Let me share with you why ChungKing Mansion in Hong Kong is a paradise for tourists from India, Pakistan, Nepal, Bangladesh and Sri Lanka.
While roaming on Tsim Sha Tsui, I saw this crazy crossing where on every traffic signal, hundreds of people crossed the street and this happened every second minute.
It was a delight to watch this and I kept watching this for 20 minutes and captured iska Timelapse video on my GoPro (check out my OnePlus 7 Unboxing video here).
Now, one thing that struck me was that one-third of the janta crossing it from one side was headed towards building.
And this made me further anxious and I too followed the path.
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I took the first 3 steps and I could see some faces, apne jaise.
I took another 10 steps and could see two queues waiting for an elevator. Normal nahi lag raha tha.
Thoda aage badha and I heard a voice, “Paajee Sim Card le lo”, I was stunned and looked around to find that there was this person smiling at me from what looked like a FARRI from Gaffar Market. I smiled, waved my hand ki nahi chahiye and took another two steps forward ki fir awaaz aayi, “Sardarjee, Dollar Exchange”. Maine phir piche dekha to saw this man sitting under a chamakta hua board with signs of Yen, Dollar, Pound & Euro.
Zarurat nahi thi and I smiled and moved aage. Ab pata chal gaya thi ki main kisi apni market type mein hu.
Par my smile got wider when I smelled the khushboo of Biryani.
Uss time to pet bhara hua tha par I took the card and for the next two days ordered khaana wahi se.
Ab let me tell you about this Indian subcontinent market called ChungKing Mansion.
This was a mix of Gaffar Market and Palika Bazaar and thoda thoda Chandni Chowk too.
The place has shops that sell phones, phone accessories, travel tickets, Indian food, Indian grocery and of course, exchange currency too.
The shops are owned by Indians, Pakistanis, Bangladeshis, Sri Lankans and also by people from Nepal.
Food from all these countries is available here.
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MDH ke masale chahiye ho ya phir Maggi, yaha ye bhi hai. And wahan it is tough to see ki kaun Hindustani hai, kaun Pakistani and kaun Nepali. Waise zarurat bhi nahi hai.
Ground floor and First floor are Markets and uske upar 14 floors are different Guest Houses jahaan lift se bahut log jaa rahe the. Seems like it was backpackers paradise bang in the centre of the city.
When this building was constructed in 1961, it was a residential one, but then slowly changed into a group of multiple guest houses where an estimated 4,000 people stay.
Ek time par it was infamous for smuggling, etc too, par now it’s a property that is constantly watched by 330 CCTVs.
So next time when you are in Hong Kong, do plan a visit to ChungKing Mansion.
Absorb some history, exchange some Indian rupees, buy a new local SIM, quench some thirst by buying Roohafza ki bottle or better still have some samose, jalebi, or laddoo after your meal of dal chawal, matar paneer and kebabs.
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My Notes for You:
*Agents can be of great help but do stay cautious
*It’s at one-minute walking distance from Tsim Sha Tsui MTR Station
*JollyBee, McDonalds, KFC etc. are 2 mins walk from the ChungKing Mansion
*It’s 5-minutes walk from HK Space Centre, Avenue of Stars, WaterFront, Star Ferry Pier, HK Museum of Art
PS: The Hong Kong Flag above is made by my son Hargun Singh Tikku using Rubik’s Cube 🙂