|First time ever to ride a bus with the family, it took 12 hours from Baguio to Manila!😓
So, our first trip abroad, yay! “O” and I haven’t traveled a lot because we were too busy raising our family and doing our best to live a comfortable life, and I’ve read enough articles about traveling with babies and toddlers to know I will not enjoy it as much if I had a baby or a toddler in tow, so the urge to travel didn’t real kick in back then.
Now that Lucas is 8 and Chakai is 14, we can finally travel and see the world as a family, little by little. 🙂
Our first destination, Hong Kong-Macau.
|Team OA’s first trip abroad!😊
I’ve read that Hong Kong is a good first vacation abroad destination for a family, because it’s not very far, the weather isn’t much different from ours, except during their winter, and it’s a good place to start to get a feel of vacationing abroad.
This is our very first vacation abroad and it was with the entire #EmilioFallarme clan (almost, we’re just missing O’s eldest sister and her family because they couldn’t join us this time), so to say that we were excited is an understatement, which is why I want to document every minute of our vacation so that when I’m old and senile I can just read this post and remember how amazing and awesome it all was.
Also, if it helps someone plan their trip, then that will make me happy too. 🙂
So anyway, we planned to explore Hong Kong and Macau in only 3 nights and 4 days, we knew it will probably won’t be enough time, but it was all the time we had as “O” and his brothers had jobs to keep.
We came from a grueling 9-hour bus ride from our hometown of Baguio City to Manila and we only had a couple of hours to rest before heading to the airport.
Initially we wanted to take a deluxe bus trip so that the travel time from Baguio to Manila will be cut from 9 hours or more with heavy traffic to only 3-4 hours, but as luck would have it, deluxe was fully booked so we had no choice but to take the regular aircon bus.
So 9. freaking. hours.
By the time we got to Manila, my ass was so numb I thought for sure they were flattened from sitting down for too long! Geez. #neveragain!
So we got to Manila, finally! O’s younger brother, “L”, picked us up from the bus station and treated us to dinner, a blog post on that will be on #EatsOA soon. Dinner was amaze balls, thank you “L” and wife, “N”. 🙂
Our flight wasn’t until 5am the following morning, we thought we’d have more time to rest when we got to Manila but because we had no choice but to ride the regular ac bus and we arrived in Manila waaaay later than expected, we were pressed for time because we had to be in the airport 2 hours before our flight.
I was able to nap for like 3 hours in L & N’s house after dinner though, but I felt tired because I had no sleep on the bus, for some reason I couldn’t fall asleep during the bus ride, I tried so many times to no avail.
From L & N’s house, I don’t know how far Las Piñas is from the airport, but because it was like 1am, traffic wasn’t so heavy, because L wasn’t comfy leaving his car in the airport’s parking lot, we took 2 Grab Cars to the airport, because all 9 of us won’t fit in just 1 Grab car.
We got there around 2am. Plenty of time for checking in, weighing in luggage and making our way to the gate.
My sister in law, O’s eldest sister “V”, checked us in online so we didn’t need to wait in queue for a long time. We just had our luggage’s weighed, tickets handed to us and off we went to our gate.
That whole process took an hour, only because there’s 19 of us.
We had another hour to kill until our flight so N and I decided we needed coffee, we took it as an opportunity to catch up while we looked for a coffee shop.
My sister in law N and I get along really well not just because our husbands are brothers, we really became friends when we lived together for a short while, when our first borns were little and L have yet to decide whether to reside in Baguio or Manila, a whole other tale worthy of a separate post. 😛
Anyway, we got coffee and lounged in the waiting area by our gate for an hour and then finally it was time to board the plane.
We arrived in Hong Kong at around 7:30-8:00am.
It was a beautiful sunny day! I was literally so giddy because of my excitement.
Their airport was fantastic, it’s a sight itself, I probably sound stupid but give me a break, this is my first time!
The bathrooms over there are so fancy too! I couldn’t help but take a selfie. Lol!
So we grabbed all the fliers we needed, fliers to Disneyland, Ocean Park and other tourist spots, we got bus routes and schedules and MTR routes.
Their MTR or the Mass Transit Railway is amaze balls and it’s not so hard to figure out because it’s color coded.
But first we needed to get Octopus Cards, they’re like SM Cinema E-Plus cards, you tap with it to pay. You can get the Octopus Card in the airport, top it up with enough credits and you’re good, you can use this not only for the bus and MTR but on convenience stores like 7-11 too and if you run out of load you can top it up in 7-11 stores or in the train stations.
With our Octopus cards topped up and ready to be tapped, we found the nearest exit.
