I decided to take the trip up to Victoria Peak for legendary views of the harbour and city, as suggested by several friends. There is a funicular tramway that goes to the top. When I arrived at the bottom station there was a two-hour wait to buy tickets to get to the top. I went to the nearby taxi rank and asked the taxi driver how much to go to the top. HK $250 he said. I laughed at him and walked off. That’s the same amount it cost to get from the airport to my hotel yesterday–about 35 km.
I walked down the hill to Connaught St and flagged a taxi down. Nice youngish fella, not bad English (better than my Cantonese!).
We agreed for him to take me up the mountain and to stop at several view points along the way. We had a great time, touring around for about 90 minutes taking about various topics from the Chinese love of gambling, to linguistics differences between Cantonese and Mandarin, to the Occupy Central protests that just wound down, and why there are different taxi types in Hong Kong (Lantau, Urban, and New Territories). I can’t say I understood most of the explanations…
Oh, and the total cost? HK $149. I gave him $170.
Anyway, I’ve evidently been rather fortunate with the weather. Apparently it rained the day before I arrived and will do so again tomorrow when I leave. Nice to have one go my way every so often!