Monday, November 28, 2011

A Visit to (Hong Kong) Cheung Chau Island and Pak Tai Temple from Daughter Paige's Journal Post 4 of 10

Cheung Chau Island, Pak Tai Temple***
from Daughter Paige's journal

Cheung Chau Island is about a 30-minute ferry ride away from Tsim Sha Tsui (TST) in Kowloon.  (My school is located on the peninsula of Kowloon). Cheung Chau is a fishing village that gets a lot of tourism on the weekends.  I went on a Friday, so it was just like a normal residential island.  My eight friends and I were some of the only tourists that day.  It was really nice.  The day ended up being a great photo shoot and it was fun just to walk around.  We wandered the markets and the streets.  We went to few different temples around the area and got some great food.  It was a really fun day.

Left to Right Front Row: Ru, Paige, Leela, Chris;
 Back row: Priya, Chris, Kendall, Becca
(Leela and Becca are Paige's roommates)

Delicious Beef and Noodles

The island is known for their seafood.  Walking around it becomes apparent how much of their revenue is based on seafood.  There are tanks of fish on the sidewalk, fishing boats dominate the waterfront, and baskets of dried fish are everywhere.  No one in my group was daring enough to get what we called fish jerky.

Dried Fish

Fish Jerky

Pak Tai Temple is the most famous temple on the island and one of the most famous temples in the Hong Kong area.  The outside decoration is bright, intricate and gaudy, but interesting.  It is a Taoist temple dedicated to the deity Pak Tai (also known as Yuen Tin Sheung Tai) who is the Supreme Emperor of the Dark Heaven.  It is believed that Pak Tai can avert disasters.


The temple is also dedicated to Kwun Yum, and Tai Sui (the Sixty Gods of Time), which I find most interesting, because 60 different statues usually represent it.  The locals don’t allow photos to be taken in the interior of the temple, but I shot a few from my hip.  The inside was really beautiful, except one terrifying looking statue that seemed to be glaring at me for taking photos.  I’ve said it before, but I love all of the lotus motifs— all the temples are covered with lotus flower decorations.

We spent most of the day walking around and exploring the island.  Our group consisted of four trained photographers and a couple of serious amateur photographers.  What does it mean when you have a group with 6 photographers?  It means you move slow and take a lot of breaks, which is usually fantastic.  We meandered through the village and found ourselves at a beach.  It was nice to be around natural elements.  I have pretty much forgotten what trees and grass are, but it’s impossible to forget about the ocean in the Hong Kong area.  We walked the sand, which was speckled with sea glass.  Sea glass is broken pieces of glass that have been smoothed by the water and sand. 

We found ourselves at the end of the beach, but big boulders replaced the sand.  We climbed the boulders for a while admiring the sea from our perch on top the rock.

The end of the day came, so we headed back to New Territories on the ferry.

***Just a reminder that I'd love to include your steeple photo in an upcoming post. Here are the details: 

Submit one or two steeple photos (or three) and I'll include them in a future post (or my favorites of them if we receive more than we can use here).  If you send one or two steeple photos, you'll be entered in the drawing for a $25 Amazon Gift Card. This is not a photo contest and you don't need to be a professional at all to enter. Just go find a good-looking steeple (or two) and take a photo.  

Here are the submission rules:

1. Send photos in jpg form via e-mail to lorilipsky@gmail.com

2. Put the words "Steeple photo" and your full name and city (country if other than USA) of 
residence in the subject line

3. Identify the city, state, country address of the building to which the steeple is attached

4. Submit photos before November 30th and the drawing will be announced the first week of December

 If you win the drawing, don't forget to send me your mailing address within 30 days so I can send the card to you. 

Best wishes!



The Prude said...

ANOTHER great visit! Paige, it is fun seeing Hong Kong through your eyes. (I may have said that once or twice:)
I loved the fish jerky photo. I wouldn't have eaten it either. And the paper lanterns are so beautiful! They are my absolute favorites.

Lori Lipsky said...

Ah. Thanks for taking the time to leave a comment, Prude. I'll pass your words on to Paige. She'll be encouraged.