What To See in Hong Kong – Sik Sik Yuen Wong Tai Sin Temple

What To See In Hong Kong - Sik Sik Yuen Wong Tai Sin Temple - Featured Image

What To See in Hong Kong – Sik Sik Yuen Wong Tai Sin Temple

It was a bright and sunny day in Hong Kong. After a good breakfast of pastries and good coffee, we were fully energized. Before arriving here, we wondered What To See in Hong Kong? After a bit of research, we found out that there is a famous attraction called Sik Sik Yuen Wong Tai Sin Temple.

It took switching train lines and some stops to reach there. About half an hour from our hotel, walking included. We were really excited. It was said that Wong Tai Sin grants every wish. We intend to each make a wish. Join us for this little trip to this awesome place.


About Sik Sik Yuen Wong Tai Sin Temple

Steps to Sik Sik Yuen Wong Tai Sin Temple
Steps to Sik Sik Yuen Wong Tai Sin Temple

The temple is named after a famous monk called Wong Tai Sin. His full name is Huang Chu-ping. He was born in the 4th century. After years of practice, he became a deity at Red Pine Hill, known as Heng Shan in Chinese.

There was a sacred portrait of him that was transported from Guangdong to Hong Kong. Eventually, the portrait was relocated to where the temple is today. Now, devotees arrive from all over the world to pay respects to Wong Tai Sin. At the same time, they submit offerings and pray for good fortune. They also receive divine guidance using Kau Cheem (explained further down this blog post).


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Inside Sik Sik Yuen Wong Tai Sin Temple

We arrived early in the morning, and the place was already filled with lots of people. There were many who came in tour groups. When in such a large crowd, it was not easy to take a photo of the sights without a stranger posing in them.

Travel Tip: Arrive earlier when tour groups have not arrived yet. Or later when they have all gone.

It was also not easy to take photos of only me or with my friends plus the scenery there. There was always people posing here and there.

Travel Tip: Quickly jump in at to take photos of you against the scenery when you see people vacate the spot. Or when you wish to take a photo of any scenery. Don’t wait.

Guardian Deity at Entrance of Sik Sik Yuen Wong Tai Sin Temple
Guardian Deity at Entrance of Sik Sik Yuen Wong Tai Sin Temple

It took me a while. I waited for some time. Tourists from the tour groups kept appearing to pose with the above Guardian Deity. Finally, when there was a brief moment free from people invading the space, I quickly snapped a photo of the Guardian Deity. Impressive figure, isn’t he?

Sik Sik Yuen Wong Tai Sin Temple
Sik Sik Yuen Wong Tai Sin Temple

After climbing up the steps, we arrived at the Sik Sik Yuen Wong Tai Sin Temple itself. It is so beautiful and ornate. I loved the intricate paintings on the walls. They were like golden lined clouds. Perhaps a symbolism of a heavenly place?

Look at the rooftop. It is so well designed. The large lanterns with gold trimmings gently swayed. They created a sense of grandeur. Plus the pillars and boards with gold Chinese words, all add to a very fine structure.

Devotees Praying at Wong Tai Sin Temple
Devotees Praying at Wong Tai Sin Temple

When you step back a little, you could see devotees praying and placing incense into long rectangular incense holders. Here is where you can pay your respects and make a wish. It is said that all you have to do is hold the incense in your hands, lift it up to the front of your face or slightly above your head, face Wong Tai Sin, and then make your wish.

Some devotees, while there, would seek guidance on their fortune. They did it using Fortune Sticks in a method called ‘Kau Cheem’.


Seek Your Fortune with Kau Cheem

Divine Guidance at Sik Sik Yuen Wong Tai Sin Temple is done by first doing Kau Cheem. Kau Cheem is available at every temple with Fortune Sticks and Moon Blocks, as shown below. But at Sik Sik Yuen Wong Tai Sin Temple, they only provide the container of Fortune Sticks. Find a counter that offers this container, and get one.

Kau Cheem Fortune Sticks and Moon Blocks
Kau Cheem Fortune Sticks and Moon Blocks

How to Do Kau Cheem?

After you collected the Fortune Sticks, go to the area where you see many people kneeling on red cushions and shaking the container of Fortune Sticks, as shown in image below.

Devotees Kau Cheem at Wong Tai Sin Temple
Devotees Kau Cheem at Wong Tai Sin Temple

Choose one of the red cushions and kneel on it. Then, while facing Wong Tai Sin, hold the container of Fortune Sticks with both hands and shake it. While shaking the container, ask your question or say your wish. You can do it silently, in a whisper or out loud. Hold the thought of your question or wish as you shake the container.

Remember to tilt the container slightly forward with the mouth of the container slightly facing Wong Tai Sin. This is to allow the chance for one of the sticks to fall out. But you don’t want to tilt too much or shake too much. This may cause many sticks to fall out. You only need one.

How to Know If The Fortune Stick Is the One For You?

At some point of time, one of the sticks would fall out. At other temples, there is the use of Moon Blocks to help decide if this is the Fortune Stick for you. But here, as mentioned earlier, there are not Moon Blocks given. Not to be concerned. Just know that the stick that fell out is the correct one for you. It is the one that answers your question or wish.

If more than one stick fell out, then replace them into the container and try again. Note that there should only be one.

When you finally get the Fortune Stick that answers your question or wish, take note of the number of that Fortune Stick. Yes, there is a unique number for every stick. Replace it into the container and return the Fortune Sticks and container to the counter.

How to Interpret Your Fortune Stick?

Like everyone, we did Kau Cheem when we were there. And like everyone, we wondered what the Fortune Stick said, what message did Wong Tai Sin have for us?

At other temples, they would give interpretation slips for each of the Fortune Sticks. And they would give it for Free. But at Wong Tai Sin Temple, this was not done. There was an area where there were rows of fortune tellers who offered to interpret the Fortune Stick at a fee.

We were not keen to do that for many reasons. Firstly, the fortune tellers were always trying to get people to buy a full reading, which included reading one’s future. Secondly, we suspected that they would say we would need to buy some talisman or some feng shui item. Nothing wrong with all that. After all, they were making a decent living.

It was just that we are people savvy with the Internet. And we know that there is a FREE online interpretation of Fortune Sticks from Wong Tai Sin Temple. And here, I share with you the same Free service.

First step – Go to Wong Tai Sin Temple website – Click Here. You will land on their home page as shown below.

Sik Sik Yuen Wong Tai Sin Temple website - homepage
Sik Sik Yuen Wong Tai Sin Temple website – homepage

Next, click on Fortune Telling Stick Enquiry option, indicated above in red box and pointed by red arrow. You will then be brought to the enquiry page as shown below.

Sik Sik Yuen Wong Tai Sin Temple website - Fortune Sticks Enquiry
Sik Sik Yuen Wong Tai Sin Temple website – Fortune Sticks Enquiry

On this page, click on the Fortune Telling Stick Enquiry button. You will then see this next page, shown below.

Sik Sik Yuen Wong Tai Sin Temple website - Enter Lot Number
Sik Sik Yuen Wong Tai Sin Temple website – Enter Lot Number

Remember the number on the Fortune Stick that you drawn during the Kau Cheem? Enter that number into the box (where the red arrow is pointing), and click the search button (that is the magnifying glass next to the box).

The system will then search for the Interpretation and display it to you. Here is an example of the interpretation for Fortune Stick 11, also called Lot 11.

Sik Sik Yuen Wong Tai Sin Temple website - Fortune Stick Interpretation
Sik Sik Yuen Wong Tai Sin Temple website – Fortune Stick Interpretation

Now you have your Free online interpretation of the Fortune Stick you received at Wong Tai Sin Temple. Great huh?


On The Grounds of Sik Sik Yuen Wong Tai Sin Temple

After the Kau Cheem, my friends and I walked the grounds a bit. It is not large. But there were some cute little statues that I would like to share with you.

Sik Sik Yuen Wong Tai Sin Temple website - Fortune Stick Interpretation
Kirin Statue

The above is a statue of a Kirin or Qilin. It is a mythical creature that is believed to bring good luck.

Lion
Lion

The above is a statue of a Chinese version of a lion. Lions are believed to be guardians. This particular one is holding an ancient Chinese coin with the Chinese words – 招财进宝 (zhao cai jin bao). The meaning of the words is to usher in wealth and prosperity.


Sik Sik Yuen Wong Tai Sin Temple – Asia Travel Gems Final Word

If you are still wondering What To See In Hong Kong, I can assure you that Sik Sik Yuen Wong Tai Sin Temple is definitely a Must See. Besides the tourists, you can truly immerse in a piece of local culture.

This is because many locals still frequent this temple. You can truly soak in the energies of their devotion. Feel the power of belief in the locals for this deity. And in doing so, you too can believe and make a wish or ask for guidance.


Where Is Sik Sik Yuen Wong Tai Sin Temple?

This place is in Kowloon. So, if you are staying in Kowloon, it will be near for you. But not to worry. Even if you are staying on Hong Kong island side, you can still take the MTR to here. See the map below.

Operating Hours

7am to 5pm, Daily including Public Holidays

Address

2, Chuk Yuen Village, Wong Tai Sin, Kowloon, Hong Kong

Telephone

+852 2327 8141


How to Get to Sik Sik Yuen Wong Tai Sin Temple?

MTR

Take the MTR to Wong Tai Sin MTR station. Take the Exit B2. The temple is next to the station, about 3 minutes walk from the station.

Bus

It is easier to take the MTR. Leave the bus for other activities.

Taxi

It can be easy to catch a cab in Hong Kong. Just hail them along the streets. Drivers are required to go by taximeter. Always ask for a machine-printed receipt. If unavailable, ask for a hand-written one.


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If you have ANY questions about this post – What To See in Hong Kong – Sik Sik Yuen Wong Tai Sin Temple, or Hong Kong, ANY at all, please submit your questions as comments below. I will be happy to help you out.

Thank you for reading this.

Wishing you and your loved ones safe and happy travels,

Timotheus

Good Food in Hong Kong – Best Wonton Noodles in Hong Kong – Shek Kee

Best Wonton Noodles in Hong Kong - Shek Kee Wanton Noodles - header

Good Food in Hong Kong – Best Wonton Noodles in Hong Kong – Shek Kee

Forget Mak’s Noodles! And all the others. There is only one authentic and Best Wonton Noodles in Hong Kong, and that is Shek Kee! Really really Good Food in Hong Kong!

I enjoyed a good bowl of wonton noodles since young. So, whenever I visit Hong Kong, I must have at least one bowl of wonton noodles, at least once in a trip. Without fail.

This time round, I did extensive research to find where has the best wonton noodles, or so they claimed. And I discovered this hidden gem – Shek Kee Wonton Noodles!

Tip: When you are in Hong Kong, you Must Try this!


Shek Kee Wonton Noodles – The Overview & Rankings

Name: Shek Kee Wonton Noodles
Cuisine: Chinese, Hong Kong Style Noodles
Meals Served: Lunch, Dinner
Dining Choices: Dine In, Take Away
Family Friendly: Yes
Food: 4.5 out of 5.0
Service: 3.5 out of 5.0
Value: 4.5 out of 5.0
Atmosphere: 3.0 out of 5.0
Prices: $$ out of $$$$$
Asia Travel Gems Rating: 4.5 out of 5.0   4.5 out of 5.0 rating


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Finding Shek Kee Wonton Noodles

When we first arrived during this trip, we met up and had lunch with our friend in Hong Kong. When we told her we planned to have dinner at Shek Kee, she was surprised we knew of the place.

She gushed that they have the best dumplings in Hong Kong! Shek Kee is a favorite among the locals, and she would even patronize the eating place at least three times a week!

With that personal review, we were convinced that we must try Shek Kee Wonton Noodles. After some shopping and sightseeing, we started to search for Shek Kee.

Good Food in Hong Kong - Best Wonton Noodles in Hong Kong - Shek Kee Wanton Noodles
Best Wonton Noodles in Hong Kong – Shek Kee Wanton Noodles, © Timotheus Lee for Asia Travel Gems

It was quite easy to find the eating place. Just follow Google Maps. More information in the How to Get There section below.


Shek Kee Wonton Noodles

We must have arrived a little earlier then dinner time. The place was not crowded. As such, we were able to get a table easily.

Shek Kee is one of the typical local eating places. It is not a cafe or 5 star restaurant. So do not expect superb service. It was good enough that they attended to us quickly, and in a friendly manner.

