Hong Kong has a lot going for it but there are a large number of people on such a tiny set of islands. The MTR (Mass Transit Railway) is an efficient way of getting around town if you’re in a rush though the buses, ferries and trams let you see more of a scenic view. The next couple of days saw me completing a number of walking trails from the condensed Lonely Planet guide that would be my bible for the next couple of days. I saw various markets around Sheung Wun selling Chinese herbal remedies but making use of very exotic ingredients such as deer antlers, dried sea horses and even dinosaur teeth! Man Mo temple is also located in this temple, worth visiting and seeing all the large coiled rings of incense continually burning up.
Hong Kong was currently building up for the famous Bun Festival, held only once a year but a major attraction for both locals and tourists. Cheng Chau island is the focal point of this festival with a number of bamboo trees covered in buns and a contest to see a number of climbers scale the tall building sized trees to see who can pick the most out of it. My day trip out to the island allowed me to see a mountaineering society holding a pre-festival climbing race that was on the news later that evening and a major tourist draw card for the island. While on the island I also visited the Pak Tai temple and the Tung Wan beach that, although lovely for the hot and humid weather still doesn’t compare to the golden sands of back home.
Hong Kong wouldn’t be Hong Kong without a proper Dim Sum experience and so I sat down at the Leung Hing Restaurant. The experience seemed completely authentic, if not slightly uncomfortable. First you have to find a seat for yourself, where you may be sharing a table with up to seven other people. Waiters will quickly come and wipe down the table, almost throwing chopsticks, and various bowls and a pot of tea at you. As I learned from observing my new tableside buddies, you should first wash all your utensils with the tea, dispensing of the tea into the biggest bowl given. The slip of paper, the waiters soon give you sits underneath the table, on another shelf that you then take with you as you pick up dim sum from the various carts around the floor. Customers continually buzz from cart to cart, lifting lids and almost barking orders at the attendant so it takes a bit of effort attracting attention to you. Pointing at dishes, indicating numbers with fingers and pushing your paper in front of the crowd will give you the edge that you need in order to get food.