Mithun On The NetPersonal website of Mithun Divakaran, a guy you may or may not know — or like.
Hong Kong 2012: Mong Kok’s many markets, and fireworks at Victoria Harbour
Date: 1st July 2012
Today I shifted over to Mong Kok in Kowloon to begin the second phase of my Hong Kong sight-seeing. I had booked a dorm bed at Ah Shan Hostel/Dragon Inn which cost me HK$148 (Rs. 980/$19/€14) a night. Finding my hostel wasn’t that hard. As soon as I disembarked from Mong Kok Station, I took Exit D2 and the second building named Sincere House housed Ah Shan Hostel.
There are four elevators in total for this building
The hostel is on the 14th floor
This looked a residential/commercial kinda building. Space in Hong Kong being a luxury, even apartment rooms are turned into commercial spaces.
The dorm room wasn’t all that great, considering it was super cramped inside with barely any space to walk (photo of the bed I got is at the end of this post). Fiona was the hostel owner and she spoke fluent English, proving to be quite helpful.
That’s Fiona behind the reception desk
After securing my luggage in the room, I stepped out again.
It was quite a sunny Sunday
The main reason I stayed at Mong Kok is because of the many popular markets within walking distance
This side of Fa Yuen street was a general market
This being a Sunday, the maids had their day off. Kowloon sees a huge congregation of mostly Indonesian maids. Hong Kong island is where the Filipino maids meet up.
This is one end of Tung Choi Street, also nicknamed “Goldfish street”
And this is why
Lots of small fish on display
Even baby turtles and tortoises
In fact, this place is great if you want anything and everything to do with pet supplies. Not so great if you are an animal rights activist.
I walked around some more
Hong Kong is a city full of pedestrian overbridges. They need them. With roads being narrow due to lack of space, pedestrian overbridges help with the flow of human traffic without obstructing vehicular traffic below.
The walkways are also where the maids congregate. It was interesting to see them make a picnic spot of such public spaces, meet up with their fellow country(wo)men and enjoy their weekly day off.
Although I did feel sorry for the plight of these maids, I realize “that’s life” for some people in this world. I appreciate the fact the authorities allow them to ‘take over’ public spaces like this. I didn’t see them make a mess of the place or anything. They clean up well before leaving.
The markets below were busy as ever
Back on Nathan Road, a marching band was playing tunes as part of the celebrations commemorating the 15th year since the hand over of Hong Kong to China. Although, they were playing “Poker Face” by Lady Gaga.
At the other end of Fa Yuen street is “Shoe street” – for obvious reasons!
You get all the popular brands here. Adidas and Nike alone have multiple outlets here. Although I didn’t find prices here shockingly low or anything.
I went inside Mongkok Computer Centre looking for a brand of wireless adapters
It’s not a huge IT mall or anything, but you get the usual gamut of computing parts and mobile stores
I found the TP Link model my brother wanted, but decided to buy after checking out a few more IT malls
Most affordable malls and shopping complexes are like this: cramped for space
Stepped out for some fresh air
A new Indian restaurant was being advertised
I didn’t understand a word, just clicked. A political message perhaps?
This is Sino Centre. I didn’t know what was in store, but I still went in to check it out.
Downstairs were stores choc full of K-pop merchandise. This store had quite an impressive collection, including the very latest releases! Not just CDs – DVD boxsets, posters, other merchandise and much more.
The upper floors were all Japanese pop culture
Stores dedicated to Japanese import toys, figurines, games…
Western video game franchises…
…and of course anime!
Quite the place if you love Far East pop-culture. I feel Sino Centre is one place I would visit everytime I’m in Hong Kong.
That’s a LOT of manga!
This was quite a popular store
There were just too many things I wanted to buy
But this nerd decided to walk to the Flower Market next
The flower market is located on Prince Edward road
It’s full of shops selling anything and everything related to gardening
My mom would have loved this place
But for obvious travel restrictions, I couldn’t buy any seeds from here
Pretty much a one-stop destination for all your gardening needs in Hong Kong
It’s right next to (or behind) Mong Kok Stadium
It was time for me to leave this place
I headed back to Mong Kok’s MTR station
The sun was setting, but the markets were still busy
These pink top buses are among the many minibuses that ply all over Hong Kong
They had closed Nathan Road to traffic
People had to walk all the way to Victoria Bay for tonight’s fireworks as Tsim Tsa Tsui station was closed as well
The fireworks show was in commemoration of the 15th anniversary of the handover of Hong Kong to China. Considering how grand fireworks displays are in Hong Kong, especially during the New Year, I was expecting quite a show by the bay..
I walked all the way to Victoria Harbour
It was getting very crowded very quick
It was pretty packed by 8pm
And it began with quite a bang
They had laser lights too
Things would whimper at intervals before going great guns again
There were a lot of “oohs” and “ahhs” from the crowd
It was quite a show!
Although it was bit loud for some
But photos of fireworks are one thing, here’s an HD video!
The whole thing lasted around 15 minutes. The crowds slowly dispersed, but knowing the MTR stations would be crowded just as badly, I decided to walk instead.
It was going to be a long walk back
I took the small roads instead of walking on Nathan Road
Stopping along to way to take a few photos of course
The malls were closing for the day
Hong Kong traffic police had opened Nathan Road to vehicular traffic
I don’t remember what I did for dinner or where I had it from – but yeah, this was the end to another day of walking around a lot!
It’s not much, but this was the room. The bed was a bit small even for my 5′ 6″ body. Oh well, you get what you pay for.