The staff took our order. And few minutes after that, the dinner crowd started to trickle in. Soon enough, the place was packed.

We ordered the Wonton Noodles with Fish Balls. And it cost only HK$35! So affordable!

Good Food in Hong Kong - Best Wonton Noodles in Hong Kong - Delicious Wonton with Fish Balls
Best Wonton Noodles in Hong Kong – Delicious Wonton with Fish Balls, © Timotheus Lee for Asia Travel Gems

This was the best Wonton Noodles we ever tasted! The noodles were just the right texture; chewy but not hard.

The wonton dumplings were large, and each was filled with meat and a full fresh and succulent prawn. If you like, you can add fish balls to the soup.

The soup was very tasty and flavorful. We made a guess that the fish bones and prawn shells from the ingredients were kept and cooked as part of the soup. That contributed to its great taste.

The soup really distinguishes Shek Kee from the others.


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Shek Kee Wonton Noodles – Asia Travel Gems Final Word

Asia Travel Gems Rating: 4.5 out of 5.0

Po Lin Monastery Vegetarian Restaurant - 4 out of 5 Stars RatingWe know, we know. The maths doesn’t add up. Their service was average. So was the ambience.

So why 4.5 out of 5.0?

It was because of the food. It was near perfection. And we feel that we must do it justice by giving the overall rating based on the wonton noodle that outshone the rest. Plus, it is offered at a very reasonable and afforable price.

Also, we feel our Asia Travel Gems readers must visit this place and taste the wonton noodles. Or you will surely miss out something special and unique in Hong Kong. So to encourage all of you, we give Shek Kee 4.5 out of 5.0.


Where is Shek Kee Wonton Noodles?

Address

Shop B, No.5 Ichang Street, Tsim Sha Tsui, Hong Kong, China

Operating Hours :

12pm – 9pm

To be sure (in case they are closed for the day), call – +852 2317 4649


How to Get There?

MTR

Go to MTR East Tsim Sha Tsui Station. Exit the station to Peking Road. As shown in the maps below, go to Ashley Road until you reach Ichang Street.

It is a small street. You should have no trouble finding Shek Kee from here.

Here is a screen shot from Google Maps, with the East Tsim Sha Tsui MTR station highlighted in a red circle, the path to Shek Kee in red dotted lines, and Shek Kee circled in Red.

Good Food in Hong Kong - Best Wonton Noodles in Hong Kong - Map showing How to Get To Shek Kee from East Tsim Sha Tsui MTR station
Best Wonton Noodles in Hong Kong – Map showing How to Get To Shek Kee from East Tsim Sha Tsui MTR station

If you have ANY questions about this review, about Good Food in Hong Kong – Best Wonton Noodles in Hong Kong – Shek Kee, ANY at all, please submit your questions as comments below. I will be happy to help you out.

Thank you for reading this.

Wishing you and your loved ones safe and happy travels,

Timotheus

What To See in Hong Kong – Avenue of Comic Stars

Avenue of Comic Stars in Kowloon, Hong Kong

What To See in Hong Kong – Avenue of Comic Stars

It was the last day of our vacation, and we had a bit of time to kill between breakfast and checkout from Residence G Hotel where we stayed. After a delicious morning meal, we headed to Nathan Road, via Kimberly Road, where we knew there would be some morning shopping available.

As we shopped along Nathan Road, I noticed an entrance to Kowloon Park. I encouraged my friends to enter the park. It would be nice to see some nature in Hong Kong, I said. They agreed, we walked into the park, and discovered a pleasant surprise – the Hong Kong Avenue of Comic Stars! If you like to know What To See in Hong Kong, this is one of the places you must visit.

What To See in Hong Kong - Avenue Stars Hong Kong - Avenue of Comic Stars Signage
Avenue of Comic Stars Signage, © Timotheus Lee for Asia Travel Gems

Tip: Don’t follow Google Map’s direction. From our hotel via Kimberly Road proved to be shorter and faster. Plus, more interesting things to see along the way.

We love comics! I could still hear the yelps of delight from my friends as we hurried to the row of comic stars.


About Avenue of Comic Stars

The Avenue of Comic Stars was opened on 28 September 2012. Colorfully painted sculptures of famous local comic characters lined the couple of hundred meters long pathway. The statues are 1.8 to 3 meters high.

What To See in Hong Kong - Avenue Stars Hong Kong - Avenue of Comic Stars Walkway
Avenue of Comic Stars Walkway, © Timotheus Lee for Asia Travel Gems

Each comic character was created by distinguished local comic artists. A signage is placed next to each monument relating who is the comic character, which popular comic it was from, who is the famous comic artist as well as a bit of history of the artist.

What To See in Hong Kong - Avenue Stars Hong Kong - Avenue of Comic Stars Walkway
Avenue of Comic Stars Walkway, © Timotheus Lee for Asia Travel Gems

These sculptures sure brought a lot of fond memories to my friends and I. And I am sure they will do the same for the locals and visitors. Those not familiar with this niche culture of Hong Kong (and Asia), can have the opportunity to learn a bit about it at this attraction.

There are lots of arts and cultural activities frequently held at this location. For example, in 2016, there was a large annual celebration that included demonstration of comic drawings, autograph sessions by famous comic artists, cosplay parade, and more! Do check out their website to see if any of the events happen to coincide with your visit.


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On A Little Avenue of Comic Stars

Here are the Comic Stars for you to enjoy viewing. I have reproduced the text from the signage placed next to each respective sculpture. The name of the Comic Character is above the image. Below the image, there is information on what Works the Comic Character is famous for, Who is the Comic Artist, and a little synopsis of the artist.

Comic Character: McDull

What To See in Hong Kong - Avenue Stars Hong Kong - McDull
McDull, © Timotheus Lee for Asia Travel Gems

Works: McMug

McDull is one of the most famous animated stars who always appear in films. Its first film is My Life as McDull.

Comic Artist: Alice Mak

Alice Mak, the illustrator of McDull character. From 1990, she created the McMug and McDull series with co-creator Brian Tse and licensed a series of related products.

With the great popularity of characters, she started devoting into animation films, movies known respectively as My Life as McDull, McDull, Prince de la Bun, McDull – Kungfu Ding Ding Dong and McDull, The Pork of Music, which all gained strong and reputable recognition.

Comic Character: Nan Gong Wen Tian

What To See in Hong Kong - Avenue Stars Hong Kong - Nan Gong Wen Tian
Nan Gong Wen Tian, © Timotheus Lee for Asia Travel Gems

Works: Magical Weapons

Magical Weapons is the first weapon-themed martial art comic with elements of fables. The story is centered on weapon, Heaven’s Crystal, forged by the Celestial Goddess to Eradicate Demon, and a cursed weapon.

In Jin Dynasty, on the day the Nan Gong Clan received the Courts’ honour, the leading evil sect came to attack. Nan Gong Yi, the Chief of Nan Gong Clan, defended with the power of the Heaven’s Crystal, which gave off a huge blast, realizing its curse, Nan Gong Wen Tian, the leading role, is the descendant of Celestial Goddess and the master of the Heaven’s Crystal.

He became the chief of the martial art circles and lived his entire life righteous, brave and kind. With the phoenix heart, he is a demigod and lives eternally as a loyal guardian to the earth.

Comic Artist: Wong Yuk-Long, Tony

Wong Yuk-long, Tony was born in Jiangmen, Guangdong Province in 1950, and immigrated to Hong Kong while he was 6. Started from aged 10, he submitted his pieces to the press, which were posted by The Chinese Student Weekly Reunion, Youth Park, etc.

He joined the comic industry since 13 and determined that comic creation as his lifelong career. During aged 17, he built up his own publisher, and was totally responsible for creating, drawing and publishing. Wong established Jade Dynasty Group Ltd. in 1993, Jade Dynasty Multi-Media Ltd. in 2003 and Hangzhou Yulang Animation Company Ltd. in 2011.

Comic Character: Miss 13 Dots

What To See in Hong Kong - Avenue Stars Hong Kong - Miss 13 Dots
Miss 13 Dots, © Timotheus Lee for Asia Travel Gems

Works: Miss 13 Dots

Miss 13 Dots is the only daughter of a local millionaire. While being lively, independent, avant-garde, and fashionable, she also cares about the people with her charitable mind and a strong sense of justice. She likes to conjure up unusual ideas and act chivalry with her friends.

Comic Artist: Lee Wai-chun

Lee Wai-chun is an esteemed Hong Kong comic artist. Having studied Chinese painting at college, she started practicing comic illustration in the 1960s. Her best-known comic is the classic Miss 13 Dots published in 1966.

The comic started the trend of girl’s comics and was very popular from 60s to 80s both at home and abroad including Southeast Asia. The heroine Miss 13 Dots is an independent avant-garde, and fashionable girl who breaks the concept that women are inferior in Hong Kong society.

Comic Character: Guo Jing

What To See in Hong Kong - Avenue Stars Hong Kong - Guo Jing
Guo Jing, © Timotheus Lee for Asia Travel Gems

Works: The Legend of the Condor Heroes

The comic The Legend of the Condor Heroes was adapted from one of the most representative novels of Luis Cha. Its protagonist Guo has a sharp hero image and stands out among the heroes created by Cha as an embodiment of orthodox moral values and traditional chivalry. As an undeniable master, he became the most successful fictional character in Cha’s novels.

Comic Artist: Lee Chi-ching

Lee was born in 1963 in Hong Kong. He is a member of the HK Contemporary Artists Association and an honorary advisor of the HK Comics and Animation Federation. He has been honored and received many awards.

For instance, in 1993, on behalf of Culturecom Comics, he collaborated with SCHOLAR, a Japanese publisher to release the comic Romance of the Three Kingdoms, making an instant hit in both Hong Kong and Japan.

Lee became the first Hong Kong artist to successfully tap into the Japan’s comic market. In 2007, his work Sun Zi’s Tactics won the Gold Award of The 1st International Manga Award by the Japanese Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

Comic Character: Sau Nga Chun

 

What To See in Hong Kong - Avenue Stars Hong Kong - Sau Nga Chun
Sau Nga Chun, © Timotheus Lee for Asia Travel Gems

Works: Tai Kung Pao

Sau Nga Chun is the forerunner of today’s typical Hong Kong girls while her age, measurements and star sign are all unknown. Being boastful, greedy, calculating, and lazy, she was already unneeded by the society.

Lately she was seen making a living as a parallel goods importer carrying milk formula to the mainland. For the time moment securing seven meals a day and finding an accommodation have not posed a problem to her.

Comic Artist: Gum Siu-man

Gum emerged in the comic field when he was 16 as a mentee of Sueng-kun Siu Wai. He joined Jademan Comics at 19 and became primary author at 21. He has worked for publishing houses Jonesky Limited, Freeman Holdings Limited, and Cuturecom Holdings Limited before setting up his own comic publisher.

Comic Character: Liaoyuan Huo

 

What To See in Hong Kong - Avenue Stars Hong Kong - Liaoyuan Huo
Liaoyuan Huo, © Timotheus Lee for Asia Travel Gems

Works: The Ravages of Time

Liaoyuan Huo is the chief of mercenary assassins “Handicapped Warriors”. Being brave and smart, he has been taking thrilling and mysterious tasks from the Sima clan. Subsequently he found his goal in life and decided to embark on the warring front. Eventually he became the invincible warrior of the time.

Comic Artist: Chan Mou

Chan was an employee of an advertising company in Hong Kong. He entered the comic field in 1996 after winning the sixth Tongli New Comic Artist Award (youth bracket) with his first short comic, Unhuman. In 1999, his sci-fi work God Pretender won the Best Art award in the 3rd Asia Manga Summit.

In April 2001, he published The Ravages of Time, a break-through to conventional literature about the Three Kingdoms Era with a new viewpoint and humanity. The comic is sold in 8 major countries and different cities in Asia since it have been launched 11 years ago.

Comic Character: Little Horse

What To See in Hong Kong - Avenue Stars Hong Kong - Little Horse
Little Horse, © Timotheus Lee for Asia Travel Gems

Works: Little Horse’s Silly Life

The comic is rich in Hong Kong flavor. It explores silly and funny things from the boring life to crack readers up.

Comic Artist: Maggie Lau

Maggie Lau was an office lady before being a fulltime comic artist. In Hong Kong Book Fair 2007, Little Horse’s Silly Life recording funny events in her life daily was released which immediately topped the selling chart.

