We still hadn’t found any good breakfast options and sadly ended up at McDonalds again. At least it’s quick and we dined in today for variety. We braved the end of the morning rush hour as we caught the MRT to Lantau Island. We were only squashed in like sardines for a short time and then the train was half empty. It was great to get a seat for the half hour ride to Tung Chung.
Our destination was the Ngong Ping cable car which took us up to Ngong Ping Village and the Big Buddha. We’ve had no shortage of cable cars and gondolas lately so it wasn’t such a novelty, but still gave great views of the Harbour. It was pretty weird to not see any snow though! The cable car is very long, but not particularly high. After a 5.5km ride, it ends around 700m above sea level at the village. It’s very touristy, but still good entertainment. There was the usual assortment of animals with wild dogs, cows and buffalo roaming around.
We wandered through the village, then climbed the 268 steps up to see the Big Buddha. We passed on some of the other attractions though, like the “VR360 Walking with Buddha” show. There was also a nunnery up the top, so we got to see that instead of the one we missed yesterday. We didn’t want a repeat of yesterday’s lunch challenges, so grabbed some food in the village before catching the cable car back down.
The kids were keen to try out their haggling skills, so we headed to the Ladies Market in Mong Kok. This area was just how I imagined Hong Kong to be with crazy streets, run down apartment blocks and signs everywhere. The market was actually reasonably calm and quiet, and the vendors much less pushy than we expected. The kids had fun haggling for the best deals, with varying success. Some vendors wouldn’t negotiate at all, others ended up at nearly half the original asking price. It was all pretty cheap though and they both came away with some goodies. There were fake products everywhere and some of the branding gave us a good laugh.
The boys were shopped out after the markets, but the girls wanted to check out the shops on Nathan Rd and found some great bargains on winter clothes. We had hoped to see the sound and light show last night, but still been at dinner, so we were determined to see it tonight. It was early dinner at a Japanese restaurant, then back down the promenade via the Avenue of Stars (Hong Kong’s version of the Hollywood Walk of Fame). The sound and light show over the harbour was okay, but nothing that special. We have been absolutely spoilt with spectacular shows and displays on this trip, which probably made us appreciate it less than we should have.
This was the last night of our trip and we weren’t ready for it be over too early so we took a night time trip on the Star Ferry over to Hong Kong Island. That ferry is one of the bargains of Hong Kong, about fifty cents per trip. Our last stop for the night was the mid-level escalators. This is the longest outdoor escalator system in the world, designed to move commuters up and down the hills of the island. There’s around 20 of them, covering a distance of over 800 metres. We didn’t have the time or energy to do them all, but it was fun doing the first half dozen and seeing a different area of the city, and a great way to end another fun day.