It wasn’t the exit to where the MTR was, unfortunately, lol, but we did manage to find where the buses were.😆
We rode the bus that will take us straight to where our hostel was.
After like 13 stops.
The bus ride costs HK$33. It costs differently depending on where you ride it.
The MTR is waaay cheaper because rides cost less than HK$10, again, depending on where you ride it and where you get off.
2:00pm is the check in time and we were way early for checking in as that was only around 9am. So we left our things on the front desk and set off to eat brunch.
We literally just crossed the street and went into the first mall we saw, and literally ate at the first restaurant we saw.
Food details will be blogged about over at #EatsOA.
Food was so freaking expensive!!!😱 And soda cost HK$50!😱 What the hell?!😵
My sister in law thought tea was complimentary so she kept chugging it like it was water, she said that when she went to China, tea was free and was equivalent to service water, and HK is China, so she kept drinking the tea.
As I was reading the menu and taking pictures for our food blog, I saw the very fine print, it said “Tea costs HK$6 per glass”.😂
I told my sister in law and she seriously almost did a spit take, it was hilarious, she drank sooo much tea.😂
In as much as I want to discuss our dining experience, I want to save that for the food blog, I’ll keep you posted.
Finally, it was 2pm and we can finally check in.
I’m told the hostel we checked in at wasn’t fancy, it’s a 2 star accommodation at most, and it’s a hostel, so my expectations weren’t that high to begin with.
It wasn’t horrible, it was an okay place to spend the night at and get some sleep, it was really cheap as compared to other hotels, but it’s not Instagram worthy.
Initially we just wanted to settle our stuff, perhaps freshen up a bit and then see the sights. Instead, we gave in to our urge to ‘siesta’.😁
With the exception of Lucas and our nephew Benedict, everyone napped the entire afternoon.
Our nephews and nieces with the exception of Tiffany, Athena, Audric and Nico stayed in our room for the afternoon, we didn’t mind, “O” and I were out like a light 5 minutes after our heads hit the pillow, we can vaguely hear Lucas and Benedict watching videos on YouTube and out of all of us, they were the strong ones.😂
So that was how we wasted the only sunny day during our 3night-4day vacation.😜
Had we known, we wouldn’t have wasted it napping.
We woke up around 4pm, waited for the others and then we headed out to see some of the sights that were in the vicinity of where we were checked in.
So we took a walk, to just take in the sights and then have some dinner.
|The Hong Kong Space Museum
|The Hong Kong Museum of Art
An interactive art in front of the Museum of Art. It’s sort of like a giant megaphone with a monitor of a karaoke on the bottom part, so you can sing a song into it and the sound will be magnified. So fun!
The Victoria Harbour in the afternoon. I love how the air tasted and smelled like the sea and I love how the waves slowly rock the boats and yachts and ships along the water. The view was just so darn calming. We hung around here for quite a while just taking in the view.
|Victoria Harbour in the Afternoon
I love clock towers, I find them intriguing. Can you imagine the fascinating stories it can tell you if it can talk? I can and I find it all so amazing.
|The Clock Tower along the Victoria Harbour
The Victoria Harbour at night. I loved it during the afternoon but I loved it more during the night. It was absolutely breathtaking.
The sun slowly setting. The dark slowly covering the once bright sky. The slow, light, drizzle falling from the sky.
The Hong Kong skyline going alive in the night. Magnificent. It was all so beautiful.
Every night at 8pm, locals and tourists were treated to a light show which you can watch on the Victoria Harbour. It features lights from the building on Hong Kong Island, just across from Victoria Harbour.
Honestly though, it wasn’t anything to rave about, I’ve seen better light shows, plus it was raining and a bit foggy (or was that smog?😕) so we didn’t get to appreciate it so much, but even without the light show, the view from the harbour is still breath taking.
|The Victoria Harbour at Night
The Avenue of the Stars. I seriously wanted to take photos with the footprints and handprints as well as statues of stars like Jackie Chan, Jet Li, Chow Fun Fat, Zhang Ziyi.
Unfortunately, it was under construction during our visit so we didn’t get to see it.😞
But,one more reason to visit again in the future!😊
|Behind us, is where The Avenue of the Stars should be…
After watching the light show, it rained so hard, so while we waited for it to slow down a bit, we took lots of family photos under the shade of the walkway and then when the rain was merely a drizzle we headed off to look for a place to have dinner.
Details of which will be on EatsOA, hopefully soon, I need to get my pictures sorted out first.😜
After dinner, which was around 10pm already, we headed back to our hostel for some much needed rest.
And that concludes Day 1 of our 3Day4Night vacation in Hong Kong/Macau. 🙂