Hong Kong no Phooey TR (Apr 2012)! The Yee's have it....TR finish #1101, 07/09

Discussion in 'Hong Kong Disneyland' started by PrincessInOz, Oct 26, 2011.

  1. PrincessInOz

    PrincessInOz Thanks for my avatar, Mary Jo!

    Joined:
    Feb 8, 2010
    Messages:
    97,460
    Woo Hoo indeed! :cool1:


    The night lights were fantastic. ::yes::


    I like shopping when I have things to buy. Good thing I needed to get shoes; otherwise I'm not sure how I would have coped with that much consumer goods sensory overload.

    The bargains were to be found more in the markets than in the departmental shops. There were some sales on with the shoes and I ended up getting a Geox walking shoe for a decent price cf Australia. But I suspect it would have been cheaper again in the US, particularly at the outlets.


    There are a couple more malls in Causeway Bay that I didn't check out. Fashion Walk/Fashion Island is right behind the Park Lane and is meant to have high end labels.

    Enjoy!
     
  2. Avatar

    Google AdSense Guest Advertisement


    to hide this advert.
  3. PrincessInOz

    PrincessInOz Thanks for my avatar, Mary Jo!

    Joined:
    Feb 8, 2010
    Messages:
    97,460
    The Yee’s Have It – Lantau Island again



    Day 6 of this vacation, Good Friday, and we were heading back to Lantau Island – again.



    After spending the first 3 days of this vacation on Lantau Island, you would think that we had no need to head back there again! For anyone staying at Disney – there is definitely more to Lantau than the Resort and the Airport. Last night on the bus ride home, I’d found out that Mrs Angel and our TA friend were very keen to head out to visit the Tian Tan Giant Buddha at Ngong Ping. Mr Angel opted to stay back at the hotel when he realised that we planned to set out early.

    We’d arranged to start at 7.30 am as I figured it would take us some time to make the trek out back to Lantau. I was pleasantly surprised to find that Mrs Angel, my parents and our TA friend all made it down by this nominated time.


    From the Hung Hom MTR station, we caught the Tuen Mun line out to Nam Cheong (pink line). We interchanged to the line heading in the Tung Chung direction (yellow line). Our destination was the Tung Chung station. Our travel time was about 40 minutes.

    For anyone at HKDR, catch the train to Sunny Bay and interchange to the line heading in the Tung Chung direction (yellow line). It should take you about 15 minutes (or less) to get to Tung Chung.



    When we got to Tung Chung, we took the Ngong Ping 360 exit to get out. I swiped this one from DH's set.

    [​IMG]



    You can catch a taxi, a bus or the cable car to get to the top of Ngong Ping. I had been dismayed to find out that the cable car service had been closed for maintenance for about 2 months in February. The scheduled opening date had been ‘early April’ but I hadn’t counted on that being a firm date. Over dinner last night, S told us that she had seen that the cable car had reopened the day before. It had made TV news as on reopening day, there had been a technical hitch and some passengers had been stuck on-route for over 2 hours. Despite that glitch, it seemed like the cable car was back up and running….hence why we had decided on heading out this way today.

    The cable car station is maybe 250 m away from the train station. You walk across the concourse and up some escalators to the ticketing booth. The last time my parents and our TA friend had come this way, they had to queue for 30 minutes just to buy a ticket. Because we had started out early, there was hardly anyone else in line. You may want to check opening times for the service before you go. We were heading out on a public holiday and knew that services would start at 9 am. I believe they might start running at 10 am on a standard day.

    [​IMG]



    For anyone wanting to head out this way…before you go, you might want to consider on what type of experience you might want to have at the top.

    There are a number of bundle ticket/offers that are available at the ticket booth. Some include the two ‘shows’ available at the Ngong Ping village; others include tours out to Tai O fishing village. All bundles are available on the standard cable car cabins or with crystal cabins.

    The other thing with the ticketing is that until the end of 2012, if you have already purchased a ticket for Madame Tussauds, The Peak Tram, Ocean Park, the Hong Kong Wetland Park or the Ngong Ping Cable car, show that ticket and you will be entitled for 10% discount on any of the other 4.


    It had been a drizzly morning so we ruled out tours heading to Tai O fishing village. I was not keen on a repeat of the day before and none of the others were really interested to see the fishing village.

