Hello, I'm Jamie. 46 years living in Hong Kong - How local do you want to get?
Award Winning Private Tours in amazing Hong Kong, former British Colony from 1841 - 1997
Yes, I'm English - if you book a tour you will get me!
Jamie - 46 years here and absolutely passionate about Hong Kong
My working background in Hong Kong was as a Business Consultant (with a specialisation in Sales / Marketing) since I was 16 years old ie from 1977 to 2011 - being a Private Tour Guide has been my full time occupation since 2011, I do not do anything else...and I am a pretty decent and very experienced Private Tour Guide who will save you an awful lot of time when you visit Hong Kong.
On my tours I cover the following topics (not in any order) and I do not work to a prepared script, you can ask me anything at all, I love a GREAT conversation, what better way to learn about this fabulous city, Hong Kong.
- Current affairs
- Raising a family in Hong Kong (I am married with 3 boys)
- A brief history of Hong Kong (1841 - 2018)
- The Opium Wars and I will be brief
- WW2 & The Japanese Occupation
- Languages and why English and Cantonese are still vitally important in Hong Kong
- Lucky numbers / gambling / superstitions and how they affect society and how they impact on business
- Education and why we have two school systems and why does the Government seemingly embrace academic mediocrity? whilst ignoring vocational training programmes for those who do not go to University
- Politics (and I will be very brief!) and why talk of independence can ruin your life
- Religion and trust me it is not at all what you would expect, it is such a fascinating subject here
- The current housing crisis and the crazy property bubble and why Hong Kong Government policies (or lack of them) just make it worse.
- Architecture and our amazing skylines and they really are quite stunning
- Wealth & poverty - currently the biggest gap in the world and yet we have a very stable society (for the most part)
- Homeless people and why our homeless figure is so, so low
- Day to day life in the most vibrant, exciting city in the world....
- The REAL reason you will never see a foreigner in 99.5% of "local" Chinese Restaurants... and it might just surprise you!
- Finally - I do not mince words, I tell you what it is really like in Hong Kong and why you should not believe everything you read in the press!
I naturally have some limitations and I like to be upfront about them.... I do not look like George Clooney but have been called “fat George Clooney” by the wife, I am terrible at speaking Cantonese and no, I do not have a posh English accent, I amble rather than walking like a kitted out 25 year old trail runner in spandex, I am not a foodie in any shape or form but having eaten in well over a thousand Chinese restaurants means I have an opinion, I am not a tree and plant expert but I can recognise a car from it’s profile half a mile away and no, I cannot get you into the China Club, primarily because I am not a member and I am absolutely not in any shape or form an old stuffed shirt.
On the other hand it you are looking for a premium quality private tour of Hong Kong with an easygoing English chap with a great sense of humour who has lived here for 46 years then contact me today.
I have lived in Hong Kong since very early January 1972 so I grew up in Hong Kong and I am a very experienced professional, private tour guide, a family guy and your best friend in Hong Kong! - I offer time saving premium quality private tours of Hong Kong - the tour is part walking / part public transport, giving you a real insight into one of the most amazing cities in the world.
I am a bit of a photographer with extensive local knowledge
Important : selecting the right tour length (number of hours)
I do tours from between 3 to 12 hours and it is my job to maximise what you see no matter how many hours you have booked.
In Tour Guide language:-
a half day tour is 4 hours
a full day tour is 8 hours
Hong Kong has an area of roughly 426 sq miles (1,100 sq km) as such attractions are widely spaced apart and this has to be taken into account when considering the length of a tour.
It is simply not realistic to expect to do Hong Kong’s Top 10 attractions in 4 hours! (You would need a minimum of 3 days to do them all!) and this is where I come in - having lived in Hong Kong for 46 years and having done 50,000 + journeys on our subway system and 40,000+ journeys on buses so I am an expert on timing and the most effective use of our public transport system. - my aim is simply to show you the best that Hong Kong has to offer.
In addition I have done well over 2,000 tours which means I have a pretty fair idea of how to maximise what you see within the time frame of a tour and the longer the tour the more you will see, over 30% of my tours are 8 hours in length.
No matter what tour length you decide on, whether it be 4 hours or 10 hours, I will show you the the very best of this vibrant city.
3 Key facts about Jamie
I am the most experienced and most highly rated Private Tour Guide in Hong Kong, I am just one person, most other companies have between 3 - 12 guides, Jamie is a real trailblazer and one of the pioneers in the field of immersive, private, premium Hong Kong Tours since 2011
Excellence in touring, that's right - unique, immersive, bespoke, premium private tours personalised to your specifications - oh, and all tours are done by me personally!
