Friday, 3 October 2014

Big Buddha, Cable Cars and Tea

Along with about a bazillion other people, we went to see the Big Buddha today on Lantau Island. Officially named the Tian Tan Buddha, it's 112 ft tall. Huge! Unfortunately it was a very grey and cloudy/smoggy/foggy day so photos are not the brightest.

Transportation to the Buddha included the metro and the Ngong Ping 360 (a very, very long cable car ride). Humourously, as we got closer to the front of the line the staff were looking for two people to fill one of the gondola cars. They quickly scanned and waved us forward. It took me a while to figure out how they knew we were only two. Duh! Tall white people! Which two of these things don't look like the others?!?

After getting a closer look at the Buddha and the Po Lin Monastery, we found refuge from the crowds in a fancy tea shop where we learned the art of making a cup of tea. Boil water to a very specific temperature, warm the tea pot and cups, rinse the tea (once or twice depending on the type of tea), then strain and pour (no steeping for the type of tea we had). We tried the fermented Pu-erh, which neither of us had ever had before. "Good for digestion," we were told.

One of two pillars guarding the entrance to the monastery.
Inside the monastery.
The Art of Tea

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