Also known as the Mid-Autumn Festival, the August Moon Festival is a Chinese celebration of the harvest, similar to our Thanksgiving holiday. August Moon is held on the 15th day of the 8th lunar month, when Chinese legend says the moon is at its roundest and brightest.
This is usually around the end of September, which is a much more reasonable time to celebrate the fall harvest than the 4th Thursday of November. Anyway, Jeff got the day off from work, so we decided to spend the day in Hong Kong.
Hong Kong was holding an August Moon Festival in Victoria Park to celebrate the holiday. But it did not start until after 3 pm, so we had to do something else in the morning. We decided to hike up Victoria Peak.
It is easier to take the tram up, as most tourists do, and we have done that in the past. But we had never hiked up to the top, so we decided to try it.
To get to the Victoria Peak tram station, and the start of one of the trails up to the top, you go through Hong Kong Park.
This is a beautiful park! The Flagstaff House is located inside the park. It is the oldest Western building in Hong Kong, built in 1846. It now has a tea museum inside it. We went into the museum before starting our hike.
The museum had many exhibits on the history of making and brewing tea. The method of brewing has changed over the centuries. And many of the minority cultures in China also brew tea in different ways.
I learned a lot about tea brewing and history from reading the displays. They also had many displays of artistic tea sets.
I am not sure if this qualifies as an only in China moment. I can understand why you would want to let visitors know that you disinfect the tea desk.
But why so emphatically SIX times?
We spent a lot of time inside the tea museum because it was interesting, air-conditioned, and not crowded. But we finally had to get on our way climbing up the trail to the top of Victoria Peak.
I said in an earlier blog entry that hiking in the hot, humid weather from May through October in Hong Kong is not a good idea. But the trail was quite shady, and we went up very slowly.
Did you know that all of the slopes alongside the trails here are registered? The British must have started that; it seems like their type of bureaucratic idea.
As always when I have to be out in the tropical sun, I have a hat, sun umbrella, and I am wearing arm protectors. I also had on sunscreen. I was very hot. But as it is still summer weather here, there are still flowers along the trail.
We got lost and ended up on a trail that went to the peak next to Victoria Peak. But we could see our destination from the other peak, so we just hiked down a bit and over to where we wanted to be. We ate a late lunch at one of the restaurants at the top of Victoria Peak, and then hiked back down towards Victoria Park.
It was dusk when we arrived at the August Moon Festival Site in Victoria Park.
This was the highlight of the August Moon Festival. It was a large half moon, made from recycled large plastic water bottles. It looked like a full moon when you saw the reflection in the pond. Very clever! Here is the recycled water bottle moon in the day light.
Here is a photo of the recycled plastic water bottle moon at night.
There were also lanterns in the shapes of popular Hong Kong foods. Here is Jeff standing next to some steamed dumplings,
and a Mongolian hot pot.
We had a lot of fum celebrating the August Moon Festival in Hong Kong, but it was a very long day. We left Longhua at about 8 am, and didn’t get back home until after 10:30 pm.