Arriving in very early January 1972 so I grew up here - I went to school in Hong Kong as a kid (ESF Schools, Glenealy and Island School) and have spent over 46 years living here, I am married with 3 boys aged 18, 25 and 34, my wife and kids were all born in Hong Kong.
My boys went to the following ESF Schools - Shatin Junior School, Shatin College, Kowloon Junior School, Beacon Hill School and KGV! and I went to Island School.
12 Key Facts about my Tours
Going Local with Jamie
46 years in hong Kong
So after over 46 years of living in Hong Kong I consider myself a local.... I have knowledge, passion, experience and lot's of enthusiasm plus a somewhat interesting perspective on this wonderful city which I endeavour to apply in a way that will ensure that you will have a memorable but fully informative visit to Hong Kong.
You may well think that doing the most touristy of touristy things like visiting the Peak for the city view, riding the Star Ferry or eating dodgy sweet and sour pork at the Temple Street Night Market are best avoided but you know what they are a part of Hong Kong culture. (Oh, and the best part of the Temple Street Night Market is what goes on behind the stalls!) - OK, so I will never eat at the Temple Street Night Market simply on the grounds that the food is awful and hygiene is an issue but for some it is a great experience and frankly the view from my spot at the Peak is the greatest city view in the world and the Star Ferry is simply iconic! - in a nutshell you need a private tour guide to show you the best that Hong Kong has to offer.
.... and I know some great places to visit if you wish to see the less glamorous parts of Hong Kong.
Awarded the Tripadvisor Certificate of Excellence
for for 6 years in a row from 2012 - 2017
Specialising in Premium Private Tours for people of all ages
My Private Tours are perfect for:-
- Business People - fit in a tour between meetings!
- Families with kids (of any age!) - I specialise in fun tours for families with kids, kids 16 and under at the time of booking are FREE OF CHARGE
- Small groups of 2 to 6 people
- Solo travellers - over 290 tours done with single ladies
- Airport layover / transit passengers with HK International Airport pickup by me and NO surcharge for this service
- Cruise Ship passengers with Cruise Terminal pick up by me and NO surcharge for this service
- For larger group tours (more than 6 people) please contact me for confirmation
- For visitors of the Jewish faith - Hong Kong has a rich Jewish heritage and a wonderful Synagogue and my tours can be adapted to include Jewish culture.
- I also do ORIENTATION PROGRAMMES for families etc who have recently arrived in Hong Kong to live
- Corporate Team Building
Specialising in Premium Private Tours for Seniors
My Private Tours are a combination of walking / using public transport with emphasis on using the MTR (Subway System) which is NOT subject to road traffic conditions - this is by far the best way to see Hong Kong and the most optimal use of your time. I am very sensitive to peoples physical condition and naturally I adapt accordingly no matter what the season.
I am available to do tours 7 days a week including holidays, all year round, you can book your unique private tour of Hong Kong up to 18 months in advance with NO deposit required.
Oh, and my tours are fun!
- 40% of my tours are with guests under 45
- 11% of my tours are with families with kids under 16
Please note when you book a tour with me, you will get me, I do not employ any other guides. I have done well over 2,000 private tours of Hong Kong in the past 7 years
Easy Booking Procedure
That's right no deposit required
I do take last minute bookings!
Those Hong Kong "Free" Tours
...oh and a high quality PRIVATE TOUR is a totally different experience to one of those very short and limited 2 hour so called "free tours" where you generally end up doing the tour with 25 other people! you have an inflexible tour itinerary, the guide talks through a microphone, works from a script, use diagrams and photocopied images, spends a lot of time upselling PAID tours....and you are expected to tip the guide by the way, so much for being free!
A lot of them claim that they are the only people that talk about the gritty side of Hong Kong, (Housing, Politics, the Homeless etc.) this is utter nonsense, us Private Guides have been doing this for many years.
Most of these Free Tour Guides aged between 20 - 30 years old love to call themselves TRUE LOCALS or REAL LOCALS in other words Chinese people born in Hong Kong, the inference being that only they could possibly know Hong Kong culture and food, they may know a few facts and figures but they have a hard time holding an in depth conversation on matters that define Hong Kong.
- oh and there is virtually no chance to have one on one detailed discussions with the guide about Hong Kong, so if you are stuck for something to do in Hong Kong then contact me, remember I have lived in Hong Kong for 46 years.
