Highlights of Hong Kong

This article is a snippet from ‘Hong Kong: The Marvellous Megalopolis!’

Not many cities in the world project the symbiosis of exquisite disparities. Hong Kong, however, is a city where dreams, differences and deftness are conflated. It is a perfect congregation of the Eastern and Western cultures, a place which is equally known for its natural beauty as much as for its towering skyline, a city known for its classical, yet contemporary culture! Even with all the infrastructural notoriety, Hong Kong hasn’t atoned its soul. Till date, it remains one of the most distinctively creative hubs around the world, a showcase of diversity – an esplanade decorated by artists, chefs, entrepreneurs and designers alike; a city known for off-beat hikes and some assorted old-school experiences! 

Tsim Sha Tsui

Cutting through the centre of this ginormous city is the Victoria Harbour. Criss-crossed with busy commuter boats and ferries, wooden catamarans, and gargantuan super-ships, it embellishes Hong Kong’s trademark of an embedded seafaring heritage. West of the harbour is the South China Sea, shimmering into the horizon past distant outlying islands – the remnants of Hong Kong’s previous incarnation as a quiet, seaside fishing village about half a century ago.

Victoria Harbour, Tsim Sha Tsui. © Cobblestone Chronicles

Victoria Peak

If you line up the places to visit in Hong Kong by popularity, the second place on the list has to be Victoria Peak. The revered Peak Tram is a unique way to experience the bounty of Hong Kong’s wonders; and I can pretty much guarantee not many people would have experienced riding in a tram inclined almost forty-five degree uphill! The tram covers a distance of roughly 1.5 kilometre from the the base (popularly known as the Central district, on the Garden Road) to the Peak, gaining an elevation of about 400 metre. This tram began service in 1888 and remains to this day, Hong Kong’s most impressive attraction of engineering!  

View of the city from Victoria Peak. © Cobblestone Chronicles

HK Disneyland

this place neither needs any exposition nor any characterisation – if you visit Hong Kong, Disneyland has to be on your list! Usually, it is a dilemma for people to choose between the Ocean Park and Disneyland, and rightly so. While Ocean Park is the largest theme park by area in Hong Kong, I must say, nothing really beats the vivid and lively diabolism brought about by the Disneyland! Now, I will be quick about Hong Kong Disneyland, a lot has been said and shown about this stunning ‘other worldly’ place, and though pretty cliche, you would certainly miss out the child-like excitement Disneyland has in the air if you don’t include it in your itinerary! The Hong Kong Disneyland is located on Lantau Island. It is recommended to book the tickets online in advance. 

The Mystic Manor, Disneyland. © Cobblestone Chronicles

Dragon’s Back Trail

The Dragon’s Back Trail is the most popular hike in Hong Kong – it is easy to access, easy to complete, surreally scenic, and ends on a sublime beach! It is also a great way to see the other side of Hong Kong, to highlight the contrasts that Hong Kong so well presents – the side with no skyscrapers, the side flourishing with trees, sandy beaches, and the blue chaste seas! The Dragon’s Back Hike is located on Hong Kong Island, which means that it’s easy to get to, and is well connected. Take the Island Line metro to Shau Kei Wan Station, look for Bus No. 9 at the Shau Kei Wan Bus Terminus, and wait for your stop ‘To Tei Wan, Dragon’s Back’. One you get off at To Tei Wan, follow the path leading up the hill to the Dragon’s Back Hike.

View from the Shek-O Peak – Dragon’s Back Trail. © Cobblestone Chronicles

Hong Kong, often referred to as the ‘Oriental Pearl’, has been largely influenced by history, its geographical location, and the blending of Western and Eastern cultures. Life for locals here is indeed very fast paced – they walk fast, eat fast, speak fast, and live fast. The usual norm is that ‘time is money’ and ‘efficiency is the key to success’, however, in the spare time, they also pay great attention to relaxation and living in the moment, for a quick lark in the nature is just hours away! Hong Kong is a city where you can rehabilitate, resuscitate and rejuvenate! It is a city where man-made architectural excellence resides in harmony with the traditional luxuriance, cultural affluence and natural effulgence.

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