Tuesday, April 5, 2011


Hello dear readers,

While in Hong Kong, we decided to visit the territory of Macau, situated 60 kilometres south west of Hong Kong.
A one hour ferry trip got us there with a very smooth and efficient ride.

Macau was a colony of Portugal from the sixteenth century until 1999.  It is now governed by China as a Special Administrative Region - quasi-independent like Hong Kong.

The economy is largely dependent on tourism. The gambling industry has very a strong influence and there are numerous casinos of extravagant and unusual design located there. We mistook one of them for an ancient Chinese temple!

It is a very crowded city, apparently the most densely populated area in the world, I read somewhere.
That becomes apparent when you see the multiple high rise apartment buildings that sit so close to one another.

We wandered around the "old area" of the centre of town.
Throughout our travels we have been drawn to such areas - they all seem to offer the most in history, ambience and usually interesting little shops and restaurants.
We were certainly not disappointed.

A beautiful old square was surrounded by shops and restaurants and the old Portuguese churches and government buildings. Only a little walk away, there were the streets with the local markets and tiny little pocket-sized shops that sold uniquely Macanese food.
The streets and the public square were paved in white cobble-stones with black motif designs.

The food and the street signs reflected the Portuguese history - a favourite local food was beef or pork "jerky".

I was amazed to see so many Chinese-style apothecary shops that sold any number of dried animal parts and herbs etc. I recently read that there are no Western-style medical schools in Macau and trainee doctors have to go elsewhere for their education.
This may be the reason for the vast number of Chinese remedy shops on every street corner!

I found it a very interesting little place, and would certainly go there to stay for a few days if I ever went to Hong Kong again.

A passport is required to move between Macau and Hong Kong - indicative of their different origins, even though both are now regions of China.

Large odd shaped building is a casino.

Cobbled white and black footpaths.

Unique Macanese food

People were lining up for this dried meat, like a type of 'jerky'.

No idea what this really is, in a Chinese 'apothecary'

Signs in both Chinese and Portuguese.

Lovely old building in the town square.

That's it, the trip is over!
Thanks for joining me along the way and I hope you enjoyed the ride!

Cheers til next time,

Monday, April 4, 2011

Hong Kong Street Scenes.

A few quick snaps to add to the story.

Bamboo is used for scaffolding on small and large buildings. Here it is used to construct the frame for a market canopy. 

Making sugar cane juice from fresh canes.

Have you ever seen a push-bike as small as this!?



Sunday, April 3, 2011

Hong Kong

Hello dear readers,

We are now back in Melbourne, however I thought I would  post a few more times and complete the story of "our trip".
We arrived in Hong Kong after a flight of 12 hours duration from London.
Our hotel was the Marco Polo, located in the area called Kowloon, which is on the mainland side of the Hong Kong harbour.
Kowloon is the tourist and entertainment area of Hong Kong city, compared to the banking and business area which is on Hong Kong island in the harbour.
Hong Kong is now "a special autonomous region" of China and no longer a colony of Great Britain.

It seemed that where we were located, shopping was the main big attraction.
Large designer stores and extensive shopping complexes with  a combination of designer outlets, jewelry  stores, ''regular" shopping and food malls, all open until 12 midnight every night, was the norm.
I found the stores expensive and quite frankly, I do not like to shop just for the sake of shopping.
I think that Hong Kong shops are probably perfect for those who love to do just that!

We spent our days there recovering a little from  the flight, and just generally browsing markets etc which I, personally, find much more my style than expensive retail stores.
We ate a lot, savouring some of the many strange and exotic dishes on offer.
We visited night markets, took a ferry to the other side and also one to the island of Macau. ( will write about that in next post)
Here are a few photos from Hong Kong.

Night time food market.

Ferry on the harbour. ( this one is actually pointing to Kowloon side)

We caught the ferry across the harbour to the main business and banking area.
On that side of Hong Kong, there is a cable car with an extremely steep incline, that we went on. This took us to the top of Victoria Peak, the highest lookout point in Hong Kong.

 A view from Victoria Peak.

Another little interesting and unusual fact ( to me, anyway) is that there are double decker trams (and buses) in the business district of Hong Kong.

Double decker tram and bus next to each other.

Anyway, folks, that's it for today, must away and get a few 'normal' housey things accomplished!

Cheers for now,


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