Those Hong Kong Coach Tours
If you don't want to do one of those generic coach tours offered by the Hotel Concierges (the itinerary has not really changed in 50 + years !! and includes the dreaded Jewellery Factory stop) - then contact me now, remember I have lived in Hong Kong for 46 years.
This could be you on the bus below contemplating the hard sell at the jewellery factory!
Trying to explore Hong Kong with a Travel Guide Book in your hand...
It is all but impossible to see Hong Kong using a Guide Book.... Hong Kong is a huge city - guide books give you a decent overview with basic facts (quite often out of date) but this is NO substitute for a private tour guide who lives and breathes the city and is a master storyteller! ... oh and makes it so easy to visit numerous places seamlessly within a short period of time using the worlds best public transport system.
Me Jamie, I am your private tour guide when you book with J3 Private Tours Hong Kong
Below, some of My Clients
Click on the image to see the full size image
Jamie - a real trailblazer and one of the pioneers in the field of Hong Kong Private Tours.
I offer:- Premium Private Walking Tours, Private Sightseeing Tours, Private City Tours, Private Cultural Tours and Private Night Tours of Hong Kong plus Orientation Programmes for recent arrivals to Hong Kong.
I am a very experienced, trustworthy & personable guide, my unique private tours are perfect for visitors who want a detailed overview of Hong Kong prior to exploring on their own, or for people who are only here for a day or two who want to make the most of their limited time here.
Many clients book me for their first full day in Hong Kong: they get to see the best that Hong Kong has to offer, with a crash course in our wonderful public transport system, before they go exploring for the rest of their stay armed with step by step instructions and personal recommendations from me.
I do tours of Hong Kong Island, Kowloon and the New Territories and our inhabited outlying islands such as Cheung Chau Island and Lantau Island.
Finally, here are some phrases I read recently from other companies offering tours:-
- "There’s a world of difference between learning about the city from a university educated professional and hearing about it from a tourist guide."
- "Why we call our guides docents"
- "Walks by professionals, not tour guides"
For the record, I am NOT university educated, I am not a docent, I am not a host nor am I a traditional tour guide working from a script as such - I am just a regular guy who is proud to be a professional, private tour guide and I do believe that my over 46 years of living in and exploring Hong Kong + 32 years as a business consultant and raising a family here actually means so much more than a formal university education when it comes to showing visitors around this amazing city that I call home. I am a story teller.
So you want to see Hong Kong, but you are not interested in taking a horrible coach tour with 30 strangers or a so called FREE Tour so you are looking for a tour guide, preferably a human one as opposed a printed city guide!
Perhaps you want to go to Cheung Chau Island, visit the Peak, trek to the 10,000 Buddha Monastery, check out the Blue House & the Pak Tai Temple or visit our Public Housing Estates; in other words - you just want someone to help you visit the MUST see places and the lesser known places that make Hong Kong tick.
.......and I have done tours with people who have the following diverse occupations:- A Princess, One Star Admiral of the US 7th Fleet, Plumbers, Nuclear Sub Commanders, Farmers, Chip Shop Owner, Teachers, Pulitzer Prize Award Winning Journalists, Photocopier Repair Guys, Lawyers, Rocket Scientists, Movie Producers, Consul Generals, Police Officers, Homicide Detectives, Travel Agents, House Keepers, Linguists, Retired and Serving CIA Officers, Fighter Pilots, Army and Navy Guys, Socialites, Students, Judges, Journalists, Software Geeks, Nuclear Power Plant Inspectors, Surgeons, Doctors, Forensic Pathologists, Nurses, Coroners, Venture Capitalists, Hospice Directors, Town Planners, Accountants, Psychiatrists, Nuclear Physicists, Professional Athletes, Ferry Captains, Commercial Pilots, Airline Crew, Social Workers, Veterinarians, Musicians, Theme Park Executives, Professional Photographers, College Professors, Gaming Geeks, Inland Revenue Tax Officials, American Airforce B 52 Bomber Pilot, Senior Engineer / Ballistic Missiles, Bodyguards, Beer Salesmen, Park Rangers, Scuba Diving Instructors, Popcorn Machines Makers, Coastguard Officers, Firemen, Structural Geologists, Veterinarians, Architects, Surveyors, Hooters