Saturday was a great day of exploring as I started my first weekend of touring the island of Hong Kong. I made my second attempt at taking the Tram up to the Peak after skipping it on Thursdays national holiday when I saw the lineups that were over two hours long.
Here is a video of the tram up to the Peak;
I left earlier in the morning and arrived at the tram station about 10am, making my way through the lines in less than a half hour. I’d recommend going early in the morning to avoid long lineups that became at least an hour long by the time I got back down at about 3 in the afternoon. We boarded the tram and began our ascent to the top of the mountain which made a surprisingly steep climb over a short journey.
Arriving at the top I climbed off the tram and meandered through the obligatory market full of kitschy trinkets and souvenirs that led to the main observation area. From here you make your way up the escalators, past all the shops to the Sky Terrace 480 which was included in my ticket (buy the return ticket with the 480 entrance). As you walk out on the terrace you’ll be immediately in awe of the incredible 360 degree view that’s laid out in front of you. The wind was quite strong and it quickly became a bit crowded but I found a bench up top and to myself, I sat for a while pondering the scenery and watching tourists taking their selfie pics.
After absorbing my fill of the incredible scenery, I headed back into the observation center which is full of retail shops, coffee shops and fast food outlets. I wasn’t interested in any of the retail activities so I ventured out to see what else there was to experience at the top of the mountain.
I walked across the street and came to the entrance of Pok Fu Lam Park deciding I’d love to go for a little hike. Well, it actually turned out to be a somewhat physically demanding tour with a walk that although on a well paved path was a steep decline down. Going down means you eventually have to do the reverse and it was a bit of a challenge in the humid heat. If you aren’t fairly fit I wouldn’t recommend going all the way to the bottom. I managed though and it was a lovely walk through some jungle like scenery that lead down to a Lake reservoir. Families and active walkers, hikers and runners were enjoying the physical activity along the paths and although you had some peace and quiet I never felt along, it wasn’t too secluded and felt safe.
It felt great to get some exercise in and to enjoy some of the urban countryside. It’s a great natural space with lots of picnic areas and washrooms at the opposite end of the park (at the bottom). After climbing back to the top I took another short trail along the top of The Peak called the Finlay Trail that offered more great views of the city among some greenery.
After making my way back to the bottom station I waked towards the MRT Central Train Station and along the way I stopped at the high-end Princes Building to gaze at some of the expensive designer stores. Actually, I stopped there to use the bathrooms more than visit the shops that I can’t afford. They have the nicest loos with an attendant to hand you a paper towel!
There’s a nice park around the Central train station where lots of people were picnicking and enjoying family activities around the park. I wondered for a bit more before heading back to my home base at The Best Western Plus in Kowloon. Home sweet home for now and the end of another great day in Hong Kong. Here is a link to the photo Gallery for more pics.