Results 1-10of 15 Reviews
Scarborough, England, United Kingdom
October 2, 2012
From journal A trip to the Orient
June 24, 2001
Macau is an unusual cultural blend of Mediterranean and Chinese, with Spanish, Moorish, British and Dutch also contributing. Portugese and Cantonese are both recognized as official languages, but you won’t have any difficulty finding English speakers in tourist-popular areas.
Hong Kong tourist authorities urge travellers to visit Macau for its multi-culture, multi-cuisine atmosphere but, on the day I went, most passengers headed directly to the large downtown casino a few blocks from the dock. Circumstances had forced me to postpone my trip until late June, when it was far too hot for serious walking-around sightseeing. That was unfortunate, because many of the more picturesque neighborhoods lay among the lush hills rising above the harbor. (The territory encompasses approximately 13 square miles, with a population of 437,000.)
Though we were sealed in a glass-enclosed cabin and asked to remain buckled in our seats for much of the trip, the high-speed ferry was still a pleasant way to inspect the then still-under-constrution airport site and the many islands populating the Pearl River estuary.
In summer 2000, Cook’s Timetable listed multiple trips daily, with running times of 55 minutes for the 74-kilometer (45-mile) trip for the equivalent of U.S. $14 round trip. (I’m converting Year 2000 Hong Kong Dollars at the June, 2001 exchange rate, so my price quote may be off. I’d made the trip during an earlier visit to Hong Kong and seem to recall paying substantially more than that.)
The Hong Kong Tourist Authority has several web pages on Macau within its own site: Hong Kong . To get to Macau a little faster, try
Alas, I have so far been unable to pry current ferry fares and schedules out of either address, but otherwise these sites, although a bit flowery in language, are beautifully illustrated and detailed.
The hovercraft terminal for Macau is perhaps two blocks from the Star Ferry, but last summer it took a circuituous walk around a huge construction site. If your stay in Hong Kong is limited, you’ll do better to concentrate your exploring on Kong Kong Island and the nightlife of Kowloon. But if you have five or six hours to spare, the side trip to Macau would be a worthwhile way to spend them.
From journal Hong Kong Highlights --- at a Reasonable Price
April 12, 2005
Leaving the busy Hong Kong Terminal behind us, we were soon to enjoy a multiplicity of sights. On our left were the high-rise buildings of modern banking Hong Kong, and the livelier Kowloon quarter was on the right, but keep a close eye on the changing landscape of Hong Kong Island as the ferry powers its way towards Lamma. Buildings hug the shoreline, and the swish, ultra-modern landscape is replaced by less impressive high-rise buildings, and then older multi-storey apartments. Soon we were observing the more tired buildings of Hong Kong Island, then apartment blocks that would be dwarfed by the mighty buildings of Central Hong Kong. But hang onto the final glimpse of the island, as it is there that we spotted a few individual low-level residences clinging precariously to the craggy extremities of the island (expensive, I’m sure, but an amazing contrast to the rest of this side of the island).
At about this time, we spot the dominating towers on Lamma Island – the source of Hong Kong’s power. But there’s still a great deal of interest as the ferry makes its way to the second-largest of the outlying islands. The waterway is full of activity: ferries, fishing vessels, offshore container storage vessels (said to be Hong Kong’s way of protecting its buildings for any cargoes that may be the remotest of fire risks), barges, speedboats, and small private boats. Not a minute passed without a significant change to the waterway. To the rear of the ferry, I’m transfixed by the wake our vessel is creating – strange what can fascinate a traveller!
We take a sharp right, then the whole of Lamma comes into view. Surprisingly, the electricity towers seem to give an air of mystery and majesty to the island, and it soon becomes evident that the island, despite its industrialisation, is a stark contrast to the bustle of Kowllon and Hong Kong. The waterway becomes less busy, and we are now seeing many more small boats – local fishermen, we presume – as we approach Lamma’s jetty. To the left are small stilted wooden houses; to the right, Lamma’s main street and two-storey buildings; and on the top of the hill, across a small bay, Lamma’s power-creation towers. What a difference from the busy harbour we left behind 40 minutes ago!
From journal A Day Trip to Lamma Island
Birmingham, United Kingdom
June 18, 2003
This service is obviously not as convienient as the MTR (subway) but it is a lot prettier. As soon as you get within a few hundred metres of the Ferry Terminal, you will see signs directing you to it. Ferries go from Kowloon to all places over Hong Kong, but the signs at the ferry port are clear and written in Cantonese and English.
Walking down to the ferry reminded me of a cattle run. Once you have chosen your destination and entered through the correct gate, you can only go one way, so there is no fear of getting lost.
For the Star Ferry trip between Hong Kong Island and Kowloon, you must also choose the upper or lower deck before you go through the departure gates, as there are different gates for each deck. The lower deck is cheaper but wet (close to the water) and the upper deck is a few pence more but glass covered and dry.
The trip is over in just a few minutes so don't hang about if you want to take photos. I regret that I didn't take the Star Ferry at night. The view is supposed to be amazing. I guess it gives me an excuse to visit Hong Kong again.
From journal A week in Hong Kong
July 1, 2001
The ferry ride to Lamma was a pleasant trip lasting just over a half hour each way. The windows were thick and dirty, sometimes making it difficult to see the passing scenery. But since I made it on board just as the sun was coming up over Hong Kong Island I was treated to a bright warm orange sunrise on the water. My early morning departure also meant, however, that we had to face some choppy water. The ride cost only 10 Hong Kong dollars, just over $1 each way.
From journal China: Hong Kong - Lamma
by Re Carroll
Abbotsford, British Columbia
October 20, 2000
From journal Hong Kong Highlights
New York, New York
July 5, 2001
For me, the 5 minute ride across the harbour always evokes a feeling of nostalgia. So much has changed in Hong Kong and this is the best way to sit back to observe and digest these changes. There is a token booth to pay your ticket or you can just deposit the coins in one of the old turnstiles. Go up the stairs and follow the crowd to the entrance. If there is no ferry docked, just wait. When you hear a ferry starting to dock, walk over to the gates. There will be a loud whistle and the sailor will open the gates. Beware of people pushing and shoving to be the first to get on the ferry for a good seat!
Locals joke that only tourists take the upper level (called First Class and costs $2.20 HK.) The benches are nicer and you are on the higher second level. I do enjoy the lower level more (called Second Class and costs $1.70.) You can stand on the edge and watch the waves crash underneath you. Plus you also get a nicer view of the city as there are no glass windows in the bow as in First Class.
The sound of the waves crashing alongside the ferry, the coming and goings of ocean liners, fishing boats, barges and yachts in the harbour, the view of the skyscrapers and hills...it gives me a chance to sit back and take it all in. It's a great way to check out the physical changes, to note what was built since my last visit. Hong Kong is always on the go and there is never a dull moment. The ferry ride gives me a moment to look back at the city and admire her strengths and beauty. Day or night, this is a beautiful ride. For the price, you can afford to take this in as many times as you like.
On the Hong Kong side, the pier is right by City Hall. On the Kowloon side, it is by Ocean Center and the big old clock.
From journal Reminiscing Hong Kong
October 15, 2007
From journal Hong Kong - A Vacation Like No Other
April 18, 2004
Go on the upper deck (first class) to take advantage of the harbour view.Phone: 2367 7065, Fax: 2118 6028, Ferry Booking Phone: 2118 6203, Email
From journal HKG
Warwick, United Kingdom
August 27, 2002
The ride is relaxing whatever time of day you take it and has to be done at least once to 'complete your HK experience'.
From journal A short stopover in Hong Kong