Waitress, Dentists, Ski Instructors, Civil Engineers, Air Traffic Controllers, Electricians, Top Law Professor's at major US Universities, Librarians, Steel Guys, Economists, Homemakers, Novelists, Book Publishers, Currency Traders, Carpenters, a Rabbi, Boiler Maker, Strawberry Farmers, Food Bloggers, Morticians, Financial Advisers, Corporate Video Makers, Private Investigators, Bounty Hunters, Chiropractors, Air Traffic Controllers, Builders, Stonemasons, Botanists, Dog Sitters, Spy, Geneticists, Interpol Agents, Prison Food Suppliers, Radio Announcers, Military Cryptologists, Forklift Drivers, Locksmiths, Icecream maker, Pastry Chef, Baker, Zoo Keepers, Explosives Experts, DEA Agents, Coffee Traders, Diamond Buyers, Wedding Photographers, Google Guru's, Geologists, Professor of Medieval History, Navy Chef's, Camp Site Operators, Animal Embalmers, Telecomms Engineers, Helicopter Pilots, Oil Industry Divers, Navy Seals, Landscape Gardeners, Mary Kay Super Agents, Hotel Owners, TV Actors, Optometrists, Gourmet Chef's, Acclaimed Plastic Surgeons, Barristers, Travel Bloggers, Politicians, Funeral Home Directors, Former Gang Member, Anthropologist, Children's Book Author, Geophysicist, Chicken Artist, Priest, Movie Makeup Artist, Expert Witness, Bail Bondsman, Opera Singer, Master Brewer, Child Prodigy, Debt Collector, Victoria Secrets Store Manager, Head of a major Charity, Celebrity TV Talking Heads (!), Fortune 500 CEO's, Corporate Trainer, Futures Trader, General Manager of a Worm Bait Company, Owner of a RV Dealership, Convenience Store Owner, Owner of an Amusement Game Manufacturer, Elephant Conservationists, Crematorium Operator, Vet from Honduras, Hair Stylist for a Funeral Home,Calendar Maker, Pedicab Operator, Poets, Steve Jobs Doctor, Big cheese Executives from HBO and CBS, former Secret Service Agent.... and some really, really senior people from J. P. Morgan, Starbucks, Google and Microsoft.
The Pak Tai Temple in Wanchai - one of my favourite Temples in Hong Kong
Click on the images above to see the full size picture.....
The most amazing city view in the world from my spot at the Peak
99.999% of the photos are my own and the writing is all mine...
At the moment I do not go out with a HK$50,000 camera (yet!) and a tripod and don't wait for 3 hours for the perfect photo. (Well, actually I have once!) I will shoot anything of interest whether the sun is shining or not!
I apologise for any spelling / grammatical errors. Content is written in plain English and I let my tours and photos do most of the talking!
Yes, I get writers block everyday, writing does not come naturally to me.... I get up at 5am daily to update my website!
I remember when I first started being a private tour guide I managed one and sometimes two blog posts a day, these days once every week is the best I can manage...
This thing I have about Cars and Car Number Plates
I have never driven a car in my life, Hong Kong has simply the best public transport system in the world so why bother... it is also expensive, so I took the decision long ago to stick to the trains and buses.
Hong Kong has it's fair share of wealthy people and car nuts so there is no shortage of fabulous cars in Hong Kong and I admit I am a bit of a fanatic and like nothing better than to go car spotting, some of the best cars can be seen at the luxury hotels we have here, the best ones include the Four Seasons Hotel, the Peninsula Hotel and the Intercontinental Hotel.
Hong Konger's also like to have custom number plates on their cars and given the obsession we have here for lucky numbers there are some fine examples of plates with the combination of 6, 8's and 9's plus those vanity plates, some of which make no sense at all!
Hong Kong is quite compact so seeing nice cars is easy and I have a really nice camera now so the quality of my images is improving every day..
I love cars, me!
I absolutely do NOT and will NOT take a commission from any type of establishment.
You read correctly. Any special mention of a retail outlet is not for my commercial gain and my comments are my own based on shopping in Hong Kong for over 46 years. I recommend them because I have received excellent service, the product I want and a good price, and I believe they rate a special mention, you can make up your mind if you choose to visit them whilst in Hong Kong.
...and yes that Jade Bracelet really is HK$15,050,000 or US$1.95 Million!
Travel Services Provided by: This is Asia (Hong Kong Macau) Limited Travel Agents Licence Number: 354091
Hong Kong Association of Travel Agents & Travel Industry Council Travel Industry Council Registration Number: 23091 - 0