Just got back from a quick trip to Hong Kong with some friends. I only spent around two days there and one was set aside for a visit to Disneyland.
It’s a pretty cheap flight from Tokyo and the cost of things once there wasn’t outrageous.
Also, since HK used to belong to the United Kingdom, English is widely spoken here! With the exception of one cabbie and an employee at a McDonald’s (went for a friend…), I was able to communicate better than I can in Japan.
Unlike at the Tokyo Disney parks, everyone at Hong Kong Disneyland spoke English. And though this is the 10-year anniversary of the park, according to the Los Angeles Times, the attendance and profits are down. Sad for them, but great for us! The park is definitely on the small side, but the ride lines were short and the crowds were small, too. Another strange thing: the souvenir shops had a 70 percent clearance section! I don’t think I’ve ever seen that at a Disneyland, not that anyone was complaining.
One more Disney tidbit: If you’re there and looking for the Haunted Mansion, you won’t find it. Instead, you’ll find the Mystic Manor, a fantasy ride about an artifact collector and his pet monkey. Due to Chinese culture and traditions regarding ghosts and the afterlife, Disney wisely went the Mystic Manor route for their ride at Hong Kong Disneyland.
I’d highly recommend Hong Kong for people looking to wet their toes in Asia travel but afraid of not knowing the native language.
Since this trip was very short and partially for business, I missed a few of the big attractions, so I have to go back soon…to be continued, amirite?…
The view from Victoria Peak. It was a bit foggy but the view is a beaut!
Discovery Bay on Lantau Island is a nice area where apparently a lot of foreigners reside. No cars are allowed past a certain point and the public transportation system is supposed to be pretty good.
Taxis are color-coded here depending on which island you’re traveling to. This particular one is for Hong Kong island.
Pardon the cameral lens shadow. Hong Kong dollars are super colorful.
Hong Kong dim sum…or what’s left of it. This shrimp dumpling had a weird gelatinous texture. Since the server did not speak English we did a bit of confusing pointing and praying our food wouldn’t be too weird when it arrived. According to Google, this dumpling is called Siu Mai.
Hong Kong dim sum. This dining experience was almost as confusing as having Yakiniku in Japan. It was a big guessing game but the food was okay. Not a good first meal for the picky eaters, though.
Dipped my toes in the South China Sea at Discovery Bay on Lantau Island.
Crab dude at Lan Kwai Fong in Hong Kong. LKF is a entertainment/dining district with a huge crowd of foreigners and young people out for some fun and drinks.
Mystic Manor is Hong Kong Disneyland’s version of The Haunted Mansion. The theme is based on fantasy and does not have any reference to ghost or afterlife out of respect to Chinese cultural and religious beliefs.
A recreation of The Little Mermaid kiss scene at the princess gardens at Hong Kong Disneyland.
Hong Kong Disneyland has an entire ‘town’ devoted to Toy Story. Very cute.
Toy soldiers at the Toy Story town in Hong Kong Disneyland. They actually rode a parachute ride with a few lucky people.
The exterior of Mystic Manor at Hong Kong Disneyland looks like the outside of a museum or something. Reminded me a lot of Jumanji.
Toy Story land at Hong Kong Disneyland. Got to this part of Disney before anyone else that morning.
Little girl posing was pretty funny/cute.
Another cute kid looking a little confused at the Disneyland princess garden.
My disneyland lunch consisted of some brisket and rice with cabbage, BBQ pork dim sum, shrimp dim sum and a Snow White cupcake. Everything was pretty bland and the best tasting thing, however, were the BBQ pork dim sum buns.