Sunday, August 26, 2012

HONG KONG - The Land of Museums

There is actually more to Hongkong than just shopping and parks.  HK is a country rich in tradition and culture;  And I should say by the number of HK's museums (based on Wikipedia they have about forty-nine (49) museums total to date), they are trully proud of their heritage.  They have museums for just about anything.

Take a break from your busy shopping schedule and drop by any of HK's treasured museums.

Click on the link for the complete list of  HK Museums, from Wikipedia. 

I was fortunate to visit about five (5).

Tsim Sha Tsui
Hong Kong Museum of Art 
Hong Kong Space Museum
Hong Kong Science Museum
Hong Kong Museum of History

The Peak
Hong Kong Police Museum
Madame Tussaud Wax Museum


If you are touring with kids,  the Hong Kong Science Museum is a must.  It has numerous interactive exhibits that your kids are sure to enjoy.  For teens and adults, the Hong Kong Museum of Art and Madame Tussaud (depending on your interests should keep you occupied, although the latter was more fun for my husband - getting to pose with wax figures of famous personalities).





Saturday, August 25, 2012

HK 5D/4N ITINERARY (FUN TIME IN HK WITH KIDS)

First things first, ask yourself, "Why are you going to HongKong?" 

If the answer is to have some family fun with your kids, then this itinerary could be a good start for you.

DAY I (DISNEY LAND)

  • 10AM - HongKong International Airport (HKIA) arrival.  Would take you 30 minutes or less to clear immigration, especially if you are travelling light, but takes more if you have kids and alot of checked-in baggage.  We bought our HK sim cards near the arrival area before heading to the taxi stand.
  • 11AM - Boarded taxi to HK Disneyland (take the green taxi it is cheaper, cost us 100HKD - 2adults+2kids with 2 baggages)
  • 12NN - Checked in at HK Disneyland Hollywood Hotel
  • 1PM - HK Disneyland Park (had lunch at the Main Street Corner Cafe - fantastic seafood ramen meal -  must try!)
  • PARADE - SHOWS - RIDES - CHARACTER GREETINGS AND MORE RIDES
  • 8PM - Fire works (we were so busy, we forgot to eat, so we just grabbed some delicious looking pastries from the Market House Bakery - yummy!)
  • 9PM - Back to hotel to re-charge

DAY II (DISNEY LAND / MUSEUM)

  • 7AM - Early start, day 2 is loaded!
  • 730AM - Breakfast at Cafe Mickey
  • 830AM - Some swimming at the HKDL Hollywood Hotel Piano Pool
  • 930AM - Toured HKDL Hollywood Hotel grounds
  • 10AM - Hotel check out (we left our stuffs at the hotel concierge and headed to HKDL park)
  • 1015 - HKDL PARK PART II (souvenir shopping time)
  • 3PM - Picked up our luggage and left HKDL for TST Kowloon Island.  We took the taxi going to TST for convenience. It would be difficult to carry our luggage with tired complaining kids.  
  • 4PM - Check in YMCA Hotel TST (very nice - see separate blog on YMCA)
  • 6PM - HK Arts Museum and HK Space Museum -  just across YMCA
  • 7PM - Dinner (so tired we ended ordering room service)  

DAY III

(NAN-LIAN / CHI LIN NUNNERY /  TRAM / MTR, OPEN TOP BUS AND STAR FERRY EXPERIENCE  / THE PEAK AND MADAME TUSSAUD)

  • 9AM - McDonalds Breakfast
  • 930AM - Nan Lian Garden and Chi Lin Nunnery (via MTR from TST alighted at Diamond Hill) - try eating at their vegetarian restaurant...
  • 11AM - The Peak - lower terminus (from Diamond Hill to Central) 
  • 12NN -  The Peak via the Peak Tram (must try)
  • 1PM - Madame Tussaud (good for picture taking).
  • 3PM - Back to YMCA (to Central MTR station via open top bus. This is a must try - the kids were ecstatic! From Central we took the Star Ferry and ended at the Harbour City Center. The kids were overjoyed to see HK's ToyKingdom - and yes we ended buying toys there too!). 
  • 5PM - KFC dinner, then back to base camp

