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Hong Kong and Japan in April; itinerary attempt #1

Hong Kong and Japan in April; itinerary attempt #1

Feb 18th, 2011, 01:12 PM
  #1  
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Hong Kong and Japan in April; itinerary attempt #1

Hi,

I booked the flights and hotels back in the fall and now seems like as good a time as any to plan an itinerary.
Any suggestions or help are appreciated especially with regards to grouping activities.

We are a couple travelling with our DD aged 13 and will happily go with the flow.

14th April (Thurs) : arr airport 5pm & head to JW. Marriott. Evening plans? Tram to Peak if clear or Star Ferry for light show. Dinner? Swim at hotel

15th; Peak if we didn't make it day before then wander; visit a temple or two
OR Hike the Dragon's Back (is this better on a weekday?)

16th. Saturday; Hike Dragon's Back or trip to Stanley? or Chi Lin nunnery and gardens? Other gardens or interesting temples?
Evening Views? Drink at Ozone (new hotel bar). evening shopping for teen?

17th Sunday am shopping? Checkout and move to Marriott on Lantau Island
18th Disney .. half day? Tram Buddha/ monastery in the afternoon or better to do this next morning?

19th am? Flight to NRT @3pm arr 8.20pm check in at Grand Arc Hanzoman (any Fodorites heard of this one?)

20th Day trip to Kamakura see Buddha, temples, beach? Anything Samurai related for DD. Hoping not to spend day lost in Tokyo subway/rail system!

21st Move to Park Hyatt. Shopping Day for teen.. shibuya? Hello Kitty shop. Throw in a couple of shrines and a bowl of noodles for good measure.

22nd Gardens? Shinjuku National? best for Azaleas?
Views.. I've forgotten which bank has great view?

23rd Saturday ; DisneySea? or swap with previous day?
24th Fly home 4.55pm from NRT

Best day to see cosplayers? If Sunday, oops we'll probably be off to the airport..
sassy_cat is offline  
Feb 18th, 2011, 01:19 PM
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Getting my head around transport... Hong Kong seems easy enough as we will get an Octopus card and top up. Not sure if we need the tourist version or the regular?
Love the new edition Year of the Rabbit version that I saw online but couldn't buy...

Tokyo. NEX plus Suica which we will buy at the airport?
sassy_cat is offline  
Feb 18th, 2011, 03:58 PM
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For Hong Kong, Octopus (1 per person) is good. You might as well take a taxi to/from the airport for 3 people; Airport Express would hardly save any $$.

For Tokyo, NEx+Suica (round-trip on NEx) is best for where you're initially staying. Take the NEx to Tokyo station, then take a taxi to your hotel.

It's a good idea to have a print-out of the hotel name/address/phone in Chinese and Japanese, respectively, to give the cab drivers.
DonTopaz is offline  
Feb 18th, 2011, 04:21 PM
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Thanks rizzuto,

So presumably we can pick up the Octopus cards at a 7 eleven or station rather than the airport in Hong Kong but we need to buy the NEx+Suica at NRT on arrival.

Can we use Suica to get to Kamakura (I saw a 'pass' but it was for 2 days so maybe we don't need that?).

I will get print-outs of the hotel details in the respective languages (good tip!).
sassy_cat is offline  
Feb 18th, 2011, 08:12 PM
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I wouldn't move to the SkyCity Marriott for your last 2 nights in HKG. It's not convenient for anything except going to the airport. Stay in the JWM. You can still do Disney and/or Big Buddha/Cable car on the 17th and/or 18th easily.
rkkwan is offline  
Feb 18th, 2011, 09:58 PM
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Disney Sea would be best on a weekday to avoid crowds as much as possible. The Edo Tokyo Museum is good.
KimJapan is offline  
Feb 19th, 2011, 08:40 AM
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Yes you can use your SUICA on the JR lines to get to and from Kamakura but you have to have enough money on the card. Have you seen this for Kamakura info yet?

http://www.japan-guide.com/e/e2166.html

Aloha!
hawaiiantraveler is offline  
Feb 19th, 2011, 02:19 PM
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Rkkwan, we booked with points and JWM was almost double Sky City rates hence the split stay!

