Lantau Island, Hong Kong
A great daytrip out of Hong Kong is to visit Lantau Island. One of the popular things to see on the Island is the worlds biggest outdoor seated buddha, and also very close to that is the Po Lin Monastery, which is just absolutely spectacular.
Go inside the main building and see the amazing details, and the beautiful buddhas.
Even the outside of the building is fantastic and very detailed.
If you want to feel a world away for a day, a delightful escape from the city is Lantau Island. It is here that the world's largest outdoor seated buddha calls home. What a sight! There is also an active monastery located here as well. Such a gorgeous environment.
To reach Po Lin, you take the ferry from the Outlying Islands pier to the port town of Mui Wo and from there, you ride a bus to the monastery.
A nice alternative (and certainly less crowded) is visiting the Tsing Ma bridge visitors point. You can see the Tsing Ma bridge connecting the New Territories to Lantau Island. There is a tiny visitors center showing information regarding the construction of the bridge.
The little park where the visitors center is located is very well kept. Certainly also worth visiting at night!
this is a beach at Lantau Island, it's not touristy, mainly filled with local people. a hiking trail passes through this beach, and there is a camping ground right attached to this beach. it has a very beautiful view, and there is also a football ground nearby, there are also some restaurants within walking distance.
Natasha took us on a ferry trip to Lantau Island to see the Big Buddha, and I have to say it was impressive.
We'd just come back from Europe, where a 1 hour boat ride on a lake in Switzerland cost us over $40, so it was amazing to get a 1 hour journey for only the equivalent of $A2!
It was a hot and humid day, but Paul and Natasha still managed to climb all the steps to the big Buddha.
Afterward, you could explore the temple there, and have a traditional vegetarian lunch together in a big room, served by monks, if I remember them correctly.
An interesting and nice cultural experience, especially away from all the crowds of the day before.
Discovery Bay is on Lantau Island. and a lot of expats live here. Once you could only get to Discovery Bay by ferry and all your household items had to be taken that way as well. Now with the Tsing Yi Bridge from the mainland to the airport, you can travel both ways.
The Po Lin Monastery on Lantau Island was opened in 1970. It is supposed to be the most magnificent Buddhist Temple in Hong Kong. The main hall has 2 floors with an elaborately decorated roof.
You can actually stay at the temple, accommodation is provided with a vegetarian meal.
From the top of the hill by the Buddha looking down. Its quite a hike to the top where the Buddha is. Lantau Island is just a ferry ride. You then take a bus up a windy road until you reach Po Lin Monastery.
More on Lantau and other islands in my travelogues.
The largest seated outdoor Buddha statue in Southeast Asia is located at the monastery. Constructed of 250 tons of gold-leafed bronze, its platform altar is modelled on the Temple of Heaven in Beijing. The Buddha can be seen for miles out to sea perched on top of the hill.
Lantau Island - Po Lin Monastery is a Buddhist monastery is located on 60 acres under the shadow of 934-metre (3,064-foot) Lantau Peak. Dedicated to the Precious Lotus, it features several richly decorated new buildings.
Tai O is on the northwest coast of Lantau Island reached by the no. 11 bus from Tung Chung MTR. For centuries it thrived on the salt trade and dried fish. Population around 2,000. Tai O is a world away from the high rise buildings of Central and Kowloon.
The Po Lin Monastery on Lantau Island is a 50-minute bus ride through thinly-populated territory from the Tung Chung MTR. It's on the Ngong Ping plateau, surrounded by mountains including Lantau Peak (934 meters). You can also get there by a 2-3 hour hike from Tung Chung. Either way, it feels a world away from bustling Wan Chai or Kowloon.
The quiet character of the area is going to change in 2006 when a 6-km aerial tramway from Tung Chung is scheduled to open. I understand the head of the monastery is not happy about the masses of people who are likely to come.
Here is another picture of Tai O Historic Fishing Village.
Less than 120 years ago, Hong Kong still had less than 50 000 people. ... Population levels only stablized after the British started to govern Hong Kong.
Located on Lantau Island, it is one of last ancient fishing villages left in Hong Kong. This village was built over 400 years ago, and has lasted until now.
From looking at the village, you could see that the fishing people in ancient China did not actually live in ideal conditions. Though now they are mostly used for storing boat equipment, you could easily picture how people back then lived.
This newly developed area is located near the airport, & serves a starting place to visit Lantau Island. From here, buses could take you to almost any part of Lantau Island. The biggest attraction in this neighbourhood is its shopping centre, one of the biggest in Hong Kong & also has one of the most powerful air conditioners! The mall overall is more quiet than the usual, but it is a nice place to shop & avoid the crowds.
My favourite is the dancing fountains, for it is a lot of fun!
Since Lantau Island is still relatively undeveloped, buses in other areas do take longer to arrive. Please be more flexible, for the wait could eat up all your time.