Ma Wan Island
Ma Wan Island is a special island in Hong Kong. It is a small island that is covered with recreational parks, big bridges, museums, beaches, and a residential complex.
During a visit to the island, you can choose between the Ark Museum, Noah's Ark Hotel, Ma Wan Park, restaurants, the beaches, the scenic view sites, and the garden and natural hiking areas for a fun visit.
The newest theme park in Hong Kong called Noah's Ark opened there in 2009. The Ark park is under the Tsing Ma Bridge and is part of the Ma Wan Park complex (馬灣公園挪亞方), and is right next to beautiful Tung Wan beach.
Geography and Features
- Though the island is small, it is interesting. It has unusually good scenic views and interesting places. It is uncrowded and comparatively quiet. It measures 1.5 kilometers long by 1.3 kilometers wide. There is a relatively quiet, park-like setting.
- The northern half of Ma Wan Island is mainly a luxurious hi-rise residential area called Park Island Apartments. A lot of expats live there. The area has the reputation of being one of the best places to live in Hong Kong. It was built by Sun Hung Kai.
- The southern half of Ma Wan Island has Ma Wan Park, Noah's Ark, beaches, museums, an old fishing village called Ma Wan Town, a 69 meter high hill called Tai Leng Tau that has a lot of great views, and a little natural hiking area. The Lantau Link Highway crosses there, and two very large bridges are there: the world-record size Tsing Ma Bridge and the Kap Shui Mun Bridge.
Ma Wan Park
Ma Wan Park and Noah's Ark takes up most of the southern side of the island. Ma Wan Park occupies a woody rise that is about 250 meters by 200 meters. The free private park is open to the public. Besides interesting views, there are thematic gardens about love and life, a playground, archaeological exhibits and free museums.
There are about ten different gardens you can see including a fern garden and an iris garden. The Solar Tower may open soon. It is a museum about the history of Chinese astronomy with a working solar telescope for the public to watch the sun.
There is a small museum called Heritage Center. In 2007, there were important archaeological discoveries on the island. Remains from six different eras were discovered ranging from the stone age to the Qing Dynasty. Among the exhibits are a Tang Dynasty kiln that is more than 1,000 years old and a Qing Dynasty kiln.
Noah's Ark Amusement Park is a part of Ma Wan Park, but it has a separate entrance on the southwest side. Both were built by Sun Hung Kai.
Sights from Tai Leng Tau Hill
There is a short natural hiking trail on the hill. Originally, the developers of the theme park wanted to retain the natural areas on the island to cherish the natural environment.
You can hike on the hill on a natural foot path and visit a Chinese cemetery. It is interesting if you haven't seen one before. The views of the harbor and bridges are good.
You can follow the beach past Noah's Ark and go under the bridge. On the other side, there are natural undeveloped hiking paths. These are better than concrete sidewalks as in much of China and Hong Kong. The walk along the clean beach itself is nice.
From the east side of the hill, you can see the Tsing Ma Bridge that is 1,377 meters (4,518 feet) long and the Ting Kau Bridge that is 1,177 meters long. The bridges are lit up at night.
On the west side of the hill among the tombs, you can see the 750 meter long Kap Shui Mun Bridge. You can watch the ships sail by.
The island is a little difficult to get to. There is a direct shuttle bus to the airport.
See transportation information to the island on our Noah's Ark Amusement Park page.
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