Tuesday, 28 February 2012

The Heritage Tail of Hong kong

Hong Kong is full of wonderful “secret” corners to explore. Of course, there are the “must sees” — Victoria Peak, the Star Ferry, Aberdeen, Stanley and the Temple Street Night Market etc that most visitors with four or five days wouldn’t want to miss. But for those with more time in this exciting, frenetic city, there are special places that remain uncrowded and unhurried and are perfect for anyone interested in the past and wanting a glimpse into life in present-day Hong Kong. Some of these special places — many dating back centuries — are linked together into the Ping Shan Heritage Trail. They arrived sometime in the 10th to 11th centuries, establishing small villages, some of which were walled for protection against roving bandits.

Beginning of trail

The first sight on the Ping Shan Trail was the Tsui Sing Lau Pagoda. This hexagonal, three-story green-brick structure is unique. Dating from the 15th century, it is the oldest pagoda in the New Territories and one of the few left in either the New Territories or Hong Kong.Stones are placed on the altar to show that the god is present.

Next to the altar is an incinerator in which fake paper money is burned as an offering to ancestors. On this trip, we bought and carried some “hell money,” as it’s called, to burn in the incinerators found in most temples and shrines.Hell money can be purchased in stores specializing in paper goods to be burned. These goods include not only fake million-dollar bills but also miniature computers, cars, houses, clothing and even food on plates, all made of paper.

Ancestral halls

Next on the trail are two magnificent ancestral halls, standing shoulder to shoulder and almost identical, although one is much older than the other.

The Tang Ancestral Hall, constructed in 1273, consists of three halls and two internal courtyards. It served as the main ancestral hall of the Tang clan in this area. The guest house is richly decorated with carved panels and brackets and gives a good idea of a wealthy Chinese family’s private residence.

This is not just the ending there are many things to be explore in the city. So what you are waiting for? Just book your Cheap Flights to Hong Kong and dug yourself to know the amazing history of the metropolis.

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