Kim,
I will look at the Edo Tokyo Museum. I agree Disney on a weekday would be best but I checked the Disney calendar and special events on that particular Saturday might tempt us to brave the crowds.

HT, Aloha!

Thanks for the transport help and I had seen that link but now I've looked more closely and discovered we can take a short hike to the Buddha and if we wash our money at Zeniarai Benten on the way it apparently doubles. Hiking usually gives me blisters so this sounds like a great option!


Logistics questions
When should we leave Tokyo to get to NRT for our 4.55pm flight? Around noon?
sassy_cat is offline  
Feb 20th, 2011, 06:52 AM
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I know from your other posts that you using hotel points for these stays, and are moving hotels as the Sky City Marriott requires about the half the number of points for a stay as the JW Marriott. The Sky City Marriott is also very well positioned for a visit to the Buddha, and places like Tai O fishing village, as it will save you 30-45 minutes in travel time from the city. As I mentioned in your other post, it won’t save you much time in going to Disney. I had thought from your other post that you had given up the idea of going to Disney on this trip. In any event, if you decide to go it won’t be any further, and may be just marginally faster, to go to Disney from the Sky City Marriott as from the JW Marriott or other hotels in town.

14th April (Thurs) : arr airport 5pm & head to JW. Marriott. Evening plans? Tram to Peak if clear or Star Ferry for light show. Dinner? Swim at hotel

With a 5 pm arrival, IMO you will be at the hotel at 6:30 - 7 pm. It will already be mostly dark by then. By the time you get settled, changed, and are ready to head out, it probably will be close to 8 pm, which is the time the light show starts. So if you want to make the light show, you may have to hustle (not sure it is worth the hustle). If you are going to make the effort, the Star Ferry would be an interesting place to see it; although the trip over is shorter than the light show, so you won’t see all of it from the ferry. You could take the ferry to Hung Hom, rather than Tsim Sha Tsui, which would give you a longer journey, and this ferry goes more obliquely across the harbour giving you wider views on both sides. You can also see the light show from the waterfront by the Star Ferry pier on the Hong Kong side before you board the ferry. On the Kowloon waterfront, there is music timed to the show and a commentary in which the various buildings “introduce” themselves by lighting up, which may make it better or worse, I don’t know. The waterfront Kowloon side is the most crowded place to see the light show.

If you can get access to the executive lounge at the JW Marriott, you should be able to see a fair bit of the light show from there. You may also have a good view from your room depending on the floor you are on. Either would involve no travel and you would not even have to change clothes. If you decide you really like the show, you could make an effort on another night to get to the Kowloon side or the Hong Kong waterfront to get the big picture view.

Another place to consider would be the Quarterdeck Restaurant, which is on the waterfront close to the JW Marriott, and has an outdoor deck which would offer very nice light show views. It is walkable from the hotel in about 10 minutes via an elevated walkway. This is very casual, American style burgers, fish and chips, etc and big desserts. May work for a first night if a 13 year old does not want to try the pig’s ear at a Cantonese restaurant. My one caveat is that there is a good bit of land reclamation work going on along the waterfront here. As you have to look up for the light show, this should not really affect you. (It does make day views a bit disappointing, but at night the lights from the cranes look like part of the overall city view.) See http://www.grtvision.com.hk/QDHK/index.php

If you go up to the Peak, you will get evening views, which are stunning (esp in clear weather which in April may not be so much the case) but not day views, which offer quite a different perspective. So that would mean another trip up to the Peak in daylight. It might be better to do this on another day, esp late afternoon and sunset, when you can see both day and night views at one time. It’s up to your schedule. If you start heading toward the Peak Tram at around 8 pm, you will miss all or a good bit of the light show during the journey up to the Peak. If you make it up to the Peak before 8 pm, you can see the light show from the Peak, it is a different perspective, but still fine. For that you probably want to be on the viewing tower on top of the Peak Tram building for the best view.