    We settled on the Journey of Enlightenment package. It cost us HK$290 per adult, about $35 in our money. I can’t remember exactly but I think this package included return trips on the crystal cabin. If it didn’t, we must have upgraded our tickets.

    [​IMG]



    We got in and headed out!

    [​IMG]



    Crystal cabin? Take a look at the floor….glass bottom!

    [​IMG]



    I started to take a look out and noted that there was a lot of drizzle!

    [​IMG]



    I guess it’s all about perception and decided that a few grey clouds couldn’t stop me from focussing on where we needed to head to. The cable car journey takes about 20 minutes to get to the top. It heads towards one mountain and spins around it, heading towards the second mountain where the Ngong Ping village is.

    [​IMG]



    Before you cross the first mountain, you’ll get a view of the Airport.

    [​IMG]



    And if you take a look back, you’ll see Tung Chung.

    [​IMG]



    The crystal cabin floor provided fantastic views straight down. For me, I thought it was worth the extra money.

    [​IMG]



    Before we even got to the peak of the first mountain, you can get a sense of what an engineering feat this must have been to actually lay the cable. It sure is a long line!

    [​IMG]



    For anyone wanting to, you can actually hike up. I don’t know if the path goes all the way to the top but it did follow the cable car route for most of the way.

    [​IMG]



    Some rather pretty countryside below, which we could enjoy courtesy of the glass bottom!

    [​IMG]



    Our day did not look very promising after we passed over the first mountain peak. This is the view we had for most of the way up to the second mountain.

    [​IMG]



    Take a look at the cable wire behind me. Visibility was not good at this stage.

    [​IMG]



    I was beginning to think that we would not be able to see the Big Buddha even if we walked right into it!





    (Continued in Next Post)
     
  4. PrincessInOz

    PrincessInOz Thanks for my avatar, Mary Jo!

    Joined:
    Feb 8, 2010
    Messages:
    97,460
    (Continued from Previous Post)


    Ngong Ping Village



    Somewhere very close to the top of the second mountain, we were all relieved to find we could see again. The cloud layer was not so thick up here!

    The cable car terminates at the Ngong Ping Village station.

    [​IMG]



    Entry out is via the gift shop (where else?).

    [​IMG]



    And immediately to the right will be the Ngong Ping village. There were signs of dampness; but not a lot of rain was falling at this time.

    [​IMG]



    There is a tea house right at the entrance. I had hoped to visit and experience a tea ceremony but never got to. Maybe next time.

    [​IMG]



    It was still relatively early in the morning and there was hardly anyone else around. The shops were opened and it was nice to have the village to ourselves. There are quite a number of eateries and shops here. On our way back, we were to enjoy browsing the Chopsticks Gallery, Wooden House, Stone Culture, Vintage and the souvenir shops. I now wish that I had purchased some chopsticks up here even though they were rather pricey. I had thought to get some in the city but because of the way things worked out, I didn’t get a lot of shopping time at the end.

    [​IMG]



    Whilst we were taking our snaps, DH and I were most amused by this monk walking by.

    [​IMG]



    And then I looked up!

    [​IMG]



    Okay, well spotted! There is a Seattle Coffee branch up the top of the Village….but the clouds had also cleared. We could see the Big Buddha!


    Further down the trail, you’ll come across the entrance to the village if you were catching a bus up. It’s the entry to the right; directly opposite that tree!

    [​IMG]



    The tree?

    [​IMG]



    It’s not real; rather it is a tree that represents a wishing shrine with blessings.

    [​IMG]



    [​IMG]



    You can buy one of these plaques from a shop in the village, write a wish on it and hang it here, under the tree.

    [​IMG]



    We weren’t the only one checking out the tree!

    [​IMG]



    We kept walking towards our destination.

    [​IMG]



    At the other end of the village, you’ll find the demarcation gate marking the end of the village boundary.

    [​IMG]



    We were about to get up close and personal with that Buddha.





    princess::upsidedow
     
  5. kmedina

    kmedina Loves all things Disney

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2011
    Messages:
    4,794
    Those cable cars are cool. I am glad they opened in time for you to see them (and am hoping you do not get stuck for 2 hours). The bottoms are neat. What amazing things you saw on that!
     
