A Cable Car, a Giant Buddha, and a Streetful of Seafood on Lantau Island, Hong Kong

A Cable Car, a Giant Buddha, and a Streetful of Seafood on Lantau Island, Hong Kong

Like the Peak Tram and Sky Terrace 428, Ngong Ping 360 and Tian Tan Buddha are two of Hong Kong’s most popular tourist attractions. They’re also inseperable. Like the tram and terrace, you can’t do one without the other. You take the cable car to see the Big Buddha on Lantau Island, just like you would the Peak Tram up to the Sky Terrace and Victoria Peak. Coincidentally, both are known for some pretty spectacular views.

We were in town to check out Michelin Hong Kong’s street food recommendations so we didn’t plan on doing a lot of sightseeing, but a day exploring Lantau Island was something we didn’t want to miss. It’s a must for any first-time visitor to Hong Kong.

Ngong Ping 360

Often cited as one of the world’s best cable car rides, Ngong Ping 360 is a 5.7 km long ride that takes you from Tung Chung to Lantau Island. Unlike the mainland, Lantau Island is largely undeveloped and covered in lush greenery. It’s a popular hiking spot for locals and makes for a nice escape from the hustle and bustle of Hong Kong.
A Cable Car, a Giant Buddha, and a Streetful of Seafood on Lantau Island, Hong Kong

You have two options of cable car β€” the Standard Cabin or this Crystal Cabin. The latter has a glass bottom that gives you awesome views of the bay and countryside. If it’s your first time to Lantau Island on Ngong Ping 360, then I suggest taking the Crystal Cabin. The Standard Cabin costs HKD 130 for a single trip while the Crystal Cabin goes for HKD 180 (adults).
A Cable Car, a Giant Buddha, and a Streetful of Seafood on Lantau Island, Hong Kong

The ride takes around 25 minutes from end to end, which as you can tell, was very thrilling for Ren. πŸ˜†
A Cable Car, a Giant Buddha, and a Streetful of Seafood on Lantau Island, Hong Kong

You can buy cable car tickets at the gate but you can get a discount if you purchase them in advance from Klook or Kkday. That’s what we did (Klook). You can follow these links to purchase Ngong Ping 360 tickets through Klook or Kkday.

Ngong Ping 360, Hong Kong

11 Tat Tung Road, Tung Chung, Lantau, Hong Kong
Tel: +852 3666 0606
Fax: +852 2109 9179
Website: np360.com.hk
Facebook: np360
Instagram: np360hk
Email: info@np360.com.hk
Operating Hours: Mon-Fri, 10AM-6PM / Sun, 9AM-6:30PM

COST
SINGLE TRIP
STANDARD CABIN: HKD 130 β€” Adult / HKD 65 β€” Child (3-11) / HKD 90 – Senior (65+)
CRYSTAL CABIN: HKD 180 β€” Adult / HKD 125 β€” Child (3-11) / HKD 145 – Senior (65+)

ROUND TRIP
STANDARD CABIN: HKD 185 β€” Adult / HKD 95 β€” Child (3-11) / HKD 130 – Senior (65+)
CRYSTAL CABIN: HKD 255 β€” Adult / HKD 175 β€” Child (3-11) / HKD 205 – Senior (65+)
1+1 STANDARD & CRYSTAL CABIN: HKD 240 β€” Adult / HKD 155 β€” Child (3-11) / HKD 190 – Senior (65+)

Ngong Ping Village & Tian Tan Buddha

The cable car will take you to Ngong Ping Village. It’s a touristy area with plenty of shops and cafes. There’s the Big Buddha in the distance.
A Cable Car, a Giant Buddha, and a Streetful of Seafood on Lantau Island, Hong Kong

Making my way to Ngong Ping Plaza and the Big Buddha.
A Cable Car, a Giant Buddha, and a Streetful of Seafood on Lantau Island, Hong Kong

“The path to enlightenment is that way.”
“Yup, it’s over here. Peace man.”

A Cable Car, a Giant Buddha, and a Streetful of Seafood on Lantau Island, Hong Kong

The last time I was here was almost 30 years ago and I haven’t forgotten these 268 steps. πŸ˜†
A Cable Car, a Giant Buddha, and a Streetful of Seafood on Lantau Island, Hong Kong

And so we meet again my old friend. Comprised of 202 bronze pieces, the statue stands (or sits?) 34 meters (112 ft) tall and weighs over 250 tons. As you can see, the Buddha’s right hand is raised to signify the removal of affliction. The left is open and rests on his lap in a gesture of generosity.
A Cable Car, a Giant Buddha, and a Streetful of Seafood on Lantau Island, Hong Kong

View from the top. Po Lin Monastery is down there somewhere. I had my first vegetarian experience at the monastery 30 years ago.
A Cable Car, a Giant Buddha, and a Streetful of Seafood on Lantau Island, Hong Kong

