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Among all the places to visit in Hong Kong, one name stands out and that is Victoria Peak. The hill top is a haven for the rich and famous as well as for any discerning individual who longs for a taste of luxury.
Victoria Peak is known by several names. To the locals it is simply referred to as ‘The Peak’ or ‘Mount Austin’. It is also a famous shopping destination because it is home to several shopping malls that offer shopaholics long hours of uninterrupted shopping pleasure.
The History Behind Victoria Peak
Victoria Peak is a name that has long been synonymous with the good life. Since the later part of the 10th century people have been coming to Victoria Peak as a way to escape the heat of summer. One of its very first residents was the esteemed Governor Sir Richard MacDonnell, who was assigned in Hong Kong during its British Colonization.
MacDonnell set up his summer residence in the Peak in 1868, long before the Peak Tram was opened in 1888. His move was soon followed by the wealthiest residents in Hong Kong. Today his old summer home is accessible to the public and each year receives thousands upon thousand of tourists.
The Peak Reservation Ordinance
When the Peak Tram was established, more and more people decided to take residence in the locale and it resulted in the drafting of the Peak Reservation Ordinance that lasted from 1904 to 1930. This ordinance saw to it that residential Areas in Victoria Peak were reserved only for high standing government officials and Europeans.
Modern Day Victoria Peak
Today, real estate sales are no longer dictated by race, but by wealth. It no longer matters if the buyer is foreigner or a Hong Kong local, as long as they are able to meet the price that is demanded, they are most welcome in Victoria Peak.
Victoria Peak boasts of up to 7 million visitors each year. The reason for such fame is the fact that it offers its visitors an unparalleled view of Hong Kong Harbor during the day and the sight of a glimmering Hong Kong at night.
Visitors at Victoria Peak have access to impressive shopping complexes in the form of the Peak Galleria and the Peak Tower. The most famous dining destination in Victoria Peak is the Peak Lookout restaurant located in an old building that was once the residence of the Peak Tram engineers.
Travelling to the Peak
The Peak is accessible via the Peak Tram, which has been in business for more than a century. Riding the Peak Tram is an experience in itself as passengers are offered a bird’s eye view of the landscape below it. Visitors can also take public buses or one of the green minibuses that service the Peak’s residents and tourists.
At present Victoria Peak is considered to be one of the most valuable real estate areas in the entire world. It may not be the highest peak in Hong Kong, but it is without a doubt the most famous one and a visit to Hong Kong would be incomplete without taking the 8 minute ride on the Peak Tram and taking a tour of this beautiful place.
Planning a vacation trip to Hong Kong may be the best choice you would make for you and your family’s enjoyment. There you will be able see all the beautiful sites that Hong Kong has to offer. Enjoy the luxury that is Victoria Peak, learn about marine life in Hong Kong’s Sea World or have fun and be a kid again in Hong Kong Disneyland.
However, you won’t be having any fun if you find yourself hopelessly lost in the region. In order to avoid such occurrence, it is best to know what modes of transport you can take in and around Hong Kong.
From the Airport
If it is your first time in Hong Kong, it is advised that you take the Airport Express Train Service after arriving in the region. It is one of the easiest, most comfortable and quickest ways of getting to mainland Hong Kong. The train stops at three designated stations and they are as follows: Kowloon, Tsing Yi, and Central.
You can pick a station that is closet to your destination by either studying the maps provided for public viewing or by asking advice from Airport Express Designated individuals. The best thing about the Airport express is that you get to learn about Hong Kong through the videos that passengers can watch while riding the train.
Buses in Hong Kong
Buses are one of the easiest and cheapest ways to get around the region. You can also take them from the airport and into central Hong Kong. Buses will be able to take you anywhere you want to go, although you will be subjected to several ride changes if you are looking to go to distant locales.
The MTR is the fastest way to get around Hong Kong. It is clean and is also very cheap and fast. It takes passengers to most of the areas in the region. A quick look at locator maps will help passengers figure out where they need to stop. Passengers of the MTR need to use the Octopus card in order to get on the train.
Hong Kong is home to a myriad of Taxi cabs that take its passengers anywhere they want to go. They are also a very cheap mode of transport. The problem with taking Taxis in Hong Kong is the fact that only a few drivers speak and understand English fluently. That is why it would be helpful if you ask someone knowledgeable about the language to write down your destination for you.
Trams are a great way to move about in Hong Kong. It is a ride that tourist should take before they can say that they had a true Hong Kong experience. To take a tram in Hongkong is an affordable and leisurely way to travel in the region.
You can also catch a ferry ride from central Hong Kong to Kowloon, TST, and Discovery Bay, Lantau, Cheng Chau and other locations accessible by ferry ride.
With the many transportation options available to tourists in Hong Kong, one of the best ways to get around the region is on foot. Take the time to stroll and enjoy the beauty that is Hong Kong.