Where: Hong Kong
Who: Mr & Mrs Wanderlust together with the kids and granny
When: Oct 2019
What: Pio's birthday and Disneyland trip pushes on despite news about protests. TIPS ON STAYING SAFE DESPITE THE PROTESTS IN HK click read more.
So a couple of months ago we booked promo flights of PAL (Philippine Airlines) to HK, then news came out about protests and how it was dangerous to go in HK. So we took a bit of a gamble after asking a few friends who just went there. A bit exaggerated news which makes tourists scared, as a result we will be including a mini guide in this post to help anyone reading our posts who are planning or already booked to go to HK in the future.
How To Get There:
*For PH Passport holders as well as SE Asian passports are free to enter for 15days or more depending on your passport, please check with your government's foreign affairs office.
Getting to HK is easy from PH as it is just a 1 hour flight, which means, we can bring our toddler and won't have to deal with any tantrums or if we do it will be just an hour.
We always book Cebu Pacific on short flights because they are definitely cheaper but this time we tried Philippine Airlines (they were on sale and can't pass up on the opportunity). We got it for the price of a CebPac flight. It was definitely a good decision as the kids were happy with their own entertainment system screen in front of them and they are able to choose and watch their favorite movies on flight. The flight attendants were also friendly and would definitely consider booking again with them especially if we have kids.
Where To Stay
HK Disneyland Hollywood
This hotel is actually different from the main Disneyland Hotel, though it is about the same distance from the hotel to the theme park and they have their own shuttle bus which goes to and from the themepark every couple of minutes.
We decided to give Disneyland's Hollywood Hotel a try for a change as we always have been booking with the main Disneyland Hotel. It was less grand than the main hotel, however its colorful hollywood like designs made it really lively and kept the kids excited.
The staff were all friendly and nice to the kids giving them stickers and other stuff.
The hotel has facilities dedicated for kids like a mini arcade/playground, pool etc. They also have a big garden, outdoor playground and also a view of the sea.
The room was smaller than the main but they do make up for their service.
Their breakfast was very kid friendly and still has Mickey and his other friends mascot roaming around for the kids and photo services.
They also have a souvenir/shop inside the hotel just in case you forgot to grab something in the theme park's shops.
All in all it was a pleasant stay with the kids, maybe not as grand as the main hotel but again they make up for it with their service as well as the colorful building and facilities.
As a courtesy and respect to Disney which is the king of kid's movies, resorts and theme park, I would not put a score on my review, but definitely no complaints or issues with our stay.
What To Do
Bring out the kid in you, or bring the kids with you, whatever it is, everyone should definitely have a good time here with all the rides and programs, as well as their lovely themed foods and souvenir shops.
This was our first time with Halloween and was really nice that the kids also enjoyed the new designs and house/rides displays.
2. Ocean Park
This theme park is more for the bigger kids rather than smaller kids, but who cares! Due to the recent protests travelers has recently declined meaning the queue for the rides have decreased significantly and as the 30 minute-1 hour line will be just like 5 minutes.
The country have their fair share of delicious stuff that foodies would surely enjoy. From high class michelin star/ multiawarded restaurants, to the streetfood / noodle stall in the streets of Mongkok, your taste buds will enjoy the distinct flavors that HK has to offer.
Time and time again we always know that HK is one of the fashion centers in the world, meaning many brands from streetwear to luxury brands are available. But again due to the protests you have to watch out which malls/shops are affected and try to stay away from it. Check out our tips below this page regarding the protests.
5. Kids / Family Friendly Places
So many choices for kid friendly places/museum and we chose to go to the Planetarium as the little boy enjoys playing and learning about planets and the universe, and we were spot on as all of us actually enjoyed the planetarium and also learned a lot of things as well.
Another museum we went to was the Science museum. We actually went there with the kids a couple of years ago however we considered going there again as the little boy was still a baby back then so now there is more comprehension and enjoyment involved. And we were again right about this decision as we all enjoyed it.
There are a lot more kid friendly museums around the city you just have to check online see which ones spark your interest then make sure they are open for the day/time you plan to go.
Guide / Tips regarding the recent protests
- Protests are only during weekends as most protesters have jobs on the weekday
- Stay away from protest areas (usually Tsim Sha Tsui and nearby stations) are closed
- Do not engage in political discussion for your own as well as everybody's safety.
- Avoid wearing black or white as these are symbols of pro/anti government and may invite trouble (though we have seen many neutral people who just happen to wear black/ white and didn't get into any trouble.
- Most retail shops, as well the malls are still open (except for the damaged ones by the protesters) and business still on going on many parts. Though all these shops around the protest areas close down.
-When there is an on going protest, and if you are going to/from TST area (or any affected area for that matter) Prepare to walk as the train stations nearby will be closed, and taxi queue will surely be long, and you can cut line by flagging down random taxi drivers asking those on queue but with exorbitant prices
- Protesters generally won't harm tourists, same goes for the police, unless of course you stay in the middle of the action, or refuse to stay away, there is a definitely a chance you may get affected.
- There are definitely lots of sale and discount prices especially on affected areas so don't be shy to ask for discounts, but of course don't be too frugal because they need to pay their rent too.
- There may be times that your schedule might get affected by the on going protests, but it is better to understand them, rather than engage or make any political statements from any sides (as you may also be banned from the country or anything to that effect).
- Protests definitely affected the tourism in the country, but on the bright side, theme parks like Disneyland and Ocean Park has few people which means, less queue and you get to ride almost all the rides you want like a fast pass.
Hope our post helped you if ever you are planning or already have tickets to HK Booked. Just relax and try your best to enjoy, it is your little way as a tourist to help by supporting local businesses
Please check out our other posts. Thanks!
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