Day 3.  Riding Hong Kong’s Peak Tram and Mid Levels Escalators

Despite the 8 hour time difference we slept until our alarm went off at 7.00 a.m.  We couldn’t see across the harbour from our window as it was so misty but were hopeful that it would soon clear.  Breakfast followed in the hotel’s restaurant – a good selection of fruit, yoghurts, pastries and hot dishes to set us up for a few hours.

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Hong Kong Park

Despite the mist, we kept with our original plans taking the MTR to Admiralty and walking through the lovely Hong Kong Park on our way to the Peak Tram station.   Queues for this historic 8 minute tram ride can become very long so it’s a good idea to arrive early to beat the crowds and save at least an hour standing in line.  We only had to wait a few minutes, paying for our tickets using our Octopus Cards as this is both quicker and cheaper.  As our turn arrived to board the tram we discovered we would have to stand and taking photos would be difficult so we held back a few minutes for the next tram where we were first to board and able to get the best seats at the front of the first carriage.  Try and remember to sit on the right hand side when travelling up The Peak as from this side passengers can take in the dramatic views looking down.

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A slightly misty view from Victoria Peak

The Peak was still shrouded in mist so we paused for coffees in the Peak Galleria before taking the Peak Trail around Victoria Peak.  This is a delightful walk and is lovely and peaceful as most visitors just pause for photo opportunities near the Peak Tram station and don’t venture further.  The trail starts on Lugard Road and is 2.4 km long providing spectacular views around the island on a clear day.  Lugard Road is named after Sir Frederick Lugard, Governor between 1907-1912.  Much of the walk is under dense tree cover with canopies of Indian Rubber trees and other sub tropical vegetation.  Helpful information boards are provided at regular intervals explaining the local flora and fauna, the trail ending at Harlech Road but, of course can be traversed in either direction.  It’s popular with locals either enjoying a morning jog, walking their dogs or practising Tai Chi in the small parks.

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Indian rubber trees along the Peak Trail, Hong Kong

Near the upper tram station we took some photos at the Lion Lookout, there are excellent views from here but it tends to be crowded with tour groups.   Instead of queuing for the Peak Tram, we took Bus No.15 down to Central which is almost as exciting as the tram itself especially if you sit on the upper deck and hold on tight as the bus twists and turns it’s way down the steep hillside.

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Maids enjoying free time each Sunday in Central

Being a Sunday, Central is transformed from a district filled with city workers to one filled with Filipino and Indonesian maids making the most of their one day off.   They meet up with their friends, filling every available space around.  It’s like cardboard city as they set up camp for the day on opened cardboard boxes, some even building sides around their zones for extra privacy.  It’s all good hearted though,  one can observe the girls playing cards, enjoying picnics, sewing and giving each other foot and neck massages.  It all happens around stores such as Cartier, Ralph Lauren etc. where certain roads are closed for the day and the girls enjoy line dancing and having fun.

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Riding the Mid Levels Escalators

A large organic food festival was taking place so we toured the stalls and were offered a variety of samples to try before stopping off at a branch of Café de Coral again for lunch, this time at Admiralty.  After enjoying a sit down and something to eat we made our way to the Mid Levels Escalators – a 20 minute ride through SoHo.  The escalators run downwards until 10.00 am and then reverse for the remainder of the day, being built to assist residents in the Mid Levels getting to and from work in Central.  It’s fun to take these escalators and observe life below as you glide along and, of course, one can stop off anywhere on route and rejoin the escalators later.

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Hong Kong Zoological and Botanical Gardens

Reaching the top we followed signs to the Hong Kong Zoological and Botanical Gardens which has free admittance.  The zoo is only tiny mainly consisting of a few monkeys and birds but the Botanical Gardens located across the street are very pleasant with attractive flowerbeds and fountains.  Feeling tired from so much walking we headed downhill pausing to glance through the railings of the former Governor’s House on the way.  Returning back to the hotel by MTR we rested our feet awhile before setting off out again.

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Riding the lovely old Hong Kong trams

Before dinner we looked in some of the stores around North Point and then had supper in a food court of one of the large malls.  This proved to be a bad idea as the meal was below standard and the food lukewarm.  Never mind, we won’t make that mistake again!  Next, we boarded one of the narrow, old trams known affectionately as Ding Dings.  Passengers board at the back and pay on alighting at the front by the driver’s cab.  Trams have a flat rate fare of about 23p for any journey and sitting upstairs, either right at the back or front is a real treat, especially in the evenings when you can gaze down at all the bright lights and the constant hustle and bustle of life on Hong Kong island.

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The bright lights of Causeway Bay, Hong Kong

Our tram ride took us to Causeway Bay,  an upmarket shopping district with a flagship branch of the department store SOGO.  I love looking round this store so we started on the ground floor and managed to look around several floors before it closed for the night at 10.00 p.m.  Returning back to our hotel by tram we just managed a cup of tea and a KitKat before falling asleep – my Fitbit didn’t really need to tell me that I’d walked over 30,000 steps today – my calf muscles and feet knew that already!

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51 thoughts on “Day 3.  Riding Hong Kong’s Peak Tram and Mid Levels Escalators

  1. Pingback: Lincoln Life Blog

  2. I love the sound of all the different ways of getting around Hong Kong – those trams and buses sound great and then the elevators, my son is fascinated by them! 30,000 steps is quite something – you must have slept well that night.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you for your kind words Joy. Taking any form of transport in Hong Kong is exciting but those escalators are really fun to ride on. It’s just as well I was wearing my comfy Ecco sandals with all that walking! Hope you all get a chance to visit Hong Kong sometime soon too! I’m sure you would love it! M.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Great Work, This is the great mixture of beautiful nature and modern city. You’ve mentioned all mid-level key places in Hongkong which allow you to take the pleasure of Hongkong. Perfect buzzing pack which engaged me from beginning to end at the reading time. Keep it up….!!!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Great post and you’ve hit lots of the big beats! So glad you’ve mentioned the Peak Trail, So often overlooked. This was always my little haven when i needed a break from the city…enjoy the rest of your stay!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. The only good thing about not traveling is having good email access – so finally I will be able to follow your blog. We will be in HK next year, so this is really great information. Thanks!

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  6. Great day by all accounts Marion; lovely to read your post. I love HK Park especially the waterfall there and the fabulous vegetarian Dim Sum restaurant next tot the Tea House…not sure if you saw those. I agree those little trams are gorgeous.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. I am glad to see that there is so much “green space” in Hong Kong. I really wouldn’t have thought there was. The Mid Levels escalators are interesting and a great idea for those who live there. Love reading your posts and looking at your pictures. Almost makes me want to change my ways and visit a big city. LOL

    Liked by 2 people

  8. OH IT ALL LOOKS SO FAMILIAR. CLEARWATER BAY IS AN INTERESTING PLACE TO VISIT AND I’VE EATEN THE BEST CHINESE FOOD THERE. DID YOU HAPPEN TO VISIT ANY RESTAURANT THAT FEATURED A CHEF ACTUALLY MAKING NOODLES AS ONE DINES?

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Anonymous

    Really well written recount of Hong Kong. Those rubber trees look awesome! I stopped over in HK once but didn’t get to do nearly enough exploring as I would’ve liked. thanks for the read 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

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