The story of Hong Kong began when the British first seized the territory as a British colony in 1839. The conflict between Britain and Imperial China can be summarized into one word: trade. The lucrative trade and enormous economic opportunities made Britain determined to establish a permanent trading post at the mouth of South China Sea. The two Opium Wars and subsequent conflicts made Hong Kong Island and Kowloon Peninsula colonies of the British, and the New Territories leased to the British for 99 years in 1898.
When the British formally took possession of Hong Kong Island in 1841, Queen Victoria once said in a letter to her relative in Luxemburg that Hong Kong was 'A rock island hardly a house has been built on it'. Trails of our past history, our Chinese culture and heritage as well as colonial activities can still be found in the territory.
Today, Hong Kong is a far cry from Queen's Victoria's view of a rock island. Metropolis Hong Kong is not only an international financial centre with modern skyscrapers, but a kaleidoscope of experiences with slick Neon-lights, and all modern telecommunication technologies. All tastes are catered for from Michelin starred restaurants to fast food stalls in the streets. Shopping is for everyone (whatever the budget!) ranging from international designer shops to the Lady's Market in Mongkok. Sight-seeing opportunities include sandy golden beaches and green mountains peaks of the Country Parks. How Hong Kong has developed into a modern city today is full of stories to be told and heard.
These histories have much to do with its people: the Chinese and the British have played key roles in making the territory a miraculous successful story: its politics with China, its unique status as a free-port and the ever closer ties with China. With the return of the city's sovereignty to China on 1 July 1997, and the growing trade relationships with China, Hong Kong can no longer be separated from China anymore.
Hong Kong is now a global shop window for China to showcase the world and will continue to do so. A visit to Hong Kong without seeing mainland China, or visiting mainland China without seeing Hong Kong, is missing opportunities to sense how the two places interplay with each other.
China is indeed a fascinating, high profile destination having hosted the Beijing Olympics in 2008. As one of the world's fastest growing economies, it supplies the world with many products and sources raw materials from around the globe. A visit to China is indeed inspiring and it is amazing to see for yourself the progress it has made to become a major power it is today.
China has a history of more than 4,000 years, with its unique customs, heritage and culture. It is one of the world's great civilizations. There are 38 UNESCO World Heritage sites in China alone. A trip to China is indeed intriguing.
The diversity and versatility of cultures and unique customs of ethnic groups let you look at the world from fresh angles.
The great mountains, rivers, lakes etc inspire painters, photographers, and artists. A journey to China will discover wonders Mother Nature has worked on the earth.
There is no other place as versatile as Asia. Asia is not just a large, populous continent, but also a diverse one, and one of the rapidly developing and growing regions in the world. Everytime we re-visit our neighbours, we'll find new skylines, new developments and sights. The diversity of landscape: tropical rain forests, islands, sun, sea and beaches in SE Asia; the Himalayas and Mt Everest between Tibet and Nepal and numerous incredible rock formations; the Gobi Desert in Mongolia; the great Rivers of Mekong and the Ganges and how they fertilise the land and vegetations only found in the region which in turn support every kind of lives around it; compel us to visit and re-visit from time to time. We're awed by its rich cultural heritage by exploring sites such as the ancient Khmer Empire (Angkok in Cambodia); the Orkhon Valley (Mongolia) where the great empire of Genghis Khan was first built; the Kathmandu Valley (Nepal) which origins in the 8th century; the Sukhothai, the first Kingdom of Siam (Thailand); and the ancient civilization of India. The region becomes unique with the arrival of western civilization, leaving behind their foot prints of East meets West heritage, such as the Melaka and George Town (Malaysia), the Historical Centre of Macau and Baroque Churches in the Philippines. What's more, it's always enjoyable to taste and sample the wide variation of cuisines, fresh catch from the sea, exotic fruits and fresh local produce, and their ways of cooking are deeply rooted with their cultural heritage. It's indeed a pleasure to meet friendly faces of the local people, visit their temples and palaces and other historical sites, to find out their customs, beliefs and share their joy and enjoy their hospitality by taking part in their local festivals.
Our neighbours are indeed delightful combinations with Hong Kong, and Hong Kong is connected by flight to most parts of Asia in 4 hours or less. The tour will certainly offer fascinating contrasts, with whooping moments to share with your friends and loved ones.
We at Momentous Asia Travel & Events welcome all of you to see Hong Kong, China and Asia.