Monday, May 28, 2012

Photo Gallery * Amazing Asia * A 1.5 Day Retreat at HK's less visited destination :-)

Hong Kong is mostly known for its busy city with great shopping and delicious Cantonese food, but not so much as a destination to enjoy nature. And yet there are so many places outside of the city that you wouldn't expect Hong Kong to have, places that force you to slow down from the busy life that Hong Kong is known for.

On this trip, I decided to take 2 days to visit Sai Kung, a set of islands on the east of Kowloon at the New Territories. At the center of it all is Sai Kung Town Centre, which is a an old sleepy Chinese fishing town. There you'll find the public piers where fisherman sell live seafood from their boats under the pier, and rows of seafood restaurants serving great seafood dishes. At the town, you can still find small alleys, old houses and and an old Chinese temple. But as soon as you step in to the rest of Sai Kung, you will find yourself secluded in lush green parklands where the busy city life is suddenly turned into a quiet place where you can smell only fresh air and see mountains densely filled with green trees and bushes. It is so quiet that you can hear a concert of birds, crickets and other insects. Cows walk the streets with the cars, and you can find all sorts of insects and colorful butterflies on the nearby bushes and sidewalks. The residents all know each other and are quite friendly. I also see the dog walker walking almost a dozen of resident dogs, and never fails to wave to my host as he drives past. A team of park rangers patrol and monitor the area.

While the locals migrate to the city for easy accessibility, the foreigners/expatriates move out to these places to enjoy the space and more relaxed lifestyle. It's nice to see that these beautiful places are being preserved at the same time, being promoted so that people learn to appreciate and love nature and its simplicity.

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Day 1
- Afternoon visit Sai Kung Town, Sai Kung Promenade with the seafood restos, Sai Kung Pier with the fishermen selling seafood on their boats, old Ancient Houses and temple
- Sunset walk along the waterfront from Sai Kung Promenade to Sha Ha Beach

Day 2
- Morning Hike suggested by my host, to Pak Sha O and Hoi Ha Wan
- Lunch at a Thai restaurant in Sai Kung Town Centre and a cold fruit shake for dessert
- Afternoon visit to High Island Reservoir within the HK Geological Park
- Sunset at the roofdeck at my host's house - great way to cap the trip :-)