Kabur ke HONGKONG alone. (part 1)

It’s Chinese New Year 2012! And I thought wouldn’t it be great if I go to Hongkong and enjoy the festive there? So I planned my trip, alone, to Hongkong. Well I used to travel by myself a lot everywhere in the world anyway, so I’d do it again this time. Okay… I got everything planned and written down, so I thought I’d be fine. I flew to Singapore and had a few hours transit before flying to Hongkong. So I took my time..lalala..blablabla.. tralala..relax..relax..and guess what happened? Yup, I missed my flight.

Tahun Baru Cina 2012! Gue pikir ini adalah waktu sempurna untuk jalan-jalan ke Hongkong dan menikmati suasana Tahun Baru Cina yang sebener-benernya. Ya kann? Jadi gue beli tiket dan berangkat SENDIRIAN. Yak bener, sendiri aja. Dari dulu sering banget jalan sendiri, jadi hajar juga kali ini. Gue terbang ke Singapore dan transit disitu beberapa jam. Nyantai, makan, bengong, menikmati Changi dan…salah perhitungan waktu! Gue pun ketinggalan pesawat ke Hongkong!! 🙁 🙁

I took time just a little bit too long and it was too late to check in. DUH! I felt like being in an intersection between going back to Jakarta and buying a new ticket to Hongkong. After lots of considerations, I chose the second option. But my blunder caused me a lot. I supposed to arrive in Hongkong at around 5 pm so I could hurry to Victoria Harbour and watch the parade and famous Hong Kong fireworks at 8 pm. But my bad time management made my departure moved to 4.30 pm and I arrived in Hongkong at 9.30 pm. Of course the Chinese New Year’s Eve party had already ended ~ *sobbed*

Ketinggalan pesawat di Singapore tuh rasanya gak enak banget…panik..merasa bersalah..dan bingungBingung antara mau pulang Jakarta lagi aja atau beli tiket baru. Udah nanggung banget, jadi akhirnya gue beli tiket baru. Masalahnya, rencana awal kan mau sampe di Hongkong sore, supaya gue bisa nonton parade Tahun Baru dan liat kembang api di Victoria Harbour jam 8 malem. Tapi gue dapet pesawat jam setengah 5 sore dan sampe Hongkong jam setengah 10. Otomatis, semua puncak perayaan udah selesai. Menyebalkan. *nangis*

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But that shouldn’t stop me to have fun in Hongkong, right? 😉 Getting off the plane, I tried to be one of the firsts to pass through the immigration. Thank goodness I sat on 2a (I checked in very early). Then I purchased the octopus card at the MRT place for HK$150 n went straight to the bus terminal to ride a bus number 21 to Mongkok. It’s all pretty easy to do, cause all the info was clear enough for tourists. The bus was a nice double-decker one, and sitting on top was a good choice. There was a voice over inside the bus, explaining about Lantau Island as the largest island in Hongkong; and also a home to the HK airport, the big Buddha statue, n Disneyland.

Sampai di Hongkong, gue berusaha jadi orang pertama di imigrasi biar cepet keluar. Untung nomor kursi gue 2a (check in paling duluan gara-gara trauma ketinggalan pesawat lagi..hehehe). Habis itu gue beli kartu Octopus di tempat MRT seharga Rp.220.000 dan gue pake untuk naik bus nomor 21, tujuan Mongkok. Asli, di Hongkong semua info trasportasi sangat jelas jadi nggak usah takut kalau jadi turis sendirian disini. Bus gue keren, 2 tingkat dan ada penjelasan yang diputer tentang tempat-tempat yang kita lewatin maupun tempat hiburan di Hongkong pada umumnya.

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this is my Octopus Card – setau gue kartu ini berlaku 3 tahun

 The bus moved pretty slowly so it took around 30 mins to take to the 1st stop. It was slightly raining outside and the view along the way was really nice. I liked HK already. The 6th stop was Mongkok. I got off and stood there for a while, confused. O oh, where I am exactly? I spotted some maps here and there, tried to combine the puzzle and finally found my Hotel after around 45 minutes. Relieved. My so-called ‘hotel’ was more like a hostel and looked exactly like the ones I saw in Jackie Chan old movies. Very hard bed, damped, freakishly small bathroom, and shady. There were around 5 other hostels plus some stores sharing the same old building. In this busy season, this place was the one I got for my budget range. The good news was I got the room just for myself. Phew. At around midnight, I went strolling around Mongkok. The night market looked like it was just started at that hour. Soooo many people shopping, from fake Prada bags to pajamas and cute earphones. I tried on some of the street food, which was really good; and also bought around 10 packs of fake eyelashes for a really good deal. 😀 The place was crazy. People shopped ‘til they dropped!

