Hong Kong part 2

As much as we had enjoyed exploring the city, it seemed almost impossible to escape the crowds in the Central or Mong Kok areas. It was therefore great to get the chance to explore some more remote parts of Hong Kong.

We decided to take the two hour journey to the remote fishing village of Tai O, located on the western coastline of Lantau Island. Travelling by a combination of metro and bus, this was as ever with Hong Kong’s public transport, very straightforward and cost just $31(£3.10) each.

The small fishing village is famous for its traditional stilt houses which many of the local residents continue to live in, and which now provide great photo opportunities.

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After a short walk around the village we made a trip to the local food market, where there was a wide variety of seafood on offer, including a man wandering around with a huge octopus. We had no idea what most of it was, and even with our usual sense of adventure, passed up the chance to try any of it.

While on Lantau Island we also took the bus to the Tian Tan Buddha. Usually this can be reached by the impressive Ngong Ping cable car, however this is unfortunately closed until May. Even more unfortunate was the view once we had climbed the 268 steps to the view the Buddha. The Hong Kong fog had again descended and we could barely make out anything at the summit.

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We were more successful in our visit to the colourful Wong Tai Sin Temple, where we were surrounded by lanterns, incense sticks and huge crowds. Next to this are the more peaceful Good Wish Gardens which we took a walk around before heading into the adjacent shopping mall to cool down. This seemed to be a common theme in Hong Kong, with travelling anywhere requiring you to walk through at least one mall, with most of these full of empty designer shops.

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We also took the unusual step of travelling to visit a public housing estate. Known for its colourful buildings, the Choi Hung estate is located Wong Tai Sin district of the city. We took a walk up the basketball courts in the centre of the estate and joined the residents up there practicing either their basketball or Tai Chi.

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As a short break before flying to Australia, Hong Kong has been a great choice, and with so much to see would definitely recommend spending a few days there to anyone. Hopefully when we return we will be a little luckier with the weather!

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