What an exciting day: We are starting the first round of favoriteplaces beta testing! To keep it simple, we have only selected a small group of people to test for now. But keep an eye on your inbox — we'll add more testers really soon! To make the wait feel a little bit shorter I want to share some adventures from my recent trip to Hong Kong with you!

 

Hong Kong and The Beauty of Nature

To be honest, before I started reading about Hong Kong I associated the city with crowded and noisy streets, enormous crowds of people, endless skyscrapers, and shopping malls. And while Hong Kong sure has all this, I was very surprised to find out that the next island, hiking trail, or lonely beach is never more than 30 minutes away. A simple hop on a ferry or minibus takes you out of the fascinating city life right into the quietness of the woods or the ocean.   

Cheung Chau

Fifty minutes from central Hong Kong and you arrive at the beautiful island Cheung Chau. Just a few steps from the ferry terminal and you can take a nice swim in the ocean - well protected by life guards and shark protection nets. After a refreshing dip, the island invites to stroll through its small center lined with shops where you can get a fresh mango juice or try the famous fish balls. If you're up for a little walk, hike up the small hill to visit the Pak Tai Temple and perhaps even the Cheung Po Tsai Cave (although it is a secret to me why this hole in the wall has made its way into so many travel guides). Back at the promenade, it is a must to check out the dried fish and seafood, even if just for a picture.

SAI Kung PENINSULA

At 30 Degree Celcius and 95% humidity, hiking might not be the first activity that comes to mind. But I can assure you it is one of the best things to do when in Hong Kong. Take a minibus and a short taxi ride to the Sai Kung Peninsula and make your way to the starting point of the MacLehose Trail. It takes you through a stunning scenery of woods, beaches, and small rivers revealing incredible views over the hilly islands and the wide ocean. Make sure to bring a rain jacket or cape as there is always a danger of monsoon rain in the summer.

TIan Tan Buddha on Lantau

Want to see one of the largest buddhas in the world? Welcome to Tian Tan Buddha. With 202 tonnes and 23 meters in height, this buddha is certainly impressive. If you have a head for heights, take the Ngong Ping 360 cable car. From the glass gondola you can catch a first view of 'Big Buddha' watching you approach. Once you descended the 268 steps from Buddha, make sure to visit the colorful Po Lin Monastery and try a milk tea and coconut mochi at their restaurant.

So many impressions

And it is tough to put them into words. So here are some pictures that speak for themselves

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