Hong Kong: A futuristic city

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Hong Kong

Photography by Peter Shanks

Futurist and monumental, the region is one of the great financial centers of Asia, combining a regime with strong Western and ancient traditions of oriental stamp.

It is the view in the bustle of its markets, filled with imitations of watches and wallets and seafood and ducks hanging head down, always with the haggling and shopping ritual. Is visible in its colorful festivals, the Chinese New Year at the helm, but Hong Kong, certainly not China. Hundred fifty-five years of British rule (1842-1997) left their stamp on the archipelago that spreads in the Pearl River delta, on the southern coast of the Sea of China, and has no less than 260 islands (the Hong Hong is the most popular and crowded, but only the inhabited islands are ten!).

The condition of capitalist Hong Kong, whose stock is the second largest in Asia (behind Tokyo), is part of the intrinsic character of the island. One can guess from the very status of SAR (Special Administrative Region, it has until 2047), which implies that no mayor or governor, but a CEO that company which administers the territory, until his inexhaustible propensity to luxury consumption and records.

Among these, are some examples: it has the most Rolls-Royce and Ferraris in the world per capita, the third in cell phones per person, which has the largest floating restaurant, the longest escalator (800 meters is outdoors), the largest permanent show of lights and sounds (won its place in the Guinness), the heaviest suspension bridge (55,000 tonnes, a flat car and one for trains). Not to mention the passion for shopping and brands: Gucci has 13 stores, as well as Louis Vuitton and Zara Asia’s largest.

It is the only place on earth, if this were not enough, where you have paid 1,600,000 euros for a license plate with the number 8, luck and prosperity, according to Chinese belief. The exorbitant prices also reach the properties, especially when you consider that space is limited: 1100 km2 for seven million people.

Hong Kong: A futuristic city

Photography by gurms

On the island of Lamma no cars moving and surviving the rhythms of another time. That does not keep appearing all the time more and more buildings: When land is revalued, the old is demolished without much remorse. Thus, rising giant that climb to the clouds and built at breakneck speed with bamboo scaffolding, which is covered in mirrors and glass exterior and the interior are oriented according to the philosophy of feng shui.

That, the kind of Manhattan skyline, is the most widespread postal on the island. Less popular is the image of Hong Kong flashy buildings, those with the clothes hanging from the windows at the best Neapolitan style. Is repeated with increasing frequency as one moves away from the glamorous island and goes into the other two parts that make up the territory of Hong Kong’s Kowloon peninsula uproar, with electronics stores, jewelry shops, bars and markets are open 24 hours, and the New Territories, home to just over 50% of the population of Hong Kong, and are glued to the mainland.

Riding From Hong Kong

Photography by cogdogblog

Six safety pins:

Witnessing Symphony of Lights:

Every day from 20 hours, the city becomes one giant terrain crossed by laser beams, beams of light colors and reflectors 33 skyscrapers of Port Victoria, on both sides of the river that divides the island of Hong Kong and Kowloon Peninsula. The rainbow of lights, synchronized to perfection with symphonic music (can be heard tuning radios, iPods or cell phones), is enjoyed both from the water, on board a ferry, as in the shore where lies the Paseo de las Estrellas in Kowloon (the local version of Hollywood Boulevard is, for example, the handprints of Hong Kong actor Jackie Chan).

Top tram ride to Mount Victoria:

Underground tunnels, ferries, taxis whose doors open by themselves to passengers, trains submarines bus, etc … part of a transportation network that works with wonderful perfection. But nothing like getting on the old tram (it takes 100 years to run), which climbs the steep slopes of Mount Victoria, whose peak is at 554 meters, amidst lush greenery. This is one of the most expensive residential areas of Hong Kong, among other reasons to understand why: it has one of the most exceptional views of the island. From there you can see, for example, the Convention Center, with an air similar to the Sydney Opera House, or the International Finance Center Tower, designed by Cesar Pelli, soon to be surpassed in height by the World Commercial Center (510 will meters).

Visit the Giant Buddha:

Thus this mass is known bronze reaches 26 meters and 200 tons. Built in 1993, stands next to the Po Lin Buddhist Monastery, perched on top of a mountain on the island of Lantau Island (doubling in size of Hong Kong, although it has just 25,000 inhabitants). At the foot of the statue There are Starbucks, gift shops and other businesses that leave no doubt about the commercial nature of the ride, anyway worthwhile. Especially in the panoramic gives the trip on the funicular transparent floor (about U.S. $ 12 round trip), including the futuristic Hong Kong airport (designed by Norman Foster and opened in 1998).

Know the other side of Hong Kong:

Yes, Hong Kong is a different, far from the crowds, with subtropical rainforests, white sandy beaches and small-town pace. Not a bad idea to visit some of the neighboring islands to check. A good example is Lamma, an island fisherman with houses on stilts, no cars, where you can eat fresh seafood at good prices, 30 minutes by ferry from Hong Kong Island

Make shopping street:

The markets open mixed tireless in the Mongkok district in Kowloon uproar: the Flower Market, Bird Market, Ladies Market … The race endless haggling can buy everything from imitation handbags to the most absurd trinkets (like the Buddha who pee, suit dog or Hello Kitty watch with Mao’s face).

Sai Yeung Choi Street, Mongkok

Photography by JohnSeb

Enter the Man Mo Temple:

Built in 1847, the Taoist temple is one of the oldest on the island and pays tribute to the gods of literature (Man) and war (Mo). Inside there are offerings of fruit, clouds and clouds of incense smoke irritate the gods, and a sage who is consulted by HK $ 10 (U.S. $ 1.4).

Good luck in your travels to Hong Kong!

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