  6. zanzibar138

    zanzibar138 DIS Veteran

    Joined:
    Jun 30, 2007
    Messages:
    3,743
    The cable car looks awesome! Pretty disappointed it was closed for maintenance while we were there - the day we were going to go was beautifully clear and sunny too! Nevermind, we'll just have to make sure we go again one day :goodvibes
     
  7. ACDSNY

    ACDSNY I love my job! I love my job! I love my job!

    Joined:
    Jun 14, 2005
    Messages:
    10,670
    I'd have to work up some courage to go on the cable cars, they really look steep.:scared1:

    Another nice set of pics for us to enjoy.:thumbsup2
     
  8. Aussie Wendy

    Aussie Wendy DIS Veteran

    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2008
    Messages:
    1,516
    Knowing very little at this stage about Hong Kong but rapidly being remedied by Princess in Oz it seems like its all peaks everywhere? That's three now. Hmm seems we need to set aside a peak a day?
     
  9. Princess_Melanie

    Princess_Melanie Princess in Training

    Joined:
    Apr 2, 2007
    Messages:
    435
    We're really looking forward to seeing the buddah - just showed DBF the pictures of the Crystal Cabin and said "Isn't that cool?!!" He just informed me he has a fear of heights?!!!!!! But he thinks he'll be ok....I guess there's always the bus option (for him that is ;) that cable car ride looks too cool lol!!)
     
  10. dgbg100106

    dgbg100106 Missing the Tag Fiary

    Joined:
    Mar 24, 2008
    Messages:
    49,239
    DH would not have made the cable ride, for some reason he does not do so well in heights where he cant see, but I would be right there with you.

    Everything looks great.
     
  11. ehsmum

    ehsmum Mouseketeer

    Joined:
    Aug 23, 2009
    Messages:
    477
    We went for the crystal cabin thanks to queenie's advice on here and it was the best move. It really wasn't that much more expensive and we walked right on, while the wait for a standard cabin was 90 minutes!

    We had the opposite weather - clear on the way up but too foggy to see Buddha once we were there!
     
  12. franandaj

    franandaj I'm so happy, I could BOUNCE!

    Joined:
    Nov 15, 2009
    Messages:
    24,160
    Nice updates. I can't believe how many cable car thingys there are there. I had no idea that Hong Kong had so many peaks! I loved the picture of the Monk, I thought the bush around his head was sort of a funny looking wig! :lmao:

    Looking forward to the Big Buddha!
     
  13. PrincessInOz

    PrincessInOz Thanks for my avatar, Mary Jo!

    Joined:
    Feb 8, 2010
    Messages:
    97,460
    The service was working perfectly whilst we were there. We didn't get stuck at all.


    I wasn't sure that the cable car was going to be back up and running for us. So, we had planned to check in the second week. I was just so happy that we had dinner with S and she could confirm that it was opened again.


    I'm sure that you'd be fine. It doesn't look that steep when you get into it at the Tung Chung terminal.

    I really had so much time on this trip that I could take a peak a day at a very leisurely pace. I think that ehsmum managed to do it all in 4 days. Just depends on how much time you have WHEN you decide to go.


    He could always go in the standard cable car with a normal floor. There are about 3 or 4 of those standard cable cars to every one of the crystal cars.



    I was pleasantly surprised at how great it really was. Sometimes, reality doesn't live up to the marketing and tourist hype.



    90 minutes???? :faint: Makes me really glad that we set out as early as we did then.

    I think the last time my parents went with our TA friend, it took them about that time. And then they said that when they got to the top there were heaps of people climbing up the stairs; so they just stayed at the bottom.


    I had to go back and look at the monk picture. :lmao:
    It's not easy being green!
     
  14. PrincessInOz

    PrincessInOz Thanks for my avatar, Mary Jo!

    Joined:
    Feb 8, 2010
    Messages:
    97,460
    Walking Beneath the Foot of the Giant Buddha



    We walked out of the gate marking the entry/exit for the Ngong Ping Village and headed across to the gate marking the entry/exit for the Giant Buddha.

    [​IMG]



    In between the two gates is a little patch of ‘no man’s land’…so to speak. Never let it be said that the Chinese are not an enterprising mob…..take a look.

    [​IMG]



    I didn’t even stop to browse.

    [​IMG]



    The walk past the gates is lined with these not-Terracotta-warrior statues.

    [​IMG]



    These are the 12 Divine Generals that guard the statue, each one representing a different Chinese Zodiac animal and each one carrying a different weapon.