Three of six smaller bronze statues known as “The Offering of the Six Devas”. They’re posed offering flowers, incense, a lamp, ointment, fruit, and music to symbolize the Six Perfections. The Six Perfections are generosity, morality, patience, zeal, meditation, and wisdom, all of which are necessary for enlightenment.
A Cable Car, a Giant Buddha, and a Streetful of Seafood on Lantau Island, Hong Kong

At the base of the statue are three floors housing the halls of the Universe, Benevolent Merit, and Remembrance. I think you need to purchase an offering to go inside.
A Cable Car, a Giant Buddha, and a Streetful of Seafood on Lantau Island, Hong Kong

Tai O Fishing Village

Tai O Fishing Village is a short bus ride away from Ngong Ping. You’ll need to take Bus 21 to get there. The fare is HKD 6.30 from Monday to Saturday and HKD 13 on Sundays and public holidays. If you have an Octopus card, then you can use it on Lantau Island buses as well.
A Cable Car, a Giant Buddha, and a Streetful of Seafood on Lantau Island, Hong Kong

Tai O is a quaint fishing village with shops selling mostly dried seafood and souvenirs. From what I’ve read, it’s a dying village. The youth aren’t interested in a fishing lifestyle anymore so many move away when they come of age. Can’t say I blame them. πŸ™
A Cable Car, a Giant Buddha, and a Streetful of Seafood on Lantau Island, Hong Kong

Trays of dried fish and fish parts
A Cable Car, a Giant Buddha, and a Streetful of Seafood on Lantau Island, Hong Kong

Some dried shrimp and oysters
A Cable Car, a Giant Buddha, and a Streetful of Seafood on Lantau Island, Hong Kong

Not sure what’s on that central tray but I think I overheard a woman say they’re dried fish stomachs. She made it sound like they’re choice items that fetch a good price.
A Cable Car, a Giant Buddha, and a Streetful of Seafood on Lantau Island, Hong Kong

More dried fish
A Cable Car, a Giant Buddha, and a Streetful of Seafood on Lantau Island, Hong Kong

Most of the stalls sell dried fish but a few offer live seafood.
A Cable Car, a Giant Buddha, and a Streetful of Seafood on Lantau Island, Hong Kong

Porcupine fish ornaments. They were even selling smaller ones as keychains. πŸ™
A Cable Car, a Giant Buddha, and a Streetful of Seafood on Lantau Island, Hong Kong

Many tourists come to Tai O to go on these boating trips hoping to see Chinese white dolphins (Sousa chinensis). They’re a species of pinkish-white dolphins found in these waters. Based on a few blog posts I’ve read, the chances of actually seeing any are pretty slim. Dolphins, from what I understand, feed at dusk and dawn so spotting them midday is a rarity.
A Cable Car, a Giant Buddha, and a Streetful of Seafood on Lantau Island, Hong Kong

Community of stilted houses
A Cable Car, a Giant Buddha, and a Streetful of Seafood on Lantau Island, Hong Kong

You can explore the village but people still live here so remember to be respectful and keep your voices down.
A Cable Car, a Giant Buddha, and a Streetful of Seafood on Lantau Island, Hong Kong

One of the dolphin watching trips coming in to dock.
A Cable Car, a Giant Buddha, and a Streetful of Seafood on Lantau Island, Hong Kong

Fishing nets
A Cable Car, a Giant Buddha, and a Streetful of Seafood on Lantau Island, Hong Kong

Boots hanging out to dry
A Cable Car, a Giant Buddha, and a Streetful of Seafood on Lantau Island, Hong Kong

More boats
A Cable Car, a Giant Buddha, and a Streetful of Seafood on Lantau Island, Hong Kong

A fisherman sun-drying the day’s catch.
A Cable Car, a Giant Buddha, and a Streetful of Seafood on Lantau Island, Hong Kong

I had read about the street food in Tai O so that’s what I was really excited about. Pictured here are spicy cuttlefish curry and fish balls. 😈
A Cable Car, a Giant Buddha, and a Streetful of Seafood on Lantau Island, Hong Kong

Ren proudly showing off my spicy balls. My spicy CUTTLEFISH balls. πŸ˜† These were so good. A stick of three went for HKD 14.
A Cable Car, a Giant Buddha, and a Streetful of Seafood on Lantau Island, Hong Kong

Balls aren’t your thing? Then you can have chopped cuttlefish instead!
A Cable Car, a Giant Buddha, and a Streetful of Seafood on Lantau Island, Hong Kong

Check out the size of those chunks! These were really good too. We paid HKD 45 for this cup.
A Cable Car, a Giant Buddha, and a Streetful of Seafood on Lantau Island, Hong Kong

Now that we had our appetizers, it was time for lunch. This little stand was selling all kinds of fresh and dried seafood.
A Cable Car, a Giant Buddha, and a Streetful of Seafood on Lantau Island, Hong Kong

Lobsters with cheese!
A Cable Car, a Giant Buddha, and a Streetful of Seafood on Lantau Island, Hong Kong

