Last day in Hong Kong
As today is our last day in Hong Kong we were going to try and mop up the things that we’ve missed. It was still cloudy, I’m going to get SAD syndrome if I stay here much longer, but it wasn’t raining so it was the Peak tram first. Having been there once already we knew the way and walked straight down there. The gates were open – we were in luck. There a good display in the entrance of the workings. The gravity-defying Peak tram was the first funicular railway in Asia and has trundled up the side of Victoria peak at a steep 27˚ incline for over a century.
The tram arrived and we jumped on. There isn’t any where for the tram to turn round so you face forwards going up and the driver walks to the controls at the other end of the tram. We got in behind a tour and they had all the seats on the right hand side but the left looked over the woodland on the way up. We hadn’t had any breakfast so sat in the Pacific coffee lounge and watched the tram go back down again.
After breakfast we were ready for our walk and started off on the well signposted Peak circuit which is a flat 2 mile circuit giving breathtaking views over Victoria harbour and the city skyscrapers.
It was a bit hazy but not bad for the time of year. Bill was fascinated by this building, not sure if you’ll be able to make it out but it’s entirely clad in bamboo scaffolding. It has netting around the outside to contain any debris but as these building are 30 or 40 stories high it seemed amazing that they had used bamboo.
This was a little waterfall coming out of the peak
and this huge spider had spun his web next to the waterfall. It was easily the size of my hand, not nice. The circuit gives views over the islands south of Hong Kong island that we could just see over the trees.
A steep trudge towards the summit leads to Victoria Peak gardens that were once part of the Governor’s lodge. Sadly the summit is fenced off and has an array of phone masts on top of it. It was very peaceful up there and decidedly cooler than the city with a nice breeze blowing through.
This puss cat was enjoying the sunshine.
As the weather was hazy and we were a bit short of time we decided not to visit the Peak tower which apparently gives good views of the city. After doing the walk we felt that was the best view. There was another great view out of the window going down. You travel backwards going down the hill but we managed to get the front seat and watched the tram descend the hill. It’s difficult to see how steep it is but you could feel the gradient as we traveled down.
Once back down again we looked for some lunch which isn’t always easy in Hong Kong. Many of the malls along the water front either don’t have any where to eat or they were way over our budget. Eventually we found somewhere after what felt like ages.
Once back out again I wanted to walk around the banking district because some of them have viewing floors but sadly it was a bank holiday for the 70th anniversary of VJ day and they were closed. I rubbed the lions paw outside the HSBC building for luck and then we moved on.
The Landmark is a very expensive mall with very expensive shops in it but it was interesting looking in the windows.
With some expensive cars outside
We walked through Statue square and passed the neo-classical Legislative building with the Hong Kong cenotaph in front of it. It’s difficult to photograph these building close up because they are so tall.
The building to the right is the modernistic but feng shui-friendly girders of the HSBC building. Designed by Bristish architect Sir Norman Foster and completed in 1985 it was one of the most expensive buildings of the time costing more than HK$5 billion.
Our time in Hong Kong was coming to a close and tomorrow we fly to Beijing in China. There is a lot to see in and around the city and I feel we will have to come back.
The last job of the day was pick up our passports from the China Travel company with our Chinese visas in them. I had been nervous all day in case there was a problem but they were ready and waiting for us. So tomorrow it’s China here we come.