Hong Kong with Toddlers 子連れ香港旅行記(2)

After two days at Disneyland, we moved to Kowloon Sheraton Towers and spent about 5 days in Hong Kong. Hong Kong is a great city for toddlers because there are parks all over the place. We must have gone to a park or playground every few hours, which kept Nina and Mila happy, as they could climb and run around (and tire themselves out!). Happy toddlers mean happy parents!

Our favorite park was the pirate ship themed playground in Stanley Plaza near the Stanley Market. Perfect setting to rest up after browsing all the shops and stalls at Stanley Market; have some lunch at the restaurants next door and let the kids play. They also have a stroller rental in case your bub gets sleepy. You can easily spend the entire day out in the Stanley area. We discovered that Mila LOVES olives. What a strange thing for a one year old to like.
Other parks we visited were:
- The Peak Galleria Mall. In case the Peak tram wasn’t enough excitement for the kids, drop by the second floor of the mall for a small playground. Nina and Mila made a little friend there. It’s always great to see how easily children hit it off.
- Kowloon Park has a great little flamingo sanctuary, but before you even get there, Avenue of Comic Stars (opened in September 2012) offers cheeky weird local comic character statues. It’s an endless entertainment for kids. Nina loved “taking pictures” of each and every statue.
– Hong Kong Park has a large lake with birds, a hedge maze, and a playground. Also, lots of local people sketching and painting, just a clip of the daily Hong Kong life that’s fun to see.
– Sai Yee Street Garden is a small park near the Ladies Market. It’s enough to breathe and unwind from the insanity of the street markets in Hong Kong. Nina walked into the Ladies Market and said, “Ohhhhh, I wanna buy something!” Scary how even little girls jump right into shopping mode after only 5 seconds. We bought her a pair of sunglasses.
– Goldfish Market was wonderful to walk around with all these cool fish. We saw some neon fish (I assume they are dyed that color?) and just enjoyed strolling around. Mila jumped out of her Ergo and wanted to walk and take in the sights. She pretty much learned to walk while we explored the streets of Hong Kong. In a week, a baby becomes a toddler. Exciting and sad at the same time.
– There are several parks around the Jade Market and Nina had us go to two or three of them. Mila got a free bracelet at the jade market for being cute… Yeah, she knows how to milk the cuteness
– Near the Avenue of the Stars, on top of East Tsam Sha Tsui station, across the overpass extending from the AOS, there is Middle Road Children’s Playground. It’s a pretty large playground with swings, several slides and play area for different ages. When we went, half of it was still closed, but the half that was still open was still more than enough for the kiddies.

For our toddlers, Hong Kong is like food heaven. Nina loves those meat buns (the BAO) and she could eat them all day. Some of them have eggs and veggies in it, so it’s a meal in itself and Nina just couldn’t get enough. The rice porridge (congee) is a standard for little ones and is available everywhere. If you can find one without MSG, it’s a perfect little meal for the littlies. Nina and Mila are dim sum lovers, so it’s not hard to please them with abundance of dumplings and noodles in Hong Kong.

When we went to Yung Kee restaurant with some friends. She managed to slip us into the VIP area, so we didn’t have to deal with the crowded main dining room with two toddlers. A lady there suggested trying the Black Sesame Roll which I’ve never seen in Singapore. She mentioned that they’re not necessarily an adult favorite, but children love them. And they did! After an extra-large dim sum dinner (there were four adults and two toddlers, so my friend ordered for four, thinking it would be enough, but then had to order two extra adult portions when she realized our children were ravenous monsters), our children fought over the dessert and cleaned it up. Black Sesame Roll is not too sweet, and it’s steamed, so a healthy choice for children who may be craving an after dinner pick up. The Yong Kee restaurant in general was a great place to go for adults too. Their roast meats are fabulous.

For a quick congee bite, we headed to iSquare and went to Praise House Congee & Noodle Cuisine. Good congee and it’s open pretty early, which is key when you have two hungry toddlers. I think it mentioned somewhere that they didn’t use any MSG, but I can’t confirm for sure.

Hong Kong is close to my heart when it comes to traveling with children since it was the first place we traveled to after having Nina. Nina was still only three and a half months old at the time and I had tagged along on Marc’s business trip. Come to think of, that was the beginning of our life in Asia. When we were in Hong Kong last time, we made a chop for Nina with her Japanese name. I wanted to make a matching one for Mila, so we headed out to Man Wa Lane, also known as “Chop Street.” I found a similar red agate stone and asked them to make one for Mila. Red agate apparently means family love, so it’s perfect for our little girls. I’m looking forward to telling them stories of their trips and giving them the chop when they can appreciate them. Most of the stalls will make the chop while you wait, or they can deliver to your hotel the next morning. We asked them to deliver both times and they were delivered timely and we are very happy with what we received. Highly recommend it for a special souvenir.

Hong Kong turned out to be a great kid-friendly trip overall. It is definitely on our list of places we’ll go to again with the whole family.

