Tuesday, June 14, 2016

Hong Kong 13 May to 18 May 2016

Ruddy Cuckoo-dove and Purple-tailed Imperial Pigeon
Having enjoyed our November trip to Hong Kong it was an easy decision to revisit when we found a March promotional offer on SIA .
Although early summer may not yield the birds we saw in winter, we were quite happy to experience a different season.  We followed the November itinerary booking the same hotel Harbour Plaza Resort at Tin Sui Wai but opted for a shorter stay as we did not visit Maipo this time.  We booked Evergreen near Jordon as we found the area convenient to do some shopping and to visit one of the islands.   Lioe and Linda joined us for the trip but we split up for the second day as Lioe and Linda visited Maipo, while we visited Shek Kong and Kadoorie Farm.
From our previous trips we were familiar with the local buses and used them most of the trip.  On arrival at Hong Kong airport we bought the 8-day SIM card (HKD118) which was more than enough for our 6 days trip.  The bus E34A  at the public bus Ground Transport Center – HKD13.90 per pax was punctual and within 80 mins we arrived Tin Shui Wai Town Centre and walked next door to check into Harbour Plaza.
After a quick lunch at the shopping mall we took bus 276B opposite Ginza shopping centre to Sheung Shui, a 20 mins ride and crossed over at MRT station to the Minibus station for bus 51K, 15 mins ride (HKD5.40)  to Hor Sheung Heung.  We walked over the bridge to Long Valley.  During summer the vegetables grown were the “Kang Kong” not the “Water-cress" we saw in November.  The egrets and herons were there with a Brown Shrike on the wire.  Except for the Chinese Pond herons in breeding plumage we saw none of the migratory water birds that had been there in winter. 
 We went back to the hotel and met up for dinner which was a trip on the LRT to Tsuen Wan West;  took bus 234A to Sham Tseng, and had roast goose at Yue Kee Roast Goose restaurant.  There were other roast goose restaurants in the area but Yue Kee  was where we had previously eaten at and had found the food good.  

On Saturday 14th May while Lioe and Linda went to Maipo Nature Reserve , we we  took the LRT / MRT to Kam Sheung Lu Station.  It was then a taxi to Shek Kong Airfield Road (HKD45) a 10 min drive where we alighted near the canal and did our birding back to Kam Sheung Lu Station.  We were not disappointed as quite quickly we saw a few Red-billed
Red-billed Blue Magpie
Blue Magpies feeding on the papaya tree behind some bushes.
After walking back to Kam Sheung Lu we took mini 64K to Lam Kam Road, it was an uphill ride and the bus stop was just opposite the Kadoorie Farm & Botanic Garden.   As there was a queue we enquired, and it was to buy tickets for the shuttle bus up to the hill garden.   We bought the 11 o’clock bus and the bus stopped at the different sections of the hill for visitors to alight and explore.  You can then return to wait for the next shuttle to go further.
We decided to alight at the Raptor Sanctury and saw a few Black Kites in the sky.  There were a few raptors that were rescued and being cared in big avairies.

We walked down the hill and took our lunch at the one and only cafe which serves only vegetarian food.  We left at 1.30pm and took the bus to Tai Po Market to change to MRT back to Sheung Shui and bus 276B back to hotel for a rest before meeting up for dinner which was at Yuen Long, taking the LRT.   We tried another roost goose Tin Hung 天鴻燒鵝飯店 but had to wait as it was a small shop at Yan Yee Bldg, 88 Kin Yip St.   On our way
Masked Laughingthrush
back we bought wife biscuits from Hang Heung.

On 15 May – Sunday – we had dim sum breakfast at the Hotel’s restaurant and then took the bus 276B to Sheung Shui, followed by mini bus 51K to Hor Sheung Heung, to give  Lioe and Linda a preview of Long Valley. After birding at the farm land, we returned to Harbour Plaza for a 1 pm check out.  We took a taxi (HKD112) to our next hotel, Evergreen Hotel at Woo Sung Street.   
Harbour Cruise

Harbour Cruise

We then took a bus No.2 to the Star Ferry to buy our tickets for Duk Ling, a 1 hour harbour cruise with light show at 7.30 pm   Duk Ling is an authentic Chinese Junk restored to its original design https://www.dukling.com.hk/en/order/.  We also checked out information on the ferry to Lamma Island.  It was a late lunch before we took a slow walk to the Star Ferry, to wait for our 7.30 pm cruise.

Cattle Egrets
16th May morning we went to Star Ferry Pier 4 and took the Ferry to Lamma Island  choosing to land at Yung Shue Wan pier.  It was a 30 mins ferry ride (HKD20)
As we walked onto the island, very noticeable were the Black Kites flying around the hill.  Its a small village and a stroll through the narrow street we were soon at the small Tin Hau Temple.  There were some Japanese White-eyes in the trees and Black Crown Night Heron and Little Egret on the rocks waiting to catch their breakfast.  We had coffee at the Green Cottage and later Lunch at the dim sum restaurant near the pier .   There are many places where you can stay, and it seems a quiet and tranquil place for a future stay as there are no vehicles on the island.  In the afternoon we took the 12 noon ferry back to Central and took bus 15 to Pacific Plaza and went up the escalator to Hong Kong Park which is behind the Island Shangri-la Hotel.
At the aviary the birds were so close and friendly, we stayed for 3 hours before going off at 4pm.
We then went back to the hotel to drop off our equipment and took the MTR to Sham Sui
Little Egret 
Po, Exit A1 for some outdoor wear shopping at 
Nam Cheong Street.   Bought a few things at shop 133 Hengchanghang and at 133C Anata Fashion. We then took the MTR to Northpoint, Exit A1 cross over to Java St market for dinner at Tung Po restaurant, another revisit for us to this local eatery.

Black-crowned Night Heron
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            On the 17th we visited the Yuen Po Street Bird Market and Flower Market and it was then a day looking at shops in Mongkok for cameras and outdoor wear.
While Lioe and Linda left that evening, we stayed another night, before we came home on 18th.