The main attraction is – as might be expected – the life-sized parade of animals trooping out of the ark through a garden replete with landscaping, ponds and waterfalls. Giraffes, camels, elephants, polar bears – they’re all here, two by two, and just as they might be discovered in nature.
Each pair of animals comes with a QR code reader. You can scan it on your portable device to get information about their habitat, diet, life expectancy and so forth. Like the whole of this theme park, the animals provide fun for all the family, whether or not they are familiar with the early chapters of the Bible.
Noah's Ark is one of Hong Kong's most unusual attractions — Photo courtesy of Noah's Ark Hong Kong
Right next to Noah’s Ark, the Ma Wan Park Nature Garden provides an excellent opportunity to explore the natural side of Hong Kong, which all too often is represented simply as a concrete jungle. From the Hilltop Lookout, visitors can admire both the park and the surrounding terrain; Noah’s Ark is right beneath the mighty 1.3-mile Tsing Ma Bridge, which connects the onetime island of Lantau with the rest of Hong Kong.
There are numerous other attractions at Noah’s Ark, but one of the most exciting is the Solar Tower, which is as educational as it is entertaining. It's one of the largest vacuum solar telescopes in the region, and visitors can peer into it and observe the sun’s surface activity as it happens.
Supporting activities include a 3D astronomy documentary, which among other things explains the workings of the sun and the solar system. This is the more scientific side of Noah’s Ark, but it’s well-interpreted, fun and obviously really popular with visitors both young and old.
Most people regard Noah’s Ark as a day excursion, while for others it might well make a good final Hong Kong day out, as it's located on Ma Wan Island near the international airport, with excellent views of the sea and harbor, together with its own semi-private beach.
For anyone with a night to spare, there's also a hotel on the premises, with family-style rooms that can sleep up to eight, (Hong Kongers tend to travel in groups, whether it’s family or friends.)
For anyone feeling peckish, Harvest Restaurant serves a mix of Asian cuisine and international favorites, which are both filling and reasonably priced.