Touristy stuff on HK Island

We did a lot of touristy stuff today, as much as Nephew could handle. In fact, we pushed him pretty far, so by the end of the evening, he was grumpy as, and his parents’ patience was also wearing thin.

We first went to HK “Zoo”. It is officially called the HK Zoological and Botanic Gardens, but I would describe it more as a small park that has a few birds and monkeys and other small animals 😆 It was a hot day, so everyone was struggling, so a small park was really all any of us could handle in today’s heat and humidity. Plus there are some hilly parts, so f you have a toddler who refuses to climb up stairs, it makes for a challenging outing. But they had this airconditioned education centre for kids, so we got a bit of a reprieve from the heat while Nephew played around with the different games that they had inside there.

We then made our way to Maxim’s Palace at City Hall for a yum cha lunch, which was busy as. We had to wait for about an hour for a table, which was mega insane. But the food here is good, and they still have the traditional push trolleys – with labels in both English and Chinese, listing the various dishes that a particular trolley has, and sometimes even a screen that scrolls through photos of the dishes! So this place always makes for a fun yum cha experience 😊 🥟🍲

The labels on one of the push trolleys at yum cha

And then in the evening, we decided to catch the Peak Tram up to – where else 😂 – The Peak. It had been under renovation for a few months, and I thought I’d quickly check to see if it was up and running yet, as I thought it would be nice to catch it up and/or down while they were in town. Luckily I checked, as they had just recently resumed operations in late July! Perfect timing! 😅

But when we got up to the top, Nephew was mega exhausted by this point and was testing his parents’ patience, so we didn’t didn’t really get to explore the area too much, which was a bit of a shame. But the Peak Tram experience itself was totally worth it – especially the ride down! Oh, and you can use your Octopus card to ride the Tram, which is sooo convenient. You can use it to go up to Sky Terrace 428 as well, apparently, but we didn’t go up there as Nephew had already lost it before we got the chance to go 😔 We may consider going up again sometime over the weekend, hopefully when we can catch the little one in a better mood!

The Peak Tram

Not sure about the parents, but I had a fun, touristy day 😊

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Brunch together before we went our separate ways

We went and had yum cha today. We decided to go to Maxim’s Palace at City Hall, the restaurant that we missed out on going to the other day because we got there so late. So today, we aimed to get there by about 10:30am. We weren’t far off that time, and it was actually quite a good time to go. We were given a choice in table, because there were quite a few still available at that time. So based on our experience today, I would recommend going for brunch / early lunch rather than a late one.

The food is great here too, as is the range. They had so many dishes that we wanted to eat, but we just didn’t have enough room for them all. Their trolleys had labels on the front to tell you what dishes that particular trolley had, in both English and Chinese, and some also had a little tv screen of sorts that scrolled through photos of the dishes. It was very impressive! It’s also all very orderly, so there isn’t too much of a culture shock in this particular restaurant 😊

We went back home afterwards and just hung out there for the rest of the afternoon. I spoke to my mum for a little while, and we were playing around with the fun filter options on Messenger. It’s good to be silly, I need more of that in my day 😊

And then in the evening, we all went our separate ways: N went to karate; N’s brother went to catch up with a friend; and I went to see The Nutcracker! 👍

It was a weird storyline… It deviated a bit from the story that I’m used to, and the first act was a little hard to follow (or maybe it was just me?). But the second act was SUPERB. The principal dancers were good, but what I really enjoyed – surprisingly – was the small contemporary pas de deux performance between the Egyptian dolls. Their control, strength, partnership, interpretation of the choreography… WOW. Just wow. Ok so they didn’t do a bajillion fouettes or jetes, but their little section of the performance really moved me. They were so amazing. And that’s coming from me, someone who’s not even a fan of contemporary ballet! So I’m very glad that I got to see the performance, as tonight was the last performance for the season.

It was a fun day 😊

Yum cha fail and Friends with family

We wanted to go have yum cha today, so we decided to try Maxim’s Palace over at City Hall, as it’s quite popular and apparently not so much of a culture shock as some older, more “local” places. It was around 2:30pm when we got there, and they had a sign up saying that they were closing between 3-5:30pm, I assume to prep for dinner. We took a ticket, and there were 15 numbers ahead of us. We figured by the time we get seated, it’ll be 3pm, so we decided to look for another place instead.

We walked to another nearby Chinese restaurant, but when we got there, we quickly see their sign saying that they too finish up at 3pm 😔 Then we walked to Tim Ho Wan in IFC, and the queue there was just ridiculous. We decided to skip this place too and just gave up on the whole yum cha idea, and settled for Tsui Wah, a local chain that’s quick and easy and relatively cheap. So lesson for today: yum cha places tend to close at 3pm in HK, and they’re really busy on Sundays! So maybe go either really early, or really late – but not as late as us today 😆

Then we just went home and rested up a bit (not that we did anything today anyway 😝) before N went to karate. And we all spent the rest of the evening binge watching Friends episodes, while Kitty happily slept on the couch in between the two brothers. It seems N’s brother and her are both starting to get used to each other now: he’s not breaking out in a rash every time he comes into contact with her fur; and she’s not acting all strange like she normally does when there’s someone new in the house. Progress 👍