Getting a later and later start in the mornings – winding down I guess. My left knee is still bothering me from the escalator gyrations I’ve been doing. When I walk it loosens up a bit, but when I sit for a while and then get up, it’s a killer.
The weather is not so bad – not nearly what we had thought it was going to be. A little overcast, but at least not raining, so we decided to postpone the History Museum and instead enjoy the outdoors. Hot and humid though. I did not wear my trusty travel vest today – way too hot.
After a short walk from the Conrad, we toured Hong Kong Park. Very lovely and serene, even amidst the skyscrapers that ring the park. Two peaceful lakes with a path in between cut through the middle of the park. In the picture on the left, you can see the building designed by the famous architect I.M. Pei.
Park Entrance Fountain
Hong Kong Park Lake
We got up late – 7:30 for DH and 9:30 for me. Now that we are no longer on our China Spree tour, it’s getting harder to “get up and at ’em.” Once awake, I went to breakfast right away with DH, as he was famished, waiting for me. After a nice breakfast buffet in the dining room at the Shangri-La, he went for a stroll to Nathan Road. Lots of approaches by fake Rolex watch salesmen and Indian tailors to make him a suit or shirts. I showered and packed. Barely made it out of the hotel by noon (because of me). We took a cab to the Conrad Hilton, which is on the other side of Victoria Bay, on the Hong Kong Island side. Another traffic jam getting through the tunnel – will it ever end? Cost HK $107.
Nice surprise when we got to the Conrad – we got upgraded to the Executive Floor room. Two large twin beds and Executive Lounge access – no problem. Love this Diamond status – just have to figure out how to keep it! The view was fabulous. Although we looked directly at the Shangri-La hotel (not the one we had stayed at earlier, but the other one in town), on one side we could see Kowloon and the Harbor, and on the other side we looked up towards Victoria Peak. Doesn’t get too much better than this. As time went on, I became fascinated by the various reflections that would appear on the façade of the Shangri-La. If I got too close to the window though, I started to get vertigo.
Conrad Hilton Room
Looking Out our Window
First some trivia about Hong Kong — Kowloon means “nine Dragons” – after the 8 mountains that separate mainland China from the Hong Kong peninsula, and the ninth for the Emperor. Hong Kong means “fragrant harbor” – for the incense that fishermen used to burn here as an offering to the gods.
Victoria Peak Funicular
We started this bright sunny beautiful day with a bus ride to get to the funicular tram to the top of Victoria Peak. (Our bus in HKG was an actual small bus – not the typical vans we’ve been in, but a real small bus.) The tram (built in 1888) was very steep in places and not so much in others – it averages a 27 % incline. I had pictured it as being the same incline all the way up. Here it is coming into the lower station. Continue reading