The iconic Star Ferry has been freighting passengers between Kowloon and Hong Kong Island since 1880. It costs 2.50 0r 3.00 Hong Kong dollars, or less than 50 cents USD to take the ferry and if you visit Hong Kong, you will almost certainly want to cross the bay at some point and will most likely make use of the convenient ferry. The view is suppose to be more impressive going from Kowloon to Central than the other way around.
August 8, 2011
July 20, 2011
July 19, 2011
After my day trip to Lantau Island, I took the train back into town and ended up with a little over an hour to spare before I was supposed to meet my friend for dinner. I was beginning to think that my best option for killing time was to find a cafe to duck into, when I stumbled upon the flower market. It was a little bit late and things were winding down when I got there, but it was still very cool to see so many flowers shops concentrated in one little area.
July 13, 2011
Lantau island is the largest of Hong Kong’s islands, almost twice as large as Hong Kong island. Most visitors to Hong Kong arrive first in Lantau because the airport is on this island. Hong Kong Disneyland is on Lantau island as well. Most people visiting Lautau island will either be heading to the airport, Disneyland, or the Tian Tan Buddha, allegedly the world”s largest outdoor Buddha.
Until 1997, Lantau island was only accessible by ferry and walking around the Tung Chung area (the end of the line of the MTR train) or the airport area, everything does seem pretty new. During my day trip to Lantau island, I took the MTR to Tung Chung and then took the nearby Ngong Ping Cable car up to the peak. At the top, there is a very fake model of a “traditional Chinese village” (meaning the souvenir shops are supposed to look like Chinese architecture from the outside) that you walk through to get to the Po Lin Monastery and the Tian Tau Buddha. The cable car is supposed to have gorgeous views, which I was looking forward to, but unfortunately, it was raining so I couldn’t see much.
Click more to see my cable car ride and the giant buddha.
July 12, 2011
If you ever find yourself with nothing to do in Hong Kong on a Wednesday, then you might consider a visit to the Hong Kong Museum of History (香港歴史博物館). The museum is free on Wednesdays. But at $10HKD on other days, you won’t break the bank visiting on a different day of the week. (Just keep in mind that they’re closed on Tuesdays.)
The museum looks at the history of Hong Kong going back to prehistoric times and continuing almost up to the present day. There are exhibits about the different ethnic groups who live/lived in Hong Kong, festivals that take place in Hong Kong and different historical events that have had a big effect on Hong Kong.
A little while ago, I posted pictures from my day trip to Cheung Chau Island and in some of those pictures, people were preparing for the Steamed Bun Festival. The history museum has a model of the “bun mountain” that I photographed, but with fake steamed buns on it.
July 8, 2011
In the blink of an eye a month has gone by without updating my blog. My sincerest apologies! I hope to catch up in the next few weeks.
And now, a return to our regularly scheduled programming:
Every day tourists visiting Hong Kong flock to the peak. The real name of the area is Victoria Peak (太平山 in Chinese). Many Europeans built homes up on the peak during the colonial days, and in those days, they were carried up to the top on chairs. I feel bad for the people who had to carry them up this horribly steep hillside. In 1888, the first tram was completed, and now it’s mostly a tourist center with shopping malls and souvenir shops.
June 6, 2011
In Japan, all the elevator safety signs are telling you to keep your crocs away from the edges of the steps. (There have been several incidents where people got crocs or croc style sandals caught in escalators and were injured in Japan.) But in Hong Kong, I just saw a smiling penguin (?) telling me to hold the handrail and be safe.
June 2, 2011
Anyone who knows me knows that I love tea. It is far and away my favorite thing to drink. Whenever I’m in the office, I always have my over sized Chicago Botanic Garden mug (a gift from some friends. Thanks friends!) filled with some kind of tea next to me. Usually I drink bancha (a type of green tea) or assam tea (a type of black tea) because those are the teas I can plunder from the snack corner of the office.
So when my friend in Hong Kong suggested going to the Peninsula hotel for their Afternoon Tea Service, I ignored her follow-up of “but it’s a bit pricey” and insisted that we go. We showed up on Sunday afternoon around 4 and got in the back of a long line. It was a holiday weekend and I guess we weren’t the only people with the idea that it might be nice to have some tea.
June 1, 2011
I visited Cheung Chau a couple weeks before their biggest event of the year, the bun festival. During the bun festival, a big wooden structure is built and covered with buns. Then people start to climb up the mountain and grab as many buns as they can. Sounds like fun!
Temples, beaches, and boats still to come! (more…)
May 31, 2011
Yesterday I wrote a post about taking a day trip to Cheung Chau Island while I was in Hong Kong. But I didn’t show you everything, so today, I bring you more Cheung Chau fun!
First, I have some pictures of the dim sum I ate for brunch on Cheung Chau.
In the full post: chicken feet, shrimp dumplings and gaiwan cups. (more…)