Hong Kong: Historic, Green and Scenic- Pok Fu Lam
Located within the Pok Fu Lam village are some of the area’s historical gems, the traditional village shrine in the form on an octagonal cowshed and the Bethanie Sanatorium. The latter is a stunning Grade II, listed, historic building dating back to 1875. The Missions Etrangères de Paris (the French Mission) built the Bethanie in the 1870’s as a rest and recuperation facility for priests and missionaries travelling and working in Asia.
The Bethanie, today houses the HKAPA School of Film and Television while its neo-gothic George.C Tso Memorial Chapel is the home of the Emmanuel Church. The Emanuel Church is an Anglican Episcopal Church and a daughter church of St John’s Cathedral that features services in English. The Church is a gorgeous edifice featuring stunning decorative accents such as stained glass windows; paneled doors and a magnificent altar. A popular attraction the chapel also serves a setting for weddings.
Other landmarks in the vicinity include the remnants of the original Dairy Farm Building. The Dairy Farm, Hong Kong’s first Dairy facility was established in 1886, to provide Hong Kongers with fresh milk daily. The farm provided employment to several residents of Pok Fu Lam village until it shut shop in 1983.
As for daily needs and shopping facilities supermarkets and shops are available within the Cyberport complex. Park and Shop superstores are also easily accessible at Chi Fu, Belcher’s Street and in the Aberdeen town centre located a short distance away. Hong Kong’s other major supermarket brand Wellcome has outlets at the Westwood on Belcher’s Street at the starting point of the Pok Fu Lam neighbourhood and the popular Scenic Villas development on Victoria Road.
Pok Fu Lam is also home to a plethora of educational institutions. The Hong Kong University is prominent in the neighbourhood that is also home to the West Island School (Secondary) and the Kennedy School (primary) of the ESF network. As for private schools, the neighborhood is the home of the Kellet School (the British International School of Hong Kong) and the Independent Schools Foundation Academy and also features a branch of the German Swiss International School. Schools belonging to the Woodland’s Group, Sunshine International, Morningstar and Safari Kids cater to the needs of preschoolers of the area.
Many public and minibus routes serve Pok Fu Lam, and the area is also within close reach of the West Harbor Tunnel access. The opening of HKU station opposite the Belcher’s development has enhanced the already excellent transportation links to the area. The journey to Central from Pok Fu Lam spans about twenty minutes depending on traffic conditions.
Pok Fu Lam has a wealth of recreation facilities. The Pok Fu Lam riding club located at the foot of Pok Fu Lam Reservoir Road offers riding lessons in English and Cantonese for children and adults alike. The verdant Pok Fu Lam Country Park serves as the starting point of the Pok Fu Lam family walk a beginner level hike. Other hiking trails include the Pok Fu Lam to Peel Rise hike and the Pok Fu Lam to the Peak hike. The Cyberport Waterfront Park is another green lung of the area with play facilities for children and dogs too.
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