am not counting this as one of the days of our trip because we don’t get into Hong Kong Airport until 10:15 PM.  By the time we take the Airport Express to our hotel (Hyatt Regency, Tsim Sha Tsui), a new day will practically be starting.  I was hoping to get a late-night meal in but I was surprised by the lack of restaurants that open past 10 or 11.

September 25, 2013: Day 1 (Hong Kong Disneyland, Victoria Peak, Temple Street Night Market)

  • Hong Kong Disneyland.  I am hoping to get there before the park opens so I can take pictures of the two Disneyland hotels on the premises.  I am most excited to ride on Mystic Manor (their version of the Haunted Mansion) and Big Grizzly Mountain Runaway Mine Cars (a cross between Expedition Everest and Big Thunder Mt Railroad).
  • Lunch at Lucky Nugget Saloon or Royal Banquet Hall.  There’s not really too much information out there about the food at Hong Kong Disneyland.  (Except for, of course, the adorable, themed dim sum at Crystal Lotus.)  While we briefly considered Crystal Lotus, we decided we’d rather have our dim sum at a more authentic Cantonese restaurant.   I picked Lucky Nugget Saloon because they have fish and chips (which M loves) and Royal Banquet Hall since they have a variety of food (American, Japanese, dim sum, rice dishes).
  • Star Ferry to Hong Kong Island.
  • Tram to Victoria Peak.  I’m most interested to take a walk in the neighborhood and get a glimpse of some of the most expensive houses in the world.
  • Dinner at Kau Kee or Temple Street Night Market stalls.  Kau Kee is supposed to have some very good beef noodle soup.  I’m sure Temple Street Night Market will have all kinds of tasty and exotic eats.  Knowing us, we’ll probably end up eating at both places in the same night!

September 26, 2013: Day 2 (Tsim Sha Tsui, Ngong Ping Village/Tian Tan Buddha/Po Lin Monastery)

  • Explore Tsim Sha Tsui.  Start at the Tsim Sha Tsui Promenade and walk to the Avenue of Stars (I want a picture with Bruce Lee’s statue!).  Make our way to the Peninsula Hotel and ooh and aah.  Walk down Nathan Road and buy souvenirs for our friends/family back home.
  • Dim Sum lunch at Tim Ho Wan or One Dim Sum or Din Tai Fung.  I picked these because they all have 1 Michelin Star.  I’m not saying that Michelin Stars mean everything, it’s more because I’ve never eaten at a restaurant awarded any!  And this is a great opportunity to do it very cheaply.  Our #1 choice is Tim Ho Wan (cheapest Michelin star restaurant in the world).  Their BBQ pork buns/steamed shrimp dumplings/steamed beef balls are supposed to be out of this world.  If, for some reason, we can’t eat there, One Dim Sum is our second choice.  Din Tai Fung is a distant third choice.  I say distant, because there is a branch near us in Arcadia, CA that we can visit if we don’t make it to this one.
  • Ngong Ping Village/Tian Tan Buddha/Po Lin Monastery.  We’re really looking forward to taking the Ngong Ping Skyrail, the views are supposed to be spectacular.  I know Hong Kong will most likely be quite hot when we go so I hope I can make it up all 260 steps to see the Buddha!
  • Dinner at Hong Kong Airport.  Our flight to Tokyo is early the next morning so we decided to get a hotel right next to  the airport (Regal Airport Hotel) for our last night in Hong Kong.   As a result, it seems easiest to get dinner at the airport.  I’ve jotted down a few choices: Hung’s Delicacies (known for their marinated goose, their main store has 1 Michelin Star), Fairwood (popular Chinese-Western fast food chain), Maxim’s Food (roast goose).  I guess you can tell that I’d like for us to try some goose before we leave Hong Kong.  They are famous for it, after all.

I’m sure our time in Hong Kong will go by all too quickly.  I would really appreciate any comments/suggestions on this itinerary.  Hopefully, this will just be the first of many side trips to Asia from Japan.

credit: Steve Webel / Foter / CC BY-NC-ND