Dinner options would be many, as the location of the Marriott means you could walk to Star Street and Wan Chai areas, or in the other direction toward Central and either go to Lan Kwai Fong, or up the escalator to the Elgin and Staunton Streets (any of these areas would be quick inexpensive taxi rides if you don’t want to walk). There are some good restaurants in the mall attached to the JW Marriott, like Zen (Cantonese), Thai Basel, Ye Shanghai. Shiro (Sushi) or Roka (Japanese), as well as good Italian at Grappa’s. The Man Ho restaurant in the JW is excellent, but a bit formal. If you go over to Kowloon for the light show, then you have choices on that side as well. It would depend on what you want to eat and how far you want to travel. If you make it over to the Kowloon side before 8 pm, the Harbourside Restaurant in the Intercontinental may be a good choice, it has wonderful views from its 2 story windows fronting the water. This may be the most enjoyable place to watch the light show. There is a buffet and a wide range of Western and Chinese a la carte. It is casual. It is not exactly cheap, as it is in a 5-star hotel, but may be a good option for a first night if people all want different things and you are tired.

15th; Peak if we didn't make it day before then wander; visit a temple or two
OR Hike the Dragon's Back (is this better on a weekday?)


The one advantage to hiking the Dragon’s Back on a Sunday is that there are more frequent buses. Saturdays are treated like weekdays here as far as bus schedules. So if your choice is between Friday or Saturday, it does not make a difference On a Friday you may have the trail almost entirely to yourselves, which can be a good thing. On Sundays, this trail is very popular, and on Saturdays it is somewhere between a weekday and a Sunday in terms of popularity.

It is very easy to combine a hike on the Dragons Back with a trip to Stanley. This would be best with a somewhat early start for the walk, so that you have time to enjoy all aspects You can do the hike and then go to Stanley for late breakfast/lunch. There is no direct bus between the two; so you either have to change buses (not hard to do) or take a taxi (about 15 minutes and about US$10). It can be difficult to find taxis in the Dragon’s Back area on a weekday or even a weekend, so the bus may be your best option. For the bus, you first take the #9 to bus out to the main road, which is Tai Tam Road. You will know when you have reached this road when the bus makes a right turn at a small roundabout. Get off at the next stop, cross the street and either take a taxi (more plentiful here) or look for the bus stop. You need bus #14 to Stanley, which offers some nice views. When you are finished in Stanley, you can take the scenic #6 bus back to Central.

16th. Saturday; Hike Dragon's Back or trip to Stanley? or Chi Lin nunnery and gardens? Other gardens or interesting temples?

It may be marginally better to do the Chi Lin Nunnery on a weekday when the gardens will be less crowed. It is very easy to combine a trip to Chi Lin with a stop at Wong Tai Sin temple first (they are one subway stop apart), which is quite atmospheric and usually more crowded with worshippers than Chi Lin. You could also go to the bird market/flower market first (subway stop is Prince Edward MTR stop. Exit at Door A -Playing Field Road), then go on to Wong Tai Sin and then Chi Lin. Chi Lin has a very nice veg dim sum restaurant (food prepared by the nuns) in the gardens which makes a good stop for lunch. You could then spend the late afternoon early evening wandering the market areas of Wan Chai, which has wet markets interspersed with some clothing shopping. The food/veg markets are most busy from about 4:30 -6:30 pm as shoppers buy provisions for dinner, and this can be a good time to go. You could take the street tram as part of a tour around Wan Chai. (Daughter could also sit by the pool at the Marriott while you do this.) You could also stop at the Hung Shing temple on Queen’s Road as well as the Pak Tai temple, both near the Wan Chai markets.

So perhaps the Wong Tai Sin and Chi Lin on Friday and then the Dragon’s Back and Stanley on Saturday.

Evening Views? Drink at Ozone (new hotel bar). evening shopping for teen?

The Ozone Bar is going to be in the Ritz-Carlton Kowloon, which is on the other side of the harbour from your hotel. You can take the subway or the Star Ferry and then a short taxi ride. The hotel is opening at the end of next month. Views are going to be fantastic (I have toured this hotel a few times during construction as one of my clients is providing part of the financing. ) By the time of your visit, the hotel and the bar will only have been open for about 2 weeks; so be prepared for a line with probably a longish wait to get into the bar; as new places here are mobbed and you will be there on a Friday night. Hotel guests probably also have priority. I have not tried to take a 13 year old into a bar here, I don’t know that she would be allowed. She could shop downstairs in the Elements Mall while you have a drink, she would be very safe, although your wallet may not be, as this is quite an upscale mall. There is an HMV music shop with CDs and DVDs, and some other shops which might interest her. There is also an indoor ice skating rink. She would be quite safe on her own there, and in virtually all of town. (The Ritz-Carlton will also have several restaurants, all of which have views to the best of my knowledge. You may be better offer making a booking at one of the restaurants. That way your daughter could enjoy the views too.) There is also a public viewing floor just below the reception level for the hotel (at about the the 100th floor), it may be open by the time of your visit as well, check the Hong Kong tourism board website. I believe you have to book for this as well.

