Lantau Island in Hong Kong
Lantau Island is the largest of Hong Kong's islands and a fantastic holiday destination. You'll find an unspoilt island offering a peaceful escape from the busy heartland of Hong Kong island or the mainland cities. Filled with mountains, beaches and fantastic sightseeing spots, you'll find yourself splitting time between spiritual Buddhist monuments and modern theme park attractions.
Lantau Island is a mountainous isle topped by the incredible, 934m high Lantau Peak. You can either catch a cable car most of the way to Ngong Ping and then walk the Lantau Trail for 25 minutes, or you can do the full two-hour hike. It's a bit of climb but well worth it for the amazing views awaiting you. And it's a fantastic spot to watch the sunrise from. The Lantau Trail is a well-marked 70km loop leading you around the island, giving you the greatest glimpses of its supreme beauty.
This island is one of the best places to visit some of Hong Kong's unique cultural attractions. The Po Lin Monastery is the site of the bronze Tian Tan Buddha, a 34m-tall statue on a hilltop reached by a long stairway. Impressive as it is large, this monument is a must-see, as it towers over the rest of the island. You'll find the monastery itself to be a serene getaway from the hustle and bustle elsewhere in the territory.
While you're here, you might want to buy one of the wooden bracelets only sold near the Tian Tan Buddha. Then, take a trip to Tai O, a fishing village on the west coast. This quaint little town is known for its traditional Cantonese stilt houses built over the water.
Along the coast is Tung Chung Fort, a reminder of China's fascinating past. It served as a Qing dynasty garrison during the 19th century and was occupied by the Japanese army during the Second World War. Make sure you see the arched gateways and six muzzle-loading cannons.
Hong Kong Disneyland
If you like your theme parks, the must-visit sit on Lantau Island (and perhaps the whole territory) is Hong Kong Disneyland. This spectacular theme park is built on reclaimed land in Penny's Bay at the island's northern end. At the world-famous amusement park complex, you'll find seven areas with rides, shows and all your favourite Disney characters, including a Toy Story Land. You'll also discover Disney hotels and lots of holiday magic here.
Lantau Island also has some fantastic unspoiled beaches that are great for sunbathing, snorkelling and diving. Mui Wo Bay is protected from heavy waves so you'll love it for swimming. Its soft sand means you're in a perfect spot for relaxing and soaking up the sun's rays. An alternative is the southern coast's secluded Cheung Sha beach. This huge shoreline runs for almost 3km.
Wherever you choose to visit on your trip to Lantau island, you're certain to enjoy your stay. This unique part of China combines all the elements of a great family holiday, from fun-filled theme parks and serene beaches to stunning countryside and cultural sights. Whatever type of holiday you want, you'll find it on your trip to Lantau Island.
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