October 05, 2016

Serene Walk in Ngong Ping and Tian Tan Buddha



One of the most famous attraction in Hong Kong is the Tian Tan Buddha located Lantau Island. Tian Tan Budah is one of the largest statues in China. Near the Tian tan Buddha is the Po Lin Monastery. But before any tourist in Hong Kong see the Tian Tan Buddha and then Po Lin Monastery, they have to pass the manicured Ngong Ping Village and the Ngong Ping Piazza. But before anything else, one must experience the Ngong Ping 360 – a 25 minute cable car ride that starts in Tung Chung, passes to the mountains and forest of Lantau island up to the Ngong Ping Village and Tian Tan Buddha.  



From MTR Tung Chung Station, which is also the terminus of the line, we proceed at exit B and found a large plaza and shopping complex called City Gate Mall. You wont get lost once you are in MTR because there are tons of signage telling you where to go. From there we proceed to the Ngong Ping 360 to ride the cable car going to Ngong Ping Village, Tian Tan Buddha and the Po Lin Monastery.  




It was our first time to ride the cable car thus were very excited to run to the cable car only to know that we were one hour early for the opening at 10AM. Ngong Ping 360 opens at 10AM so we decided to just stroll around Citygate mall, specifically in their supermarket. City Gate Mall sells a lot of sneakers at a discounted price. I just do not know how affordable of cheat those branded shoes as I am not into shoes.

When we proceed to the Ngong Ping 360 Cable Car, we did not go through the usual line because I bought our passes through klook.com- an online booking site that gives discounted tickets and a hassle free experience in attraction in Hong Kong and some Asian countries.



We lined up for a standard cable car, the other one is the crystal where in the floor is glass. We waited for about 30 minutes before we rode our own cable car. We were stuck along with 6 other people from different Asian countries.

The ride is 25 minutes. From the top you will see Lantau's tick forest along with massive developments on the sides. The Hong Kong International Airport can also be seen during the ride. You will also see the ongoing construction of the bridge linking Hong Kong and Macau.




I was never afraid of heights thus I enjoyed the scenery's along the lines. When you look down you will see a wooden trail that goes through the Ngong Ping Village. I saw a couple of people trekking with their backpacks. This is something to look forward to when I go back to Hong Kong. I also saw a waterfalls down the forest though I just do not know if that is accessible from the trail.

Ngong Ping Village



When you get down the Cable Car, a manicured village called Ngong Ping will welcome you. The area was specifically built for the tourist. There are restaurants, cafes, souvenir shops, a cinema and the like at the Ngong ping Village. The establishments' architecture are inspired by the Chinese traditional houses.




Unless you have a lot of money to buy in the overpriced souvenir shops, Ngong Ping is not for you. We wend there just to take pictures and for the rest room.  



Ngong Ping Piazza


One of the newest attraction in Ngong Ping is the Piazza. It has a large space where religious events is being held at a specific time of the year. The Piazza also links the Ngong Ping 360 and Ngong Ping Village to the religious sites such as the Tian tan Buddha and the Po Lin Monastery.  






You will enter the Piazza through the Pai Lau or the large gate leading you to the Bodhi Path. Along the path are the 12 statues which symbolizes each Chinese zodiac signs. These statutes are regarded by the Chinese as the protectors. My girlfriend Lana, excitedly found her zodiac signs under the intense heat of the sun. You may also find your own zodiac for a good luck.  


There are also establishments on the side of the Bodhi Path that sells refreshments and snacks. I wanted to take a video or pictures of the snacks because it was new to us. But before I press the shutter, a lady was shouting at me telling me “No Picture, No Picture” I immediately kept my smart phone and hold my DSLR that was recording the moment. Lol. See my video below.  

Tian Tan Buddha (Giant Buddha)


When I was planning for the trip, my first thought was of the Tian Tan Buddha.The Giant Buddha may be the only destination on Ngong Ping, the others are actually an accessory to the Giand Buddha. When I was planning for the trip, my first thought was of the Tian Tan Buddha.





The right hand of the Buddha which is raised symbolises removal of affliction while the left hand is open reting on its lap symbolises generosity. Climbing the 280 steps ton reach the Buddha was tiring, folks tend to rest at the middle because of exaustion especially during summer months. I woould advise you to bring umbrella for protection.




Po Lin Monastery



As if I was a Buddhist, I adored the ornamental that makes Po Lin Monastery a perfect sanctuary for the hungry soul. I entered the incense filled room from the red wooden doors. There were a lot of tourist not monks... or maybe tourist who will offer thanks giving pray for blessings. So we were actually the tourist because we were not Buddhist.  







When you look closely on the walls of Po Lin Monastery you will notice its detailed design and colors. I cant help but to look at the walls for a long time just to see how good it was. I am sure, it was a work of an artist.   





You cant take pictures inside the temple but a good eye and sense of balance will give your camera a million dollar worth of picture of the golden Buddha inside.  




Walking in Ngong ping for a couple of hours is like a therapy in nature. Thought there were a lot of tourists, you will still find that spot to think about your life the presence of God and nature. 



How to go to Ngong Ping
Location Map