If you like live music, the Lobster Bar in the Shangri-La hotel, also part of the JW Marriot complex, usually offers it. This will be a lot less crowded than the Ozone bar. The bar in the JW Marriott also sometimes has live music.

17th Sunday am shopping? Checkout and move to Marriott on Lantau Island
18th Disney .. half day? Tram Buddha/ monastery in the afternoon or better to do this next morning?


Can you tell me what it is you would be shopping for? Antiques are primarily found on Hollywood Road, and most of those shops are closed on Sundays. Otherwise, shops in most places are open, but spending a Sunday shopping in the malls in Hong Kong can be very crowded. I also don’t think you will find anything that you can’t get at home, and really no bargains. If you want to spend hours combing the discount bins in Wan Chai and Causeway Bay, you can do that; it just would not be my idea of a way to spend time in such an interesting place as Hong Kong.

If you want to combine some shopping with local walking/sightseeing, then consider the SOHO and other areas around the escalator which can offer small boutiques (Peel Street, Elgin Street and Gough Street are good for this and could be combined with brunch in that area). If your daughter wants inexpensive costume jewelry, hair accessories, shoes and clothing, then take a wander to the area between Central and Sheung Wan. Try Wing Kut Street, which is a pedestrian-only street in Central running between Queens Road and Des Voeux Road. You can also find some shops on Wing Wo Street which runs parallel to Wing Kut Street. Both are close to the Shueng Wan MTR stop (exit Door E2, cross the street, turn left and walk down the street, looking for Wing Wo which will be the first narrow alley on the right. Wing Kut is the next alley.) From that area, it would be an easy walk to the dried fish market areas of Sheung Wan, or in the other direction to the wet market areas of Central around Peel and Graham Street.

Another thought is Causeway Bay, in particular the Island Beverly Mall, which is a warren of tiny shops selling all kinds of inexpensive clothing and shoes, mostly suitable for teens. But on a Sunday this area will be packed, packed. Can be interesting to observe, but keep your wits about you.

Island Beverly
1 Great George Street
Causeway Bay
MTR to Causeway Bay, Exit Door E, turn right, walk about 10-20 feet. Island Beverly is on corner on right (just past the Body Shop), go up escalator.

There is also an outlet mall near the Sky City Marriott, it is in Tung Chung, about a 5 minute taxi ride). You go there on one of your days at the Sky City Marriott, esp. the morning of your flight. I don’t know that they offer any more bargains than outlet malls in the US, but if that sort of thing interests you, it may be worth a look. It is called Citygate Outlets, see http://www.citygateoutlets.com.hk/index.html. This mall has a good, inexpensive food court area. Your husband could play golf on the 9-hole course at the hotel if he does not want to shop. The Sky City also has a spa (have not been), which may be a good way to relax before a flight.

I don’t know that I would want to combine Disney and the Buddha on the same day, as I think it might be quite tiring. The Buddha closes at about 5:30 pm and the last bus and cable car down leave at about that time, so you would have to plan your day quite carefully, and may feel rushed at the Buddha or rushed at Disney. I know you have a 13 year old and perhaps Disney really appeals to her. Otherwise, I would make the 18th a full Lantau day including the Buddha, Tai O to take a pink dolphin boar ride, and a late lunch on the beach at the Steop. You can also walk up or down from the Buddha or do other hikes/walks. Not sure of your level of interest in this. There is a very easy walk which begins and ends at the Buddha and does a circuit of the surrounding area, offering very good views, this takes 1 -2 hours depending on what route you want to take. There is a very easy walk down from the Buddha through several monasteries that is quite interesting, IMO, it takes about 1.5 hours to the minibus stop at Shek Mun Kap. You can also walk from the Buddha to Tai O, this is downhill or on the flat, you do need about 3-4 hours for the walk, but on a clear day this is a very nice walk.