In December 2007, Little Horse’s Silly Life 2 was released, which was once sold out. The following years saw a number of sequels invariably climb to top of the selling chart, which is an incredible achievement in the industry. Her success also aroused the interest of major organizations inviting her for co-operation to launch products and host exhibitions.

Comic Character: Wang Xiao Hu

What To See in Hong Kong - Avenue Stars Hong Kong - Wang Xiao Hu
Wang Xiao Hu, © Timotheus Lee for Asia Travel Gems

Works: Tiger & Dragon Heroes

Tiger & Dragon Heroes is the most long-standing local comic strip in Hong Kong, and also the most representative piece of Wong Yuk Long. The theme of the story revolves mainly around brotherhood and the fight for justice.

Wang Xiao Hu, the leading role, is a guy with a strong sense of justice and great fighting skills. he met his elder brother, Wang Xiao Long, and Shi Hei Long, who became best friends. They then formed a martial art school to make the quintessence of Chinese Kung Fu widely known and punish evil-doers.

Comic Artist: Wong Yuk-long, Tony

Wong Yuk-long, Tony was born in Jiangmen, Guangdong Province in 1950, and immigrated to Hong Kong while he was 6. Started from aged 10, he submitted his pieces to the press, which were posted by The Chinese Student Weekly Reunion, Youth Park, etc. He joined the comic industry since 13 and determined that comic creation as his lifelong career.

During aged 17, he built up his own publisher, and was totally responsible for creating, drawing and publishing. Wong established Jade Dynasty Group Ltd. in 1993, Jade Dynasty Multi-Media Ltd. in 2003 and Hangzhou Yulang Animation Company Ltd. in 2011.

Comic Character: Hui Lok

What To See in Hong Kong - Avenue Stars Hong Kong - Hui Lok
Hui Lok, © Timotheus Lee for Asia Travel Gems

Works: Feel 100%

Hui Lok, an all-around designer and creator, partners with his friend Jerry to start up an advertising firm. Unlike Jerry, he stresses loyalty in relationship, and is dissatisfied with Jerry’s loose romantic attitude.

Hui Lok is so much into Cherie and regards her as a perfect goddess. Although Cherie does not feel for him, he is willing to be her guardian angel, selflessly devoting his care and love.

Comic Artist: Jeffrey Lau

Jeffrey is well known for his comic Feel 100%, which has been adapted into films and TV series, owning the hearts of youngsters. In 2008, in The 2nd International Manga Award by the Japanese Ministry of Foreign Affairs, his work stood out among 368 entries from 46 countries and won the Gold Award.

In recent years, he has been invited by universities, schools of professional education, primary and secondary schools to give seminars and join in various exchange activities, sparing no efforts in promoting arts and culture and the creative industry.


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Comic Character: K

What To See in Hong Kong - Avenue Stars Hong Kong - K
K, © Timotheus Lee for Asia Travel Gems

Works: K

K is a story of a Chinese agent refitted from the 007 story with the inclusion of light jokes in his exciting tasks. Like James Bond, K retains a loose in romantic attitude and hero-like characters, and also shares human’s weaknesses. The difference is that his Chinese identity is highlight in the story.

Comic Artist: Li Chi-tat

Embarking on the comics industry in 1982, Li left Jademan Comics a month later to pursue his comic career as an independent artist. His works were issued in Japan and published in Taiwan and France. In recent years, he took up art in other forms which helped take his comics to a new level with these art elements.

Comic Character: Q Boy

What To See in Hong Kong - Avenue Stars Hong Kong - Q Boy
Q Boy, © Timotheus Lee for Asia Travel Gems

Works: White Cat Black Cat

White Cat Black Cat was created in 2004. The white cat Q Boy is curious about everything and willing to ask (Q stands for question). His uncle, the black cat Doctor A, is an erudite scholar (A stands for answer). Their interaction enables children to learn efficiently and happily by reading the funny comics.

Comic Artist: Ma Sing-yuen

A renowned local comic artist, he has served as art director and creative director in newspaper and magazines. In the 1990s, he worked as a full time comic artist and illustrated comic columns in major newspapers covering current affairs, politics, and humour.

In 2004, he collaborated with Fong Sha Mei on the White Cat Black Cat series and more than 300 books were published in eight years. The comic not only includes an endless stream of jokes, but more importantly marries humour with knowledge. It is loved  by children and recommended by teachers and parents.

Comic Character: Andy Chan

What To See in Hong Kong - Avenue Stars Hong Kong - Andy Chan
Andy Chan, © Timotheus Lee for Asia Travel Gems

Works: Teddy Boy

Andy Chan is the hero in Teddy Boy. With the underworld background, the comic is a faithful reflection of all walks of life through the happenings and fates of its characters. Andy, in particular, who was once a heroic youngster, has mellowed as he turned middle-aged like any other man.

Comic Artist: Man Kai-ming

When Man Kai Ming started to work in comic field at the age of 13, the comic industry was blooming. He worked for many comic production companies, including newspapers Kwong Pao, Hei Pao, Ching Pao and Kam Pao.

After years of experience, he started his own publishing house in 1992 and officially released its debut title Teddy Boy. Like no others, Teddy Boy changed to be issued every 3 days in 2003. The practice continued on today and now it’s published 1,500 issues.

Comic Character: Doggie

 

What To See in Hong Kong - Avenue Stars Hong Kong - Doggie
Doggie, © Timotheus Lee for Asia Travel Gems

Works: God Legion

God Legion revolved in the Shang and Zhou dynasties in China, when human co-habited with gods on the earth. The gods had superior wisdom and strength, and human beings were in awe of and obedient to them.

The protagonist of the story is Doggie, an offspring of a human and a god. Disgruntled at the gods’ long-term suppression and ruling to humans, he decided to challenge the god’s authority.

Comic Artist: Cheng Kin-wo

Cheng engaged in comic field in 1992. After working under Kwong’s Printing Company Limited and Ocean Creative Company Limited, he left for his individual career. he was the editor in chief of The Legend of the Devil Vol. I to III, Jedi Skywalker, Quadra Spirit, Violet Infortune, Valkyria Phoenix, Fire Dragon, Shadow Killer, God Legion and Wild Wolf and Mary.

Comic Character: Cowboy

What To See in Hong Kong - Avenue Stars Hong Kong - Cowboy
Cowboy, © Timotheus Lee for Asia Travel Gems

Works: Cowboy

Cowboy was created in the 70s and early 80s. The whole series, which came in 40 volumes, tells what happened in Cowboy’s family, especially between the father and son, in a fun and warm way and reflects the community of Hong Kong. Using limited words except short titles, the cartoonist manages to tell stories vividly with pictures only.

Comic Artist: Wong Sze-ma

The Macau-born artist was originally called Wong Wing-hing. In the 1950s he was a teacher in Macau and learnt illustrating after work. In 1965, he was employed by Ming Pao. On one hand he cooperated with Alphonso Wong with a comic series Old Master Q and Godfather, on the other drew illustrations for Louis Cha’s novels.

During 1971 and 1980, he composed 4-panel comic strips, including Father and Son. Cowboy Debussy and Gorgeous Susan, whereas Cowboy was later compiled into a 40-volume comic book and was very well received in the market.

Comic Character: Din-Dong

What To See in Hong Kong - Avenue Stars Hong Kong - Din Dong
Din Dong, © Timotheus Lee for Asia Travel Gems

Works: Din-dong

Din-dong, a silly cat kept by the illustator, is full of positive energy and dreams. It likes to collect surplus resources. Exhibitions featuring Din-dong were showcased in LCX at Harbour City, Olympian City and APM in Hong Kong as well as The National Museum of Emerging Science and Innovation in Japan.

It won the 4th Asiagraph Jury Special Work from Japan, and its animation was broadcast in Nippon Television Network Corporation and the 34th Hong Kong International Film Festival.

Comic Artist: Postgal Workshop

Postgal Workshop is a two-person comic group which Pam Hung is mainly responsible for the content while John Chan for the graphic. The name “Postgal Workshop” is a homonym of “cat flea” in Cantonese since they think that people living in the world alike a tiny cat flea when compare with the universe.

The duo received Hong Kong Arts Development Awards – Awards of best Artists. Their works were awarded the grand prize in Japan TBS animation competition afterward they were interviewed by The Daily Yomiuri.

Comic Character: Bruce Lee

What To See in Hong Kong - Avenue Stars Hong Kong - Bruce Lee
Bruce Lee, © Timotheus Lee for Asia Travel Gems

Works: Bruce Lee

The comic Bruce Lee was created in 1971, inspired by a movie, The Big Boss. Despite being in hard times, the comic managed to make  breakthrough with an innovative idea, making comic with martial art and combat theme as the mainstream in Hong Kong.

The legendary title is one of the longest running comics in Hong Kong publishing for almost 40 years. Thanks to the conscientious illustrator, the series did not come to a break until 2009.

Comic Artist: Vincent Kwong

Kwong followed his brother to join the industry at the age of 11. In 1971 he started the long comic strips Bruce Lee, whose circulation was on par with Tony Wong’s Tiger & Dragon Heroes.

It is also one of the longest running comic strips in Hong Kong. In the mid-60s, he founded Good Friend Comics Journal and Peter Pan Comics Daily; in the mid-70s he founded comic papers such as Hei Pao and Comic Strip Daily.

After a brief spell in Jademan Comics, he established 82 Comic House and Kwong’s Printing Co. Ltd.

Comic Character: Tiger Shark

What To See in Hong Kong - Avenue Stars Hong Kong - Tiger Shark
Tiger Shark, © Timotheus Lee for Asia Travel Gems

Works: Tiger Shark

Tiger Shark, the most representative figure in the Tiger Shark series, has a mighty fist with a million self-destructive horsepower. The crux of the story comes when his ultimate move was used.

With too much power to bear, the move set its user’s body to blast. The illustrator wished to express all feelings in life in one move. Like it is said that a person reviews his entire life before his death, the self-destructing move unleashes all experience, feelings and life of its users.

Comic Artist: Wan Yat-leung

Wan has been in the comic field over 20 years. Strongly influenced by western culture and different film and comics, he created many renowned titles with different skills. Better known ones include If I Were King, Black Leopard, as well as Tiger Shark and Warlord published by Ocean Creative Company Limited, a publishing house he founded.

Wan wishes his work would appeal to readers of different age groups and stimulate their interest in comics.  He finds these are more meaningful compare with fame and fortune.

Comic Character: Old Master Q

What To See in Hong Kong - Avenue Stars Hong Kong - Old Master Q
Old Master Q, © Timotheus Lee for Asia Travel Gems

Works: Old Master Q

The almighty Old Master Q is regarded as “Chinese Superman” by readers. Being humorous, imaginative, indignant to injustice, righteous, adventurous and unbounded, Old Master Q is as good as bad. He upholds traditional Chinese values but struggles amidst Chinese and Western cultures.

Old Master Q has no lack of friends. Apart from Big Dumb, Mr. Chun, Old Chiu, his girlfriend Ms Chan, he has the acquaintance of many female friends, pets, monsters, and even aliens.

Comic Artist: Alphonso Wong and Joseph Wong

Comic artist Alphonso Wong who was originally named Wong Kar Hei, was born in Tianjin. After moving to Hong Kong in 1957, he began drawing comics with pen names including Budding.

In the 1960s he started Old Master Q series under his eldest son’s name Wong Chak. The lively and funny comic has since been readers’ favorite. His eldest son Wong Chak continued his father’s creation. To distinguish the two, readers call (the comic artist) Senior Wong Chak while (the architect) Junior Wong Chak.

Comic Character: Dragon Lord

What To See in Hong Kong - Avenue Stars Hong Kong - Dragon Lord
Dragon Lord, © Timotheus Lee for Asia Travel Gems

Works: Dragon Lord

The fire-natured Dragon Lord is a warrior from the heaven responsible for safeguarding the artefact Sky Fixer. The universe lies different beings, including mankind, ghosts, demons, and gods, each of which is governed by its own rules and impenetrable to others.

The Sky Fixer is an artefact maintaining the balance of the universe. He secretly mounts surveillance on every evil power on earth in the human world.

Comic Artist: Khoo Fuk-lung, James

Khoo is one of the top comic artists in Hong Kong. Tons of readers in Southeast Asia are crazy about his publications. In 1992, he set up a publishing company with his friends to publish the hardcover version of Dragon Lord. It made a huge success selling more than 50,000 copies in Hong Kong.