    [​IMG]



    There were also a whole pack or 5 of dogs! I don’t know why they were there and this was definitely a case of letting the sleeping dog lie.

    [​IMG]



    The steps up to the Giant Buddha are on the right hand side. We were just beneath his feet!

    [​IMG]



    I got DH to take a picture of me on…er…his camera.

    [​IMG]



    There are a few steps…240 or so of them.

    [​IMG]



    Entry to the steps is to the right of the picture. You will find a ticket booth located here. You can walk up and around the base of the Giant Buddha free of charge. However, there is an option to go inside the Giant Buddha, which will cost money.


    As with everything, there are options for this….and it involves food. The first option for entry comes with a snack and a drink and costs about HK$25 per person, which amounts to $4 in our money. The second option for entry comes with lunch and costs around HK$75 per person, about $10 in our money. Mrs Angel and the 3 of us decided to take the chance with the snack option.



    So, let’s start the climb!

    [​IMG]



    I swiped this from DH’s camera. There were a couple of beautiful artefacts placed along the way. I don’t know how old this bronze urn was; it might have been faux old as the Giant Buddha was only opened in 1993, I couldn’t really say for sure.

    [​IMG]



    This was the other artefact that kinda marked the 2/3 way up with one final stretch of steps to go.

    [​IMG]





    (Continued in Next Post)
     
  15. PrincessInOz

    PrincessInOz Thanks for my avatar, Mary Jo!

    Joined:
    Feb 8, 2010
    Messages:
    97,460
    (Continued from Previous Post)


    Up Close with the Tian Tan Giant Buddha



    At the top of the steps, we were to come close to the Tian Tan Giant Buddha.

    [​IMG]



    The Giant Buddha sits at 34 meters or 112 feet tall and is constructed from bronze. I noticed that there was a road that came all the way up to the base level here, removing the need to climb the steps. I guess it caters for anyone who has a disability and cannot climb up. However, as there are 3 different levels around the base of Giant Buddha, I'm not sure if anyone with a disability would be able to do more than just go round the bottom level.

    [​IMG]



    There are most steps up to the base of the lotus, where the Buddha sits on. We did the circle round first.

    [​IMG]



    I gather that the Giant Buddha was made from over 200 pieces of bronze. It was all intricately put together.

    [​IMG]



    You’ve already seen that he has one hand up and the other is placed on his lap….

    [​IMG]



    …with the palm up.

    [​IMG]



    I swiped some of the close up shots from DH. It was starting to spit a little at this stage and I was reluctant to change camera lenses to the telezoom.

    [​IMG]



    The Swastiki symbol is one of the oldest symbols known to man. I’ve always been fascinated with the fact that the Swastiki as depicted on Buddha’s chest is meant to be a symbol for good luck, peace, prosperity and fertility. It is also a symbol that has appeared in many civilizations including the Mayan, Mesopotamia, Navajo, Hopi and ancient India. However, the true meaning seems to have been mostly lost after the second world war, when the Inverted Swatiki was used by the Nazi’s as a symbol of the Third Reich and all the hate and racial prejudice that they engendered. It continues to be used by the Buddhists in the original meaning.

    [​IMG]



    On his hand is a chariot wheel with 8 spokes…the Dharma Chakra, the Wheel of Life…representing Buddha’s teaching to the path of enlightenment.

    [​IMG]



    As you climb up, you’ll find the six Boddhisatva deities, or the Offering of the Six Devas with flowers, incense, lamp, ointment, fruit and music respectively to the Giant Buddha, symbolizing charity, morality, patience, zeal, meditation and wisdom, which are all necessary to enter into nirvana according to Buddhism theory.

    [​IMG]



    These Devas are made from stone.

    [​IMG]



    [​IMG]



    We climbed up to the top level. I expect that the views would be reasonable from here. We mostly had the grey cloud so I couldn't rightly say; but the view back to the village was good.

    [​IMG]



    Around the lotus base are a number of doorways. I never worked out which hall this door took you into. It was closed for us.

    [​IMG]



    But this was our entry inside the Giant Buddha.

    [​IMG]



    Sadly for us, it was strictly no photography. Inside were a number of halls and exhibits. I remember an area where there were shrines and the remains of the departed and could understand why the no photography rule was in place here.