ディズニーの後、4日程香港を楽しみましたが、子連れで助かったのは、公園の多さです。2時間に一度は公園に寄って子供達を遊ばせたおかげで、比較的皆ご機嫌で回れました。
– お勧めはStanley Market近くのStanley Plazaにある海賊船を象った公園です。回りにレストランもあり、ベビーカーのレンタルもあるので一日ゆったり遊べます。
– The Peakの上にある小さいモールの二階の外にも小さい遊び場があります。ここで新菜と実良はお友達を作って遊んでて、かわいかった。
– Kowloon Park (九龍公園)には比較的新しい(2012年9月開設)Avenue of Comic Starsがあります。ローカルなアニメキャラの像が沢山並んでいて、子供も大人も楽しめます。Kowloon Parkに行ったらもちろんフラミンゴもお忘れなく。
– Hong Kong Park(香港公園)の遊び場やバードサンクチュアリは子供達のお気に入りでした。ローカルの方が絵を描いていたり麻雀していたりして大人も散歩していて楽しいです。
– 女人街の近くにあったSai Yee Street Gardenは小さい公園ですが、買い物疲れした足を休めて子供をのびのびさせるには十分でした。
– 三歳の娘は金魚街がお気に入りでまた行きたいと何度もせがまれて困った程です。翡翠市場の近くには三つも公園があります。
– 翡翠市場では実良さん大活躍。色々なところで愛想を振りまいてはお土産をゲットしておりました(汗)翡翠はどれも綺麗だったのですが、かえって何を買ったらいいのか分からなくなってしまい、結局買わずじまい。でも瑪瑙のカップが色違いで綺麗だったので、4つセットで買ってみました。小さい前菜とか入れるのにいいかなあ、と。前菜をかわいい器に入れるような食事結局作らないので使ってないけど。
– Avenue of the Starsを散歩した後は、East Tsam Sha Tsui(尖東)駅の上にある、Middle Road Children’s Playgroundがお勧めです。Avenue of the Starsから陸橋を登って少し歩いたところにあります。グーグルマップスで見ると結構AOSから距離があるように見えるのですが、5分程で着いたと思います。

私達が行った11月は丁度いい秋晴れで中国本土の連休の後なため、観光客も比較的少なく、大満足でした。香港中の公園を回ったのではないかと思うような旅行でしたが、普通の生活の一部を感じる事が出来て、とても有意義な旅だったと思います。我が家の1歳児は香港で歩けるようになりました。特に金魚街がお気に入りでお姉ちゃんとテクテク歩いている様子は微笑ましかったです。

食事の面でも、飲茶はうちの娘たちには大人気で、肉まんみたいに手で持てるものやおかゆと果物で子供達にも大満足な旅でした。香港は折角美味しいものがあるので、子供にも楽しんでもらいたいですよね。

友人と一緒に行ったセントラルのYung Kee restaurantでは一緒に行った友人がVIPセクションを予約していてくれたおかげでセミ個室で子連れでもゆっくり楽しめました。メインダイニングルームもちらッと覗いたんですが、結構カオスな状態で、自分達だけで入るには不向きかも…と感じました。でもローストはとっても美味しいです。個室リクエスト、出来ればしてみて下さい。こちらのレストランで、シンガポールでは見たことのない、黒ゴマロール(Black Sesame Seed Roll/黑芝蔴卷)という一品(デザート?)をお店の方が大人にはあんまりだけど、小さい子供は大好きなのよ~、とサービスしてくれたんですが、これが大ヒット。黒ゴマペーストをモチ状にして、巻いた感じで、確かに大人には不向きでしたが、子供達は争って食べてました。ほんのり甘い蒸し菓子、とっても助かりました。

私達はカウルーンに泊まっていたので、近くにあるiSquareのPraise House Congee & Noodle Cuisine でお粥を食べましたが、ここも美味しかったし、清潔でした。ベビーチェアはなかった気がしますが、うちの娘達は食べるのに必死で問題なかったです。確かMSGは使用していないと書いてあった気がするんだけど、確信が持てなくて、すいません。

香港は、新菜の初旅行先でした。3か月半の新菜を連れて、NYからマークの出張について来たのが初旅行でした。今から考えれば、アドベンチャー好きな親でしたね~。友人が何人かいたので、色々事前にミルクだのおむつだのリサーチして来たんでした。まだ3か月半だと寝てるだけで楽だった…あれからもう2年半たってるのか、と感慨深かったです。

その時に新菜、と名前の入ったハンコをハンコ街、Man Wa Laneで作ってもらっていたんです。それとおそろいのものを実良にも作って貰いたい、と思ったのでまた行って作ってきました。どこに行っても大抵ホテルに次の日の朝持ってきてくれるのは嬉しいですね。無事お揃いのハンコを作れました!赤メノウは家族や兄弟(姉妹)への愛を象徴する石だそうで、お気に入りです。いつか娘達に香港の話をしながら渡してあげるのが楽しみです。お店は幾つもあるんですが、両方とも適当に、気にいった石のあった場所でハンコを作ってます。どちらも満足な出来で、きっちりホテルに配達してくれました。その場で作って貰う事もできますが、子連れで待つって苦痛なので、お勧めしません。座るところもないし、近くに適当なお店ってのも余りないし。

子連れで大都市に行くのはは少々不安だったのですが、ベビーカーなしでもとっても楽しかったです。ますます香港が好きになりました!

The view from the Peak

The view from the Peak

I never take pics of food anymore, but the wonton noodles at the Peak was great!

I never take pics of food anymore, but the wonton noodles at the Peak was great!

Nina walking with Mila

Nina walking with Mila

Nina taking a pic of  a funky statue at the Avenue of Comic Stars

Nina taking a pic of a funky statue at the Avenue of Comic Stars

Nina at the Goldfish Market

Nina at the Goldfish Market

Nina with her sunglasses she picked out.  She's a teenager!

Nina with her sunglasses she picked out. She’s a teenager!

Nina and Mila's matching chop

Nina and Mila’s matching chop

Nina and Mila's carving

Nina and Mila’s carving

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