The reason we flew to Shenzhen was to visit the China Folk Cultural Village, a park that has 22 villages representing the 56 ethnic minorities that are in China. We were told that it was based on the Polynesian Cultural Center in Hawaii. It is very similar but with some Disney or extra steroids mixed in. In the villages ethnic people give short cultural programs and demonstrate crafts from their home areas. They even have a big theatrical performance in an outdoor amphitheater in the evening. We had a great time there and saw lots of interesting things.
Next to the folk village, along the path under the heart, was Splendid China a big park that contained miniatures of various scenic and historic places in China. It was nice, but we enjoyed the folk village much more.
From the airport in Shenzhen it was only about a one hour bus ride to our hotel right near the water on the Kowloon side of the city. It was a 5 minute walk to the Star Ferry in one direction and 5 minutes to the Metro station. We stayed at the Salisbury YMCA. The Salisbury is a very nice modern hotel that has been at the same location since 1925. It was a great place to stay. This is one of the views of Hong Kong Island from our side of the bay.
On our first day in Hong Kong after settling into the hotel Libby rested while I went exploring. We had a weeks worth of laundry that needed to be cleaned so with directions from the hotel I found a genuine Chinese laundry several blocks away. $2.75 per load for wash, dry, and fold; all in three hours. I found the terminal for the Star Ferry, 25 cents to cross over to Hong Kong Island, a great bargain for a spectacular view of the city. I also checked out the location of some of the restaurants in our area and investigated the Metro.
The following morning we went to the Temple in Kowloon, a 20 minute ride to the North on the Metro. While there, we visited the Church distribution center to get some things for our Branch primary.
Crowded Metro train
After lunch we went exploring across the bay on Hong Kong Island. We took the ferry then rode the worlds longest escalator that climbs the hills up the south side of the city in almost 20 long segments
After dinner with our group at Dan Ryan's Chicago Grill we took the tram (actually) a funicular. to Victoria Peak for a view of the city lights.
You can see Hong Kong in the foreground and Kowloon across the water.
The following morning we went to the Church headquarters building (below) in Hong Kong and had a chance to share teaching ideas with the other BYU China teachers. The Church has a very nice building that has two or three chapels with all the associated classrooms etc. and offices for the Asia Area Presidency and other Church operations. We spent the afternoon buying a few things and exploring in the City.
Sunday morning we went to a China District conference in a ward chapel that is located on one of the lower floors of the Temple. We had a wonderful time visiting with many of the other teachers that we had not seen since our training in Provo. It was a great 4 days. That afternoon we went by bus back across the border to Shenzhen and caught a plane to Guilin to begin our tour of Southwest China.