I like to plan trips. Download my Hong Kong Itinerary here!
I can plan trips for you as well upon request, but please give me at least 4 weekends for places i’ve been to, and 8 weekends for place that i haven’t.
What to expect in Hong Kong: Hong Kong is a really bustling city with A LOT of people. There are people everywhere and they will bumb into without apologizing! Smoking in Hong Kong is also a common affair so you can smell cigarettes quite often.
The travel plan: Take small meals, and ALWAYS order different food in the group.
Key cantonese words to learn: mm goi, which means either excuse me or thank you. (You’ll use it in the first context more often XD)
How much to bring?: This is really subjective. I am a glutton, and i must snack. I had about 5 meals a day (including snacks) I occasionally do some shopping too. I spent around 2900HKD. I also like to know how much are my transport fares cost so that i can plan how much to bring. For the Hong Kong MTR, the train trip planner tells you exactly how much it cost to get from one station to another.
Day 1 – Mongkok (旺角), Yum Cha @ Tsim Sha Tsui
Day 1 Flight: Jetstar 9.40am flight
Hotel: Shamrock Hotel (Jordan Station)
Getting out from the Airport
We already had our octopus cards so we topped up and went to take the A21 citydirect bus which took us directly to opposite our hotel. The citydirect bus cost 33HKD, much cheaper than the airport express MTR of 60HKD, and has a big luggage storage compartment which made the journey quite comfortable. In case you are not staying at Jordan, check out the citydirect buses that travel from the Airport here! The journey took about 1 hour. For those without the octopus card, you can purchase it at the airport (which has a long queue), or you can pay cash in the bus and purchase the octopus card at any other MTR stations – which is what i would recommend.
Mongkok – New Town Mall and Argyle Centre
Mongkok was our first destination for snacks and shopping at New Town Mall and Argyle Centre! New Town Mall and Argyle Centre is actually linked. Take exit D2 to enter the building. The famous 百味 cold noodles (20HKD) is just on Ground Floor, but it was quite a disappointment. I honestly didn’t understand the hype about it. 百味 is a cold noodle store where you can select your own toppings and then add their sauce and chili at the end. For 20HKD it will look something like this.
百味 cold noodles
My brother recommended taking the escalator up to the 3rd floor at Arygle Centre, and in front of us was another store selling cold noodles that were much more flavourful! P.S. In Hong Kong, Level 1 is the level above Ground Floor.
Shopping in Mong Kok means you can bargain! A tip for bargaining is to go below what you are willing to pay. Also, many shops are selling the same items so don’t be afraid to walk away if the price doesn’t match your budget. Hong Kong is also environmental friendly so bring your own shopping bags as they are chargable.
Mongkok – Ladies’ Street (Lui Yan Gai) and Sneaker Street (Bo Hai Gai)
It can get very confusing in Mongkok without a GPS, so this is my simplified version of Mongkok’s map without all the bustle. Of course, it is not to scale.
Simplified Map of Mongkok
Just diagonally across New Town Mall (exit D2) is the shopping bazaar of Mongkok. Sai Yeung Choi Street is full of live performances after dusk. Go up further, passing 2 junctions, you will arrive at Soy Street. To the left will be Sneaker Street, while the right has loads of street snacks, commonly known as 大排檔. Try the famous stinky tofu and curry fishball at Fei Jie! The Sneaker Street goes far left like an L-shape, and in between it is the Ladies Street. The fashion statement of Hong Kong are sneakers. Sneakers in Hong Kong have a larger variety of designs and are often on discounts if you purchase 2 or more! As for the Ladies Street, it has become a sad, imitation goods street in my opinion. Much different from the Ladies Street i went to 13 years ago, which is sad.
Yum Cha – Tsim Cha Tsui, Granville Road
After shopping, we went for dinner at Yum Cha. They are famous for their super cute looking dim sum! We made reservations in advance and there was still a long queue at 8pm. Yum Cha is conveniently located at Tsim Sha Tsui Station Exit B2. Directions here.
Dim Sum at Yum Cha
From the top, pineapple tarts shaped in little birds (鴿吞鳳梨 59HKD). Taste ok, i’ve had better pineapple tarts in Singapore. Bottom left, it’s custard bun in normal and green tea flavour (睇住流奶 49HKD). It is one of the best tasting custard buns i’ve ever had! I am a big fan of salted egg yolk bun, and i shun from custard buns because i find that the taste isn’t as rich and savoury. However both flavours were amazingly good! At bottom left, it’s char siew bun (一籠八戒 49HKD), which taste really sweet but incomparable to Canton Paradise. As you can see, the price per set of dim sum is pretty steep. A meal for 7pax cost us about 1,750HKD. While you’re there, why not take some wet napkins back as souvenir!