I say 'taste' as it feels like we've had the Disney version of China here in Hong Kong! We stayed in the stunning JW Marriot, whose lower ground floor lift opens out to the Pacific Place Mall with Prada, Versace, Gucci etc and we did see some amazing animals at Ocean Park but they were far from in their natural environment!
It was well worth a visit and we had a great day out, this gorgeous giant panda and red panda being the absolute highlight. Sophia spent a good hour just observing the dolphin training at the marine mammal research centre, where they had 4 pools of dolphins bred through the worlds first AI programme.
Meanwhile the boys did some terrifying rides we were keen to skip! There was a couple of brilliant roller coasters, but the animals (particularly the giant panda and red panda) and aquarium were definitely a highlight of Hong Kong for us.
Hong Kong is an autonomous territory, previously a British colony and was only handed back to China on 1st July 1997.
It's a major port and global financial hub and is densely populated so if you do step outside of the shiny new malls, it's insanely busy and not pleasant to get around on foot. We walked to an authentic Chinese market which was interesting and we're able to see the contrasts of traditional living against the backdrop of the cities skyscrapers.
We couldn't work out what the occasion was as we walked down to see the harbour. There were groups of girls sitting on plastic sheets having picnics all over town - even under escalators! We learnt later on that it's the maids who have one day off a week and meet their friends to hang out on Saturdays.
On our last night our good friend Jimbob flew in a day early for meetings here, so we caught up over dinner and the boys went on for birthday drinks. They obviously felt the need to celebrate Dave's birthday as they didn't return until Dave was well into his 46th year!
It's our final morning here and Daves birthday. We were planning a walk in Hong Kong Park and a tram to The Peak where our lovely friends The Whites lived for a couple of years, but it's pouring down with rain. So lunch with Jimbob instead and I'll leave you with a photo of Dave the last time he was here with the boys for the Hong Kong 7's, where fancy dress is obligatory. I'm not sure what the locals in the bus queue knew quite what to think....