It’s a tough call on whether to go to the Buddha on the day of the flight. As I recall, your flight is ay 3 pm. I believe it is possible if you do the following (i1) check- in on-line the evening before your flight, and (ii) make a 9:30 booking for the cable car up to the Buddha. See http://www.np360.com.hk/html/eng for info on booking. I would recommend buying tickets for the “crystal cabin” as this will allow you to jump most of the line for the cable car. An advance booking allows you to skip the line for tickets, but there is then a line for the cars themselves, which can be just as long as the line for tickets. On a weekday you are unlikely to have encounter long lines, but as you only have a short time, the more time you can save, the better. School trips do go on weekdays.

I would also recco that before heading to the Buddha, you go to the airport and check-in your luggage. (You could also check in for the flight, but if you do it on-line you will save wait time. You can leave hand luggage in lockers at the airport or at Citygate Outlet mall.) Then, from the airport, take a taxi to Tung Chung and get on the cable car, the taxi takes just about 5 minutes. If you are on the cable car around 9:30, you would have about 2 hours at the Buddha. You can of course take an earlier cable car, but the Buddha itself is not open until 10, although the monastery buildings open at 8 am. If you want to go earlier, you could visit the monastery temples, and/or do the Buddha circuit walk (I can send details). You should leave the Buddha monastery area by Noon. I would take the bus back just for the different view; it does take about 15 minutes longer than the cable car, but there are not any lines for the bus. Either way, if you are back down at sea level in Tung Chung at 12:30 or 1 pm, that is more than enough time to make a 3 pm departure.
Cicerone is offline  
Feb 20th, 2011, 08:14 AM
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sassy, yes I would leave at 12:00 pm to make my way to Narita. Depending on the mode of transport and where you are in Tokyo it should take between 80 to 110 minute, more in heavy traffic.

Aloha!
hawaiiantraveler is offline  
Feb 20th, 2011, 09:59 AM
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Cicerone,

Thank you again!

Arrival night; I hope we have a great view at the JW as I did pay the point supplement for a Harbour View room and I expect we'll be tired from the long journey in coach.
I think dinner and a stroll might be enough excitement if we're too late for the light show or to take full advantage of the Peak views.
My daughter will not want to eat pig's ear on the first, last or any other night of this trip and probably not in her lifetime so the restaurant suggestions are much appreciated.

We ended up paying cash for one of our 2 nights at Sky City as the deal included Disney tickets and breakfast so we will visit Hong Kong Disney but a full day there is not necessary. Maybe we could fit this in before flying out on Wednesday if we check our luggage early.
I think the combination of the Buddha hike with a pink dolphin excursion would win over spending time at Disney.

Shopping; we are not interested in outlets or anything we can buy in the US. I think my daughter will like Wing Kut street. She's interested inexpensive clothing, accessories especially cheap jewelry. Anything with Chinese lettering would be good such as a t-shirt, scarf, beach towel or bag.

We both make ceramics and I noted your shopping sites for these on another thread, thanks!

My daughter will also enjoy the food markets around Wan Chai as she dreams of being the next Food Network star.

My husband is not a shopper so the shopping spree/s will be short. He would be happier in a cafe with wi-fi or somewhere where he sit and do a crossword.

The ice skating rink you mentioned will be the ideal place for DD to hang out while we hopefully get a quick drink at the Ozone bar. I'll check if the public viewing floor will be open.

I'll rethink my itinerary and come up with plan B soon.
Thanks for all your help!

HT,
Thanks! We would be leaving Tokyo on Sunday from Shinjuku (Park Hyatt). I think we will probably allow a little extra time and have brunch/lunch somewhere on the way (any suggestions?) or is it OK to eat at the airport?
sassy_cat is offline  
Feb 22nd, 2011, 02:47 PM
  #12  
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Japan itinerary
Arr 19th April check into Grand Arc Hanzomon hotel hopefully by 10.30-11pm.

Wed 20th. Day trip to Kamakura. Walk the trail from Kita-kamakura Stn
(Jochichi temple, Zeniarai Benten and then onto the Buddha)

We'd also like to see Hasadera (do we walk from the Buddha or will there be taxis available?).

