It happens in threes! The day before our departure to Asia, Molly came down with a horrendous sickness bug…which she then passed onto Marcus and I the morning we left. The thought of being on a plane for 12 hours whilst ill was most daunting; however we we sucked it up and were keen to get out of London via a very kind favour from Jules who took us to the airport.
It was my first time at Heathrow Terminal 5 and we quickly bought the whole of Boots Pharmacy as a way to drug ourselves better. A delay was obviously on the cards with our luck so we tag teamed in and out of soft play to entertain moose/wear her out before the flight. A good idea since we were stuck on the Tarmac while they de-iced the wings for well over an hour before take off.
The flight itself wasn’t too arduous, Molly slept well, but only on us. She would not be buckled into the sky cot for love nor money! I managed to watch a film (Our Kind of Traitor) but swerved any alcohol saving British Airways a fortune in regards to our usual long haul boozy antics.
The final and third GAAAH was arriving at Hong Kong to find Molly’s buggy had not arrived with us! We had no pushchair for the whole of our time in Hong Kong, Marcus deserves a medal for carrying her around on his back, and BA, quite frankly you are the pits and not my favourite people at the moment! A buggy finally arrived late, on our last night – alas it was not ours so even though we have one in our possession we’re yet to hatch a plan as to what to do with it!
The trip into Kowloon was easy via the Airport Express train and bus. We had a very quick recce of the area surrounding our hotel but Molly was K.O’d so we did the shameful thing of grabbing a takeaway macdonalds to scoff in room after she was put in her cot.
A quick note on jetlag. I have it really badly and spend most nights awake. Marcus and Molly on the other hand are able to sleep to their hearts content making me somewhat jealous! One of my biggest worries before coming away was dealing with Molly if jetlag hit, but perhaps the day of projectile vomiting wiped her out enough to sleep through and adjust her body clock quickly?!
On our first full day we grabbed an on the go bakery breakfast and headed to the Hong Kong Museum of History giving a great insight to our home for the next few days.
Avoiding the hustle and bustle of Tsim Sa Tsui streets we took a breather in the magical Kowloon park. Molly loved making friends in the playground and watching the parrots and flamingos.
The heat got to us so we all headed back to the hotel (Butterfly on Prat – very much recommend) for a long and well needed nap.
Once we rose from our slumbers we took our first ride on the cheap and extremely efficient MTR to the goldfish market. Molly was in her element and it was fish noises galore!! I’ve never seen such exotic looking fish!!
For dinner Marcus chose a fab Chinese restaurant. Molly learnt a new, very important word – BEER and got stuck into some buttered toast and rice (hurrah! She’d been off her food completely since being sick making me somewhat anxious!).
We walked mainly down Nathan road to get home via the Ladies Market and Temple Night Market selling all kinds of toys, bags, clothes etc – I was good and bought nada!!
After another sleepless night (and for once sleep thief, it wasn’t your fault!). Eventually we all woke late which felt very naughty! We took the amazingly cute star ferry over to central which was so much fun. Molly loved being on the boat.
Our first, most important stop was to Tim Ho Wan, the worlds cheapest Michelin star restaurant. YUM YUM IN MY TUM. Molly loves eating out in Hong Kong, she may not be eating much but she sure loves playing with the rice bowls and spoons! Marcus’ favourite dish was the BBQ pork buns, mine, the shrimp and vegetable dumplings and Molly’s the steamed egg cake. We massively over ordered but it was really nice to have a taste of everything, all for £16!!
Our next port of call was Victoria Peak, one of the must sees in Hong Kong. En route we walked though Exchange Square, as it was Sunday it was full of Philapeno’s enjoying their only day off of the week. It was such a beautiful atmosphere, groups of around 4-5 woman in pockets eating glorious food, dancing, chatting, sharing their purchases-fascinating! (I later found out, it’s actually quite sad, these woman have no where else to go, they are live in ‘help’ and are expected to be out of the house on a Sunday).
We stopped off at the HSBC headquarters building and Statue Square, before joining the ridiculous queue for the Peak Tram. After queuing for what seemed like ages with an overtired Molly we eventually boarded and started the ascent to Victoria peak, it was far steeper than I expected and quite a thrill ride. It reminded me of a tram I took in Australia when touring Katoomba in the Blue Mountains. Once you dismount you’re thrown into tourist tat heaven (Lands End!!), with various shops and attractions such as Madam Tussauds. We really enjoyed the views from the 428 Sky Terrace, although they probably would have been better on a slightly smogless day! In the queue back down, Molly made several friends before finally falling into a deep slumber…until we got back to the hotel where she’s learnt to turn lights on and off giving hours of entertainment.
We decided to head to a theme cafe as a little treat for breakfast. We chose Charlie Browns (Peanuts) as it was so local to the hotel. The food was far better than expected and we all had a great time.
We headed to Middle Road Playground, which genuinely was amazing. It’s probably been the best pitstop yet. Seeing Molly’s face light up when she saw the climbing frame was just pure heart melting moment. We stayed and played for ages/until she was ready for a snooze.
After a nap back at the hotel we enjoyed a stroll along the promenade to soak up the skyline and see other tourist hotspots such as the Avenue of Stars and the old Clock Tower. We also ventured into the Kowloon mosque where we invited in and showed around by a lovely chap.
To wear Molly out before dinner we took her to Toys R Us (as one does!), where she entertained the shoppers by tearing up the joint causing her usual carnage. Maybe not our smartest move as she really didn’t want to leave but we had plans with an old university friend of Marcus’ and couldn’t be late!
Our final day was spent in the magical world of Disneyland. It’s so easy to get to from Kowloon and once at Sunny Bay MTR there’s a special line with personalised Mickey trains to take you to the gates. We arrived nice and early due to another appalling night of no sleep. Well worth it as we got to see Micky and Minnie open the gates, which was super cute and Molly was mesmerised. We hired a stroller and it felt amazing not to have Molly wriggling in our arms for a change. Due to a new ride (Iron Man) opening the very next day the park was super quiet, meaning no queues!! We went on so many rides and all of them were Molly suitable. I believe it’s one of the smaller Disney’s and age bracket wise perfect for little people. As well as the rides we had photo stops with a range of characters (she was NOT a fan of Tigger!) and stayed to watch the Flight of Fantasy parade.
Our very last thing we did was another trip down to the waterfront to watch the Symphony of Lights, a light and sound show. A great way to finish off our first stop. Tomorrow we’re off to Hanoi!
(thank you to Marcus for the photos – I’m actually using a proper camera for a change!)