Having visit a city multiple times and returning back again is always lovely.
1. You already know your way around or at least how to get around
2. You don't have to revisit the typical tourist destinations (done and dusted!)
3. You get to venture out to other less well known places
4. You can take your own time visiting the places you want to visit!
This trip to Hong kong was my 3rd time there, and this time, I went with my cousin and my aunt. Since we've all been to Hong kong, and we weren't exactly in the mood to do too much shopping damage, we had sometime to hit up pretty Instagram-able locations in the city.
These places were definitely not located near train stations or bus stops, but having the luxury of time meant that we could spend more time hunting down these Instagram spots that hong kong residents speak of and spend some time taking photographs there!
1 | Sai Wan Swimming ShedThe first spot we headed to was this abandoned old swimming shed.
A place slowly gaining traction and #hastag hits on the Instagram community.
Because we visited this spot at around 4 in the afternoon and it was a rather cloudy/rainy day, we did not get to see the beautiful sunset one would get in the summer, but it also meant that we did not have to deal with the line of tourists that forms (as I gathered from some Instagram posts), just to take a picture of the shed/with the shed.
As of now it isn't as crowded of a spot as other Instagram destinations, but once the word gets out, I don't think i'd be going on a 50 minute bus ride just for a photograph.
Although, if you're into fishing, sitting at the edge of the shed and catching some fishes might be a great idea.
2 | Colourful Steps at Yau Ma TeiThis spot we stumbled on by accident. We were walking along the streets of Yau Ma Tei after lunch locating the bus stop to take a bus to the Sai Wan Swimming Shed when we passed by these 2 rows of beautifully painted steps.
We were definitely not the only ones taking photographs there, but the steps were so long that each segment was painted a different pattern, which makes for multiple Instagram shots at one location. For a full view of the steps, see here!
I'm pretty sure there are more street art and graffiti areas in Hong Kong, but it was lovely to just stumble upon these 2 rows of steps as we were casually walking around the streets of Yau Ma Tei!
3 | Clustered Houses in Quarry Bay
Quarry Bay was the last spot we stopped at to shoot whilst our Instagram mission was still in operation, before the rain came and stopped it.
These houses are best viewed at during the night time when the lights come on, but we weren't staying on Hong kong island, so that made it difficult for us to visit this location at night.
The good thing about this location is that there were several little platforms you could climb on to get the perfect photograph. And because its hidden in sort of like a back alley, you don't get the judgemental looks one would get from a passerby for posing or taking multiple jump shots!
I would definitely recommend visiting Quarry Bay at night or early in the morning when the lighting is favourable.
Visiting this spot in the middle of day or when the sun was about to set made for very grey and dull-er looking photos.
Still, it's definitely worth a visit. Especially since it is a more accessible location.
Also, what you see on pictures is really what you get. You really have to strain your neck just to look to the top of these old apartment buildings.
I love re-visiting old places just to go to places like these. Do away with the popular places like Victoria Harbour and The Peak. Take a bus ride to the edge of Hong Kong island, or go hunting for street art. It makes for a more exciting memory.
It might seem pretty ridiculous traveling to places for a nice photograph or for Instagram, but we all want nice photographs as keepsakes - it's definitely the cheapest form of a souvenir. So technically, there is no harm in going off the beaten path for this reason right?
18 November 2016 Hong Kong
If you follow me on Instagram, you'd have seen this outfit. Here's the story linked to it :)
Spring came slightly early for me when I was basking in the sun and its warmth during my solo trip to Lisbon in Portugal. One of the places I visited, was called Belem, a place 3 train stops away from the Lisbon city centre. It is a place with PERFECT OOTD backgrounds, windy, yet sunny, nice open space, lush greenery, and most importantly, it is home to the ORIGINAL PORTUGUESE EGG TARTS.
In Portugal, they are called Pastéis de Nata which translates to custard tarts. Well whatever you call them, they are delightful. I had at least 1 for every day I was in Portugal.
On the first night of my arrival in Lisbon, I had a brief conversation with a stranger interviewing tourists in Lisbon for a school project, and he told me I had to visit Belém. I was certain I would be going until, during dinner, a fellow traveler (who has been to Lisbon before) told me that she thought Belém was overhyped.
Nevertheless, on my third day in Portugal, I had a free afternoon to kill, and thus headed off to Belém, and I was glad I did!
Before hitting up Belém I scrolled through the internet looking for ideas on what to do there and things/attractions to visit. One of the top places that came up was the Jerónimos Monastery. From the pictures online, it looked really majestic.
There were 2 parts to the Monastery, the Church was free to enter, but to enter the other part of the Monastery, I had to pay 10euros. I thought It would be pretty worth it, considering it looked incredible from the outside, and so I did. Unfortunately, despite the really neat architecture, I thought 10 euros was way too over priced. The details of the Jerónimos Monastery facade was interesting, but if you aren't a fan of architecture, I suggest skipping out on the entrance and just enjoying the external view.
Fortunately, I was one of the last to enter the place for that day, and I had it pretty much all to myself. There weren't many tourist in the Monastery to begin with anyway.
After leaving the Monastery, I headed towards the river for some awesome views by it. But, as I was passing by a huge fountain, I caught a rainbow! I love sights like this, it just reminds me how beautiful and unexpected our world is :)
By this time, the sun was about to set and the winds started to blow, it was nice to admire the view of the river and the bridge. The lack of a railing by the edge of the waters did freak me out a little. I didn't dare go too near the edge for the fear of getting blown into the waters or losing my balance and falling in. The strength of the wind was seriously insane!!
When people go to Belém, more often than not, is to visit the Tower of Belém, where you could apparently get a beautiful panoramic view. I had this theory that the last entry would be approximately 6pm, so that visitors could watch the sunset from above. Happily believing my self-constructed theory, and without checking the internet for any prior confirmation, strolled over to the tower at 6, and realised everyone was walking in the opposite direction.
That's when I started thinking, "Could it have closed earlier than 6? Why is everyone walking away from the tower?" Upon reaching the Tower of Belém, I realised that the last entry to climb up for the views was 5pm. I was pretty bummed, until I realised the lack of tourists in the region means a chance to take decent photos - i.e. photos with no tourist heads in them!
What made all the walking worth it despite not having the opportunity to head up to the tower was the colourful sunset. I loved walking by the river just taking in my surroundings and having the sunset right in front of me.
Against the sunset, the tower looked incredible. It reminded me of the type of tower Rupunzel would be trapped in. Slightly fairytale like, but not pretty perfect and all princessy.
It was a shame I didn't get to visit the tower, but I enjoyed my afternoon in Belém. Coincidentally, I wore an outfit with nice teal green shades and a flowy cut that reminded me of mermaids and the ocean.
I am definitely missing the double digit temperatures of Lisbon now that i'm back in cold rainy London. Cannot wait for spring and summer to arrive. I think I'm a beach/sun/warmth loving girl at heart.
Thank you for reading, do let me know your thoughts! x
WHAT I WORE
Teal Dress: ASOS
Fluffy Cardigan: Primark
Boots: ECCO Shoes
'Fur' Lined Leggings: Primark