In 1993 he left the publishing company and joined Jademan Comics as art director until 2007, when he founded Lucky Dragon Comics & Animation Ltd. His publications include, Amazing Weapons 4, The 8th Copper Man in Shaolin, Kung Fu, Kill The King.

Comic Character: Shau Sing Chai

What To See in Hong Kong - Avenue Stars Hong Kong - Shau Sing Chai
Shau Sing Chai, © Timotheus Lee for Asia Travel Gems

Works: Shau Sing Chai

Shau Sing Chai was a character in the 73 Comic Series. Using local Cantonese together with unique character modeling and humorous presentation, the comic was well received by readers.

It is Hong Kong’s first comic that established its fan club and with which figurines and T-shirts were made. Shau Sing Chai is also the first comic open for readers’ contributions, nurturing many comic talents.

Comic Artist: Ricky Chan

The locally born comic artist entered to comic field at the age of 16. He became a comedian master in the comic industry with the release of Shau Sing Chai and Siu Keung Comic Collection. He is known to enjoy good personal network and ready to help bud artists.

Comic Character: On On and Guy Guy

What To See in Hong Kong - Avenue Stars Hong Kong - On On and Guy Guy
On On and Guy Guy, © Timotheus Lee for Asia Travel Gems

Works: Fake Forensic Science

On On and Guy Guy were created by Siuhak in 2004, inspired by An An and Jia Jia, two giant pandas kept in the Ocean Park. Turning deaf ears to what they don’t want to hear, they make many dialectical jokes. The comic also ridicules the local instant culture, as well as local politics and current affairs.

The two pandas often forget their own names; bearing a resemblance to Hong Kong people in post-handover era who have to recognize their identity.

Comic Artist: Siuhak

Having graduated in BA in Graphic Design (Hons) from the School of Design, the Hong Kong Polytechnic University in 1996, he freelanced in local illustrations, comics and animations and scriptwriting.

In 2004 he formed a comic group Springrolllll with Craig Au Yeung, Eric So, Yeung Hok Tak and Chi Hoi. From 2004 to 2008 he was a guest tutor in the School of Design, Hong Kong Polytechnic University and started to compose lyrics for canton pop.

Comic Character: Cloud

What To See in Hong Kong - Avenue Stars Hong Kong - Cloud from Storm Riders
Cloud from Storm Riders, © Timotheus Lee for Asia Travel Gems

Works: Storm Riders

Storm Riders revolves around two fellow disciples, the arrogant Cloud and accommodating Wind. Neither friends nor enemies, they have gone through the turmoil in the underworld and thus joined hands to uphold orthodox moral.

Now a millenary disaster is imminent, and the duo, having received the prophecy telling them what to do, is rising to fight with their lives in an attempt to avoid the havoc once and for all.

Comic Artist: Ma Wing-shing

Ma Wing-shing was locally born in 1961. Having been adoring painting, he started composing and drawing the fame making A Man Called Hero in 1982. By mid-1983, it was the best selling comic in Hong Kong with over 200,000 copies sold locally.

Ma innovated Hong Kong comics by introducing realistic technique, and cinematic expressions, making a far-reaching impact. Ma founded Jonesky Limited in 1989. Storm Warriors, which has been published for 23 years, always tops the selling chart of Hong Kong comics.

He subsequently released many well-known comics including Black Leopard, The Heaven Sword and Dragon Saber, Flying Fox of Snowing Mountain etc, securing his leadership in the comic industry.

What To See in Hong Kong - Avenue Stars Hong Kong - Cloud from Storm Riders - closer view
Cloud from Storm Riders – closer view, © Timotheus Lee for Asia Travel Gems

This comic character, Cloud, deserve more photos. It is very popular, and the pose and detailing is superb.

What To See in Hong Kong - Avenue Stars Hong Kong - Cloud from Storm Riders - closer view of face
Cloud from Storm Riders – closer view of face, © Timotheus Lee for Asia Travel Gems

The famous comic artist, Ma Wing-shing, signed on this! It is the statue of the popular comic character he created, called Cloud.

What To See in Hong Kong - Avenue Stars Hong Kong - Ma Wing Shing's Autograph!!!
Ma Wing Shing’s Autograph!!!, © Timotheus Lee for Asia Travel Gems

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Where is the Avenue of Comic Stars?

Kowloon Park

The Avenue of Comic Stars is in Kowloon Park. It is on the east side of the park, nearer to Nathan Road.


There is a map of Kowloon Park at the entrances. Lots of activities inside the park. People jog, there is a swimming complex, and in the early mornings you can enjoy watching people practicing martial arts and tai chi.

What To See in Hong Kong - Avenue Stars Hong Kong - Kowloon Park Map
Kowloon Park Map, © Timotheus Lee for Asia Travel Gems

Of course, the park will have beautiful flowers for you to appreciate.

Tip: Slow down. Appreciate the pretty flowers.

What To See in Hong Kong - Avenue Stars Hong Kong - Flowers at Kowloon Park
Flowers at Kowloon Park, © Timotheus Lee for Asia Travel Gems

There are lots of tall trees that look really ancient. The sight is so enchanting. And made all the more charming with the sight of people practicing tai chi.

What To See in Hong Kong - Avenue Stars Hong Kong - Trees at Kowloon Park
Trees at Kowloon Park, © Timotheus Lee for Asia Travel Gems

Address

East side of Kowloon Park, Near Nathan Road, Tsim Sha Tsui, Hong Kong.

Visitors can enter by Park Lane Boulevard Entrance of Kowloon Park.

Opening Hours

Daily: Monday to Sunday: 5:00 am – 12:00 midnight

Admission

Free


How to Get There?

MTR

Go To Tsim Sha Tsui Station > Take Exit A1 > walk along the left side of Nathan Road towards Jordan for around 5 minutes.

Or Go To Jordan Station > Take Exit D > walk along the right side of Nathan Road towards Tsim Sha Tsui for around 5 minutes


If you have ANY questions about What To See in Hong Kong – Avenue of Comic Stars or Hong Kong, ANY at all, please submit your questions as comments below. I will be happy to help you out.

Thank you for reading this.

Wishing you and your loved ones safe and happy travels,

Timotheus

What To See in Hong Kong – Wisdom Path

What To See In Hong Kong - Wisdom Path - Header

What To See in Hong Kong – Wisdom Path in Hong Kong Lantau Island

After the morning of appreciating Tian Tan Buddha, we had a very good lunch at Po Lin Monastery Vegetarian Restaurant. As we had dessert at the deli outside the restaurant, we took advantage of the moment to rest a while.

Soon enough, we were energized, and ready for our next adventure. We wondered What To See in Hong Kong next? We read about the Wisdom Path, and were eager to see it.


About Wisdom Path

Wisdom Path features thirty eight (38) wooden monuments that are eight (8) to ten (10) meters tall. Each of these monuments, also called wooden steles, have Chinese calligraphy inscribed on them.

The words of the calligraphy form phrases that are verses from the Heart Sutra. The Heart Sutra is one of the world’s best known prayers. It is revered by Confucians, Taoists and Buddhists.

The thirty eight (38) wooden steles are arranged in a figure eight configuration. This is to symbolize infinity. This amazing work of art was created by Professor Jao Tsung-I, and completed in May 2005.


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Finding the Wisdom Path

As we walked out of Po Lin Monastery, we noticed a pathway between Tian Tan Buddha and Po Lin Monastery. There were sign posts and one of them indicated that the pathway would lead to Wisdom Path. We walked about a few hundred meters before we found some signs that indicated the start of the trek to Wisdom Path.

At first, we were a little confused. There were so many colorful signs promoting different brands of drinks. And there was one that indicated a Tea Garden Restaurant.

There was a piece of stone just below all those signs. It took us a few seconds before we realized that it was a milestone that indicated the start of the trek to Wisdom Path.

And if you looked really carefully, below the Chinese Words, there is a faded arrow that pointed the way.

What To See In Hong Kong - Sign Post to Wisdom Path
Sign Post to Wisdom Path, © Timotheus Lee for Asia Travel Gems

Journey to the Wisdom Path

We began our trek to Wisdom Path along a narrow track. On the sides were trees, shrubs and all types of greenery. We could hear some soft sounds of creatures in the distance, and the occasional bird calling. And were surprised there were not more signs of fauna. Were they shy because of our presence?

Tip: The Wisdom Path trek is quite long. Stay on track by following the signs and the beaten trail. Do not go off the track.

Not far from the start point of the trek, we spotted Cherry Blossoms! We were quite amazed to find them there. More so because they were so unexpected.

What To See In Hong Kong - Cherry Blossoms along the way to Wisdom Path
Cherry Blossoms, © Timotheus Lee for Asia Travel Gems

As we ventured further, we observed that there were the greenery was lush, and flora abundance. The air was sweet and dry. All of this made the trek absolutely pleasant, and treat for the eyes.

Tip: Do take time to appreciate the trees and flowers.

Some distance in, we came across what looked like an abandoned tea house. This could be the Tea Garden Restaurant that one of the signs indicated earlier. There was no one around, and it did not look like it was conducting business anymore.

Tip: The Tea Garden Restaurant is another milestone. You know that you are on the right track when you see it.

Opposite the Tea Garden Restaurant, there was a small field of shrubs. We wondered what they were at first. Then we realized that it was a small tea plantation.

This was cool. It meant that the tea house used to serve tea that were grown there. So fresh!

What To See In Hong Kong - Tea Plantation
Tea Plantation, © Timotheus Lee for Asia Travel Gems

The Wisdom Path

From the start of the trek to the Wisdom Path, it should take about twenty (20) to twenty five (25) minutes walk. Of course, it all depends on your speed of walking. Also, if you stopped to admire the flowers and tea garden, it would take a little longer.

After the nice and pleasant walk, we finally reached the Wisdom Path. We did not expect what we saw. It was awesome.

Another good thing about this attraction was that there were not many people here. We believed it was because not many people knew of this place. So, it was not crowded and very serene. The tranquility added a touch of spirituality to this place.

We started to walk the Wisdom Path.

What To See In Hong Kong - Start of Wisdom Path
Start of Wisdom Path, © Timotheus Lee for Asia Travel Gems

Immediately, near the start of the path, there were the wooden steles already. As mentioned earlier, the wooden steles were about eight (8) to ten (10) meters tall. They look magnificent, don’t they?

What To See In Hong Kong - Up the steps of Wisdom Path
Steps to Wisdom Path, © Timotheus Lee for Asia Travel Gem

From the photo above, you could see that they were almost as tall as the trees around them. Below is the first of the wooden steles at the Wisdom Path.

What To See In Hong Kong - Heart Sutra on Wooden Steles
First wooden stele of Wisdom Path, © Timotheus Lee for Asia Travel Gem

Below is a close up of the first wooden stele. It says that this is the Heart Sutra.

What To See In Hong Kong - Heart Sutra on Wooden Steles - close up view
Heart Sutra on Wooden Stele, © Timotheus Lee for Asia Travel Gem

It must be noted that not all the wooden steles are of the same breadth. Here is one that is a little broader. The piece of wood used is natural, like a large log that had been sliced for a surface to carve the calligraphy.

What To See In Hong Kong - Heart Sutra on Wooden Steles - Another perspective
One of the broader wooden steles, © Timotheus Lee for Asia Travel Gem

As we walked along the Wisdom Path, we felt immersed into the experience. We were no longer watching like they were just an attraction. As we looked up to view each wooden stele, we felt such a sense of awe. And as we continued walking, there was almost a sense of losing oneself into the space, forgetting that it actually formed the infinity sign.

What To See In Hong Kong - Heart Sutra on Wooden Steles - Looking from another angle
Looking from another angle, © Timotheus Lee for Asia Travel Gem

Every once in a while, we looked around. Everywhere we looked, there were slopes and mountains. We could understand why this place was chosen for this representation of the Heart Sutra.

We could not help but feel such a sense of appreciation by the beauty all around us.

What To See In Hong Kong - Heart Sutra on Wooden Steles - Mountains and greenery all around
Mountains and greenery all around, © Timotheus Lee for Asia Travel Gem

Here is a photo to share how it looked when we gazed upwards from the base of one of the wooden steles. Against the sunny blue sky, it was colossal and breathtaking.

What To See In Hong Kong - Heart Sutra on Wooden Steles - Looking magnificent
Looking magnificent, © Timotheus Lee for Asia Travel Gem

After the visit to the Wisdom Path, we exit from where we started. A look around, and we saw that to the left was a sign that said – Phoenix Hill. There were steps that invited people to explore the hill.

