TWO DAYS IN HONG KONG
Remember, it is 9:00am and I just left my belongings at the Sheraton Hotel and Towers in Hong Kong. Even if I didn’t sleep much during my flight I don’t have time to do so right now, it’s time for adventure.
As a reminder, with 7,5 M of habitants Hong Kong is one of the most populated places in the world. This population is divided on 200 islands forming 18 districts. 40% of the 1100 km2 of Hong Kong are natural protected parks.
In other words, two days are far from being enough to explore all this area, but I will present you a few places that you can visit and enjoy during a short trip.
HOW CAN I MOVE IN HONG KONG?
The metro, tram and ferry network is very complete on the principal islands. 50% of the displacements are made by metro in HK. The trains circulate from 6:00am to 1:00am and the price of a ticket is between 6 and 26HKD (0,6 and 2,6EUR) depending on the distance. The trains and the stations are very clean, every square meter of ground, stairs, walls is constantly being cleaned. Due to the climate the trains are all equipped with the air conditioning. I encourage you to buy an octopus card for your trips.
The taxis are also very cheap in this city so do not hesitate for your night moves (24HKD for the first 2kms and 1,7HKD each additional 200m in the worst case).
TIAN TAN BUDDHA
Originally, it was only a lost monastery in the mountains and lush vegetation, but the monastery Po Lin passed on the front of the world stage when was installed in 1993, the extraordinary statue of Tian Tan Buddha. Sitting majestically, this 34-meters high bronze Buddha is turned to the north to watch over all the Chinese people and attracts innumerable pilgrims from all over Asia.
To access the giant Buddha, you can take the Ngong Ping 360 from the Tung Chung station. This cable car will take you to a little village of shops and restaurants. You’ll have to walk a few meters and then climb the 268 steps to reach the giant statue.
In front of the statue, Po Lin Monastery is one of the most important Buddhist shrines in Hong Kong. It has been dubbed the “Southern Buddhist Kingdom” and hosts many monks for events related to Buddhist iconography. You can enjoy his garden full of scents and bird’s songs.
SYMPHONY OF THE LIGHTS
Imagine a night show of sound and light that animates more than 40 skyscrapers. It’s one of the most impressive daily shows in the world, a true icon of Hong Kong’s inexhaustible energy.
The skyscrapers and monuments on both sides of Victoria Bay serve as a theater for an extraordinary multimedia show between lights, lasers, giant LED screens in keeping with the music. The Hong Kong skyline becomes an outdoor audiovisual party.
You can listen to the music of the show in front of the Hong Kong Cultural Center in Tsim Sha Tsui and on the promenade of Golden Bauhinia Square in Wan Chai every evening at 8:00 pm.
It is the highest point of the island, the most popular district since the colonial era, the one where the air was the coolest. But in the era of air conditioning, it remains the favorite place for its views of the famous bay and skyscrapers, known throughout the world.
It’s truly a staple of your stay in Hong Kong, you have a panoramic view of all the glittering skyscrapers and Victoria Harbor to the green hills of the New Territories from Sky Terrace 148 on the roof of the Peak Tower, where you will also find restaurants and shops.
To climb, I advise you to use the peak tram. From the lower station, you can climb up to 30 degrees through the trees with original views of the surrounding skyscrapers. To go down again, you can take the tram or opt for the circuit of 3.5 kilometers, the Peak Circle Walk, which goes around the Peak, breathtaking views follow one another at your own pace.
At the end of the funicular at the foot of the Peak, the historic Peak Tram Gallery is a witness of its history and that of Hong Kong. Since 1888, the date of its commissioning, the tram is the quiet witness of 120 years of evolution.
INTERNATIONAL COMMERCE CENTER
To finish, I took the ferry from the North Point Ferry Pier to Kowloon City. After a little walk around the old Kai Tak airport I went to the ICC, the International Commerce Center which is the tallest building of Hong Kong. There, located on the 100th floor you’ll find “Sky100 Hong Kong Observation Deck”, the city’s highest indoor observatory, which offers visitors an incredible 360-degree panorama of Hong Kong Kong and Victoria Bay, “an unrivalled view from an unforgettable place”.
It was then time for me to head back to the Sheraton Hong Kong to take a last shower before jumping one last time in HK’s subway to the airport.
Hong Kong is a very dynamic city full of interesting things to do. Of course, 2 days are not enough so I plan to fly back there in the future, but if you have the occasion to visit the archipelago for a weekend or a short trip, do not hesitate.