A few years ago, I was very eager to say that the community was overall positive, but now I'd say that it was just as rotten as it is today. Perhaps it is my nostalgia goggles wearing off, but I'm starting to remember the negative experiences I had with people. I miss my old friends of course, but I've ran into some very terrible people. It's the same thing today, just that people are more spread out now so it's easier to avoid interactions.
I would say that the old layout of Victoria Island is still quite nostalgic to me. It was always fun being able to walk from one town and then return full circle. The large, intricate maps were a lot less straightforward to navigate in. I especially remember the L forest somewhere between Kerning City and Lith Harbor.
Ever since I saw that Pink Bean appreciation thread, my perspective has been changed. I never realized how much I needed that wonderful, delightful bean in my life. Gender doesn't matter - Pink Bean is the best waifu.
Certainly, it was a place that people of different levels congregated at but it was mostly high leveled players showing off. Even if it was good exp back then, it would not be good exp now. The monsters in HHG were best suited for lvl 15- and nowadays, players get out of that level range quickly. Some classes even have quests to bring them to lvl 2x now.
If HHG were to be brought back now, people would only go to it at the beginning for nostalgia and then it would be abandoned again. There really is nothing special about that place anymore.