Tip: The entrance to the Phoenix Hill is recognizable by a gateway and a statue of the Phoenix. It is on the left of the entrance of the Wisdom Path. Don’t miss it!

We climbed the steps, and after a short distance, we looked back. We were able to have a bird’s eye view of the 38 wooden steles of the Wisdom Path. Look closely and you could make out the infinity symbol cast by the wooden steles!

What To See In Hong Kong - Heart Sutra on Wooden Steles forming Infinity symbol
Wooden Steles forming Infinity symbol, © Timotheus Lee for Asia Travel Gem

We walked slightly further up the Phoenix Hill, and were rewarded with a breathtaking view of the mountains and valley of the Lantau mountains, the islands and the South China Sea.

What To See In Hong Kong - Breathtaking View of Islands and South China Sea
Breathtaking View of Islands and South China Sea, © Timotheus Lee for Asia Travel Gem

We spent some time appreciating the majestic view. Soon after, we made our way back to Tian Tan Buddha.


Where is the Wisdom Path Located?

Address

Ngong Ping, Lantau Island, Outlying Islands

How to Get There?

MTR

Go to MTR Tung Chung Station. Take Exit B. Then take the Ngong Ping Cable Car. This will take around 25 minutes.

Bus

Or from the same Tung Chung Station, take New Lantao Bus 23. This will take about 45 minutes.

Ferry

Another way to get there is by Ferry, which you have to board at Central Pier 6. Take the ferry to Mui Po, then take New Lantao Bus 2 to Ngong Ping Village. All this may take around 40 minutes, minus wait time.


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What is the Heart Sutra?

The Heart Sutra is a very popular sutra in Mahayana Buddhism. It has 260 words, and as such is the shortest sutra.

Its Sanskrit name is Prajnaparamitahrdaya. The meaning is The Heart of the Perfection of Wisdom.

The sutra records the conversation that Avalokiteshvara Bodhisattva has with one of the disciples of Buddha, Shariputra. They discussed the five skandhas that are form, sensation, conception, discrimination and consciousness. All of which are empty as Avalokiteshvara has observed, and thus became free from suffering.

We will not assume to know all there is about this lovely Heart Sutra. The above is just a brief explanation. For more information, it is best to read up more about this sutra from Buddhist websites, attend talks by monks about this sutra, read books about it, or visit Buddhist libraries.


If you have ANY questions about What To See in Hong Kong – Wisdom Path or Hong Kong, ANY at all, please submit your questions as comments below. I will be happy to help you out.

Thank you for reading this.

Wishing you and your loved ones safe and happy travels,

Timotheus

Good Food in Hong Kong

Good Food In Hong Kong

When you visit Hong Kong, you are never lack of choices for Good Food in Hong Kong. Dim sum, roasted meats, wanton noodles, and more. We feature some places with really good food, and some that are hidden gems.



Shek Kee Wonton Noodles – The Best in Hong Kong

Best Wonton Noodles in Hong Kong - Delicious Wonton with Fish Balls - Click on Image to Read More
Best Wonton Noodles in Hong Kong – Delicious Wonton with Fish Balls – Click on Image to Read More

Forget Mak’s. And any others that claim to be the best wonton noodles in Hong Kong. Shek Kee is The One. I have tried all the others, including Mak. And I have found that Shek Kee is much better. Would you like to find out more, including location, of this hidden gem? Read More


Po Lin Monastery Vegetarian Restaurant

Good Food In Hong Kong - Deep Fried Bean Curd Sheets with Lemon Sauce - Click on Image to Read More
Good Food In Hong Kong – Deep Fried Bean Curd Sheets with Lemon Sauce – Click on Image to Read More

When you visit Tian Tan Buddha on Lautau Island, don’t miss this treat! The vegetarian food is delicious, and you can tell they use really fresh ingredients. Plus, there is a really tasty dessert shop just outside. Read More



If you have ANY questions about Hong Kong or any of the articles about Hong Kong, ANY at all, please submit your questions as comments below. I will be happy to help you out.

Thank you for reading this.

Wishing you and your loved ones safe and happy travels,

Timotheus

Good Food in Hong Kong – Po Lin Monastery Vegetarian Restaurant

Good Food In Hong Kong - Po Lin Monastery Gateway - Header

Good Food in Hong Kong – Po Lin Monastery Vegetarian Restaurant

After a wonderful morning at Tian Tan Buddha (also lovingly called Big Buddha), we were hungry. The climb up the 268 steps and back down, plus walking around and inside the inner halls surely worked up an appetite. We hunger for Good Food in Hong Kong!

Fortunately, the ticket we bought included a full course meal at the Po Lin Monastery Vegetarian Restaurant.

We had read many good things about the restaurant and the food they served. And looked forward to experiencing it first-hand. We wanted to see if it really was as good as what netizens have claimed.

Below is the brief intro about Po Lin Monastery and the Summary of Ratings, followed by our experience tasting the food at vegetarian restaurant. Continue reading to join us for this gastronomical journey.


About Po Lin Monastery

Po Lin is a Buddhist monastery. It was founded in 1906 by three monks. And is located on Ngong Ping at Lantau Island of Hong Kong. The location is quite remote, in a setting that is amongst lush and serene mountains.

It is one of Hong Kong’s most important Buddhist sanctums. After Tian Tan Buddha was added, it became a very popular destination for locals and tourists.

There is a well known vegetarian restaurant that is famous for serving delicious vegetarian dishes. Around the monastery, and everywhere in Ngong Ping, there are beautiful flowers, lush greenery, and even wildlife and livestock.

This tree was at the hill slope, at the side of the 268 steps to Tian Tan Big Buddha.

Good Food In Hong Kong - Lush Greenery along the slope of the hills at Tian Tan Buddha
Lush Greenery along the slope of the hills at Tian Tan Buddha, © Timotheus Lee for Asia Travel Gems

Tip: When you are at Ngong Ping, do take time to notice the pretty flowers, plants and trees there.

Good Food In Hong Kong - Beautiful Flowers Everywhere at Ngong Ping, Lantau Island, Hong Kong
Beautiful Flowers Everywhere, © Timotheus Lee for Asia Travel Gems

There are ways to get there; such as by MTR to Tung Chung MTR station then by bus or cable car, or by ferry. More info below.


Po Lin Monastery Vegetarian Restaurant – The Overview & Rankings

Name: Po Lin Monastery Vegetarian Restaurant
Cuisine: Chinese, Vegetarian, Vegan Options, Gluten Free Options
Meals Served: Lunch, Dinner
Dining Choices: Dine In
Family Friendly: Yes
Food: 4.0 out of 5.0
Service: 3.0 out of 5.0
Value: 4.0 out of 5.0
Atmosphere: 3.0 out of 5.0
Prices: $$$ out of $$$$$
Asia Travel Gems Rating: 4.0 out of 5.0  Po Lin Monastery Vegetarian Restaurant - 4 out of 5 Stars Rating


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On the Way to Po Lin

After a wondrous time at the top of the hill, and being awestruck by the colossal Tian Tan Buddha, the inner halls of treasure and the breath-taking views of the mountains, we began to feel hungry.

Fortunately, the ticket we purchased earlier included a set meal at the Po Lin Monastery Vegetarian Restaurant. To get there, we had to walk down the 268 steps. This time, it was not so tiring as going up.

Good Food In Hong Kong - Pavilion and Gateway to Po Lin Monastery can be seen to be just across Tian Tan Buddha
Pavilion and Gateway near Tian Tan Buddha, © Timotheus Lee for Asia Travel Gems

As we reached the lower flights of steps, we noticed many people praying at a circular construct. We found out later that this is called the Pavilion.

Good Food In Hong Kong - Pavilion just across Tian Tan Buddha
Pavilion just across Tian Tan Buddha, © Timotheus Lee for Asia Travel Gems

It was nothing sensational. But it was nice to see and experience every part of this tourist attraction.


Entrance to Po Lin Monastery

Po Lin Monastery was just across the Tian Tan Buddha. After we reached the bottom of the 268 steps, and crossed the Pavilion, we saw the gateway to the monastery.

Good Food In Hong Kong - Gateway to Po Lin Monastery
Gateway to Po Lin Monastery, © Timotheus Lee for Asia Travel Gems

Vegetarian Deluxe Set Meal

Do not expect the usual window display of food or large neon signs to indicate where the restaurant is. This is a simple and unassuming eating place.

Look for the temple, and then walk to the left side of the front of the temple. Look for signs where one of them would indicate the restaurant, and the direction it is located.

Though it took a bit of time to find, it was actually easy to spot the restaurant. Here is where you have to be sure which room to enter. Earlier, we purchased the Deluxe Set Meal. A sign on the door of the restaurant informed us that the meal would be served in the VIP (Very Important Person) room.

Tip: Remember to Buy the Deluxe Set Meal when you purchase the ticket at Big Buddha. It is worth the money. The room is air-conditioned (great for a hot day), and the meals are served by wait staff. ==> Read Big Buddha post for info on How to Buy the Best Deal for visit to Big Buddha Museum & the Deluxe Set Meal <==

One of the wait staff greeted us as we entered the VIP room. She asked for our ticket, and we showed it, and informed her that there were four of us dining. Immediately, she allocated us a table.

After that, everything happened really fast and efficiently. There was nary a smile or pleasant conversation. It was not horrible either. Just very mechanical and quick.

The plates and utensils were placed, followed by bowls for washing hands or tea cups. Then the dishes arrived one after another.

Here is what you get for a Deluxe Meal for four (note: menu may change over time):

The first dish was the Deep Fried Bean Curd Sheets with Lemon Sauce. It was cooked in a sweet and sour style. We must admit that this is a great starter. The sweetness and sourness was not too heavy, and not too light. Just the right amount to make this a mouth watering combination that increased our already worked up appetites.

Good Food In Hong Kong - Deep Fried Bean Curd Sheets with Lemon Sauce
Deep Fried Bean Curd Sheets with Lemon Sauce, © Timotheus Lee for Asia Travel Gems

The Bean Curd Sheets were crispy yet full without being flaky. At some places, the bean curd sheets get soggy very quickly because of the sauce. They have managed to keep the sheets crispy even after we started on the other dishes that came soon after.

The next dish was the Black Mushrooms with Vegetables. This turned out to be the highlight of the meal.

Good Food In Hong Kong - Black Mushrooms with Vegetables
Black Mushrooms with Vegetables, © Timotheus Lee for Asia Travel Gems

They mushroom were firm and chewy. Notice some places served mushrooms that just tasted like nothing? Not here. At Po Lin Monastery Vegetarian Restaurant, there was a light yet distinct mushroom taste on our tongues! It was just the right amount of flavor too!

The green vegetables were no lightweight, too. The ingredients were so fresh and full of taste of each type of vegetable that we suspected they might have been grown in the fertile lands of Ngong Ping. Maybe even organic?

Every Chinese meal should have soup. Or at least that is a Cantonese way of having meals. Sadly, the Mixed Mushroom Soup was disappointing. We did not think much of it.

Good Food In Hong Kong - Mixed Mushroom Soup
Mixed Mushroom Soup, © Timotheus Lee for Asia Travel Gems

It was a thick soup with bean noodles, black fungus, strands of bean curd skin and assorted mushrooms. While nice to have and drink after an exhausting walk up and down the steps to Big Buddha, the taste was bland and nothing special to speak of.

We thought it was going downhill after the soup. Thankfully, things bounced back. The Spring Rolls were served next.

Good Food In Hong Kong - Spring Rolls
Spring Rolls, © Timotheus Lee for Asia Travel Gems

I love Spring Rolls! And the ones from Po Lin Monastery Vegetarian Restaurant were really good! They were well fried such that the skin was light and crispy. The filling was tasty with light sweet and peppery flavors. Again, we could tell how fresh the ingredients were.

After the Spring Rolls, we were hopeful for the rest of the meal to be even better. We were rght!

Good Food In Hong Kong - Asparagus with Mixed Mushroom and Cashews
Asparagus with Mixed Mushroom and Cashews, © Timotheus Lee for Asia Travel Gems

The Asparagus with Mixed Mushrooms and Cashews was a delightful dish. Besides the asparagus, mushrooms and cashews, there were also celery, red & yellow peppers, and snap peas. We could savor each and every individual vegetable’s flavor. Plus, the combination of the vegetables made this a crunchy and scrumptious combo.

