After you finish with the 360 degrees view of Hong Kong in the cable car, the Big Buddha and the Po Lin Monastery, you can either hit back home or visit a surreal fishing village of Hong Kong.
You can catch a bus from the bus terminus behind the Bug Buddha or hail a cab, like we did till Tai O, a fishing town on the western side of Lantau Island.
Tai O, in Chinese means a large inlet of water as the Tai O river splits to the north (Tai O creek) and west, and this fishing village lies at the fork. There is pedestrian bridge that connect the north and west of the fork. Earlier it was a rope bridge which has now been made of steel and concrete.
When British came to Hong Kong, this village was called Tanka village and was an illegal entry point to enter Hong Kong for people escaping from China. It was also used by the smugglers due to its strategic location to smuggle guns, tobacco and people. Due to salt marshes present here, salt was also produced here.
Although there is a public school here, most youngsters move out of the island, on attaining adulthood. Fishing is therefore on the decline here.
There was a huge fire in 2000 on the island, which destroyed a large part of the village houses and all you see now are squatters’ huts or dilapidated stilt houses.
Looking at the current situation of the village it is difficult to comprehend that once this was called the “Venice of Hong Kong”.
There is village market where shops sell traditional salted fish and shrimp paste. You can also go for a boat ride here and if you are lucky you might see the Pink Dolphins. On stilt houses there are some eating joints where you can sample the local eats.
There is small shop in the market housing old stuff used by the village and visiting it you get the feeling a visiting a village museum.