Welcome to Batgung

Our articles about Hong Kong are grouped as follows – just click on the section that interests you, or scroll down to see the most recent articles. If you can't find what you're looking for, please leave a question in the discussion forum.

Visit Hong Kong
Move to Hong Kong
Hong Kong daily life
Old Hong Kong
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Sidetrips from Hong Kong

Hong Kong is a great place to visit, and there’s lots to do.

But if you’re coming to Asia for a visit from a long way away, it’s likely you’re going to want to stay for at least a couple of weeks to make the flight worthwhile. So is there enough to do in Hong Kong to keep you busy all that time? Well, maybe, but it’s not what I would advise. A fairly comprehensive look around Hong Kong might take you (depending on how hard you want to push yourself) from five to seven days. If you’re in Asia for longer, you will likely want to consider making one or more of several possible sidetrips from Hong Kong. Here are some options. Read more »

Invest or gamble?

Hong Kong is a great place to invest in stocks, as there is no capital gains tax, and no tax on dividends. So why don't more people do it? Read more »

Some advice on expat living

In a recent article, I considered some personality or temperamental traits that may help expats find 'success' in their postings. Then, serendipitously, I came across remarks a fine writer, David Foster Wallace (see more about him in the postscript to this article), made in a commencement address to the new graduates of Kenyon College in the USA in 2005.

Wallace’s words that day capture far better than I could how people both succeed and fail in living life a certain way. I believe these ideas have particular relevance for expatriates. I think you’ll see why as I give you a little précis + commentary on what Wallace said. Read more »

Town planning in Hong Kong, part II

As I mentioned in my previous article on Hong Kong town planning, it's curious -- in a wonderful way, of course -- that Hong Kong's extreme population density, coupled with 'Radiant City' town planning that's produced mostly urban hellholes in other countries, has resulted in a very livable city that's among the world's safest. Read more »

Aroma Ear Wax

Aroma Ear Wax

You have to admire this "work with what you've got" approach to ear wax - if you can't get rid of it, at least make it smell nice. Read more »

Why Hong Kong?

I didn't intend to come to Hong Kong at all. Instead I was heading to Australia courtesy of their working holiday visa. But, there was a lady I'd met previously in Canada that I'd taken a fancy to. She was living in Hong Kong, so I thought I'd stop here on the way. Read more »

Town planning in Hong Kong

I've recently read a classic book on town planning, The Death and Life of Great American Cities, by Jane Jacobs. Jacobs burst on to the town planning scene with this book in the early 1960s, and has been the sage of what's been termed 'New Urbanism' ever since. She unfortunately passed away recently. (You can find a fairly recent interview with her here if you're interested.)

 Read more »

What's in a name?

If having a baby is difficult, sometimes choosing their name seems even harder. And when you've got two cultures & languages in the mix, things get even more complicated.

Choosing the English names for our two daughters has been my job, with MrsB holding the power of veto. The first time around, before we knew the baby's sex, I was suggesting "Huw" if it was a boy. It's a friend's name, and has a link to Wales where I'm from. "No!" says MrsB, "any Chinese person that hears you call his name will think you're swearing at him". Lucky it was a girl...

 Read more »

The airport to Hongkong island in record time

If you've just arrived in Hongkong, join us in the race to the Hongkong island taxi rank, and the quest for a new personal best. Read more »

Things to see and do in Hong Kong: off the beaten path

Here are some tips from MrB and our readers for Hong Kong attractions that you may miss if you're not well-informed:


Let's kick off with a great idea from MrB:

A suggestion -- especially if jet-lag means you are waking up early -- is to head out to one of the parks to see people doing their morning exercise. You’ll see various types of Tai Chi, including ladies with large red-cloth fans [link to banner photos], and people with swords. There are also other (usually older) groups of people doing their exercises together, often to music. This is one of the things I like about Hong Kong, that when people get into their sixties here, many will start taking more care of their health, and join one of these informal groups to do their morning exercises and have a chat. Read more »

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