We started our day with breakfast at the hotel which was a wonderful buffet and everyone got whatever they wanted. (not, quite true, Xinya and I started our day breaking into the rooftop pool and unexpectedly exploring the employees areas of the hotel, but that’s a whole other story)
The Peak: The tram up is closed, ugh. We were going to take cabs around but we wanted a real adventure so we took public transit. We first got on the subway for about a dollar each and it was very crowded but unbelieveably clean and organized. Then we hopped on a bus; likely the wrong one because we found a direct one on the way down, but it was great. It was a double decker bus and the girls (and Jeff) got to sit up top on the front seat which was really on the front of the bus….Very exciting when we travelled up the hil with straight down cliffs on the side of the road! The peak offered a wonderful view of the fog and not much more. But we had a good laugh about how crazy it was that we couldn’t see a thing.
We then went back on the bus and the subway to get to the buddha. Unfortunately (or fortunately given the rumoured unstability of the cable cars) the cable cars were closed. We hopped in cabs but that meant an indirect route around lantau island up the back of the mountain to get to the buddha and monastary area. This ended up being a really interesting drive through lush mountain areas, a small village with cows wandering everywhere and by two prisons which looked like resorts. There are little stores and the base of the buddha and a starbucks, which I was ready for and took the chill off. We walked up to the monastary, got some food at the vegetarian snack bar and walke up the steps to the buddha. Again, a wonderful view of fog! But it was amazing. The girls enjoyed the ice cream that was included in our ticket and we headed down. At the bottom, we found a bus that would take us back down, so we didn’t need to get cabs.
After a quick stop at the hotel to change shoes, but on more clothes and get Maggie’s friend, we were back out, headed to the temple street market. It’s a night market and we got there after 7. It has stall after stall of goods and everyone tried to make a deal. I taught Xinya the art of bargaining. She didn’t really like thinking that we were going to walk away from something she had chosen and wanted but she liked the good deals. We picked up some noodle bowls she had eyed at one of the stores at the Peak for much less than they cost at the Peak.
Tired, we took the subway home to the hotel and fell asleep quickly.