Kowloon hotels travel and accommodation guide  
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Kowloon hotels travel and accommodation guide

The name Kowloon is thought to have orig- inated when the last emperor of the Song dynasty passed through the area during his flight from the Mongols. He is said to have counted eight p~ on the peninsula and commented that there must therefore be eight dragons there - but was reminded that since he himself was present there must be nine. Kowloon is thus derived from the Can- tonese words gau, meaning nine, and long, for dragon.

It covers a mere 12 sq km of high-rise buildings extending from the Tsim Sha Tsui waterfront to Boundary St. Apart from a few notable exceptions, Kowloon is architee- turally unexciting. Height restrictions for buildings (because aircraft bound for Kai Tak airport had to skim Kowloon rooftops) give the district a much lower skyline than in Central. Central is also I-long Kong's finan- cial heart, shown off as its most prized asset, while Kowloon is more a crowded province of mercantile mayhem. There is none of the slickness of Central (except the pockets of glamour in top-end hotel shopping arcades), and for the most part Kowloon is a riot of tourist commerce set to a gritty backdrop of crumbling tencinent blocks.

There are impressive buildings, none the less, supported by intriguing sights. Love or hate its design, the Hong Kong Cultural Centre is a bold stab at turning Hong Kong into something more than a city obsessed with wealth. The Peninsula is one of Hong Kong's great colonial buildings and, at night, the Promenade along Victoria Harbour is a stunning technicolour vista of Central and Wan Chai - the subject of countless post- cards. Kowloon Park is a blessed haven for the tired denizens of Nathan Rd and the Hong Kong History Museum is a must-see for those who want a coloudul and imaginative guide through the Hong Kong of yesterday. Kowloon's districts are best seen on foot.

Unlike on Hong Kong Island, there's no tram to ferry you around; but areas of interest are not spaced too far apart, and these are the areas with the highest concentration of hotels, restaurants and amenities.

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