Just came back from Hong Kong! Although you may have heard about all the protest and rally there, I would say that it is still quite safe to go there. In fact, protestors are very peaceful. And I really appreciate how they fight for democracy.
Well, though I have visit the places occupied by the protestors, I did not go there for protest. I went there because I would like to take a vacation. Overall, I will say it is really a good idea to visit Hong Kong, if you can have a 10 day vacation.
The Protest in Hong Kong
There are quite a number of attractions in Hong Kong. It is very common for tourists to visit the big Buddha in Po Lin Monastery. I also spent one day there. By taking the cable car, it is easy to visit the Monastery. It did not cost much to visit there. It costs only about USD20. I think it is really worth the money to go there. The Buddha statue is the biggest in Asia. You have to walk up the stairs in order to go there. I have walked up the stairs for about 15 minutes.
The Buddha Statue
Another place that I visited was the mid-levels in Central district. It is a place that everyone should go in Hong Kong Island, according to some travel guidebooks. Before I went there, I thought that I had to walk up the stairs again! Luckily, there is a series of escalators going up the hill. So, I could go uphill very easily. There are a lot of good bars and restaurants there. Local people also visit there from time to time to relax and have a drink. I met a lot of local people there. Of course I have talked a lot with them about the current protest. I am still under the impression that they really know what they are doing. And I could really feel their passion to fight for democracy.
There are a lot of places for shopping in Hong Kong. However, I did not really go shopping when I was there. There are a lot of mainland Chinese people in the shopping districts. It really seems that Chinese loves Gucci and LV very much. I just did not want to visit places which are too crowded. And I myself do not have much interest in such brand names. So, I just did not go shopping in Hong Kong.
If you really want to have a taste of real Hong Kong, I would recommend visiting Temple Street. There is a night market there. It is one of the most popular night market in Hong Kong, for both tourist and local HongKongers. There are quite a lot of hawkers and I felt that I could go real shopping there!