    We also entered an area where there was a circular stairway going down. There was a huge bell at the top and it rang whilst we were heading down. The sound wasn’t loud but I hadn’t expected the bell to ring at that particular moment. At the bottom of the stairway was a most impressive carved wooden statue. We then entered a hall that seemed to circled right round that contained artwork, calligraphy and artefacts. There was a lot of Chinese writing and signs; and as I don’t read Chinese, I can’t provide much more insight than what you can find on the internet, which is that these were depicting Buddhism. I also gather that there is a relic of Buddha himself. I can’t remember if we saw that or not.


    When we exited from inside, it was spitting a little and so we made our way down to the bottom.

    [​IMG]



    (Continued in Next Post)
     
  16. PrincessInOz

    PrincessInOz Thanks for my avatar, Mary Jo!

    Joined:
    Feb 8, 2010
    Messages:
    97,460
    (Continued from Previous Post)


    I’m not getting any Wisdom: The Left side of the Path was a minor Mis-step for me



    Remember how I said that the Buddha was located on the right? We headed towards the left side…

    [​IMG]



    The Piazza was nice…

    [​IMG]



    …and it did provide a nice view back to the Giant Buddha.

    [​IMG]



    But I’d made a tactical mis-step in heading for the Piazza. I’d forgotten that I was meant to look for the Wisdom Trail which was up the road some more.
    So, I missed out on the Getting of the Wisdom Trail….guess I’ll have to do without the extra wisdom for now. And for anyone reading this and heading up to the Giant Buddha, if you make it to the Wisdom Trail, I’d really appreciate if you took some shots for me and post them!


    Because, when I turned round, I got distracted by this gate.

    [​IMG]



    And we were all pulled in!





    princess::upsidedow
     
  17. Aussie Wendy

    Aussie Wendy DIS Veteran

    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2008
    Messages:
    1,516
    Looks awesome-and thanks for the history/religious lesson-its nice to know what you are looking at! You area already so wise-you obviously didn't need any more! Makes the Nara Buddha look tiny at just under 15m. I am waiting to see where the gate leads to.

    My DD saw a huge Buddha on a mountain as she was flying in to Kyoto-she is still trying to work out where it might have been.
     
  18. ehsmum

    ehsmum Mouseketeer

    Joined:
    Aug 23, 2009
    Messages:
    477
    Yep, 4 days in HK proper and 2 at HKDL. I would have loved to have longer and explored a little more but we got to do all the highlights and everything on our "must do" list in 4 days :).

    The 90 minute wait was only for the standard cabin, the crystal cabin was walk on. I didn't understand why so many people were waiting for the standard cabin when the price wasn't that much cheaper :confused3

    I love your pics of the Buddha! We couldn't see any of that detail because of the fog. This is what we saw

    [​IMG]

    And this was our view of the village below

    [​IMG]


    :lmao:
     
  19. dgbg100106

    dgbg100106 Missing the Tag Fiary

    Joined:
    Mar 24, 2008
    Messages:
    49,239
    Love, Love , Love the pictures and write up of the Buddha!
     
  20. usnuzuloose

    usnuzuloose DIS Veteran

    Joined:
    Sep 20, 2009
    Messages:
    153,123
    Phew, all caught up. The dinner looked really good. All that shopping, I would have really felt over load. I cant remember, but inside those shopping centers do they have food courts? I am shocked that you didnt take pics inside the store of the shoes....:lmao:

    I love the animal shows. I loved swimming with the dolphins. The ones with bottle necks noses , they are really strong. That was some rain pellting. I guess they do not have drainage for the standing water. Now I see why you said your shoes got soaked. No pic of you wringing out your shoes?:rotfl:

    I couldnt get on that cable car. That is some trek if you choose to walk it. That buddah ( sp? ) is huge! Dont you hate that , you get some where and you cant take pictures.

    You were such a trooper going through all that and still going. My kind of weather, I love the rain. Hopefully I can stay caught up.:coffee:
     
  21. Princess_Melanie

    Princess_Melanie Princess in Training

    Joined:
    Apr 2, 2007
    Messages:
    435
    I am in total awe of your buddah pictures!! I'm really looking forward to going here :) Do you think it would be better to go on a week day or a weekend? We arrive on a Saturday at tea time and want to avoid doing Disney on a weekend - seeing as we're already on Lantau - we might do this (Tian Tan Buddah) on the Sunday?
     

Share This Page