Macau is a really interesting place, being that it just went back to China as well. However, instead of being a colony of England, like Hong Kong, it was a colony of Portugal. So, interestingly, the architecture of Macau was all in the style of Portugal. Different money system, and, practically a different country from China, still set it apart as it tries to be unified with China. There is still a strict immigration control point, that divided Macau from China.
We decided to travel to Macau when we found out how close it actually was to Hong Kong . All you have to do is get on a fast jet foil boat, that is exactly like a plane on the inside, and you’re there in an hour! It was really funny, because we had to go through customs and everything right when you got off the boat. When we arrived, we took a taxi to St. Paul ‘s old ruins of a church. Passing McDonald’s with Chinese characters along the way. Seeing the ruins of this old church was really cool, since only the front is still standing. From there we wandered around to find a nice place to eat. We found a great little outdoor restaurant, and had a filling lunch while watching the passer-byers.
We also went to an old fortress that still had the cannons, along with a great view of China across the river, and the city. We made the rounds of the local temples and such, and then took a taxi to the border control between Macau and China . There is a window (outdoor) that lets you see China on the other side. After the control point, we went to a Casino. Casino’s are illegal in Hong Kong, but Macau allowed them, so we went in. Of course, being warm, I was wearing shorts, so I was denied entry. So, we went across the street to buy some pants–for $3– Macau is very cheap! We went in, and I spent just $10 on doing different stuff. It was a cool experience because I had never gambled before. We then spent the evening there, and ate at the McDonalds (just to add to my list of eating at a McDonald’s in every country). We then boarded the boat for a quick trip back to Hong Kong . The next day we were flying to Singapore.
The next day we decided to go to the Amusement Park, and it was pretty cool. The park is located on a mountain top 15 minutes by gondola. The views from the Gondola were really spectacular, and the park was not crowded at all. We returned to Hong Kong and continued to shop around. The next morning we planned a side trip to Macau, China.
We decided to take another look over Victoria’s Peak during the day, so we headed for it again. After some pictures and a breathtaking view, we went on a boat trip to Aberdeen, the fishing market. On a boat, we weaved through the fishermen selling their catches for the day. After the boat ride, we went to Stanley Beach, the most popular area for Silks, and Hong Kong’s beach. We then went around shopping and spent the day there. After returning to Kowloon, we shopped at all the famous places. I bought lots of clothes–coming from Tokyo, clothes were so cheap!
The next morning we were awakened to the bells of the school that was located right in front of our hotel. We were pretty high up in the building, so we could look down at the students changing classes or breaking for lunch. We decided to take the train to Hong Kong island–the real business district of Hong Kong. We rode the train, and then a bus (which would only accept EXACT change) to the city centre. The maze of the streets and tall buildings made Hong Kong a never-ending struggle to get around. That night we took a tour to Victoria’s Peak for a night view of the city below. We also ate on the Jumbo, a boat with a restaurant, one of Asia’s finest and most famous. After seeing the night view, we returned to our hotel to plan our next day.
Hong Kong has been a place that I have wanted to visit for quite a long time. Due to its awesome architecture right on the Victoria Harbor , a cityscape I will definitely never forget. My friend Keiko and I had decided to do a tour during our spring break in March. We left Tokyo on a flight directly to Hong Kong . We arrived in the evening and went straight to our hotel. Connecting us from the airport to the main part of Hong Kong was a new train system which whisked us to Kowloon , where our hotel was located. Our hotel room was quite small, and was located in walking distance to a train station. That night we walked the streets seeing the liveliness of the street stalls, restaurants and lights. I called home to Tennessee from a payphone out on the street, and my mom could not believe the sounds she heard of Hong Kong.