Grilling up our scallop, skewered beef, and chicken wing.
A Cable Car, a Giant Buddha, and a Streetful of Seafood on Lantau Island, Hong Kong

Flame-torched beef yo! This reminded me of the delicious flame-torched beef we had at Raohe Night Market in Taiwan a couple of years ago.
A Cable Car, a Giant Buddha, and a Streetful of Seafood on Lantau Island, Hong Kong

Grilled chicken wing
A Cable Car, a Giant Buddha, and a Streetful of Seafood on Lantau Island, Hong Kong

Grilled scallops swimming in garlic
A Cable Car, a Giant Buddha, and a Streetful of Seafood on Lantau Island, Hong Kong

Grilled oyster also swimming in garlic
A Cable Car, a Giant Buddha, and a Streetful of Seafood on Lantau Island, Hong Kong

Grilled fish roe
A Cable Car, a Giant Buddha, and a Streetful of Seafood on Lantau Island, Hong Kong

Skewered chicken, squid, and beef
A Cable Car, a Giant Buddha, and a Streetful of Seafood on Lantau Island, Hong Kong

And of course, the lobster with cheese!
A Cable Car, a Giant Buddha, and a Streetful of Seafood on Lantau Island, Hong Kong

The claw! As expected, the lobster was the most expensive, at HKD 90 for half if I remember correctly. Everything else ranged in price from about HKD 15-30 or so. Not exactly cheap but not super expensive either.
A Cable Car, a Giant Buddha, and a Streetful of Seafood on Lantau Island, Hong Kong

A short video I made of today’s adventure on Lantau Island. Sorry for the shakiness in some parts. I’m new to videos and only now realizing the importance of stabilization. I’ll get a gimbal for my GoPro soon to bring you better videos. πŸ™‚

As described up top, Lantau Island is a must if it’s your first time in Hong Kong. I know it’s tempting to spend all your time shopping and eating but be sure to allocate at least half a day to this island. As you can see from this post, there’s a lot to do here and your Hong Kong trip won’t be complete without it.

We didn’t do it today but you may want to have a vegetarian lunch at Po Lin Monastery as well. They’ve become rather famous for it and I remember liking it very much when I ate there 30 years ago. πŸ™‚

How to Get There

There are three ways to visit the places mentioned in this post. The first two assume you’d like to ride the cable car just once. It’s pricier than taking the bus so some people may want to ride it either just entering or leaving the island. The third is for people who want to do the cable car roundtrip.

Remember that you can buy discount tickets to Ngong Ping 360 through Klook or Kkday and that Octopus cards are accepted on all Lantau Island buses.

TUNG CHUNG – NGONG PING – TAI O – TUNG CHUNG
Take the MTR to Tung Chung station (Exit B). Walk to Ngong Ping 360. Take the cable car to Ngong Ping Village and Tiang Tan Buddha. From Ngong Ping Village, take Bus 21 to Tai O Village. (Fare – HKD 6.30 [Mon-Sat], HKD 13 [Sun, public holidays]) From Tai O, take Bus 11 back to Tung Chung. (Fare – HKD 11 [Mon-Sat], HKD 18 [Sun, public holidays])

TUNG CHUNG – TAI O – NGONG PING – TUNG CHUNG
Take the MTR to Tung Chung station (Exit B). Walk to the bus station. Take Bus 11 to Tai O Village. (Fare – HKD 11 [Mon-Sat], HKD 18 [Sun, public holidays]) From Tai O, take Bus 21 to Ngong Ping Village. (Fare – HKD 6.30 [Mon-Sat], HKD 13 [Sun, public holidays]) From Ngong Ping, take the cable car back to Tung Chung.

TUNG CHUNG – NGONG PING – TAI O – NGONG PING – TUNG CHUNG
Take the MTR to Tung Chung station (Exit B). Walk to Ngong Ping 360. Take the cable car to Ngong Ping Village and Tiang Tan Buddha. From Ngong Ping Village, take Bus 21 to Tai O Village. (Fare – HKD 6.30 [Mon-Sat], HKD 13 [Sun, public holidays]). From Tai O, take Bus 21 back to Ngong Ping Village. Take the Ngong Ping 360 cable car back to Tung Chung.

For travel tips to Hong Kong, check out our Food-Lover’s Travel Guide to Hong Kong

The Food-Lover's Travel Guide to Hong Kong

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JB Macatulad

JB Macatulad

JB is one half of Will Fly for Food and its chief itinerary maker.Β Β He's the one to blame for all the crappy photos and verbal diarrhea on this blog.Β Β Don't listen to him.
JB Macatulad


There are 2 comments for this article
  1. Steven at 1:34 pm

    If you travel for food, Hongkong may be one of country that you should visit. many types of street foods we can find there and yet Hongkong is typically the source of seafood in East Asia (This place is where the famous Oyster sauce brand was made from fresh local oyster). The post really useful and give lots of information about great venue to visit and of course for having nice meal. Thats an awesome foodie travel.

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