When your family is from Hong Kong trips there typically involve a lot of visiting relatives, drinking tea, and eating out. You don’t usually get to act like a tourist in the city but on my last trip to Hong Kong I managed to sneak away for an afternoon to check out Victoria peak and shoot some photos.
Victoria Peak is famous for its views of Hong Kong Harbour. It has been popular with visitors since the mid-1800’s and officially became a tourist destination with the construction of the Peak Tram in 1888. As a child I remember my Dad taking me on a bus tour up to Victoria peak but they turned around half way up the hill due to low cloud cover. Heading up to the peak by tram is fairly easy as it leaves right from Hong Kong’s Central district.
Once you arrive at the tram you’ll typically have to wait in a fairly long line to get tickets. As with most places in Hong Kong, you can use your Octopus Card to pay for your ticket just as you would for the MTS subway system. For an extra HK$25 [www.thepeak.com.hk] you can get access to a city viewing platform at the top of the Peak Tower. The waiting area for the tram has many historical artifacts that tell the story of the tram. The tram ride itself lasts about 5 minutes with a elevation gain of 368 meters [Wikipedia].
Having decided against paying extra for the viewing platform, I managed to find a couple of free places where you could get some nice shots of the city and harbour. It was a fairly hazy day so I didn’t get a lot of great shots, although I do like the one at the top of this page with the lion. I also got this shot of a unique warning sign. The stick man looks genuinely freaked out so I made sure to mind the step!
There is a nice walking trail leaving from the peak tower where I got some other neat shots including this one where people had carved messages into some bamboo.
While waiting for the trip back I got to peek into the peak tram control room.
I was lucky enough to grab a standing room spot right at the front of the tram for the ride down. At some points the tram runs up/down a 27 degree gradient, although it looks and feels more like 45!
This post was submitted to Travel Photo Thursday by Budget Traveler’s Sandbox, a weekly collection of travel photos from bloggers around the world. It may be Wednesday in Vancouver but it’s Thursday where TPThursday is hosted. Be sure to check it out for more cool travel photos!
I had no idea a place like this existed in Hong Kong. Sounds like a great excursion. I love the photo of the carvings in the bamboo.
The best thing about Hong Kong is that it is full of surprises! You really never know what you will find around the corner or at the end of a bus route.
That “Mind the step” sign is pretty graphic 🙂
Great shots! I was in Hong Kong in 1997—unfortunately before I had a digital camera. I guess I’ll need to go back! 😉
Before you go make sure to check out my HK Foodie 5 posts so you know where to eat!
I love the bottom photo – it gives you a real sense of just how steep the track is. I hear there’s excellent hiking in Hong Kong too though so far I’ve only managed the airport.
There airport is quite nice too! There are a lot of outdoor activities very close to the city and I’ve never done any of that either! Next time….
I too, like the top image with the lion and the “mind the step” graphic – which made me laugh. That guy is scared!
I really like the shot from the front of the tram. It seems as though you are falling off a cliff.
I love Hong Kong — so busy and vibrant! And so many great sites too!
Interesting article 🙂
Your post came at a good time – I am reading everything I can on Hong Kong. We will be there in July/August. And really looking forward to it. I will make sure that I take notes from your site and visit the places you recommend.
It’s many years since I rode that tram to the top, and I’d certainly like to go back and do it again. That last shot of the slope down is most impressive!
The first and second are my favourite. The lion picture captures a very specific mood…
Nice post and photos. I enjoy tram rides and this one up to the peak looks like a great one. If I ever get to Hong Kong, I’m definitely taking it!