Good Food In Hong Kong - Fresh Lotus with Potato Paste
Fresh Lotus with Potato Paste, © Timotheus Lee for Asia Travel Gems

The Fresh Lotus with Potato Paste surprised us. At a glance, we thought this was a dish of yams. I do not particularly like yams. But my friends revealed to me that they were actually fresh lotus and very palatable. I gave it a try, and it was really good! We changed our minds. This might be the best dish of the entire meal.

Tip: Save your appetite for delicious desserts from the deli next to the vegetarian kitchen. See the next part to read more about it.


Delicious Desserts

After lunch, we patronized the Deli that was next to the vegetarian kitchen (from the VIP room, turn left). Here, there was an assortment of snacks and desserts such as steamed cakes, noodles, bean curd, glutinous rice dumplings, and more.

The Bean Curd is renowned and highly praised by many. It is fresh because it is home-made by the monastery daily.

Good Food In Hong Kong - Delicious Desserts such as Bean Curd, Mango Pudding and Glutinous Rice Dumplings with Peanut and Green Bean Paste fillings
Delicious Desserts

We tried the Bean Curd, Mango Pudding and Glutinous Rice Dumplings with Peanut and Green Bean Paste fillings. The bean curd was as good as its reputation; fragrant, soft and silky. The dumplings were a surprise. They were so soft and flavorful.

You must try all these when you are here!

Tip: The stock at the Deli is limited. Some favourite items, like the bean curd, are made in small quantities. You should buy them when you see that they are available. A good idea would be visit the Deli first, buy what you wish to try, and bring in to the VIP Room to enjoy with your Deluxe Meal.


Po Lin Monastery Vegetarian Restaurant – Asia Travel Gems Final Word

From our experience, most of our friends are reluctant to have vegetarian meals. When we have lunches and dinners together, rarely they would agree to it. Unless, of course, they are vegetarians.

Over the years, we do find that more and more of our friends are all right with vegetarian food. It might not be their first choice. But if suggested, they are open to it. Though, sometimes with hesitation.

We dare say that if they tried the food at Po Lin Monastery Vegetarian Restaurant, they would change their mindset about vegetarian food.

Asia Travel Gems Rating: 4.0 out of 5.0

Po Lin Monastery Vegetarian Restaurant - 4 out of 5 Stars RatingThe restaurant did not get full 5.0 rating only because of the ambience, and service. Sure, we understand that they are not really a commercial establishment.

But then again, people paid money for this. So, it would have been nice to sit in a better decorated restaurant. And nicer when the wait staff are a little friendlier. We do not expect too much. Just a smile now and then. And some greeting perhaps?

Aside from the little bit of down side, the food is really worth enjoying. That is why, although service was not good and environment was not ideal, the rating is not low. The food raised it to a 4.0.

Anyway, you will most probably spend the day at Tian Tan Buddha. Why not have good food?


Where is Po Lin Monastery Vegetarian Restaurant?

Address

Po Lin Monastery, Ngong Ping, Lantau Island

Operating Hours at Po Lin Monastery: Monday to Sunday (including public holidays), 8am to 6pm

Operating Hours at Po Lin Monastery Vegetarian Kitchen:
Monday to Friday (except public holidays), 11.30 am to 4.30 pm
Saturday, Sunday & Public Holidays, 11.30 am to 7.00 pm


How to Get There?

MTR

Go to MTR Tung Chung Station. Take Exit B. Then take the Ngong Ping Cable Car. This will take around 25 minutes. Another 10 minutes’ walk to the monastery.

Bus

Or from the same Tung Chung Station, take New Lantao Bus 23. This will take about 45 minutes, then 8 minutes’ walk to the monastery.

Ferry

Another way to get there is by Ferry, which you have to board at Central Pier 6. Take the ferry to Mui Po, then take New Lantao Bus 2 to Ngong Ping Village. All this may take around 40 minutes, minus wait time.


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If you have ANY questions about this review, about Good Food in Hong Kong – Po Lin Monastery Vegetarian Restaurant, ANY at all, please submit your questions as comments below. I will be happy to help you out.

Thank you for reading this. Next, we visited the Wisdom Path. Don’t miss this interesting place that you must visit when you are at Big Buddha, Lantau Island, Hong Kong.

Wishing you and your loved ones safe and happy travels,

Timotheus

What To See in Hong Kong – Big Buddha in Hong Kong Lantau Island

What To See In Hong Kong - Big Buddha, also known as Tian Tan Buddha at Lantau Island

What To See in Hong Kong – Big Buddha in Hong Kong Lantau Island

If you are wondering What To See In Hong Kong that is a Must, it is the Big Buddha in Hong Kong Lantau Island, also known as Tian Tan Buddha, is an amazing sight to behold! It is so huge that it can be seen from an airplane as it approaches Hong Kong International Airport.

During our last Hong Kong vacation, of course we simply must visit this awesome and magnificent Buddha image! We were really eager and excited about this day trip to the island that also has many attractions such as the Po Lin Monastery, the monastery’s vegetarian restaurant, the Wisdom Path, and more.

At that time, we were staying at Residence G Hong Kong (by Hotel G). It was a very nice Boutique Lifestyle Hotel. We will share about that in another blog post soon. (So do sign up for our newsletter to receive updates)

So, we had to travel from Residence G Hong Kong, which is located in Kowloon, to Big Buddha in Hong Kong Lantau Island.


Getting to Lantau Island

It is very easy and convenient to travel from anywhere in Hong Kong to Lantau Island. One of the most affordable ways is via MTR (Mass Transit Railway).

The MTR has a vast network that can take you to almost anywhere in Hong Kong. Take a look at the map below (click to see a larger version of the map).

What To See In Hong Kong - MTR Map
MTR System Map, source: mtr.com.hk, CLICK to see larger version

The closest MTR station to Residence G Hong Kong, the hotel where we stayed at, is Austin MTR station. After early morning breakfast, we walked along Austin Road to the station.

We took the train on the West Rail Line to Nam Cheong MTR station. Then transit to Tung Chung line towards Tung Chung MTR station. That stop was in Lantau Island itself. You can see the route on the map above.

What To See In Hong Kong - View from MTR train en route to Tung Chung MTR Station that is on Lantau Island
View from MTR train en route to Tung Chung MTR Station, Lantau Island, © Timotheus Lee for Asia Travel Gems

At certain sections of the train route, it went above ground. Nothing spectacular to see, but it was nice to get views of Kowloon as the train sped on to Lantau Island.


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Citygate Outlets

At Tung Chung station, there is a mall called Citygate Outlets. Initially, we thought of spending some time there to browse around, and perhaps get some great deals. It is, after all, a factory outlet, supposedly selling stuff at much lower prices.

Tip: Truth about Citygate Outlets – our Hong Kong friend informed us that the product range at this mall is not good. The fashion is not the latest, and the discounts were not really worth it. A taxi driver later confirmed this with us. Apparently the locals know this. Only tourists were in the dark, thinking there are good deals because of the word ‘outlets’, which is supposed to mean stuff at much lower prices. They are not.

After finding out the truth, we decided not to shop there. Still, the mall has a good use though.

The train ride from the hotel was not too long, but long enough. And it may be another half an hour to one hour to Ngong Ping, Lantau Island where Tian Tan Buddha is located. So we took advantage of the nice and clean restrooms there, and had our restroom break.


Ngong Ping Cablecar

What To See In Hong Kong - Ngong Ping Cablecar Station was closed
Ngong Ping Cablecar Station was closed, © Timotheus Lee for Asia Travel Gems

It was supposed to be an entire experience. We had planned and intended to take the Ngong Ping Cablecar to Ngong Ping. That is where Tian Tan Buddha, Po Lin Monastery and Wisdom Path are located.

Unfortunately, when we reached the cablecar station, we were informed that the entire service was down due to maintenance. We had no choice but to take the bus to Ngong Ping.

We were a little disappointed as we wanted to see how the view as the cable car ‘flies’ over to Ngong Ping. Nevertheless, the main event is the Big Buddha. So disappointment was quickly dissipated by anticipation.


Bus to Tian Tan Buddha

We discovered that the bus to Ngong Ping was bus number 23. But before that, we had to find out how to pay for the bus ticket.

Tip: Get the Octopus card the moment you start to take the MTR around Hong Kong and Kowloon. It is very useful, convenient and saves a lot of money. When you first get the card, you need to pay HK$50 (refundable deposit) and HK$100 value for use. We were able to use the same card for the bus to Ngong Ping. No hassles.

The queue for bus number 23 was very long. Fortunately, the bus arrives frequently. In less than half an hour, we were aboard the bus, and on our way to Ngong Ping.

The bus ride was not really smooth sailing. Ngong Ping is at the top of a very high hill. The road to there has a lot of sharp turns and many curves that most probably circled the slopes of the hill.

Tip: For those who are prone to air or car sickness, I suggest taking something to prevent that before boarding the bus.


Gateway to Tian Tan Buddha

After some time, we finally arrived! Here is the Gateway to Tian Tan Buddha!

What To See In Hong Kong - Gateway to Tian Tan Buddha
Gateway to Tian Tan Buddha, © Timotheus Lee for Asia Travel Gems

Yesterday, after we arrived, we spent half a day and night at Kowloon. And what a difference Ngong Ping was to Kowloon!

There were vast open spaces with lush greenery that filled the landscape at Ngong Ping. In contrast, there were tall and short buildings that covered every area in Kowloon, thinly separated by narrow roads.

At Ngong Ping, I could actually feel my soul breathe.

Tip: From the Gateway, it is awesome to see the Tian Tan Buddha sitting high on the hill. A sight you will never forget. Take a few moments to soak it all in.

At the Gateway, we could see the monumental Tian Tan Buddha! (top right portion of photo above) Here is another photo of the Big Buddha as seen from the Gateway.

What To See In Hong Kong - Tian Tan Buddha seen from afar, from Gateway
Tian Tan Buddha seen from Gateway, © Timotheus Lee for Asia Travel Gems

The Bodhi Path

Before reaching the actual Big Buddha image, there was a Bodhi Path that led to it. When we were there, and because the weather was also quite warm, the path looked really long. But it actually was not.

Also, it was fun to spend a little time along this path. There were 12 Divine Generals placed along the pathway.

What To See In Hong Kong - Bodhi Path that leads to Tian Tan Buddha
Bodhi Path that leads to Tian Tan Buddha, © Timotheus Lee for Asia Travel Gems

Tip: Did you know that each of the 12 Divine Generals represent an animal in the Chinese Zodiac? Find yours, and take a photo with it!

The one below was the Divine General for those born in the Year of the Rabbit.

What To See In Hong Kong - Divine General for those Born in the Year of the Rabbit
Divine General for those Born in the Year of the Rabbit, © Timotheus Lee for Asia Travel Gems

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The Long Stairway to Tian Tan Buddha

And then … the long and steep flight of steps to Tian Tan Buddha.

268 steps!

What To See In Hong Kong - 268 Steps to Tian Tan Buddha
268 Steps to Tian Tan Buddha, © Timotheus Lee for Asia Travel Gems

Sounds exhausting?

Well, it was the climb we had to take in order to get a closer view of the magnificent statue, and to enjoy the sweeping scene of the mountains and seas.

Let’s go!

Tip: Oh wait! At the bottom of the steps, there is a booth that sells Meal Tickets. These are tickets to dine a set lunch at the nearby renowned Po Lin Monastery Vegetarian Restaurant. A Deluxe Meal is priced at HK$128 per person (as of March 2014). Choose the Deluxe Set Meal. You won’t regret it. And purchase the tickets here at this booth at the base of the steps. Reason: You also get FREE admission to the museum when you reach the Big Buddha. The artifacts, relics and art pieces are worth viewing.

At the bottom of the steps and along the way up, there were many Incense Burners, Lamp Posts and mini Pagodas.

What To See In Hong Kong - Large Incense Burner at Foot of Steps to Tian Tan Buddha
Large Incense Burner at Foot of Steps to Tian Tan Buddha, © Timotheus Lee for Asia Travel Gems

Beautiful, isn’t it? Look at the intricate details. Here’s another one.

What To See In Hong Kong - Large Incense Burner along Steps to Tian Tan Buddha
Large Incense Burner along Steps to Tian Tan Buddha, © Timotheus Lee for Asia Travel Gems
What To See In Hong Kong - Large Lamp Post along Steps to Tian Tan Buddha
Large Lamp Post along Steps to Tian Tan Buddha, © Timotheus Lee for Asia Travel Gems

Tian Tan Buddha

We finally reached Tian Tan Buddha!

