Hi Travel Buddies,
After alighting at the Tung Chung MTR Station, we saw huge crowds and super long queues for the Ngong Ping cable car ride, so we changed our initial plan of taking the cable car ride and took the bus 23 from the bus interchange terminal instead. The bus ride was cheap, we paid HKD27.40 for public holiday rate and you also get some scenic views on the way uphill and it took us less than an hour reach.
We were lured by the beancurd dessert stall when we alight and we paid HKD10 for a bowl. Later we realised that Po Lin Monastery also gave away one complimentary bowl for every paid ticket entry into the podium at Giant Buddha, the Tian Tan Buddha.
It was well worth to climb some 268 steps to take a closer look at the Buddha statue and enjoyed the spectacular mountain scenery. For HKD23 per pax, we can enter into the podium and receive a complimentary vegetarian lunch at The Po Lin Monastery.
You can also buy the vegetarian meal ticket at the ticket office below the Tian Tan Buddha or at the restaurant in The Po Lin Monastery. The restaurant has a good reputation for delicious vegetarian food but we were relieved that we did not buy the meal ticket earlier because it was simply too crowded! We decided to go for the complimentary lunch instead.
After a quick and simple lunch, we followed the hiking trail to the Tea Garden and Wisdom Path, an outdoor replica of the centuries-old Heart Sutra. The sutra is displayed on wooden pillars placed in the form of a figure ∞, a symbol represents immeasurable splendour and infinity.
Next, we walked back to the Ngong Ping Village. The fastest way to go down hill will be to take the 25-minute cable car ride. We opted for the more expensive crystal cabin, the highlight was of course the 360 complete view of the scenic landscape of Lantau and South China Sea offered by the glass-bottomed cabin. The one way trip of HKD 118 (public holiday price) was indeed well spent. There are also other combo packages available, for instance, you can choose to go one way by the standard cabin and return by crystal cabin or vice versa. However, we were happy we chose to go up by bus and return by cable car for different experiences. The long queue never seem to appear shorter than the morning crowd when we returned to the terminal where we started in the morning. 😛
We shopped a little at the Citygate Outlets Mall, just outside the terminal. As this was the second time we went, we focused on the shops that were not opened on the first visit, the first day of Chinese New Year.
Want to find out more about our shopping experience at Citygate Oulets Mall, read our previous post by clicking here. 🙂