Exchange journal: Escaping the Aussie winter in HK

Stephanie Yap is undertaking a combined Bachelor of Applied Finance with Bachelor of Commerce – Professional Accounting degree at Macquarie. Being a four year degree, she had plenty of time to fit in short term exchange to the Chinese University of Hong Kong.

“One thing on my to-do list at university was to go on exchange. I chose Hong Kong because it was a place I had heard so much about and wanted to explore first-hand. I also jumped at the chance to escape an Aussie winter!

Mixing with other international students and local students in Hong Kong, I learned that:

  • Australians apparently sound British
  • terms such as ‘arvo’, ‘jumping castle’ and ‘fairyfloss’ had to be explained; and
  • there would be reoccurring debates with Americans over the correct pronunciation of ‘kebab’ and McDonalds slang.

There were so many notable experiences, but one that I rave about was hiking to Sheung Luk stream. The two hours of buses, taxis and hiking to get there was well worth it, with spectacular water views and an eight-metre cliff jump waiting for us. What better way to cool off in the 30 degree heat?

Our walk was followed by beers on the beach, kick-ball and a night-boat ride back to town.

A few of the other things I miss about Hong Kong are:
3am dim sum, green tea icecream, milktea, lemon tea, frequent trains, all-you-can-eat hot pot for AU$10, cheap taxis, street food, vibrant nightlife, Asian dice games and all the wonderful international faces that we met whilst abroad.

I will certainly be returning to Hong Kong in the near future. Hands down, this was the best five weeks of my university  –  the world is certainly a smaller place after going abroad.”

Read about short-term exchange programs available to Macquarie students.