Beijing Time (GMT+8)
11:56 pm Nov 03
Victoria Harbor is a natural landform harbor, situated between Hong Kong Island and Kowloon Island of Hong Kong. It is not only an important port of Hong Kong, China, but also a unique place which has witnessed the history of Hong Kong.
Before 1840, the Harbor was only a small fishing village with a population of about 5000 people. The original name was “Hong Kong Harbor”. Later then, the British, who had eyes on its potential to be a hub port of the East Asia and its important strategic location, waged the Opium War and seized the harbor. The Harbor was then renamed “Victoria Harbor” as to pay respect to Queen Victoria. From then on, it had opened the era of Hong Kong as a British colony and its subsequent development as a trading center. In 1997, the sovereignty over Hong Kong had been transferred back to the Chinese government.
Covering a water area of about 41 kilometers, Victoria Harbor is the biggest harbor in China and the third biggest harbor in the world. An average of 220,000 ships visits the harbor each year, including both oceangoing vessels and river vessels, for both goods and passengers. The Kwai Chung Container Terminals in the western part of the harbor is one of the busiest container transportation centers in the world.
Besides the spacious waters, Victoria Harbor also enjoys a very long coastline. Countless beautiful buildings along the south and north shores are another highlight of the harbor. There are modern Skyscrapers and landmark buildings along the south shore (Hong Kong Island) and there are also Hong Kong Art Museum and Hong Kong Space Museum along the north shore (Kowloon Island).
At daytime, the harbor owns a magnificent scenery combined by the blue sky, white clouds and emerald waters. During the night, the view is more stunning. The dramatic panoramic night view of the Victoria Harbor is world famous and has won Hong Kong the laurel of “the Pearl of Orient”. It is listed as one of the fifty must-visit sites in one’s life by National Geographic.
Among the best places to view the harbor are the Peak Tower atop Victoria Peak, or from the piazza at the Cultural Centre or the promenade of Tsim Sha Tsui on the Kowloon side. Rides on the Star Ferry, particularly the route between Central and Tsim Sha Tsui, are another popular way to view the harbor and cityscape.
As the natural center of the territory, the harbor has hosted many major public activities, including the annual fireworks shows on the second night of the Lunar New Year, the Dragon Boat Races since 1976, which is the greatest event in Hong Kong’s dragon boat circle.
These activities are popular within both tourists and locals alike. To enhance the popularity of the harbor as a sightseeing location, the government has introduced a show dubbed A Symphony of Lights since 2004. This display has been listed in Guinness World Records as the biggest multi-media light and music concert in the world.
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