Hong Kong Journals

China: Hong Kong - Lantau

A March 2001 trip to Hong Kong by kylebarber

Lantau Photo, Hong Kong, China More Photos
Quote: Exploring nature and Buddha on the island of Lantau

China: Hong Kong - Lantau

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Overview

Lantau Photo, Hong Kong, China
Quote:
If you fly into Hong Kong's new airport, you'll inevitably get a good view of Lantau. Situated right next to Chek Lap Kok, the island of Lantau is humungous, yet it is only inhabited by a few thousand. Part of this is its far distance from Hong Kong Island and Kowloon, and the once difficult commute it involved (there is now a high speed rail transport system for the airport). Another factor is that Lantau is still for the most part thickly covered with trees and made up of steep hills. These "inconveniences" are what make Lantau such a great destination, however. The unspoiled natural beauty of the island makes for a great escape from the business of Hong Kong. Coupled with the enormous Budd...Read More

Delifrance

Restaurant

Quote:
There aren't a great number of services throughout the island of Lantau, so when I first arrived at the express train station in Tung Chung, I stopped in a bakery chain called Delifrance to stock up on supplies. Very similar to the Au Bon Pain chain in the United States, Delifrance features a wide variety of croissants, muffins, pastries and such to tide you over until your next meal. There's more substantial fare at full service locations back in the city, but this mini store is all about quick bites and coffee to go. It's all pretty affordable, and surprisingly fresh for train station resfreshments.

Member Rating 3 out of 5 on July 5, 2001

Delifrance
Tung Chung train station, Lantau
Hong Kong

Po Lin Monastery

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Attraction

Po Lin Monastery Photo, Lantau Island, China
Quote:
Taking the #23 bus from Tung Chung, we wound up a steep incline, turning frequently which allowed for great views of the island and ocean below. When we got to the top of the hill, very loud chanting filled the air from what sounded like a loudspeaker. Exiting the bus, I followed the crowd towards the Po Lin monastery, catching a glimpse of the Buddha looming over my right shoulder.Inside the monastery were a number of shrines, some quite ornate, with donation boxes placed squarely in front of each. There is a donation box everywhere in this temple, which reminded me of visiting the Vatican. A service was in progress in the room below the main altar, but we were not allowed to step inside to wi...Read More

Member Rating 3 out of 5 on July 5, 2001

Po Lin Monastery
Ngong Ping Plateau
Lantau Island, Hong Kong

Big Buddha-Tian Tan Buddha

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Attraction | "Seated Buddha"

Big Buddha-Tian Tan Buddha Photo, Lantau Island, China
Quote:
I walked outside the Po Lin monastery to the immense Buddha, where I discovered there is an admission gate to the statue costing almost $22. Considering how much $22 will get you back in the city, this charge seemed rather ridiculous, even if it included a vegetarian lunch. But after inquiring at the counter I learned that you only have to buy a meal if you wish to to climb to the second and third levels of the statue platform. I passed and began the steep climb.Unfortunately, the views were hindered that day by the hazy, overcast weather. But the Lantau Island certainly does seem beautiful, with the ocean reaching out beyond for as far as you can see. The Buddha is huge, with the surprising b...Read More

Member Rating 3 out of 5 on July 5, 2001

Big Buddha-Tian Tan Buddha
Near Po Lin Monastery
Ngong Ping, Lantau Island

Star Ferry

Attraction | "Ferry Ride"

Quote:
Since it was still so early in the morning, I took the alternate route back to Hong Kong: a bus to the Lantau village of Mui Wo and then a ferry ride to Central. The bus ride cost 16 Hong Kong dollars, and was a pleasurable drive with different scenery than we saw coming from Tung Chung to the monastery. In Mui Wo, also known as Silvermine, there wasn't too much to see while I waited for the ferry. Supposedly there is a waterfall not far from town, but none of the locals seemed to know its whereabouts. The ferry only cost 10.5 Hong Kong dollars and, unlike the Lamma ferry, had a place to sit outdoors for taking pictures. But the hazy weather was even worse out on the harbor, and I was downright c...Read More

Member Rating 3 out of 5 on July 5, 2001

Star Ferry
Victoria Harbour
Hong Kong and Kowloon
+852 2367 7065

Train Ride

Story/Tip

Quote:
I got off to an early start in Lantau, leaving my hotel in Wan Chai at 7:00 AM in order to avoid the throngs of visitors that reach the Po Lin monastery by lunch time. Instead of taking the less expensive ferry ride across the harbor, I opted for the express high speed train. It cost 26 Hong Kong dollars each way, but takes one third of the travel time.Part of my rationalization was that it would make for scenic trip itself as it runs above ground most of the way. But tall concrete walls line more of the track's length than the express train that runs from the airport. At least you are travelling in comfort as the train is silent and the seats are roomy and outfitted with individual television ...Read More