Bus-nya butuh waktu sekitar setengah jam untuk sampai di perberhentian pertama. Mongkok sendiri adalah tempat berhenti ke 6. Gue turun dari bus dan bengong bentar. Bingung. Gue dimana ya nih? Orang rame banget, ujan rintik rintik, dan lampu disana sini bikin bingung berat..ahh jangan nyasar dong,Liv… Gue liat peta dan berusaha untuk mikir sambil nyari jalan. 45 menit kemudian (sempet salah masuk gedung beberapa kali), gue sampe juga di ‘hotel’ gue. Gue sebut ‘hotel’ bukan hotel, karena ternyata ini adalah hostel murah dengan bentuk sangat menyeramkan. Gedungnya jelek, dan sama sekali nggak meyakinkan. Mirip ama gedung-gedung tua di film-film Steven Chow atau Jacky Chan. Sadis! Untung gue dapet kamar untuk gue sendiri. Di musim Tahun Baru Cina, semua hotel penuh dan mahal banget. Cuma ini yang bisa gue dapet dengan harga miring. Untung numpang tidur doang gapapa kali ya. Tengah malem habis cek in, gue jalan keluar dan ternyata didepan hotel ada pasar malem. Ya ampun, dari tas Prada palsu sampe bulu mata palsu ada semua. MURAH PARAH. Gue belanja sampe jam 3 pagi kali. Gila nih Hongkong.

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Well, that was the introduction of my trip to HK. The next 4 days in the city, I visited some of its major attractions. I walked here and there a lot! I think HK was much more than a shopping haven. HK itself is a unique combination between modern and culture, and between green peaks and a stunning ocean. It’s an excellent alternative for those seeking adventure, like me.

Okey, itu adalah hari pertama gue di Hongkong. Empat hari berikutnya, gue berkunjung ke berbagai tempat. Kaki gue sampe blisteran dan jalan agak pincang pas balik Jakarta gara-gara kebanyakan jalan. Gue suka Hongkong. Ini adalah perpaduan yang pas antara modernisme dan budaya, dan antara gunung serta lautan. Hongkong lebih dari sekedar surga belanja dan makanan.

First stop was admiring the HK Skyline. Many claim it as the best skyline in the world. It’s a serious competition for New York’s skyline, in my opinion. I preferred to enjoy it from Avenue of Stars (a Hollywood like area where famous Hong Kong Stars have left their hand imprints). I went there two times, one in the morning and another one at night to see the difference. Looking over Victoria Harbor directly at the Hong Kong Island skyline was great. At night, the buildings lit up and every 8 pm the lights ‘dance’ to the music with the help of lasers and special lighting for the show. It was really amazing! After watching the spectacular show, I took the famous Star Ferry, across the lovely Victoria Harbor. Awesome view!

Gue pergi ke Avenue of Stars untuk menikmati pemandangan gedung-gedung tinggi Hongkong. Gue coba pergi siang dan malem untuk dapet kesan yang berbeda. Kalau malem sekitar jam 8, ada pertunjukan laser dan lampu menari-nari mengikuti musik di gedung-gedung nya. Keren banget. Gue juga nyobain nyebrang pake kapal ferry ‘Star’ yang terkenal.

The next day I went to The Peak (Victoria Peak). People could not possibly visit Hong Kong and not visit Victoria Peak. The cable car or the Peak Tram (the city’s oldest mode of public transport – single ride ticket for HK$ 53) ride up was terrific and made me wonder how I didn’t simply fall down the mountain. It was very foggy and windy when I got to the Sky Terrace 428, -the highest 360° viewing platform in HK-, but the view was still outstanding. I’ll make sure to go there again in a clear day next time I am in HK. At the peak, there were lots of things to do, from shopping, dining, up to Madame Tussauds experience located on P1. I visited Madame Tussauds back in Shanghai a year ago, so I passed. Shopping was not an option either. So I took time trying some shrimps in Bubba’s Gump while looking at the view from the top. After a few hours, the fog became thicker..I couldn’t see anything anymore..so I returned to the city with a cab for around HK$ 100. I was about to take the bus actually, but the queue was simply too much to handle.

Besoknya gue ke Victoria Peak, puncak di tengah kota Hongkong. Ini tempat WAJIB didatengin. Antri tiketnya lumayan panjang, tapi yang didapet juga seru. Gue naik trem ke atas (satu arah waktu itu seharga Rp.78.000 – gue baliknya nggak naik trem lagi, dan nggak jadi naik bus juga, tapi naik taksi seharga Rp.150.000 gara-gara nggak kuat antri) dan menikmati pemandangan di Teras khusus yang mereka bangun untuk ngeliat Hongkong dari ketinggian. Walau pas gue dateng lagi mendung, tetep bagus! Cuma ya dingin banget anginnya diatas, sampe menggigil gue. Disitu ada juga Museum Madame Tussauds. Gue udah pernah di Madame Tussauds di Shanghai jadi gue nggak beli tiket masuknya. Gue akhirnya sempetin untuk nyoba makan udang doang di resto Bubba’s Gump.

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well, u all know, the Bubba Gump Shrimp Restaurant and Market is a chain of seafood restaurants inspired by the 1994 film Forrest Gump

Hm..where else to go? (to be continued) if you still wanna read more please click “My solo escape to HONGKONG (part 2)”

Selanjutnya gue kemana? (bersambung… kalau masih pengen baca, silahkan klik “My solo escape to HONGKONG (part 2)”)

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for me, the freedom of wandering alone is simply irresistible – olivelatuputty.com -@shiningliv

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