Thurs 21st Change hotels in the morning (Park Hyatt). Explore in and around Asakusa and Ikebukuro Sensoji temple, NEZU Shrine, Koishkawa Botanical Garden ...

Fri 22nd Harajuku (Takeshita Dori/ Meji Shrine/ Yoyogi Park)

Sat 23rd Disney Sea . I looked at a site that predicted the crowd level and it's not expected to be terribly crowded but busier than an average weekday.

Sunday. We'll have a little time before heading to NRT
45 floor of Tokyo Metropolitan Government Office (Tocho)for views (south tower). last minute shopping?
sassy_cat is offline  
Feb 23rd, 2011, 03:26 AM
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Your husband can find free internet and someplace to do a crossword, for the price of a cup of coffee or juice, at any Pacific Coffee Company (go to www.pacificcoffee.com) or at any MIX juice/sandwich place in Hong Kong (http://www.mix-world.com/default.asp). There is a Pacific Coffee Company in the British Council, which is part of the same complex as the hotel, or in the Lippo Centre, an office tower connected via a walkway to the hotel’s shopping centre. There are MIX outlets in Hollywood Road and Central which is convenient for strolling in that area. For a list of cybercafés in the PRC and Hong Kong generally, go to http://cybercafe.com.

A good place to sit out, other than the hotel’s pool, is Hong Kong Park which abuts the hotel and is very green and a nice respite from Hong Kong streets.

If you don’t want to brave the Ozone, another bar with a view is the Eye Bar, on the 30th floor of the iSquare building. There is a very good restaurant as part of this, Nanhai No 1. The building also has a very large, somewhat more hip, shopping centre as part of it (do you sense a pattern here?). Your daughter may find more things to her liking and budget there, see http://www.isquare.hk. It’s near the waterfront in Kowloon.

I have a list of restaurant recommendations for Hong Kong which is about 40-pages. It is broken down by view, no view, area, price and food type/region. I would be happy to e-mail it to you if you want to send me a message at [email protected].
Cicerone is offline  
Feb 23rd, 2011, 04:48 PM
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Thanks Cicerone,

The coffee/wi-fi places will be very useful!

Can you recommend any pink dolphin excursions we could book in advance or is it best to turn up and look for a boat?

Rough itinerary #2
14th April (Thurs) : arr airport 5pm & head to JW. Marriott.
I think we may well be less ambitious and hang out in or near the hotel. Eat, swim, check the neighborhood and the view then bed!

15th; Peak in the late afternoon if weather looks good after hike in the morning (the Dragon's Back) then Stanley.
Evening drinks/ice-skate/shop


16th. Chi Lin nunnery and gardens (veg lunch... great for me but my travelling companions will revolt!) plus Wong Tai Sin temple. Late afternoon early evening wandering the market areas of Wan Chai.
Dinner?
We may well switch these two days around depending on how we feel.

17th Sunday am shopping OR checkout and move to Marriott on Lantau Island then spend rest of day at Disney. Eat at Disney or food court at Sky City mall?

18th Tram Buddha/ monastery then walk to Tai O for pink dolphin trip. Dinner at Stoep restaurant?

19th am Spa/swim/golf or shopping then flight to NRT @3pm

I don't usually plan much in the way of restaurants but I will take a look at your list so I have some idea of places in the area we find ourselves in.
Anywhere in particular you recommend in Stanley?

We like casual places but not fast or fried food fans. Chicken suits everyone (except deepfried!)with noodles/rice/salad whatever. We all enjoy spicy food
sassy_cat is offline  
Feb 24th, 2011, 10:53 PM
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Some thoughts on the itin:

Can you recommend any pink dolphin excursions we could book in advance or is it best to turn up and look for a boat?

There are several boat operators in Tai O, they stand at the water near the bus stop and ferry pier. You can’t really miss them, they will probably seek you out. These are all small boats, maybe holding 5-7 people. I don’t think they charge more than US$15-20 for a boat trip of about 45 minutes, which includes a ride through the town so you can see the houses on stilts.

There is a larger boat which has a more official/scientific tour, see http://www.hkdolphinwatch.com. It does not go from Tai O, but goes from Tung Chung (which is near your hotel), so that may work. They are much longer tours, however, like 3 hours or so. That may be a better option for your last morning.

