Everything I loved about Hong Kong - David Sylvia

Study abroad, January - June 2007.

Causeway Bay crossing
@daveexplores on Instagram

Above all, I learned...

Who I am. I'm gonna get deep real quick. This was my first time traveling overseas. This was my first time being somewhere where English was not the native language. This was my first time being an ethnic minority. This was the first time where my grades weren't being recorded. This was my first time where every part of my identity was not only more apparent, but challenged. Yes, I learned a lot about Hong Kong politics and influence from mainland China, Eastern philosophy and its differences from my Western upbringing, and how to stomach a whole lot of flavors and smells that I was NOT expecting. But, this trip was so much more than discovering Hong Kong; it was about discovering me. I learned which parts of myself really mattered to the world, and which parts of myself really mattered to me.

Where to stay...

For HKU students: Starr Hall was the shit when I was there.

For HKU students: Wei Lun Hall was my home, which was...fine.

$$ Citadines Mercer Hong Kong

$$ Ovolo 286 Queen's Road Central

$$ Hotel Indigo Hong Kong Island

$$$ The Pottinger Hong Kong

$$$ The Shangri-La Hotel

Where to eat...

The Brunch Club

The Flying Pan


Nha Trang

Yum Cha

City Hall Maxim’s Palace

Luk Yu Tea House

Dim Sum Library


Uma Nota

Ho Lee Fook


Mother Of Pizzas


22 Ships

Burger Circus


Smile Yoghurt & Dessert Bar

Hui Lau Shan

Mammy Pancake

Oddies Foodies

Where to drink...

Ladies' Nights - women drink for free or deep discount:

Tuesday: Soirée

Wednesday: Rummin’ Tings, Ophelia, Oolaa

Thursday: Cé La Vi, Otto Lounge, Rude

Saturday: Solas


Dr Fern’s Gin Parlour

The Chinnery

8 1/2 Otto e Mezzo Bombana



Lan Kwai Fong - expat bar district

Lily & Bloom



The Pontiac

Old Man

65 Peel

Red Sugar

Mizunara: The Library

The Globe

What to do...

Victoria Peak - hike (walk up) from the western side

Ocean Park - aquarium + amusement rides

Lamma Island - hiking and seafood

Tian Tan Buddha - aka Big Buddha

Deep Water Bay beach - quiet

Repulse Bay beach - big

Clearwater Bay beach - gorgeous, but remote

Victoria Park - pro & amateur tennis tournaments

Monkey Mountain - hike in Kam Shan Country Park, home to macaque monkeys

Hong Kong Sevens - international rugby tournament at Hong Kong Stadium

Hong Kong Soccer Sevens - international soccer/football tournament at Hong Kong Stadium

Happy Valley Racecourse - horse racing by Hong Kong Jockey Club

Hong Kong Heritage Museum

Victoria Harbour - charter a boat and watch the laser display (Symphony of Lights) at 8pm

or, watch the Symphony of Lights from the Tsim Sha Tsui side of the harbor

Tai O - fishing village

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