Monday, July 29, 2013

Towards The Peak

I scheduled our trip to The Peak in the afternoon so that we can see the view during both daylight and nighttime. Prior to our trip, I received a nice postcard from Hong Kong that showed The Peak. I have not been to the place before so I was excited to see it with my own eyes.


...the sky did not cooperate

So foggy :(

We reached The Peak through the tram. However, we could see nothing because the fog covered the view. Silent Hill, anyone?

We ended up just having dinner at a Vietnamese restaurant. Right before we left (again, though the tram), however, we were lucky that the sky cleared up.

Doesn't this view remind you of the movie Pacific Rim?

The weather was really a letdown. However, I'm still glad that the fog cleared during the last minute. We even saw The Symphony of Lights. 

Hong Kong, you will always be fabulous to me. :)

Saturday, July 27, 2013

Foggy Day in Ngong Ping Village

Our third day in Hong Kong was a rainy day once again. From Tsim Sha Tsui, we took the train to Tung Chung (where Citygate outlets is located) and then took Bus23 that brought us to Ngong Ping Village. This is the part in which I'm thankful that I paid attention to our commuting around Hong Kong four years ago and so I was able to remember where the bus terminal in Tung Chung is located.

A view of the beach from the bus seat

We went up those stairs...

...until we finally reached the Tian Tan Buddha-- the world's biggest outdoor Buddha statue. It was really foggy that day.

Hello again! I remember, it was also raining when I visited this place four years ago.

After taking photos and reading the stories about Buddha, we went down and headed to the Po Lin Monastery.

Going to Po Lin Monastery

We were able to explore Po Lin Monastery before. Nowadays, however, it seems that a lot of the areas are no long open to visitors.

I like Po Lin Monastery because it's SO FULL of flowers!

Something that caught my attention: a temple in construction. "so that's how they're constructed"

We headed to Ngong Ping Village for lunch. Now, Ngong Ping Village is a place that I haven't been to before.

Creepy. Silent Hill, anyone?

Despite the name, it's not really a village where people settle. It's actually a modern tourist-y area filled with shops and restaurants.

The (artificial?) Bodhi tree at Ngong Ping Village

At the other end of Ngong Ping village is the Ngong Ping 360 (cable car) terminal. I had wanted to ride the cable car back to Tung Chung but unfortunately, my mom and my aunt are totally scared of riding plus it was really foggy and it's not exactly nice to pay a hefty HKD94 if there's nothing much to see. I remember my Maokong Gondola (another cable car) ride in Taipei last January 2012. It was also foggy and rainy though that only cost me NTD50 (or PhP75) one-way so that wasn't such a pain in the pocket.

Anyway, we went back to Tung Chung by Bus 23 again. I did a little shopping at Citygate (just a nice tribal-print top) and then headed to The Peak (blog post up next!)

Monday, July 22, 2013

Macau in a Day

One of the things that lured me into booking that flight to Hong Kong was a day trip to Macau. I've been to Macau back in 2009 but that trip was very short (practically just half a day) and we weren't able to go to many places.

This time, I made sure to go to the places I missed even if it's just a day trip. It was a rainy day in Hong Kong but weather in Macau was great albeit a little too hot.

Upon arriving at the seaport, we rode a free shuttle that took us to Grand Lisboa Hotel and then walked to Senado Square. It's a World Heritage Site and I seriously wonder why we did not go there four years ago. It's such a fabulous place and it made me feel like I was transported to Europe.

The Macau General Post Office at Senado Square where I bought maxicards and postage stamps

We walked along the Historic Center of Macau until we reached The Ruins of St. Paul.

The Ruins of St. Paul

Lunch: vermicelli noodle soup with duck leg

We left the Macau Historic Center and then went to Macau Tower. My mom and I decided not to go up the observatory anymore because we've been there before and the entrance fee was expensive. We just let my aunt and uncle go to the observatory.

The view from Macau Tower's base.

After Macau Tower, we went to The Venetian (where there are lots of Filipino workers and tourists!) Four years ago, we were able to go to The Venetian but I wasn't able to explore the place (I only saw the lobby because we had to rush to the port to catch our ferry ride). This time, I made sure to explore The Venetian. If you've seen Boys Over Flowers (the Korean TV series), this is where Geum Jan Di and F4 stayed! 

Look, spiral escalator!

One thing I love about Macau is their postal service. I saw vending machines for postage stamps and mailboxes in different places (i.e. not just the post office). I wish we had the same system in the Philippines-- one in which I don't need to go to the post office during office hours to be able to send mail.

The post office at the seaport.

This postage stamp vending machine is out of order, though.

And that's it, our short but fun day trip to Macau.

Friday, July 12, 2013

Back to Hong Kong

My first time going to Hong Kong was in 2009. It was my first trip out of the country (heck, out of Luzon even) and I always said I'd go back there. 

Honestly, though, I didn't think I'd go back after just four years. *laughs*

It wasn't exactly part of my travel plans for this year. It's just that my aunt and uncle, who are based in America were on vacation in the Philippines, wanted to go to Hong Kong and wanted someone to accompany them. My mom and I went. I did the itinerary and all. It was May and it was a good escape from the unbearable Manila heat.

Tsing Ma bridge (taken during the bus ride from the airport to the hotel)

I reserved a room at Hao's Inn (located in Tsim Sha Tsui). It's pretty cheap for HK standards. The rooms are small (which is the norm in HK) but the place is immaculately clean (the housekeeper is Filipina, by the way). There's a water dispenser at the common area which saved us a lot of money as bottled water is quite expensive in HK (well, I'd say everything's expensive in HK). Oh, the staff are very nice too!

The first day was "chill day". My aunt and uncle aren't exactly the "travelling type" so I had to relax our itinerary. We basically just went around TST and to the Avenue of the Stars.

Mom and I at the Avenue of the Stars

This shot would have been better if the skies were clear.

We had dimsum and noodles for dinner at the foodcourt in Sogo Mall near the Avenue of the Stars. Seriously, food is like one of my favorite things about Hong Kong. 

At 8pm, we went back to the Avenue of the Stars to watch the Symphony of Lights which, unfortunately, underwhelmed me. Maybe it was the bad weather or maybe it's because it's no longer my first time to watch the show.

It felt good to go back to HK, though. :)

Monday, July 1, 2013

Second Half

Fifteen days of no update because:
  1. I got a bit too occupied with work. 
  2. I got hit by a car last week while crossing C.P. Garcia Street with my co-workers. We were on our way to UP to play frisbee/go jogging. I twirled midair, bounced and then landed on the pavement. Good thing there were no other oncoming cars when I landed. My forehead hit the pavement pretty hard which turned my nose into a scary faucet of blood but thankfully my CT Scan results showed no internal bleeding. No other fractures except for a nasal fracture which may or may not need surgery .(Hopefully, I will know this week.) Bruises, wounds, spasms and an awful lot of mental trauma. Anyway, doctors said I'm lucky that I got away like this. I'm actually back to work.

I've been through a lot of pain this year. If there's anything I'm praying for, I just want the second half of the year to be less painful, if not free of pain.

Now, some doodles. I've been doodling a lot just to take away the stress, the worries and the fears because I have many.