Lantau Island and the Big Buddha

Quick blog post today as I’m now back at my hotel and waiting for the airport transfer to arrive.

I mentioned yesterday that I had wanted to visit the Big Buddha at Lantau Island, but with the announcements on the MTR that the cable car was out of action I decided to wait. This morning I walked along to Causeway Bay, my local MTR station, to see if the situation had changed. It hadn’t. Mmm, what to do with my last day…

Well I decided to go anyway, chancing that I might be able to take a taxi instead–or just enjoy whatever else Lantau Island had to offer.

After taking the MTR over to Central, I changed to the Tung Chun line (orange) and watched the stations go past as we headed out to the last stop on the line at Tung Chung. Sunny day today and the train soon broke out into the open to give me some great views over the sea. Arriving in Tung Chung I followed the signs for the cable car and found to my surprise that there was a bus service available. I joined the queue.

After about half an hour I was starting to worry as there was no sign of any buses–and even when a bus did finally arrive the queue didn’t seem to change much. Just as I was wondering whether I should give up and head back, a bus arrived–followed by another two in rapid succession. There’s obviously a joke in there somewhere.

The trip to the monastery took around 30-40 minutes up some interestingly steep gradients.

Stepping off the bus I had my first view of the Buddha. And yes, it was pretty big…

Walking into the monastery I headed towards the steps that lead up to the Buddha itself. These were pretty steep and I, erm, had to stop to rest my legs a couple of times.


Amazing views from the top…

And the Buddha himself…

Back down at the bottom I had a few minutes to spend exploring. Here’s the main shrine…

They had some impressively huge incense sticks burning (we’re talking inches in diameter) so I probably stink of smoke now! I then headed back to the bus terminal and waited around for another 30 minutes or so in the blazing sun. Luckily I had my trusty Tilley with me.

Back on the MTR to Hong Kong Island. I grabbed some seafood noodles in the hotel cafe. And now I’m waiting for my transfer as I write this.

This has been an amazing experience. Thanks to my fantastic wife for being so supportive. Without her help, this week would never have happened.

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