Date : 29/11/2012
She was invited by Hong Kong Tourism Board to visit their country.
I was busy in my shoots as usual, and unexpectedly my manager called me up saying that Hong Kong Tourism Board has invited me to visit their country. I was doing my make-up and as soon as I heard that, I got excited and without giving it a second thought I agreed to visit the place.
I was heading to the Asia’s World City, Hong Kong and was equally excited!!
To ensure that I make the most of my trip, I pre-planned each and every hour from shopping, sightseeing; yummy Chinese dining, my visits to theme parks; exploring the Chinese culture to everything. Thanks to the tourism board, they helped me with lining up the major attractions like Hong Kong Disneyland, Ocean Park Hong Kong, Victoria Harbour, Sky 100 Hong Kong Observation Deck, Ngong Ping 360 Cable Car and the Big Buddha at the Po Lin Monastery.
Of course this included lots of shopping at the famous HK streets and enjoying the nightlife at Lan Kwai Fong.
I arrived with an early morning flight to Hong Kong after which I headed towards the Taikoo Shing Road for the East Hong Kong Hotel. After refreshing myself at the hotel, I started my tour with a visit to the Hong Kong Ocean Park.
Ocean Park Hong Kong is a marine mammal park, oceanarium, animal theme and amusement park, situated in the Southern District of Hong Kong. I enjoyed “The Hair Raiser” a ride that goes upside down completely in air. The Dancing fountain and the refreshing spray made the Lagoon picturesque in the dark. At night this display is transformed into a stage for the world’s first 360-degree water screen show which was a visual delight for me. The ‘Amazing Asian Animals’ exhibits some of Asia’s rarest and precious native animals like giant pandas, red pandas, Chinese giant salamanders and Chinese alligators.
I then moved towards the newly opened attraction in Ocean Park – ‘The North Pole Encounter’ and ‘The South Pole Spectacular’. I was thrilled to see the exquisite pacific walruses, seals, and northern sea lions, chatting excitedly across the water. At the South Pole, I was surrounded in the world of the rarely found penguins including 70 penguins from three species – endearing king penguins, dramatic southern rockhopper penguins, and gentoo penguins.
We wrapped up for the day at the Chinese Restaurant by having some delicious Chinese dim-sums.
My second day began with the morning buffet breakfast at the hotel. There were varieties of cheese, breads, fresh juices, eggs, exotic fruits to choose from. The food at East Hong Kong Hotel was unbelievably sumptuous.
After having heart full of breakfast, we decided to reserve the day for shopping and experiencing Chinese culture. We first visited a Chinese Temple. It was a completely mesmerizing experience. I managed to interact with the Fortune Teller at the temple which added a hint of mystery to my trip.
We then left for Tsim Sha Sui through the very famous Star Ferry ride. It was beautiful to experience the Victoria Habour. I enjoyed the cool breeze and the spectacular view of the skyscrapers that covers the bay. After getting down at the harbour, we took a bus to the famous Ladies Market. I was fascinated to see themed markets aligned together such as sportswear market, luxury goods market, electronic market etc. Hong Kong is definitely a shopper’s paradise! I bought some make-up for myself with lot of bags, designer clothes and some gifts for my friends. They were never ending malls that housed all my favourite brands around the world.
I started my day with a visit to the Sky 100 Hong Kong Observation Deck which is the highest indoor observation deck in Hong Kong – all the way up on the 100th floor of the International Commerce Centre (ICC), the tallest building in Hong Kong! It was a breath taking experience of the 360-degree bird’s-eye view.
After Sky 100, we headed to the place where I always wanted to be since my childhood – Hong Kong Disney Land. The child in me was thrilled as soon as I entered the place. It was a trip down the memory6 lane as ‘Mickey’ and ‘Minnie’ used to be my favorite Disney character and I finally got a chance to meet them at the Flights of Fantasy Parade that happens every day. We first explored the newly open ‘Grizzly Gulch’ area. Then we went on to explore ‘The Adventure Land’, ‘The Toy Story Land’, ‘The Fantasy Land’, ‘Tomorrow land’ and ‘Main Street U.S.A’.
At night I saw the beautiful view of Disney in the form of Stars Fireworks in the sky.
It was the day to witness the finale of the ‘Hong Kong Super Shopper Contest’. 9 teams from countries such as India, Mainland China, Malaysia, the Philippines, Singapore, South Korea, Taiwan, Indonesia and Thailand participated in a contest to compete for HK$200,000 as a Visa spending bonus. India was represented by Ms. Shweta Ganesh and Ms. Amruta Khatavkar from Mumbai.
After attending the finale, we went to Repulse Bay located in the southern part of Hong Kong Island; it’s the most spectacular beach in the region. Repulse Bay is a luxurious residential area for dining, relaxation, and aquatic activities.
Now, it was time to experience the night life of Hong Kong. Lang Kwai Fong is HK’s most happening place – hub to brilliant music and great ambience. I visited to ‘Pulp’ – bar and lounge for a Wine tasting session. Designed to impress through its décor, music, cocktails and parties, Pulp sets the gold standard in Hong Kong’s pulsating nightlife. It was surely an unforgettable night out.
It was the last day of my trip and I decided to reserve it for the best – my personal favourite place at Hong Kong – the Ngong Ping 360, a breathtaking 30 mins scenic cable car ride to the tallest outdoor seated bronze Buddha at Po Lin Monastery on Lantau Island. I was spell bound with the view from the cable car ride. I could see the Giant Buddha from my cable car. I bought miniature jade Buddhas, three Gods of prosperity, fortune and health and a few laughing Buddhas for my friends. Shopping was never-ending for me.
From thrilling moments to magical surprises, Hong Kong was indeed a fun and unforgettable experience for me.