Friday, 30 August 2013

Where to Stay in Macau - Apartment in Coloane

A few months ago I went with two friends to Macau. As I explained in my earlier post, Macau has much more to offer than just casinos, and I recommend to anyone who stays in Hong Kong for a while to pay a visit to the former Portuguese colony.

In my previous post I forgot to mention where I and my friends stayed, so I'd like to share this information now because it might prove useful to travellers.

Instead of booking a room in a hostel or hotel, we decided to rent an apartment for one night. This is not the cheapest option, but for one or two nights it's certainly affordable. Moreover, we could see how an average apartment looks like and also live there as if we were local people. We used a website called airbnb.com, where you can find flats or rooms to let.

The apartment was located in Coloane, in the southern part of Macau. On the map (see below) Coloane looks pretty far away from the most interesting parts of Macau, but remember that Macau is small. In fact, we always walked from Coloane to Taipa.

Wednesday, 28 August 2013

Hierarchy, Conflicts and Communication in Chinese Culture

In the West two opposed images of China co-exist. On the one hand, there is the country of Communism, corruption, government repression, and authoritarianism. On the other hand, there is the country of harmony, group-thinking, compromise.

These two images of the same country are almost irreconcilable. How can we believe in a harmonious, peaceful, altruistic society when we not only know of the turmoils and cruelties of the past, but also hear of the exploitation and hardships of the present?

This double image of China is the result of a misinterpretation. In many respects, this Chinese dichotomy echoes another one, an older one. When Japan stunned the world by industrialising within a few decades, Western perceptions of Japan were, too, dominated by apparent paradoxes. As Ruth Benedict pointed out in her masterpiece, The Chrysanthemum and the Sword, Japan seemed to have two souls that contradicted each other. 

In the eyes of many Westerners prior to World War II, Japan was a riddle. There was the Japan of the samurais, with their culture of honour, loyalty and violence, the Japan of feudal wars, of militarism and imperialism. But on the other side, Japan stood out for her refinement and sophistication, expressed in her arts, manners, ceremonies, and highly developed social structure. Which one was the true Japan? The gentle, cultivated, well-mannered, or the aggressive, cold-blooded, brutal one?

Sunday, 11 August 2013

Paramita - Vegetarian Food in Hong Kong

One of the greatest things about living in East Asia is the rich and delicious vegetarian cuisine. I am not a vegetarian or vegan, but I love to eat vegetarian food and if there were more restaurants that offer this kind of food I think I would avoid eating meat altogether.

Two days ago I went with a couple of friends to Paramita, a vegetarian restaurant in Times Square, in Hong Kong's thronging shopping area of Causeway Bay. Let me share with you some pictures I took that day.

Tuesday, 6 August 2013

Hong Kong Central Library, Tin Hau Temple and Surroundings on a Hot August Day

It doesn't matter in which form they present themselves - rainy, sunny, typhoon-battered - Hong Kong summer days are a challenge for everyone who likes to take long walks. Today is one of those splendid afternoons in which the glistening sun floods the city with its glowing light and occasional specks of clouds hang in the blue sky. Despite the scorching heat I decided to take a walk around Hong Kong Central library. The temperature stood at 34 degrees Celsius, but the real feel was 39!

How to Get to Hong Kong Central Library


Hong Kong Central Library is located on 66 Causeway Road, Causeway Bay. However, Tin Hau MTR Station is slightly closer to the library than Causeway Bay Station. It takes only about five to ten minutes from Tin Hau to the library. I started my walk from Tin Hau MTR Station.





Night Walk in Hong Kong

Last evening I felt like taking a short walk, but then I ended up walking for almost three hours. The weather in the summer is always hot and humid, however yesterday it was relatively less hot and humid, and there was no rain. I started my walk from Tin Hau and went to Statue Square, between Admiralty and Central. I took a few pictures of the skyline at night. I think I'll never get enough of the amazing Hong Kong skyline, which is one of the most impressive in the world.