Hong Kong day 1: Ngong Ping Village

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From TST station, we changed trains at Lai King for the Tung Chung Line. After we got off the train, we walked out the station and crossed the plaza until we found an escalator directing us toward Ngong Ping Village. Ngong Ping Village is free, although there are activities you will need to pay for if you want to take them.

On our way to Ngong Ping

Since we bought our tickets via Klook, we lined up in the exclusive Klook line. We bought the roundtrip cable car after 2:30pm ticket because it was the cheapest. My friend Jenna, who went to Ngong Ping two months ago, advised me not to take the glass-bottom cable car boat because you’ll see the view outside the window anyway, and there’s not much to see beneath you.

A cheaper alternative to the cable car is taking the bus to Ngong Ping, but Aya and I wanted to ride via cable car for the views.

Ngong Ping Village is a recreated village styled in an old Chinese architecture and feel, but the stores are modern. They even have Starbucks and Subway there. They have several paid activities on offer, but you can also just walk up the short path up to the Hong Kong Big Buddha and the Po Lin monastery, which are both free.

Hong Kong Big Buddha
View from the top

I loved the beautiful, intricate and colourful design
Saw some monks as they left the temple on their way back to the monastery.
Long line snaking through the main street of Ngong Ping Village. On the sides are modern cafes and Chinese tea shops in the old Chinese architecture style.

We didn’t have enough time to walk further or check out the other exhibits because the line for the cable car was already very long. It was only 4:45pm, but we only got to ride the cable car at 6pm. I didn’t complain, we weren’t in a hurry, and the view on the way back was very beautiful. The sunset bathed the island in a soft pink light – a color I particularly love.

Ngong Ping Village is high up in the mountains and the air is brisk. We went in January, which is the winter season in Hong Kong. I was very unprepared for the weather, because Google said it’s 17 degrees in HK during our trip. I brought a warm jacket and a thick shawl, but ate Koku insisted I bring ate Apple’s winter gloves, scarf, and hat. I almost didn’t bring them, but it’s a good thing I listened because the weather dropped to 11 degrees (and feels like 9 degrees), and I would have gotten sick from the cold! I was also wearing leggings for the three-day trip, because I used all my jeans in Australia and they were still in the laundry when I left.

Sunset view from the cable car.

While I loved the sunset view, the cable car ride back was much colder because there was no sun, and cold air kept hitting my back from the lower vents. My toes were frozen stiff by the time we got off the cable car – and I was already wearing socks and rubber shoes. Next time I travel to a cold place, I’m going to be much more prepared!

Aya was also feeling the chill, and we both started to crave soup or anything warm. We went back to TST and walked to the K11 Art Mall. We saw a sign for a Japanese restaurant in the basement, and we found Enmaru Izakaya. The ramen was so good and filling. Service was great too. We were sufficiently feeling warm when we left. However, when we went back up, we were still feeling the brisk cold so Aya bought tea while I had hot chocolate from Starbucks.

Aside from the chilly air and confusing train system, our first day in HK was much better than I expected. 🙂

Read my other Hong Kong posts!:

This was the first time I appreciated Hong Kong as more than just a shopping destination.

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