Would you fly/visit with a 1-year-old and a 2-year-old by yourself? Wasn’t sure how safe/accessible everything would be? Would appreciate your insight if it’s doable with kiddos!
I’ve traveled a lot, sometimes with children, but I’ve never been to Hong Kong with children. So I turned to a couple of people with the right kind of experience. The first is Sara, a friend who lived in Hong Kong for a couple of years. I emailed her:
My inclination is to answer that the hotel and tourist areas of Hong Kong would be as accessible and safe as any city she already knows about and would be willing to travel to with her young children.
I asked if she agreed.
Yes I do, with one exception, the city is not very stroller friendly, and if she is alone getting up and down the subway stairs with two littles could be quite challenging. I got pretty good at using the escalator with the baby in the stroller which is officially against the rules but a lot easier than taking him out and carrying him and the stroller while dealing with the twins who were 5.
If you were living there, you’d be thinking about saving money by using the subway. But for a visit, I’d suggest paying the extra for taxis to get around. You may well get drivers with some English. But be sure to have the business card of the hotel or the brochure of the attraction you’re headed to. If language fails, they can “speak” for you.
For the flight, I divided plane activities/necessities into several gallon-sized zipper bags so I could grab them quickly without digging through my entire carry-on. For example, in one bag I would put a couple diapers and a smaller ziplock of wipes. Then if I am changing the diaper in my seat I can put the dirty one in the ziplock bag and get rid of it later if necessary.
The flight will not be easy, but the city is extremely safe and amazingly clean. As far as what to see with kids that young, everything the tourist books recommend is good, the tram to the peak was probably our family favorite.
You’ll know best what your own children enjoy. I agree with Sara, that the tram would probably be a hit. I’d suggest talking to your hotel staff to find out low-visitor times. Otherwise, there can be thick crowds and a long wait. (I’ll have more to say in another post about what to do at the top.)
A hotel with pool can be an enjoyable break.
One really simple, but kid-friendly activity would be riding the Star Ferry. Just go back and forth across the harbor if you don’t have anywhere in particular to go. The first-class ticket costs a little more, but lets you take the ramp that goes to the upper deck, where the view may be better.
Be sure to purchase an Octopus Card, which you scan for public transportation (not taxis) and can be used for purchases at lots of places, including some vending machines and the ticket for the Peak Tram. It got us in ahead of the long ticket-purchasing crowd. The card can be purchased and recharged at the airport and at 7-Elevens (which are everywhere) and I don’t know where else.
I think it would be a very difficult thing to do if “by yourself” means no other adult at all. If she means without a tour guide but with both parents [or another adult] then it would be much more doable.
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