This was my second visit to Hong Kong. I first visited here 6 years ago, and the city hasn't changed much. The first place I went to was the Kangaroo Pub, the source of much amusement on my last trip. However, the pub was no longer there, so I had to look for other pubs. I did not have to look far. We had the fortune of being here over Chinese New Years, so we got to see the fireworks, but it was also quite busy.
The Star Ferries are pretty cheap to ride back and forth. But I preferred the subway, due to speed. The harbour is quite busy during the day with ferries running both was as well as to the other islands and Macau.
Because of Chinese new Year, most shops were closed. Several street markets were open, but were quite busy.
So, this year is the Year of the Pig, but is especially auspicious somehow, so everywhere there were golden pigs. People lined up to go inside this pig (in a mall) to have their photo taken, sort of like we would go see Santa, I guess.
Just a typical city street.
This was a small park in Kowloon. There seemed to be a lot of concrete used in parks, but this was more of a plaza.
So much neon. There were a lot of Karaoke places, all with the same unintelligible (to me) signs.
... and yet another Karaoke place.
There were lots of jewelry stores, all sporting golden pigs.
The best part of it all was the fireworks. I had a great spot in Hong Kong, where it wasn't crowded and we could get right up to the water.
... same same...
Near Fenwick Pier, there was a small amusement park set up.
These little orange trees are everywhere. I was tempted to pick an orange off and eat it, but chickened out after a debate with my friends on how the oranges might taste.
The highlight was a trip to Lantau Island to visit the big Buddha and Po Lin Monastery. I'm sure there are many ways to get up there, but the easiest (I thought) was to take this tram up the mountain.
Of course, it was Chinese New Year, so we ended up waiting two hours just to get on the tram. There are trails all the way up the mountain, so I guess you could hike it (maybe).
At the top of the tram, there is a little shopping village, including a Starbucks and a 7-11.
The man attraction...
Same... notice the swastika on the chest.
There were several of these statues around the big Buddha. People were trying to throw money in their hands. Notice the "Do not throw coins" sign at the base of the statue.
... same, same.
At the monastery , people were lighting incense to call the spirits. There were notable differences between how people worshipped here versus how it is done in Thailand. The biggest was that no one removed their shoes at shrines and temples.
It made my eyes sting (smoke).
The main temple...
... and the inside.
... one more Buddha.