Anyone who knows Ashley knows that she absolutely LOVES Halloween. For Halloween we didn’t have costumes due to our limited budget and her husbands lack of enthusiasm for playing dress up, but we did want to get out and do something for Halloween none the less. We decided to check out the view from the top of the city that night and then make our way down to the Lan Kwai Fong.
Amazing views of Hong Kong
To start the night we decided to take the Ferry to the other side. Hong Kong is divided in half (ish) by a river. We stayed on the TST (Tsim Sha Tsui) side of the river which allows you to see the financial district on the opposing side of the river. The view of the financial district is amazing and it’s the view you usually see when you see a picture of Hong Kong. Rather than take the subway to the other side (which goes beneath the river) we decided to take the ferry to the other side. Our mini-hostel room was just 15 minutes from the ferry station so we walked over that way. On the way there we took some time to take in the view of the financial district at night and the views are amazing as you can see.
We made our way across on the Ferry and then found our city bus that would take us to the top of the hill that sits directly behind the city you see in the picture above. We hopped on the bus and it turned out to be a double decker bus with no one on it. We promptly went to the very top and managed to sit on the front row which was a bit of a weird view. It’s as if you’re the drive but you aren’t in control. What made it more interesting is that the road leading up to the top is extremely narrow with a lot of hairpin turns. We questioned whether we’d make it to the top on more than one occasion.
Once we made it to the top we made our way through a mall area and out onto the observation deck. It costs nothing (other than the bus fare to get to the top). The views at the top are amazing and you can really get a sense for all of Hong Kong as you can look out and see both side of the city from there.
It was very windy and starting to rain at the top so we snapped a few quick photos and went on our way. Our plan now was to head down to the Lan Kwai Fong neighborhood. The Lan Kwai Fong area is basically party central for Hong Kong where there are numerous clubs and restaurants. We knew that it would be a busy night to be in the area so we wanted to get there a little early to try and beat the crowds. We hopped on the city bus to make our way down and eventually got to an area that was pretty close to there and hopped off. As soon as we exited the bus we quickly realized we were NOT early and in fact we were there at the same exact time that every other soul in Hong Kong had decided to descend upon Lan Kwai Fong.
We were quickly greeted by a mob of people who were making there way towards Lan Kwai Fong. It just so happened that the spot we jumped out at was the “herding zone” to get into Lan Kwai Fong. Apparently for Halloween the Lan Kwai Fong area is so busy they have to hire police for crowd control over a mile away from the actual destination. You are then funneled through a series of winding streets like cattle all the way to the Lan Kwai Fong. It was literally exactly like herding cattle except it was a bunch of crazy people dressed up for Halloween read to get their party on.
As we stood in our long line being herded toward the Lan Kwai Fong area, there was a large biker gang dressed up for Halloween in the center. It was stand still traffic so all the bikers were stuck in the middle with a huge mass of people on either side. Naturally when you have a loud motorcycle and a big audience the most appropriate thing to do is rev your engine as loud as it can possible go. As the bikers would rev their engines and raise their hands the crowd would cheer out pushing the bikers to rev their bikes even more. You could tell the crowd was quickly getting pumped up as were the bikers who would make little mini sprints down the streets when they could move. This went on for about 1 minute and 37 seconds until the hundreds of police officers in the area made their way to the bikers and pulled them over. The crowd groaned at the police for spoiling the fun. After a short stand off the police seemed to let the bikers go and they let out one more big rev before they made their way outside the area.
We snaked our way through the streets and encountered a lot of characters and big crowds along the way. In total the line took about 1.5 to 2 hours. However, it didn’t feel like it took very long because the crowd kept it entertaining as we went. There were even crowds gathered outside the cattle drive watching the crowd inside us shuffle through the streets.
We finally arrived in the Lan Kwai Fong area and holy cow was it busy. The police were controlling the flow of people getting into the area. They would only let in groups of people after they felt a sufficient amount had left. As we made our way in we decided to grab a drink (or two) to enjoy as we did some intense people watching. We noticed there was a 7 eleven and I told Ashley I would go grab drinks.
Getting drinks from 7 eleven turned out to be one of the most interesting experiences of the night. This particular 7 eleven was just 2 people standing side by side wide. Due to the massive crowds the 7 eleven turned into a conveyor belt of people. Everyone would enter on the left hand side (opposite the cash register) and then work their way along the left wall all the way to the back of the store and then turn and eventually get back to the register. 99% of the people were just grabbing beer but you had to go through the whole process as the line was essentially formed at the front of the store to get to the register. The poor employees inside were doing their best to keep things orderly. I have no idea how much they sold that night but it looked like a bomb had exploded in there and they were restocking as fast as possible.
With drinks and hand Ashley and I sat on the side and watched the show as did most people in the area. I must say the costumes were all very impressive. Everyone in Hong Kong went all out for their costumes and this was definitely the place to see and be seen. Below are some of the best we saw. Note the group of 5 guys with machine guns. Some guns had no orange tip which would not have flown in America. It was awesome being in the area but we could only take so much. Exhausted after a long day and fighting the crowds we left about 2 a.m. People were still funneling into the area and I have a feeling the party was no where near over. I felt bad for the cleaning crews that must have come in the next day, they did not have trash cans set up anywhere….that was a mistake