In this article, I hope to share my experience of training Wing Chun in Hong Kong, answer common questions about visiting and training Wing Chun in Hong Kong, and hopefully assist you if you ever plan to make the trip yourself one day. This article is broken down into three sections. The first is an overview of staying, traveling, eating around Hong Kong, and directions to the VTAA. The second section discusses visiting schools in Hong Kong, what to look out for, and my experiences at 4 of the schools I visited in Hong Kong. The third section discusses what training is like in Hong Kong, how the classes are structures, how it may be different or similar your school, and my training experiences at 3 of the schools I visited in Hong Kong. In each section, I will refer to each school I visited by name. It is not my intention to offend anyone, any lineage, or any school. I hope to share my experiences from an un-biased view point. So, please do not take offense. Part 1 begins now…
Once you arrive at Hong Kong International Airport, transportation is relatively simple. I stayed at the Royal Plaza Hotel which is only about a 5 minute walk to the Ving Tsun Athletic Association. This hotel also offered a shuttle bus from the airport. However, even if you don’t have that option, taking the MTR train system from the airport is not difficult. There are also many taxi drivers looking for your business as well. The MTR train system, however, is probably the most user friendly system I’ve ever seen. As for language, don’t worry, most people speak some English. If you stay in the relatively populated areas, you won’t have a problem finding someone who speaks English. I tried to learn some Cantonese, but didn’t feel comfortable using it.
You can purchase an octopus card which you can load with money and use for the MTR, at convenience stores, and all over Hong Kong. However, I could not figure out where to get such a card so I just used the individual ticket machine at the MTR. The single ticket machine has a touch screen where you just touch where you want to go, it gives you the price, you insert your HK dollars, and it spits out a ticket. Again, it’s the easiest system I’ve seen. I used Google maps for directions which also helped to know which lines go where and how they connect. Obviously, pick up a map of the MTR lines once you get there to see which lines connect where.
The traffic in Hong Kong is very congested and crowded. Most people take the MTR, mass transit systems, or walk. There are large numbers of pedestrians all over Hong Kong, walking here and there. Expect to always be in a crowd of people wherever you go. Eventually, you’ll also get used to drips of water landing on you as you walk about the sidewalks. The buildings in Hong Kong tower above with many levels. I never understood why water drips all over the sidewalks, but get used to water dripping on you when you’re walking. I would not suggest driving in Hong Kong unless you have to. There are many cars on the roads especially during rush hour. The MTR is probably the most affordable means of travel.
As for eating in Hong Kong, it’s not too difficult. There are plenty of restaurants around town, probably one on every block on the main roads such as Prince Edward and Nathan Rd. During my visit, I ate at a variety of places. I enjoyed the food court (called the Food Opera) at the Moko Mall which is connected to the Royal Plaza Hotel. The food court here had a variety of food and nice restaurants (not fast food). It was an international array of cuisine from Vietnam, Japan, Taiwan, and other places. There were maybe 15 different restaurants in the Moko Mall Food Opera. However, there are other places to eat particularly on the major roads. I did not have a bad experience anywhere I ate.
Ok, so, you made it to your hotel and you’ve found some food, how do you get to the Ving Tsun Athletic Association? As you probably know, the VTAA is located at 3 Nullah Rd. However, the entrance is on Sai Yeung Choi Street. On this street, you will see an entrance for multiple addresses on Nullah Rd to include 3 Nullah Rd. I believe the entrance is also home to an apartment building with residents. There is a code to enter that the residents have. However, if you knock, the security guard will let you in. Take the second elevator with the number 2 above it to the second floor. When you get off the elevator the VTAA will be to your right. To your left will be Leung Yin’s Ving Tsun School that you can check out as well.
This concludes part 1. Part 2 will cover what it’s like visiting the schools, things to look for, and my experiences. Hope you check it out. Thanks for reading.
Wishing you peace and compassion.
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