A Weekend in Hong Kong & Shenzhen
Introducing new teacher guest blogger, Alex Feal, who’ll be sharing his teaching in China experiences with us over the coming weeks.
Alex has a degree in History from the University of Edinburgh (UK), and currently teaches in a public school in Shenzhen as part of the 2018 Teach China Graduate Program. He’s a passionate traveller and you can follow him on Instagram @latte.wanderer
Sure, I mean I could spend the next couple of hundred words describing how the last two weeks of teaching have been exactly the same as the last few months, but I think most of us only really live for the weekends when it comes to working in Asia and the adventures that they can bring. The last couple have been no different.
I feel like every time I sit to write one of these blog posts I end up talking about crossing the border from Shenzhen into Hong Kong, and all of the different things you can get up to once you leave the mainland and, well, this post isn’t any different really (oops). Next time though, I promise I’ll stick to mostly writing about Shenzhen for those of you wanting to come. For the meantime though, this week may as well be nicknamed ‘Teaching in Shenzhen: the Hong Kong edition’.
I wrote last time about how, for me, sometimes the best thing about living in big cities is how easy they can be to get out of and so that’s exactly what I did.
Hiking & Beaches
Some friends had been on a “meetup” event hiking around Hong Kong’s Sai Kung area during the Chinese New Year break and had raved about how the air was fresh, the trees not man-made and the beaches empty so we had to go. 2 metro rides, a border crossing, another 2 metro’s (one fully filled with us questioning why we didn’t just take the bullet train like a normal person), and then two small buses got us to the Sai Wan pavilion, basically the end of the road. From there, it’s all paths and beaches, not a motorbike in sight!
Part of Hong Kong’s multi-stage Maclehose Trail, the whole area is well signposted and leads to some of the most pristine beaches in the area, not to mention some awesome cliff diving spots! Just make sure to not do what we did – miss the last bus out of Sai Wan and have to walk back through the national park in the dark.
Weekend Photography in Hong Kong
Five easy (read: HA) days at school later and it was back across the border to find some rooftops to shoot the neon from. A flight-attendant friend’s landing into HK for the day was exactly the sort of motivation to get up early and rediscover some of the city’s best café’s (Pause It in Mong Kok and Why 50 I Sheung Wan if anybody else is a coffee fiend!) while waiting for it to get dark and for the neon to turn on. The sporadic rainfall throughout the day was perfect, keeping casual Hong Kong-ers inside, putting up reflections all over the floor, and meant that people didn’t really look too hard when someone carrying an umbrella ducked into a doorway to get to the roof.
Be sure to check out my Instagram (@latte.wanderer) to see some of the shots from Hong Kong! I guess it should be mentioned that obviously you can’t just walk into any building and try and go to the rooftop, and if a security guard or resident asks you to leave then best to just leave rather than being shady in a foreign country.
Holi Celebrations in Shenzhen
Back in Shenzhen – and more than a little inspired by all of the Instagram posts from holi in India, we tagged along to the Indian expat community’s holi celebration. Sure, it wasn’t anywhere near as instagrammable as the posts actually from India (Jaipur top of the list for the next national holiday in May for sure), but if a part of graduating from uni is running around a field with your friends throwing powdered paint at each other, then I’m all in on this whole “adulting” thing!
Anyway, it’s Monday morning, I’ve just taught 2 classes and my kids can still see the colours in my hair… I’m off to go try and not seem so obvious. Til’ next time, follow me on insta and check out my travel blog!
Follow My Future Travels
If you have any tips on places to go, be sure to follow and let me know on insta @latte.wanderer, or check out my website www.lattewanderer.com for coffee and travel tips.