The gigantic Tian Tan Buddha is made of bronze. It took 12 years to build, and was completed in 1993. It is 34 metres tall and faces north. This direction was specially chosen so that the Big Buddha looks over all the Chinese people.

Why was the statue named Tian Tan Buddha?

Its base is a model of the Altar of Heaven. Also, known as Earthly Mount of Tian Tan, which is the Temple of Heaven that is located in Beijing.

We hope everyone receives blessings when they see the images here of Tian Tan Buddha!

What To See In Hong Kong - Big Buddha Blesses Everyone
Tian Tan Buddha Blesses Everyone! © Timotheus Lee for Asia Travel Gems

The right hand of the statue is raised. This represents the removal of affliction. The other left hand rests on the lap. This is a gesture of generosity.

What To See In Hong Kong - Big Buddha - view from another angle
Another angle of Big Buddha, © Timotheus Lee for Asia Travel Gems

The Museum

Beneath the statue, there is a Museum. It comprises of 3 halls – the Hall of the Universe, the Hall of Benevolent Merit, and the Hall of Remembrance.

There were many floors of ancient relics and Buddhist items on many floors. We even saw an Anita Mui shrine. But more significant was the relic of Gautama Buddha, the alleged cremated remains. That is what this Museum is renowned for, and why most people visit it.

It was really worth a visit. Take note of the tip given earlier to buy the ticket at the ground level so that you get free entrance to this ethereal and blissful experience.

Unfortunately, no photo taking was allowed. So we have no images to share of the Museum.


Around Tian Tan Buddha

At the base of the Big Buddha, there were six statues of Devas positioned all around it. As we took time to observe them, we noticed that each of these Devas has an item in their hands. They were lifted upwards as if offering them as gifts to Tian Tan Buddha.

What To See In Hong Kong - 3 of 6 Devas
3 of 6 Devas, © Timotheus Lee for Asia Travel Gems

These 6 bronze statues are known as The Offering of the 6 Devas. They are offering flowers, incense, lamps, ointments, fruits and music to Tian Tan Buddha. These items symbolize the 6 Perfections, which are zeal, patience, morality, generosity, meditation and wisdom. All necessary for enlightenment.

What To See In Hong Kong - Another 3 of 6 Devas
Another 3 of 6 Devas, © Timotheus Lee for Asia Travel Gems

The base of Tian Tan Buddha is circular with a large walkway for visitors to amble. Every step we took, we were greeted with really beautiful scenery.

Tip: Take some time to slowly enjoy the breathtaking view. It is truly awesome!

What To See In Hong Kong - Awesome View of Mountains
Awesome View of Mountains, © Timotheus Lee for Asia Travel Gems
What To See In Hong Kong - Serene Mists On Mountains
Serene Mists On Mountains, © Timotheus Lee for Asia Travel Gems
What To See In Hong Kong - Po Lin Monastery from afar
Po Lin Monastery from afar, © Timotheus Lee for Asia Travel Gems

After this spiritually lifting experience, we proceeded to have lunch at the famous Po Lin Monastery Vegetarian Restaurant. We had done some research before we traveled to Hong Kong, and many reviews said the lunch is really good.

We will be posting about this soon. So do come back to visit and read about it, or subscribe our newsletter to receive updates.

See ya soon!


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If you have ANY questions about What To See in Hong Kong – Big Buddha in Hong Kong Lantau Island, ANY at all, please submit your questions as comments below. I will be happy to help you out.

Thank you for reading this.

Wishing you and your loved ones safe and happy travels,

Timotheus

What To See In Hong Kong

What To See In Hong Kong

This page showcases What To See In Hong Kong. Some are fun. Some are cool. Some are amazing. Each appeals to different people in different ways. One thing’s for sure – there is something for everyone in Hong Kong.



Sik Sik Yuen Wong Tai Sin Temple

Sik Sik Yuen Wong Tai Sin Temple - Click on Image to Read More
Sik Sik Yuen Wong Tai Sin Temple – Click on Image to Read More

Renowned for its rich history as well as the rumors of granting wishes, Sik Sik Yuen Wong Tai Sin Temple must be on your travel itinerary when you visit Hong Kong. How do you make a wish correctly? Read More


Avenue of Comic Stars

Avenue of Comic Stars in Kowloon, Hong Kong - Click on Image to Read More
Avenue of Comic Stars in Kowloon, Hong Kong – Click on Image to Read More

The legendary Wind and Cloud. The funny Old Master Q. The enigmatic K. Plus many more Asian comic heroes and superstars come alive in full size statues along this avenue. A tribute that is worthy of your time and visit. Read More


Wisdom Path

What To See In Hong Kong - Wisdom Path - Click on Image to Read More
What To See In Hong Kong – Wisdom Path – Click on Image to Read More

A little off the beaten track, within distance from Tian Tan Buddha, is a footpath that leads to the Wisdom Path. What is the Wisdom Path? What are these tall wooden steles? And how tall are they? What are the words inscribed on these wooden steles? Find Out Now


Tian Tan Buddha, also known as The Big Buddha

What To See In Hong Kong - Big Buddha, also known as Tian Tan Buddha at Lantau Island - Click on Image to Read More
What To See In Hong Kong – Big Buddha, also known as Tian Tan Buddha at Lantau Island – Click on Image to Read More

A visit to Hong Kong is not complete with a tour to Lantau Island, and to see The Big Buddha. Also known as Tian Tan Buddha. There is so much more than just this huge tribute to Buddha. Read my blog post to find out more



If you have ANY questions about What To See In Hong Kong or any articles about Hong Kong, ANY at all, please submit your questions as comments below. I will be happy to help you out.

Thank you for reading this.

Wishing you and your loved ones safe and happy travels,

Timotheus

Hong Kong

Best Places To Visit In Asia - Hong Kong - The Peak

Hong Kong

About Hong Kong

Best Places to Visit in Asia - Bustling Street filled with people
Bustling Street filled with people in Hong Kong

Hong Kong is one of our favorite cities to visit in Asia. She is exciting, fast paced, colorful, and filled with fun and excitement. It is no wonder she is nicknamed as the Pearl of the Orient.

There are skyscrapers in the business district that creates an impressive skyline. Plenty of shops with a plethora of products that will please any hardcore shopper.

Charming famous attractions offer a glance in history, respite from the hectic modern world, and even theme world fun and entertainment like Disneyworld. Of course, not to forget, the myriad choices of delicious world class dishes that can be found in top class restaurants, appealing local cafes, and street side stalls.



Where is Hong Kong?

Hong Kong is located on China’s south coast, at the mouth of the Pearl River Delta. It is surrounded by the South China Sea with one of the major attractions that is the Victoria Harbor.

The country comprises Hong Kong island, the Kowloon Peninsula, the New Territories as well as hundreds of outlying islands. One of the most famous islands is Lantau Island. It is where the Hong Kong International Airport is found, and the popular Tian Tan Buddha.


Races, Culture & Religion

Races

The majority of the Hong Kong population is of Chinese descent, and are ethnic Chinese. There are Hongkongers who are of Indian, Filipino, British, Indonesian, Vietnamese, Pakistani and many other origins. This makes Hong Kong very colorful and exciting. Plus, there are many races who are expatriates working in Hong Kong.

Culture

There is a high level of cultural tolerance in Hong Kong. Cultural influences from the western world began during the British rule. At the same time, the ancient Chinese culture were held strong and dear.

Today, you can see people still practicing Chinese traditions while celebrating Christmas with as much fervor as Chinese New Year.

Certain Chinese beliefs and Feng shui are taken very seriously in Hong Kong. For example, before any construction or renovation changes to a building, Feng Shui experts are often consulted. It is believed that the right action by following the advice of the Feng Shui expert can bring business success.

Another example, is the belief that the spirits of the land must be appeased before starting any project in the area. There will be prayers and offerings that must be respected.

Languages

The majority of the population speaks Cantonese, a Chinese dialect. There are other dialects spoken, too. Mandarin, the national language, has become more widely spoken in recent years.

Due to the British rule, many of the Hong Kong people speak English. Those working in the government, business and tourism sectors are usually fluent in English. Though there are still some locals who do work in industries related to the three sectors, and are not so good at English.

Do be respectful, and communicate as best as you can when you encounter such cases. Some would even speak in Chinese or Cantonese mixed with English.

What To See In Hong Kong - Tian Tan Buddha seen from afar, from Gateway

Religion

The main religions in Hong Kong are Buddhism, Taoism, and Confucianism. The small communities of beliefs are Christians, Roman Catholics, Sikhs, Muslims, Jews, Hindus and Baha’i.

Yet, at the same time, a majority of the people have no religious affiliation. All religions are tolerated and respected.


Festivals and Public Holidays

The holidays and festivals in Hong Kong are predominantly Chinese. Most are celebrated with lots of color and excitement.

Best Places to Visit in Asia - Lion Dance during Chinese New Year Celebrations
Lion Dance during Chinese New Year Celebrations, © Timotheus Lee for Asia Travel Gems

Here are the holidays and festivals:

  • New Year’s Day
  • The day following the first day of January
  • Lunar New Year, Second day of Lunar New Year, Third day of Lunar New Year
  • Ching Ming Festival
  • Good Friday
  • Holy Saturday
  • Easter Monday
  • Labour Day
  • Buddha’s Birthday
  • Dragon Boat Festival
  • Hong Kong Special Administrative Region Establishment Day
  • Day following the Mid-Autumn Festival
  • National Day
  • Day following the National Day
  • Chung Yeung Festival
  • Christmas Day
  • The first weekday after Christmas Day

Dress Codes & National Dress

There really isn’t any National Dress for Hong Kong. The only consideration is that women may wear the lovely cheongsam as formal wear durinng important occasions.

Best Places to Visit in Asia - Cheongsam
The Lovely Cheongsam

The cheongsam is a body-hugging one-piece dress. It is also known as qipao.

As for dress code, there is none to follow. Basically, dress wisely for the season you are going to be in Hong Kong.

For example, during the colder months, pack for layers. Best to wear long pants rather than shorts due to the cold weather. Also, have a light jacket that you can easily wear when outside, and remove when indoors.

During the warmer months, it is all right to wear shorts or bermudas. T-shirts or polo for men, and light blouses for women is fine.

Check out the Weather in Hong Kong section (below) for more info on the weather so that you can plan what to bring for clothing.


National Sport

Hong Kong people are quite active in sports. Football, cricket, basketball, swimming, badminton, table tennis, cycling and running are popular.

Though not a sport, many Hong Kong people like to trek on weekends and holidays. They go outside of the city, and into the nature havens to enjoy a good hike.


Currency in Hong Kong

The Hong Kong dollar (HKD) is the legal tender in Hong Kong. And it is best to use this when making purchases or paying for hotel fees or cab fares.

Other currencies like the Chinese yuan (RMB) or the US dollar (USD) may be accepted at some establishments. But the exchange rate is not good. In the end, it is better to use the Hong Kong dollar.


Weather in Hong Kong

Hong Kong has a humid subtropical climate. The only thing to watch out for is the unpredictable typhoons. That can affect your travel plans.

Spring (March to May)

Weather starts to get hot and humid. The evenings can be cool, though. Average temperature is between 17 to 26 degrees celsius.

Summer (June to August)

This is the really hot season. We have been told by friends in Hong Kong to avoid visiting during this period. Average temperature is between 26 to 31 degrees celsius. But it is the high humidity that makes it feel very warm.

Autumn (September to November)

The weather starts to turn cooler. There can be gentle breezes that bring respite to the the heat. This can be considered as some of the best months to visit Hong Kong. Average temperature is between 19 to 28 degrees celsius.

Winter (December to February)

If you prefer cooler weather, then these are the better days to visit Hong Kong. The weather is cool and dry with lots of cloud coverage.

Not so good if you prefer more sunny days. If you prefer the latter, consider Autumn described above.

The average temperature is betwween 12 to 20 degrees celsius. Although, there have been instances when the temperature dropped lower. There have even been reports of snow occasionally at the higher areas.


Best Time to Visit Hong Kong

My friends in Hong Kong tell me that the best time to travel to Hong Kong is between October to March. And I found this to be true.

The weather from October to December is cool and pleasant. It gets colder from January. By end of March to April, it is still all right. But it can get quite cold and foggy.

From May to September, the weather is hot and humid. At times, quite uncomfortable. There is also heavy storms and typhoons around this period. Do check weather forecast if you really have to travel during this period.


