Possibly the last Chinese junk to be painstakingly handcrafted in Hong Kong, Aqua Luna was created using age-old designs and traditional materials by a local, longtime craftsman. Also known as Cheung Po Tsai in Cantonese, Aqua Luna is named after the infamous Cheung Chau island pirate who used to terrorize these waters.
Offering 1,500 square feet of indoor and al fresco space, split across two wooden decks, Aqua Luna’s full bar and cocktail lounge can accommodate up to 80 guests at a time for exclusive private cocktail cruises and dinners. However, the junk follows a regular schedule, plying the waters of Victoria Harbour between Hong Kong Island and Kowloon.
Aqua Luna plies the waters of Hong Kong harbor day and night — Photo courtesy of Aqua Luna
It was the "fragrant harbor" – referring to the incense grown here, rather than any particularly pleasing odors – that drew merchants to Hong Kong in the first place, a safe, deep water anchorage with plenty of fresh water onshore. Hong Kong has changed out of all recognition in the past century or so, and there are so many sights to see both on land and on the water.
Along with Aqua Kuna, scores of craft make their way back and forth: oceangoing container ships, lighters, packet boats, ferries, pleasure craft, fishing trawlers, yachts and even dinghies barely big enough to contain the fisherman who is dipping his net in the water.
On either shore, the skyscrapers rise like a battalion of giants. It's not so much their height, as their number. Hong Kong is short of building space, and the harbor front has been reclaimed again and again to make room for more. Indeed, it's being reclaimed again in a massive project that will transform the northern coast of Hong Kong Island.
Perhaps one of the best times to board Aqua Luna is during the Symphony of Lights, which takes place every day at 8 p.m. A massive sound and light show that's beamed between the high rises on either side of the harbor, it's the city's best free entertainment.
And while there's a charge for boarding Aqua Luna, it's certainly one of the most exclusive excursions in Hong Kong. It's also a great chance to meet other people, and not simply tourists, but also residents, who relish the grand spectacle of their home turf as much as anyone else.
Naturally, the photographic opportunities on board are unrivaled. Finally, this is a trip that kids love just as much as (if not more so than) adults. Bon voyage!