Travel Diaries: Hongkong ~ My First Backpacking Trip

Hongkong (meaning Fragrant Harbour) is a Special administration region of PR China. Before the transfer of sovereignty to China in 1997, It had been a British colony for nearly 150 years. As a result, most infrastructure inherits the design and standards of Britain. It is a unique destination that has absorbed people and cultural influences from different places of the world and proudly proclaims itself to be Asia’s World City.

It is a paradise for tourist’s. I’ve visited this place thrice and it always stands tall. It was a good & different experience every time I have been to this place, first time I visited this place in 2009 with my friend Goutham and it was a backpacking trip. And forget not that it was my first backpacking trip.  Later, I had to visit twice for some business meetings in 2011 & 2012. In those business trips, I have never visited any other place other than Arts museum and planetarium and a brisk walk on the harbor. It is quite hard for me to recollect all my memories since its already been 6 years;). Now in this coming posts, I’m going to share some of my experiences, tips, suggestions and Pictures (mostly taken by a small camera and the pictures are not of a great quality ;).

Hongkong travel (13)

Ngongping 360: Ngong Ping Cable Car is a visually spectacular 5.7km bi-cable ropeway. This cable car journey begins from Tung Chung, crossing Tung Chung Bay to reach the angle station on Airport Island and turning about 60 degrees in the air towards North Lantau. This was one of the best ride to enjoy all the beautiful views during this 25-minute ride: One can view the vistas of the distant and vast South China Sea and the rolling grassland slopes of North Lantau Country Park from the cable car slowly take over from the hustle and bustle of the city, introduce us to the serene and natural surrounds that Lantau is famed for. The journey also offers a breathtaking panorama of the Hong Kong International Airport, verdant, mountainous terrain of Lantau Island, Tian Tan Buddha and the 360-degree view of the Ngong Ping Plateau.

Uninhabitated islands scattered in South China sea..

Uninhabited islands scattered in South China sea..

Visiting the big Buddha in Lantau Island is in my opinion the No1 must visti attraction. Reserve a full day for it and try to go with good weather. Recommendation: To get there you have to take a gondola lift (Ngong Ping 360) which offers 2 kind of cabins: a standard cabin and another one with a glass floor (crystal cabin). I strongly recommend to take the crystal cabin for one of the ways. Now the catch: take the standard cabin in the way up and the crystal on the way down. The majority of people takes the crystal on the way up and the standard on the way down, which causes some major delays in taking the gondola on the way down, take advantage of this fact to avoid huge queues on your way back.

Visiting the big Buddha in Lantau Island in my opinion the No.1 must see attraction. Reserve a full day for it and try to go with good weather.

Tian Tan Buddha, also known as the Big Buddha, is a large bronze statue of a Buddha Amoghasiddhi, completed in 1993, and located at Ngong Ping, Lantau Island, in Hong Kong. The statue is located near Po Lin Monastery and symbolises the harmonious relationship between man and nature, people and religion. It is a major centre of Buddhism in Hong Kong, and is also a popular tourist attraction

Tian Tan Buddha, also known as the Big Buddha, is a large bronze statue of a Buddha Amoghasiddhi, completed in 1993, and located at Ngong Ping, Lantau Island, in Hong Kong. The statue is located near Po Lin Monastery and symbolises the harmonious relationship between man and nature, people and religion.

A view from the peak tower.. And the backdrop is the one of the finest Harbors on Earth..

A view from the peak tower.. And the backdrop is the one of the finest Harbors on Earth..

Looking down at the city from this famous vantage point, you'll see one of the finest harbors on Earth and a skyline so improbable, audacious and lofty.Everything you've heard about Hong Kong's restlessness and energy is dramatically reaffirmed by the view from the Peak. Even the most cynical locals never tire of visiting.

Looking down at the city from this famous vantage point, you’ll see one of the finest harbors on Earth and a skyline so improbable, audacious and lofty.

A view from the top of Victoria peak

A view from the top of the Victoria peak.. Victoria harbor and Kowloon as a backdrop. The view was breathtaking! & the best part of our visit was it was not very crowded when we were there.. 🙂

A view from the Victoria Peak..

Everything you’ve heard about Hong Kong’s restlessness and energy is dramatically reaffirmed by the view from the Peak. Even the most cynical locals never tire of visiting.

Some Info-Bits about Hong kong Islands:

Hong Kong Island (香港島): Most of Hong Kong’s highest skyscrapers and the financial centre can be found here. Overall, Hong Kong Island is more modern and wealthy and considerably less dirty than the other areas of Hong Kong. The Peak is the tallest point on the island, with the best views and highest real estate values in the world.

Kowloon (九龍): The peninsula to the north of Hong Kong Island, with great views of the island. It offers a chaotic mix of malls, street markets, and residential tenements. With over 2.1 million people living in an area of less than 47 square kilometres, Kowloon is one of the most densely populated places in the world. Kowloon includes Tsim Sha Tsui (尖沙咀), the location of many budget hotels and Mong Kok , a shopping district.

New Territories (新界): The New Territories contain a curious mix of small farms, villages, industrial installations, mountainous country parks and towns that have populations the size of some cities.

Lantau Island (大嶼山): A large island west of Hong Kong Island. You will not find many idyllic villages, but once you get over the stray dogs and the ramshackle buildings you will find beautiful mountains and beaches. The airport, Disneyland, and the Ngong Ping cable car are located here.

Outlying Islands (離島): Well-known weekend destinations for the locals, the Outlying Islands are most of the islands surrounding Hong Kong Island. Highlights include Lamma (南丫島), well known for its seafood and Cheung Chau (長洲), a small island that used to be a pirates’ den, but now attracts seafood aficionados, windsurfers and sunbathing day trippers.

Top 7 Tips from my perspective..

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