Thursday, April 1, 2010

Hong Kong by night...

After dark is when Hong Kong really comes alive... but I can assure you the city is anything but dark! I would love to know just how many skyscrapers there are in Hong Kong but based on the number of lights that shine our across the city at night it must be a staggering number!

A major highlight for us was the spectacular Symphony of Lights show that plays every night. Basically it’s a 10 minute light extravaganza synchronized with music in which many of the city skyscrapers are lit up in a variety of colours using spotlights and laser beams etc. It’s no surprise that the night cityscape is considered one of the best in the world, if not the best in the world – the lights themselves are amazing but coupled with the way they reflect and twinkle in the water makes them that much more spectacular.

Hong Kong also has a number of really wicked night markets that are a hive of activity until the early hours of the morning. If you can stand the jostling that inevitably goes on when you have hundreds of people all trying to walk down the narrow alleyways lined with stalls then not only do you deserve a medal but also a bargain or two along the way! It was really interesting seeing the different selling styles of the stall holders – The majority were ultra pushy and would practically accost you on your way past all the while yelling in your face “you want copy bag, copy watch, I give very good price”. Then there were the ones who sat there half asleep, barely lifting an eyelid as you tried to ask how much something was. We soon learnt that unless you were seriously interested in buying something it was far better not to touch or even look out the corner of your eye at anything because as soon as you did you were more often than not swooped on!

As well as all the little nick-knacks in the markets there was also a variety of tasty-goodness food stalls. It’s true that as you walked past some of them it smelt more like you had walked through someone’s fart rather than a food stall but on the whole they all looked and smelt pretty appealing! We were quite taken with the steaming bamboo baskets of Dim Sum as well as all the ducks hanging by their necks waiting to be cut up and served.

The Lonely Planet Guide was dead right that if you’re in bed before 11pm you’re missing out the real Hong Kong!