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When pollution rates are down and there’s no acid thrown down at the busy streets, Mongkok could be great fun.
Busy, bustling, crowded, shops, brands, restaurants, street food, “Ladies” street market, computer market (旺角電腦中心), goldfish market, flower market (花墟道), bird street market (雀仔街), huge malls (like Langham Place (朗豪坊))… Mongkok’s got it all. Taipei’s Ximending type of feeling.
I go there every once in a while, especially when someone I know comes down to visit Hong Kong and I need to provide an “authentic” “modern” Hong Kong experience.
There’s something comforting in all the shining neon Chinese signs, young folks wearing expensive brands, promotion girls in mini-skirts, pushy mobile network salesmen, awful world music bands, Christians pushing God to the locals… it all plays together in harmonious anarchy.
Most of those visiting Mongkok seem to like Ladies’ Market – the most well-known tourist trap in Asia.
Here’s a bargaining tip for you from my Indian classmate : whatever price they say, offer 20% that price (he said 10%, but I’m not Indian). If they’re nice enough to continue bargaining, push as high as 30% nicely, and when you can’t reach an agreement say “Thank You”, apologize and walk away. They’ll probably agree and if they don’t – there are more selling the exact same thing along the street. Somehow, this has worked for a number of people I know who are really bad at bargaining, so it’s worth a try.
If you’re looking for electronics, search for the computer market on 8 Nelson Street with around a 100 computer shops cramped into a really small space (reminds me of Nova in Taipei):
One of the things I really like in Hong Kong are the natural sweets shops and chains. Where you can find healthy treats like this …
or… just about any street food treat you’re into…