Family: Hong Kong (Discovery Bay)

Regarding my family research, I have been most surprised thus far by Discovery Bay.  I try not to research the cities too much before we arrive. I like to know where a grocery store is located for our check-in shopping trip, but other than that, I try to just arrive to a new city ready to explore and learn.

Discovery Bay is certainly nothing like I was expecting. Discovery Bay is a little community just across from Hong Kong. A 25-min ferry ride lands you right in downtown Hong Kong, but Discovery Bay itself it a little oasis away from the city.  Honestly, I cannot say I’ve ever really experienced anything quite like it.

The streets are filled with walkers, runners, bikers, buses, and golf carts.  There are little parks and playgrounds literally everywhere. On my 5-mile running loop, I passed at least 20 playground, which were always filled with children.  There are two city plazas; Discovery Bay Plaza and North Plaza.  Each plaza has a grocery store, restaurants, coffee shops, and a few other local type shopping.  You’ll find at least four racket clubs, a golf course, and a few yoga studios.

Most everyone speaks English. Everyone is friendly and welcoming. In the mornings, you’ll find most of the moms are rockin’ their Lululemon’s, carrying yoga mate or tennis rackets, and cell phone in hand around the Bay.  You’ll see all the children walking, riding the bus, or in golf carts headed to one of the many private schools wearing their very sweet school uniforms.

All, in all, I really loved Discovery Bay. I felt welcomed, at home, and extremely at ease. While in Discovery Bay, I also connected with the DB Moms Facebook group which was really interesting and fun.  It was a little piece of home.  The moms were all so kind and helpful. I posted a few questions and quickly got accurate, thoughtful responses.  During my time in the group, I witnessed a true sense of community and family.  Through the Facebook group, I witnessed a lost child find his mother, a credit card be returned, endless recommendations be provided, and also the general mom venting sessions entertained without judgement.

Here’s are my research findings:

  • As for working hours in Hong Kong, I walked to several moms during my stay and was really surprised.  In general working in Hong Kong is rough, long hours, long commutes, and high expectations.  Discovery Bay has a tons of pilots since the community is so close to the airport, so that of course means, sometimes days or weeks away from the family for working parents.  Most all of the family have a Helper. I wrote an entire blog about Helpers.
  • The parks are always full. I mean every park, every evening was packed. Nolan visited at least ten parks and made a new “best friend” every time.  In the evenings, I found more Helpers with children than parents, but on the weekends, I thought it was the opposite.  I always met and chatted with a fellow parent during our park visits.
  • Coffee shops were limited. Each plaza had a primary coffee shop; Discovery Bay had Pacific Coffee and North Plaza had Starbucks.  The coffee shops were always packed with a good mix of people. Lots of people with laptops working, but also groups of people just chatting and visiting.
  • A sense of “community” was probably my favorite part of Discovery Bay.  If it weren’t so expensive, I could have really found myself being happy, settled, and well connected to the Discovery Bay community.

Here’s my final thought on Discovery Bay;

  • Surprisingly, one of my favorite cities for “family” of the trip. Other than Sitges, I don’t think I connected with so many fellow moms in a single city.  If you are ever in Hong Kong and need a great place for kids, Discovery Bay is THE place to be.
  • When we get back to Fishers, I do feel like I need to better connect with people in my community.  During my stay in Hong Kong, I started researching groups to connect with back home. I need to do better about getting out of house and actually meeting new people in the community.

And now as always, some of my favorite pictures:

^Our little travel pro.

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