THE metro has been even more hectic than usual this holiday season and as Christmas and New Year’s eve loom, some folks may consider quitting the city — the country — entirely for the duration.
Certainly a favorite destination among Filipinos, Hong Kong is offering visitors something special this season. There are two spectacular light shows over Victoria Harbour — the new version of the internationally acclaimed nightly multi-media light show A Symphony of Light and the winter version of the Hong Kong Pulse Light Show — and a new virtual reality ride at Ocean Park.
The 10-minute A Symphony of Light show begins at 8 p.m. every evening and is followed by an eight-minute performance of the Hong Kong Pulse Light Show. Both shows run nightly until Dec. 28. The two shows are best viewed from the Tsim Sha Tsui waterfront.
The new version of A Symphony of Lights features dynamic rays of light sent out in rhythm from 40 buildings and locations on both sides of the Victoria Harbour. The new show incorporates colored searchlights, lasers, and beam lights sent out like a special fan-shaped lighting effect from the roof of the Central Government Offices and the Revenue Tower. Ten LED panels on harborside buildings are for the first time joining the multimedia show, displaying images and messages to encourage audience participation.
The show is complemented by music from the Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra. By downloading the A Symphony of Lights mobile app, visitors can listen to the music simultaneously and share their photos on social media platforms.
Immediately after A Symphony of Lights, the winter version of Hong Kong Pulse Light Show begins at the Hong Kong Cultural Centre. Spectators on the Tsim Sha Tsui waterfront can view it from the Hong Kong Cultural Centre Piazza.
The 3-D projection show begins with a snowstorm which covers the Hong Kong Cultural Centre in snow and ice and blows away the numbers on the Clock Tower, stopping time just before Christmas arrives. A dragon then sets out to find the missing numbers which are scattered across Hong Kong landmarks. The dragon eventually finds them and restarts time to save Christmas.
There is also something new for Hong Kong visitors to try out: Ocean Park Hong Kong has launched Hong Kong’s first ever virtual reality rollercoaster — The Mine Train presented by Samsung Gear VR — as part of its Christmas Sensation Celebration.
After putting on special VR headsets with attached Samsung GALAXY smartphones on the Mine Train, guests will begin their ultra-realistic journey in the Amazon rainforest through the vivid screen of GALAXY smartphones. Equipped with a 101-degree field of view, Gear VR allows guests to enjoy the 360° video in first person view. Guests can come face to face with animals living in the Amazon rainforest, while experiencing the sensations of the highest speed at 71 kilometers per hour and gravitation forces as the train rockets up and down along the tracks.
In addition to the VR rollercoaster, there are two VR game zones — a life-like shootout at the VR Arcade, and riding hyper-speed bikes, completing missions in mid-air, and even boxing at the VR Challenges Zone. Thrill Mountain also houses a seasonal VR cinema where guests can immerse themselves beneath the rainforest canopy in a 360° view in the VR Forest Adventure.
For discounts and more information, visit www.oceanpark.com.hk.