Saturday, March 3, 2012

Walk on the not-so-wild side: Around the Peak

A leisurely five-minute walk away from the malls and souvenir booths and swarming families is a lovely, quiet path around the Peak. 

I think that's Lamma Island in the haze off the southern shore, the closest of the Outlying Islands. Another goal for my next visit. (Although later that week I did get to Cheung Chau Island, which you'll eventually see.) 

The actual peak:

I stumbled across (not literally) a worn set of concrete steps that cut straight up the steep slope through the woods towards the top:

 The quiet and emptiness was stunning, and refreshing, after days of ultracrowded bustle.

Anyone know what kind of tree this is? The red bark was even more striking in person (in plant?):

At the top was this garden and pavilion. It's probably more frequented on fine, sunny days. Today there was just a small family taking a daughter's graduation photos, and a couple other random people wandering through.

Coming back down the other side, I passed this old Victorian gatehouse, the last remaining piece of what was the colonial governor's summer residence (temperatures up here are remarkably lower than down below, a blessing in what I hear are brutally hot, humid subtropical summers).

Below, some of the insanely pricey, luxury residential buildings - a lot of which were oddly crappy under the circumstances, like much architecture in Hong Kong - rather slapdash-looking and not well kept up. To be fair, most modern architecture everywhere is depressing, and the climate here must be hell on buildings.

But they're paying for views like this, I suppose:

Can you imagine negotiating this driveway and street, let alone at night? Just close your eyes and pray.

Time to head back down:


  1. Hi Michael --

    Nice to see you posting some more and good for you for discovering the real Victoria Peak (as opposed to Victoria Gap). :)

    If I had known you would be visiting the Peak so many times, I'd also have told you about the way up to neighboring High West -- from whose summit the view really is very splendid indeed! Ah well... next time you visit Hong Kong... ;b

  2. You're on!

    Yeah, I'm hoping to get back on a more regular posting schedule. This is fun when I take the time.