Saturday, March 30, 2013

Back to Big Buddha

Another must see in Hong Kong is a trip to Big Buddha and Tai O fishing village.  The cable car ride up into the mountains is beautiful and in January it is also quite chilly.

The first glimpse of Big Buddha always amazes you. Despite the word "Big" being part of its name, it is difficult to comprehend the size of this statue.

We opted to do Tai O first and so we headed down the mountain on a bus to this fishing village that has not changed much over the years. First on the agenda is a boat ride through the village and out into the sea in search of the pink dolphins. It was a fun ride but for the first time I did not get to see any of these unusual dolphins.

We walked the village for a while after our ride. The main item of trade is dried fish products. You can find almost anything including complete skins of sharks for sale.

Paula found some fresh water pearls and the old man selling them was only happy to help the girls try them on.

We treated ourselves to eggy waffles from a famous waffle man. He has been written up in the papers and magazines. The waffles are cooked over a charcoal fire and served steaming hot. We had the first waffle of the day. It was yummy.

After our time in Tai O we returned to Big Buddha and climbed the 250+ steps to the temple. The statues surrounding the temple are also worth the climb.

A visit to the monastery ended our day on a beautiful note.

And as we watched the sun set on our ride down the mountain, we were wishing Buddha had provided blankets for the trip.

Once More at Ocean Park

 In case you haven't guessed, one of my most favorite places in Hong Kong (and Shayne's as well) is Ocean Park. How could we have a visitor without spending a day among the wildlife and marine life and oh those wild rides.

Our first stop was the Grand Aquarium and Shayne got up close and personal with a few of the residents.

We also saw many of our favorite friends there.

After the aquarium we stopped by to see the blue faced monkey and the pandas both black & white and red.

We made our usual stop at the goldfish exhibit.

Before heading up to the top of the mountain we strolled through Old Hong Kong and Shayne treated Paula and I to a rickshaw ride (not).

My oldest has always been a daredevil and if you look close, you can see her having a great time on one of the wilder rides in the park. It's a great coaster called Hair Raiser and it definitely lives up to its name. I have ridden it several times but this day I was photographer instead.

We had lunch at Tuxedos where you dine with the penguins. The food and the entertainment are both excellent.

After lunch there was another quick coaster ride complete with waves to the photographer.

The new Polar exhibits are terrific. Shayne and Paula liked the giant polar bear a lot.

The seals and the walrus are very playful and fun to watch.

Another spin on a wild ride for Shayne only this time. Paula and I cheered her on.

We left the Polar area and headed to the rain forrest.

We saw parrots and snakes and the Hercules beetle which is the strongest animal in the world. It can lift 850 times its body weight which is the equivalent of a 70 KG. human lifting 7 double decker busses. Yipes!

Shayne's favorite place in the park is the Sea Jelly exhibit. We must always make time to visit these beautiful creatures. I completely agree with her. They are lovely and mesmerizing. It is very relaxing to wander among them.

Anew exhibit will be opening soon called Sharks Alive. I think it might be a bit scary.

And what kind of a day at the park would it be without enjoying a bit of childhood nostalgia.

As our day was coming to an end, we walked along the edge of the park and enjoyed the most beautiful of sunsets on the South China Sea.