Thursday, 2 October 2014

Nature in the City

The Hong Kong Zoological and Botanical Gardens is a bit different than those elsewhere. To start with . . . it's free!!

There are several large aviaries, lots of different kinds of primates (gorillas, orangutangs, various types of monkeys and ring-tailed and ruffed lemurs) and a few turtles both very big and very small. A few of the monkeys were very active so we sat for a while, watched and laughed at their antics. It was great to see that they all have quite large areas to move around in.

I didn't take many photos as the aviaries were not ones you could go into and of course the monkey enclosures were cages so both were not ideal for photographs. And I leave most of the flower photography to Andrew for obvious reasons. (Obvious to those who have seen his photos compared to mine!)

In the afternoon we took the Star Ferry over to Kowloon and headed to Kowloon Park. It was extremely busy so definitely wasn't a highlight. We later learned that October 1 is Chinese National Day so everyone was enjoying the holiday.
Starr Ferry, from Kowloon looking back toward Central Hong Kong

Today we took the metro (two different lines) and a taxi out to the Mai Po Marsh Nature Reserve in the New Territories. The Reserve is now a protected area and is managed by the World Wildlife Federation. It was great to get out of the city for a day!

Our guidebook indicated there were several 3-hour English guided tours a day but in actual fact there was a Cantonese tour in the morning and an English one in the afternoon. Since you can only go into the protected area with a guide and we didn't want to wait several hours, we went on the Cantonese tour. Luckily the guide was kind enough to give us a very abbreviated English version at each stop and answer several questions. 

These water lilies were  gorgeous and plentiful! 

The area is extremely diverse with several different wetland habitats including freshwater ponds, mudflats, reedbeds and mangroves. 

Birds we saw included herons (Great Blue and Chinese), black kites, grebes, Chinese bulbuls, cormorants, egrets, ibis and doves.

Between the sweltering hot and humid days and all the walking we're doing, I am sleeping very well at night!!! 

No comments:

Post a Comment