The Delights of Hong Kong - Hong Kong Information and facts

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For better or worse, you're never alone
Hong Kong is densely populated at 16,469 people per square mile, and sometimes it feels like the entire population is located in Mongkok. The popular shopping district gained entry into the Guinness Book of World Records as the most crowded shopping district in the world. One of the busiest of Mongkok's busy streets is Sai Yeung Choi Street, which is now sealed off from traffic and home to street performers as well as shoppers.

Cosmopolitan city, tropical paradise
About 40 percent of Hong Kong's territory is protected by country parks, representing one of the highest proportions in the world. A 20-minute drive from just about anywhere in the city will take you to idyllic beaches and hiking trails through lush green mountains. In 24 hours, you can experience paragliding off a mountain, diving off the coast, trolling for pink dolphins and cruising on a speedboat, with time left to get decked out for a swank night on the town.

Excuse us while we scrape the sky
Hong Kong owns the world's largest collection of skyscrapers -- 7,650, to be precise.  But we also suffer some of the worst feng shui in Asia because of inharmonious architecture, such as the knife-like design of the Bank of China tower.

Cash-free living
Nowadays, all you need for a fun-filled day in Hong Kong is an Octopus card. You can pay for all public transportation, KFC meals, vending machine sodas, 7-Eleven impulse buys, Park n’ Shop grocery runs and even ice skating rentals with a “doot.” (The sound made when swiping the Octopus is now a common verb, as in “just doot it.”) The Octopus even comes in tiny, SIM card-sized chips that can be dangled on bracelets like lucky charms. 

There's market on top of market (on top of market...)
Bird market, shoe street, ladies market, goldfish market, flower market … all centered in the bustling Mongkok neighborhood within walking-distance of one another. That's unbeatable shopping.

The cradle of kung fu legends
Three of the world’s biggest kung fu stars enjoyed their breakout moments in Hong Kong: Bruce Lee in “The Big Boss” (1972), Jet Li in “Shaolin Temple” (1982), and Jackie Chan in “Drunken Master” (1978).

The best-fed people on earth
With one restaurant for every 600 people, Hong Kong surely boasts one of the highest per-capita concentrations of cafes and restaurants in the world. It also makes Hong Kong the worst place to be on a diet, so we'll just call this one a draw.

Adrenaline rushes come cheap
The late-night red minibus from Central to Mongkok is the fastest way to cross the harbor at night -- if you can stomach it. The HK$11 ride is notoriously thrilling, nicknamed 'the deathwish minibus' for its limit-pushing speeds.

Public transportation rules
Hong Kong is no place for motorists, with about 380,000 private vehicles for a population of over seven million. But it's a public transit utopia. Big buses, little buses, ferries, railways, a tram -- you name it, we have it, and they're all interconnected, making Hong Kong’s network one of the most sophisticated in the world.

We are the world
Now fully 115 countries have consulates in Hong Kong, more than any other city in the world.
Mega-convenient convenience stores
Hong Kong has the highest density of 7-Elevens in the world, with a density of one per 1.380 square miles, as of 2007. Add to that the number of branches of competitor Circle-K, and you have total convenience store overkill. (One tiny block near the CNNGo offices inexplicably houses five convenience stores).

We are disrespectful to dirt
The SARS outbreak in 2003 scarred us forever. Now you’ll notice sanitation stations -- automated machines that spurt disinfectant -- in virtually every building in the city. Notices in elevators boast the frequency with which buttons are sanitized (an average six times a day) and being sick in public is practically a faux pas (dare to sneeze on public transport without wearing a face mask and be prepared for the stink eye from fellow passengers).

There's only one certainty in life
Commanding the lowest tax rates in Asia (16.5% for corporations, 15% for unincorporated busineses), it’s no wonder Hong Kong is a major financial hub. Also, unlike many other countries, taxes on capital gains and sales are unheard of. 

The bamboo and concrete jungles unite
In a city where buildings can extend more than 50 stories high, the use of bamboo is the safest, most efficient, most versatile, most eco-friendly material used for scaffolding. The bamboo is light, yet durable enough to withstand typhoons. It’s quite the sight to observe the renovation of the Four Seasons Hotel by workers who erect an average of 650 square feet of scaffolding a day.  

Almost completely climate controlled
If all shopping malls were to close, Hong Kongers would be in a lot of trouble. The average 22- to 22.6-degree temperature of the SAR's 50 malls is what keeps us cool enough to enjoy hot pot dinners even during our 35-degree sub-tropical summers.

We get two New Years!
Hong Kong adheres to both the lunar and solar calendars, so we get to celebrate the bi-annual renewal of both. It’s like having dim sum and afternoon tea simultaneously.

Content taken from CNN International (CNNGo)


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The Delights of Hong Kong - Hong Kong Information and facts The Delights of Hong Kong - Hong Kong Information and facts