We set out this morning for Stanley, a town on the south side of Hong Kong Island. Our concierge was kind enough to point us to bus 973 or 793 – I can’t remember. A double-decker air-conditioned bus, it would take us all the way to Stanley beach for the Dragon Boat Championship Races. An hour and a half of stop and go traffic later, we emerged into what can be described as a sauna. I was starving and a bit cranky, so Geoff thought it wise to forage for food.
We ended up in this little restaurant – The Stanley Restaurant – in the middle of Stanley Market. It supposedly sold Chinese, Western, and Thai food and it was jam packed full of people wolfing down bowls of noodles. Most of the patrons looked like members of various teams. It was so full that you sat anywhere you could. Some tables, including ours, contained 3 different groups of people! After enjoying our noodle soup with wantons and a bottle of Tsing Tao, we headed back out into the heat.
I made a beeline for the water. Stanley Beach isn’t the prettiest beach in the Hong Kong area, but the water was cooler than the air, so I was happy. Unfortunately, I wasn’t dressed for swimming, so I only stood in the shallow bay until the water was up to my knees. It did the trick, though, and made the weather a lot more bearable!
This is one of the larger races of the weekend, and you could sure tell by the number of competitors and spectators!
We saw the end of one race and wanted to stick around for the next. However, numerous delays and the heat made us reconsider. It was soooooo hot and sticky and gross.
So, back on the bus and another hour and a half to get back to Kowloon. Our first priority? As usual, Dim Sum. The Lonely Planet book recmomended a restaurant in the basement of the Kowloon Hotel which was only notable because it served until 5pm. We managed to find it, although it seems to have changed names. And it does serve until 5pm. Easily twice the price of our previous Dim Sum experience, it was nevertheless pretty good.
And they had hedgehog-shaped chocolate steamed buns with egg custard filling. Delicious!