DAY IV (OCEAN PARK)

  • 8AM - Central via Star Ferry 
  • 9AM - Bus to Ocean Park
  • 10PM - Ocean Park (we had lunch at the Panda Cafe, but was not satisfied with the service nor the food)
  • RIDES - SHOWS - RIDES - SHOWS - RIDES  - RIDES - SHOWS
  • 4PM - Left the OP and back to base camp
  • 530PM - Dinner at Charlie Brown's Cafe
  • 7PM - Sneaked out - left the kids with their father and went shopping :)

DAY V (FREE TIME)

  • 8AM - Breakfast at the hotel (Mall Cafe)
  • 9AM - Kowloon Park (This is actually very good.  I recommend you try this - free and fun, your kids are sure to have fun!)
  • 1030AM - HK Museum of History
  • 12NN - HK Science Museum (my family loves museum)
  • 2PM - Late lunch at TGIF
  • 330PM - Some more pasalubong shopping at Koi Kei, then back to hotel to rest a bit
  • 5PM - Off to the airport via taxi (taking the cab rather than taking the MTR or the hotel bus proves to be more convenient and economical if you are with kids and  baggages)
  • 6PM - HKIA
  • 8PM - Back to Manila
It is difficult to squeeze in too many activities if you are travelling with kids.  They tend to be cranky late in the afternoon - since this trip is for them, I had to tone down my addiction to shopping and just do it on the side strip :)

See related article on travelling HK with kids - "Hong Kong with kids in tow".

Sunday, August 5, 2012

Chi Lin Nunnery

Chi Lin Nunnery is located at the same complex as Nan Lian Garden.  The complex is located at 5 Chi Lin Drive, Diamond Hill, Kowloon.
 
 The temple complex includes a nunnery, temple halls, Chinese gardens, visitor's hostels and a vegetarian restaurant.

Chi Lin Nunnery's vegetarian restaurant

It was still too early for lunch and we just had breakfast.  We ordered special cheesecake (made without eggs) and volvic bottled water from France. 

After we have relaxed our tired feet, we went next door to see Chinese timber architecture, rocks and potted plants exhibition.


Inside the next door rocks and wood exhibit



My boys goofing around!

Toy Story Land, HK Disney Land


One of HKDL's latest attraction is the Toy Story Land

My youngest was so thrilled to see his favorite movie
(i.e., watched a gazillion times) come to life.  

It was just like to dream come true for my kiddos. 

Biggest Woody everrrrr... :D



Picture opportunity with Woody and Jessie inside a Barrel of Monkey's


Riding Slinky Dog Zig Zag Spin



These popsicle benches are so darn cute!



I want the bigger RC paps!




Now this is the RC I want to bring home!



On board the Toy Soldiers Parachute Drop!


Just got to take a picture with REX :D






At the Toy Soldiers Garrison



Surprised that there is no Buzz picture opps inside Toy Story Land.  We had to go to Tomorrow Land for some Buzz picture taking.

Ain't complete without Buzz! 



Saturday, August 4, 2012

The Piano Pool @ HK Disneyland Hollywood Hotel






My kiddos could have easily spent a day at HKDL Hollywood Hotel's The Piano Pool. Absolutely one of the cleanest and safest pools I have been to.

(1) Vest provided free
(2) Two life guards on look out
(3) Pool water level starts at 1 foot deep 


Entrane to The Piano Pool


My 8 year old enjoying a dip!


All geared up and ready to jump (vest and beach towels are provided free of charge)

Wee! 


Let's get ready to rumble!!! 

Enjoying a dip!

A cool dip is a way to start a busy day at HKDL!!!