What to See in Hong Kong?

There is so much to see and do in Hong Kong. There are historical sites, temples, museums, serene and lush gardens, fun theme parks, and many more.

You can ride the century-old tram up to Victoria Peak, the highest peak on Hong Kong Island, and enjoy majestic views of Hong Kong. Or take the cable car or bus up the mountains of Lantau Island, and see the ancient Po Lin Temple, and the famous huge Tian Tan Buddha.

What To See In Hong Kong - Big Buddha, also known as Tian Tan Buddha at Lantau Island. Click Image to Learn More
What To See In Hong Kong – Big Buddha, also known as Tian Tan Buddha at Lantau Island. Click Image to Learn More

Within the same area, there is also the Wisdom Path. It is really tranquil, and the view of the sea is awesome!

What To See In Hong Kong - Wisdom Path. Click Image to Learn More
What To See In Hong Kong – Wisdom Path. Click Image to Learn More

Along the coast at Victoria Harbor, be dazzled by the Symphony of Lights that perform every night. During the day or night, you can feast your eyes on the one of the most beautiful skylines there.

Here is a hidden gem in Kowloon area – the Avenue of Comic Stars. Tap into your inner child and be delighted by all the famous Asian Comic Stars in full size sculptures!

Avenue of Comic Stars in Kowloon, Hong Kong. Click Image to See More Comic Stars!
Avenue of Comic Stars in Kowloon, Hong Kong. Click Image to See More Comic Stars!

If you are interested in history and temples, here is one you must not miss! The Sik Sik Yuen Wong Tai Sin Temple is popular, and hundreds of thousands of tourists and devotees visit this site every year. It is said that when you make a wish to Wong Tai Sin, your wishes will come true.

What To See In Hong Kong - Sik Sik Yuen Wong Tai Sin Temple - Click on Image to See More about This Awesome Temple

What To See In Hong Kong – Sik Sik Yuen Wong Tai Sin Temple – Click on Image to See More about This Awesome Temple

In addition, there are hundreds of islands where you can explore old fishing villages, and enjoy fresh seafood.

Just to name a few. To see the entire list, please go to the What To See In Hong Kong section.


What to eat in Hong Kong?

Hong Kong is one of the cities in Asia that is a food paradise. There is the popular dim sum, also known as yum cha, where you can enjoy a wide variety of snacks, buns, noodles, cheong fun, glutinous rice with meat wrapped in lotus leaf, and much more.

Yum cha is an experience that you must try when in Hong Kong. The other is breakfast at local cafes where you can taste the local Bo Lo Bun and other local delights.

Besides dim sum, there are other Chinese food that visitors must try; such as Wanton Noodles, Siew Lup (barbecued meat), etc. Here is a hidden gem – Shek Kee Wonton Noodles. Few tourists know about this place, and locals love the food here.

Best Wonton Noodles in Hong Kong - Delicious Wonton with Fish Balls - Click on Image to Read More
Best Wonton Noodles in Hong Kong – Delicious Wonton with Fish Balls – Click on Image to Read More

Of course, it is not all Chinese food. There are places serving Italian, French, Western, Indian, and others from other parts of the world. And there are also fast food chains like MacDonald’s if you feel a need for that.

And if you are vegetarian or prefer vegetarian food once in a while, you must try the culinary delights at Po Lin Monastery Vegetarian Restaurant. It is scrumptious!

Good Food In Hong Kong - Deep Fried Bean Curd Sheets with Lemon Sauce at Po Lin Monastery Vegetarian Restaurant - Click on Image to Read More
Good Food In Hong Kong – Deep Fried Bean Curd Sheets with Lemon Sauce at Po Lin Monastery Vegetarian Restaurant – Click on Image to Read More

The above are just a few I have blogged about. More coming soon and will be added to the Good Food in Hong Kong section. Check it out.


Shopping in Hong Kong

One of the main activities that tourists partake in any visit to Hong Kong is shopping! The malls are numerous, the stores offer plenty, the night markets are overwhelming.

While Hong Kong is slowly losing its reputation as a bargain hunter’s paradise, there are still many places where one can get really great deals. Even high end branded goods at huge discounts.

Also, most people go to Hong Kong for clothing, luggage, jewelry, cameras, electronic goods, and cosmetics. For those who fancy Asian art and antiques, there are still some excellent selections at specialty stores and galleries.

Clothing

The hottest and latest fashion can be found at malls such as IFC, the Landmark in Central, Times Square in Causeway Bay, Pacific Place in Admiralty, and Harbour City in Tsim Sha Tsui.

There are also medium sized malls and shops that showcases mid range brands such as Giordano. If you prefer something a little more unique, check out the hip and trendy independent shops. These feature local designers, and can be found in Sheung Wan, Wan Chai, and Tsim Sha Tsui.

Minimalls in Tsim Sha Tsui are not to be missed. Here, you can find all things young and trendy. There are local designs as well as popular stuff from Korea.

If you do not mind off season items, there are outlets at Horizon Plaza in Ap Lei Chau, with brands like Prada. These are heavily discounted, and worth a visit.

Not to forget, the street and night markets on Temple Street in Yau Ma Tei and Tung Choi Street in Mong Kok. Also, the eastern end of Granville Road in Tsim Sha Tsui and Cheung Sha Wan Road in Sham Shui Po. These are places where you can find garments at really low costs.

Computers & Electronic Goods

There are some places where you can find good bargains for compter and electronic goods. But honestly, we do find there are other cities that have better deals.

If you really need to buy something in Hong Kong, we suggest Wan Chai, and the malls and flea markets in Sham Shui Po.

Cameras

When shopping for cameras, do note to consider only those that have a price tag. Do not buy any camera that does not have one.

That said, you can find great camera stores at Stanley Street in Central, Kimberley Road in Tsim Sha Tsui, Sai Yeung Choi Street, Tung Choi Street, Sim City at Shantung Street in Mong Kok.

Gems & jewellery

Hong Kong is a popular place to buy jade. You can find good quality jade at the Jade Market in Yau Ma Tei. Pearls are also popular finds, both cultured and freshwater.

If you are not experienced in buying gems and jewellery, consider only those that offer you certificates. Also, make sure that the shop will buy it back at a fair market price.

Art

Looking for paintings, sculptures, ceramic works or installations? Or merely browsing?

There are many galleries along Wyndham Street, Hollywood Road in Central, and Sheung Wan.

Annual art events such as Art Basel, the Hong Kong Art Walk, etc are superb opportunities to acquire some art or immerse in the local arts scene.

Antiques

Antique hunting can be quite a challenge in Hong Kong, especially if you are looking for authentic ones. If you are, it is better to visit reputable antique shops along Wyndham Street and Hollywood Road in Central and Sheung Wan, auction houses and large emporiums.

Bargaining

Bargaining is accepted in Hong Kong. But be careful if you are able to bring any price too low. Chances are they will charge you for something else at a higher mark up or the goods may be questionable. A trick that may be used is to sell goods that have no international warranty.

The best way to shop is to check out the prices at a few stores before buying.

Guarantee & warranty

As mentioned above, some imported goods may only have a warranty that is valid only in Hong Kong. If you buy it, and return to your country, the warranty may not be honoured by the brand.

What you can do is to make sure what you purchase has an international warranty. Alternatively, it may be possible to exchange the warranty card with the importer for one that is valid for your country.


How to get to Hong Kong?

There are many options to arrive in Hong Kong, and here they are:

By Airplane

Hong Kong International Airport services more than a hundred airlines that fly to and from cities all over the world. This includes budget airlines, too.

Hong Kong’s national carrier is Cathay Pacific. It is a decent airline with good service.

Best Places to Visit in Asia - Hong Kong's national carrier, Cathay Pacific
Hong Kong’s national carrier, Cathay Pacific

Getting To and From the Airport

This is easy and convenient. Plus the options re not that expensive at all. There are trains, buses, taxis and hotel transports to and from the airport.

If you are not carrying too much luggage, consider the MTR, which is very affordable. It only takes about 25 minutes to reach Hong Kong Island.

Also, there are free shuttle buses from Kowloon and Hong Kong stations to major hotels. Check out How to Get Around Hong Kong (shown below).

By Train

The MTR has regular routes between Hong Kong and Guangdong, Beijing and Shanghai. Arrivals and Departures are at the Hung Hom Station. Everyone needs to pass through the Hong Kong Immigration.

By Boat/ Ferry

There are high speed ferries that travel to and from Hong Kong via ports in Mainland China. These also service Kowloon and the Hong Kong International Airport.

There is the Hong Kong – Macau Ferry Terminal, Hong Kong – China Ferry Terminal, and Hong Kong SkyPier.

Visas

Most nationals from most countries do not require a visa to enter Hong Kong if visiting as a tourist. The period of stay can be from 7 to 180 days, depending on which country you are from. Do check with your tour agent or your local China Embassy for further details.

People who travel frequently to Hong Kong for business purposes can get a Hong Kong Special Administrative Region Travel Pass. This helps to make immigration procedures faster and simpler. There are criteria to get this special pass.


How to get around in Hong Kong?

Getting around Hong Kong is easy. There is by MTR, bus, tram, taxi or ferry. All easily paid by using the Octopus Card – more about this card below.

By MTR

Best Places to Visit in Asia - Hong Kong's MTR
Hong Kong’s MTR

The Mass Transit Railway (MTR) system extensively covers all major districts. It is the fastest and most efficient way to get around Hong Kong.

The MTR has eleven lines. See the map below for all of them.

MTR Map, source: MTR, Click Image to See Larger Version
MTR Map, source: MTR, Click Image to See Larger Version

As you can see from the map of the train lines above, you can get from your hotel to almost anywhere in Hong Kong easily.

The MTR also has a light rail system that runs between Yuen Long and Tuen Mu, both in the New Territories. There is also inter-city service to Mainland China.d

By Ferry

From Central or Wan Chai on Hong Kong Island, you can board the Star Ferry to Tsim Sha Tsui in Kowloon. And vice versa. The ride is delightful and offers sweet views of the sea, skies and the harbour.

Best Places to Visit in Asia - Hong Kong's Ferries
Hong Kong’s Ferries

When going to and back from the Outlying Islands, go to the Central Ferry Piers on Hong Kong Island. The ferries there can bring yu to islands like Discovery Bay, Peng Chau, Lamma Island, Cheung Chau, and the popular Lantau Island where you can see the famous Tian Tan Buddha.

Tip: Take the Fast Ferries to save time.

By Car / Taxi

You will never find any lack of taxis in Hong Kong. All journeys are metered. They are also relatively cheap, air-conditioned, and clean.

Hail a taxi along the street, at a taxi stand or at mall or hotel taxi queues.

Taxis are categorized by three colours. The Red Taxis can travel throughout most of Hong Kong, except Tung Chung Road and the entire south side of Lantau Island. Green Taxis service only the New Territories. And the Blue Taxis can only operate on Lantau Island.

Exceptions are Hong Kong International Airport and Hong Kong Island. All taxis can travel to and from these places.

By Bus

Bus route cover almost all of Hong Kong. The buses are comfortable, and many are air-conditioned.

Do try the double-deckers that are popular with locals and tourists. When you sit at the top deck, you can enjoy really cool views of the city.

You can use the Octopus Card to pay for your bus journey. See further details below about the Octopus Card.

By Trams

If you can, schedule some time to take things a little slower, and board the historic trams. These double-decker streetcars have been providing travel since 1904. Grab a seat on the upper deck on these charming vehicles for a chance to explore the city at a slower pace.

Best Places to Visit in Asia - Hong Kong's Trams
Hong Kong’s Trams

The Peak Tram

The view of Hong Kong from The Peak is famous and spectacular! Do visit during the day and night to enjoy the views in different light.

To get there, there is the Peak Tram that chugs along the steep slopes. The journey only takes about seven minutes and offers sights to remember.

Payment by the Octopus Card is accepted. See below.

Octopus Card

The Octopus Card is really a necessity when you visit Hong Kong. It is not only to pay for your travel by MTR, buses or trams. It is also useful for purchases at convenience stores, fast food joints, supermarkets, and many more.

You can get one of these at any MTR station. Best choice is to get the Sold Tourist Octopus Card. It costs HK$39. The On-Loan Octopus card has a refundable deposit of HK$50.



If you have ANY questions about Hong Kong, ANY at all, please submit your questions as comments below. I will be happy to help you out.

Thank you for reading this.

Wishing you and your loved ones safe and happy travels,

Timotheus