The magic of Hong Kong

The magic of Hong Kong

My six-year-old daughter, Kruthi, is fascinated by Disney characters, so we decided to go on a trip to Hong Kong during her vacation.

On the day of our arrival, after checking in to the hotel, we decided to visit Victoria Peak. We boarded the Peak Tram at Garden Road. The tram experience was exhilarating as the uphill ascend is so steep that the buildings we passed by looked like they were leaning at an angle of 30 degrees.

On the peak, we had a panoramic view of the city from the Sky Terrace 428 tower. Located 428 meters above sea level, the Peak also houses Madame Tussauds Wax Museum and Trick Eye Museum.

There is actually nothing much to do at Madame Tussauds Wax Museum except walk around and take photos with celebrities. My daughter Kruthi enjoyed posing with her favourite cartoon characters.

At Trick Eye Museum, we saw magnificent eye-tricking paintings that are featured on plain surfaces, and by way of optical illusion, appear to be three dimensional. 

The following day we visited Disneyland. Located in Penny’s Bay, Lantau Island, Disneyland is divided into seven themed sections with over 100 attractive fun rides and varieties of shows.

At the entrance, there is Hong Kong Disneyland Rail Express that takes tourists to all sections of Disneyland. We hopped onto it.

There were a lot of shows like Festival of ‘Lion King’ at Adventure Land, ‘Beauty and the Beast’ at Fantasy Land, ‘Mickey and the Wondrous Book’ at Fantasy Land, to name a few. 

The visit to ‘It’s a Small World’ in Fantasy Land section is worth a mention.

The day concluded with the ‘Disney Paint The Night’ parade by the Disney characters. The parade ended with the fireworks’ show above the ‘Beauty and the Beast’ castle.

The following day we visited Ocean Park by bus. The park is divided into two sections – The Summit and Waterfront separated by a large mountain. The Waterfront is located near the park entrance; the Summit is located on the top of the mountain and is not walkable from the Waterfront. One has to go by Ocean Park Cable Car or the Ocean Express train.

The Waterfront is marked into different sections such as Grand Aquarium, Asian Animals, Whisker’s Harbour and Old Hong Kong.

The Grand Aquarium houses more than 5,000 fishes from 400 species and has the world’s largest aquarium dome to peer into. We then moved to the Asian Animals.

The Asian Animals houses pandas, Asian otters, monkeys and some small alligators. We then traversed to Whisker’s Harbour, a play area for kids.

Our next visit was to Old Hong Kong. The Old Hong Kong is modelled after Hong Kong in the 1950s and the stalls sell antique items.

Initially, we had chalked out a half-day tour to Ocean Park and visit Lantau Island - Tian Tan Buddha statue to relish the sunset in the evening. But it was late in the evening when we returned from the Summit, so I was disheartened that we could not see the statue.

Next morning we packed our bags and reached the airport to find that our flight was delayed by three hours. I was lured to visit the Buddha Statue which is close by to the airport. We checked in our luggage, collected our boarding pass and dashed to see the magnificent bronze statue. 

Located at Ngong Ping, Lantau Island, the 112-ft tall Bronze Buddha statue is one of the five large Buddha statues in China.

We reached Tung Chung base station by bus, then got into Ngong Ping 360 glass-bottomed cable car. We crossed seven mountains to reach the Ngong Ping Village where Buddha resides. We walked for about 10 minutes through the Ngong Ping Village to get to the base of a set of 268 steep steps leading to the lower podium of the statue. The climb was exhausting but we were delighted to see the statue of Buddha.

We walked around the statue to see the six Devas and quickly descended down. With alluring memories lingering in our minds, we boarded our flight back to Bengaluru.

Deepthi Rao
(The author can be contacted at deepti.hd@gmail.com)

 

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