“Consider Revisiting: You Learn Something New Every Time You Go Back” is one of the headings I used in my recently-published guest post at DPS (Digital Photography School) titled How to Search Potential Cityscape Photography Spots Online Before Traveling . Please check it out if you haven’t yet!
In there, I primarily talked about the importance of pre-departure preparations such as knowing “what to shoot”, “where to shoot from” and “how to get to those locations”, but also touched a bit on the topic of revisiting the same destination, saying as follows.
The great thing about revisiting the same place is that you learn something new every time you go back, such as discovering lesser-known photography spots, finding a faster way to move around, etc. Besides, you can try new restaurants and coffee shops alike, and after a few visits, you’ll be able to walk around the city like a local!
Revisiting to Take Better Photos
It goes without saying that the first and main purpose of revisiting is to take better photos. Like I said in the guest post, even if your preparation is perfect, you may still end up going home with no decent photos due to inclement weather or sheer mistakes.
I mentioned Hong Kong as the place that draws me back for its amazing cityscapes. My first visit was back in 2013. Although I got a rare clear day, I made an ignorant error of setting a tripod up too tall in high winds at Victoria Peak and ending up with blurry images.
So I revisited the following year for redemption, but was cursed with their infamous grey weather throughout my 4 day stay. It was only at my third visit that I was able to shoot something satisfactory. Since then, I’ve revisited three more times (total of six visits) and been able to capture some of my most favourite photos to date, as seen below.
Revisiting also allows you to be familiar with the place and find a faster way to move around, etc. For my first two visits to Hong Kong (note that I’ve always stayed at OZO Hotel Wesley in Wan Chai), I’d take MTR (subway) back to the starting bus stop at Central Bus Terminus to get on bus no. 15 that goes to Victoria Peak. Then on my third visit, I happened to find out that bus no. 15 actually stops just behind the hotel (a neat finding that has saved me an hour per trip to Victoria Peak ever since!).
Speaking of restaurants and coffee shops, I normally search a lot on photography spots prior to travelling, but not on eating spots, so I was pretty clueless where to dine in. But after six visits, I have a few favourites now, such as DimDimSum , Dim Sum specialty restaurant, and some cafes around Wan Chai area.
Still Young and No Commitment? Make Your Dream Happen!
Frequenting Hong Kong several times makes me feel like it’s my new home, but I’m still keen on going back for more photography. In fact, my dream now is to take a few months off going to Hong Kong and shoot cityscapes at blue hour on every single clear day. It’s not a humanly-impossible dream, but hard for those of us married with school-going kids, just like myself.
If you’re still young with no commitment, and have a dream like mine, just make it happen! It gets much harder when you’re older (but I haven’t given up!!).