Friday 15th August
If you read our previous post, you’ll know that Josh is a big fan of Buddhas. Obviously, the only way to celebrate turning 24 in Hong Kong was a cable car ride over to see the Big Buddha!
We arrived in Tung Chung to be greeted by the Elephant Parade, the world’s largest art exhibition of decorated elephant statues created by artists and celebrities. After each exhibition, a few of the statues are auctioned by a renowned auction house, with 20% of the sales price going towards The Asian Elephant Foundation. They manage funds to various elephant conservation projects to ensure a brighter future for Asian elephants.
Obviously Josh tried to blend in…
This is ‘Beauty in the City’ by Ye Ruoshi, which was one of my favourites. She stated that while we are living in a vibrant and fast-moving city, we sometimes forget to stop and “smell the flowers.” Just like flowers, elephants are also often neglected. She wants people to stop and admire the beauty in the city and to treasure its existence.
‘Naughy Ollie’ by Nandita Chaudhuri draws its inspiration from patterns inscribed in delicate china used by Royalty.
‘Custard Chan’ by Tania Willis is a collection of all the things that she loves about Hong Kong. The name and colour refers to Hong Kong’s delicious yellow egg custard tarts.
‘The flower of the mind’ by Nawarat Tattanawan was inspired by vintage flowers that imply happiness and warmth.
Josh’s favourite was ‘Cherry Moon’ by Wanchalerm Mueanpang, which shows us that the beauty of nature will always prevail.
As I’m not going to write about every single elephant there (as much as I’d love to), I’ll leave you with my favourite, ‘Moonlight Kiss’ by Diana Francis.
“From dragonflies, angel fish and crested parrots, a kiss beneath the moonlight assures the heart lives on in harmony.”
Limited edition hand-crafted replicas and a select range of products were also created from the exhibiton elephants in a pop-up store in the mall.
As expected, they were rather pricey, but ever so pretty!
Say hello to this gorgeous little ‘Rainbow Fish’ by Noppawan Nuansiri!
Finally, we pulled ourselves away from the elephant invasion and made our way over to the cable cars! Luckily we had snacks while we waited in the queue 🙂
The views over Lantau Island were spectacular!
After a half hour ride, we arrived at the Ngong Ping Village. Our first stop was a late lunch of wontons and noodles for me…
…and vegetables with fried noodles for the J-dawg.
Now we were ready to explore!
The Buddha is in sight!
Though Lucky Cats and souvenir shops stole our attention for a while…
The Tian Tan Buddha statue (informally known as the Big Buddha) is a large bronze statue that was erected in 1993, taking 12 years to complete. At 34 metres high, it is a major centre of Buddhism, as well as a popular tourist attraction. The Buddha appears peaceful, with his right hand raised to represent the removal of affliction. Unlike the other great Buddha statues, the Tian Tan Buddha faces North, bestowing blessings upon China.
Josh even got a high-five for his birthday!
We returned to the bottom to be greeted by a herd of water buffaloes in the car park…
As the evening drew closer and our bellies began to grumble, we headed over to Mong Kok to one of my favourite Thai restaurants that Jess introduced me to (sorry I didn’t take note of its name)!
Josh started with a fresh coconut juice.
I went for my usual (heavenly) Thai red seafood curry and Josh had a green vegetable curry with a side of fried morning glory to share.
After dinner, we went for a stroll around the highest shopping centre in Mong Kok i.e. Langham Place.
Every few months, they hold themed Sanrio exhibitions which are always very popular!
You’ve all heard of the classic penguin cooking show filmed by a baby seal, right?!
This is Ijuin Pandaba, whose skills include speed-eating dumplings and listening to rap music.
I think it’s time to go home now…
With a few sneaky text messages during the day, Ry had put together a few (perfectly timed) birthday ciders and a mango cake by the time that we returned!
HAPPY BIRTHDAY, JOSH! 😀