16th. Chi Lin nunnery and gardens (veg lunch... great for me but my travelling companions will revolt!) plus Wong Tai Sin temple. Late afternoon early evening wandering the market areas of Wan Chai.

If your daughter wants to be a chef, she has to make peace with vegetables! If you don’t tell them, they may not be aware that no meat is on offer, as the selection is very large. Soup and noodles are available, just not with chicken or beef stock.

As an alternative, you could do Chi Lin first, then Wong Tai Sin, then head to the tip of Kowloon for a meal there, more non-veg choices. You may also find something to your liking in the mall which is part of the subway stop for Chi Lin. I don’t recall that there is much around Wong Tai Sin as it is more in the middle of a housing estate, but you can always take a wander around.

17th Sunday am shopping OR checkout and move to Marriott on Lantau Island then spend rest of day at Disney. Eat at Disney or food court at Sky City mall?

Unless you decide to go to Disney (not sure this is the greatest idea for a Sunday), you may want to do Stanley on Sunday morning if you did not get there as part of the Dragon’s Back. On Sundays the restaurants will be quite full as brunch here is a popular activity. A booking might be a good idea, or just plan for a small wait at some places.

If you go to Disney, it may make some sense to go the Sky City Marriott first and drop off your luggage. Otherwise, the JW Marriott will hold your luggage after you check out, so you could return to the hotel from Disney to get it. This may actually be faster than going out to the airport hotel and then back to Disney.

Otherwise, I would spend most of the day in Hong Kong, and go out to the hotel in the evening. You could even go after dinner. Have the JW Marriott hold your bags.

18th Tram Buddha/ monastery then walk to Tai O for pink dolphin trip. Dinner at Stoep restaurant?

If you plan to go to the Buddha, then walk to Tai O and include dinner at the Stoep, this may be a longish day esp with a 13-year old. It also can be quite warm and humid in April. The cable car to the Buddha will take about an hour all in from the hotel. You probably want about 1.5 hours at the Buddha, possibly more. Walking to Tai O from the Buddha will take 3 hours or so. You will want 1.5-2 hours at Tai O, and I guess you would plan lunch there. The bus trip from Tai O to the Stoep will be about 40 minutes. Just bear this is mind when planning the day. You may be better off doing the 1.5-2 hour circuit walk around the Buddha and then taking a bus from the Buddha to Tai O in about 20-30 minutes. Then a late lunch at the Stoep. As it is only about 30 minutes from the hotel to Hong Kong, you could go into Hong Kong for a late dinner on the 18th.

If you want directions for walks, let me know.

I don't usually plan much in the way of restaurants but I will take a look at your list so I have some idea of places in the area we find ourselves in. Anywhere in particular you recommend in Stanley?

If you want my restaurant list, send me an e-mail. There are a number of casual bars and restaurants along the waterfront, any really would be fine; my favourite for a bit more ambience than just a pizza or pasta would be the Boathouse. The Pickled Pelican is a pub which is another good option. (There was a dim sum place which has closed unfortunately.) At the far end of the row of restaurants, you will see a 3-storey light brick building with verandahs running around it, that is the Murray Building, which is a 19th century British-era colonial structure which was moved literally brick by brick from Central and rebuilt in Stanley. It has some shopping and some restaurants, there is a Spanish restaurant one and also a Vietnamese one, each have terraces looking over the water.

For a more gourmet experience, try Lucy’s which is Italian/Med. On a weekday you should not need a booking, but it may be worth calling (2813-9055). The only drawback to Lucy’s is that there is no view.

We like casual places but not fast or fried food fans. Chicken suits everyone (except deepfried!)with noodles/rice/salad whatever. We all enjoy spicy food

If you like spicy, you are better off limiting Cantonese restaurants, because other than for a few exceptions, the food is not spicy (you can of course just ask for fresh chilies and add them to whatever dishes you have). Try Hunan or Szechuan. Thai, Malay/Singaporean and Indian would also be good choices.
Cicerone is offline  
Feb 27th, 2011, 04:29 PM
  #16  
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Join Date: Oct 2008
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Cicerone,
Plenty of information to mull over here. Thanks for taking the time to describe various options for our itinerary.
sassy_cat is offline  
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