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Jul 09 2012

Get out of town – in Hong Kong

Published under Featured,Travel

Get out of town – in Hong Kong

(NC)—It usually comes as a surprise when first-time visitors to Hong Kong discover that the region is far more than a city. In fact, 40 per cent of Hong Kong’s 1,104 square kilometres is preserved as green space, which includes a network of 23 country parks, four major hiking trails and dozens of city parks. And there are deserted islands and beautiful beaches too.

In fact, many of Hong Kong’s top attractions make use of green space or coastal locations. A top attraction is the massive Ngong Ping 360 cable car that lifts its passengers over Lantau Island, with breathtaking views of the surrounding ocean and other islands. Many of the cable cars offer “Crystal Cabins” with glass floors so that riders can appreciate the forests, wildlife and hikers beneath them. There’s a village at the top of the ride with restaurants and attractions, or you can enjoy a vegetarian meal in the peace of the nearby Po Lin Monastery after you’ve climbed the many steps to marvel at the Giant Buddha.

Another favourite island is Lamma, easily reached by regular ferries from downtown Hong Kong. A path with spectacular views surrounds the island and there’s a reward awaiting walkers at Sok Kwu Wan village with its many bay-side seafood restaurants. A lunch here is a highlight of any Hong Kong visit.

As one travels east out of Kowloon, green spaces become more and more evident until the Sai Kung Peninsula is reached. This isthmus of land is dominated by the Hong Kong National Geopark where green hills swoop down to secluded bays, beaches and the massive reservoir that is city’s major source of fresh water.

The coastal road that runs around Hong Kong Island and the route that cuts through the mountainous centre are two of the world’s most spectacular drives. Both can be achieved atop a double-decker bus, which makes the rides even more thrilling. Alighting at Stanley, passengers will find a beach-fringed bay, lots of open-air restaurants and famous Stanley Market for souvenirs, art and clothes.

But one doesn’t have to leave the city to find green places. Both Hong Kong and Kowloon contain many beautiful parks and botanical gardens, as well as two renowned courses for a favourite city sport, horse racing.

Come to the city or beyond for a never-ending list of things to enjoy.

More information is available online at


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