Sunday, March 25, 2018

Up, Up, Up, and Then Down.

I think Bro thought I was crazy to drag him to see escalators but that's exactly what I did and it was the first thing we did today after our dim sum breakfast at Lin Heung. The Central-Mid Levels Escalator system in Hong Kong is not only an important transportation system for residents of the city but it's also a tourist attraction so we had to go.

It's very early on a Sunday morning but not everyone in Hong Kong was still asleep.

From Lin Heung Tea House, we just continued walking along Wellington Street as the escalators run past there.

Schematic diagram by A52ljgh89 .  Licensed under CC BY-SA 4.0.

Hong Kong Island is dominated by steep, hilly terrain and the Central-Mid Levels  escalator and walkway system makes it easier to from the lower Central area to the higher Mid Levels neighborhood.

The Central–Mid-Levels escalator and walkway system in Hong Kong is the longest outdoor covered escalator system in the world.

The escalator system itself is 800 meter (2,600 ft) long with a vertical climb of 135 meters (443 ft).  It links Queen's Road Central in Central with Conduit Road in the Mid-Levels, traveling primarily up Cochrane and Shelley Streets. At Queen's Road Central, the Central–Mid-Levels escalators system is connected through Central Market to the Central Elevated Walkway, an extensive footbridge network covering the Central area.

To ride the entire length of just the escalator system takes twenty minutes but many people walk while the escalator moves to shorten their trip.

The system has been in operation since 1993.

Since we had never been to the escalators before, we didn't realize there are specific times for when the escalators go uphill and when then reverse direction and come downhill.  The hours are set to facilitate transportation during the weekday rush hour but remain as is even on weekends.  It definitely is a convenient way to get up and down the hill!

Downhill direction: Mid-Levels to Central 6am to 10am daily
Uphill direction: Central to Mid-Levels 10am to midnight daily

From 10am the direction of travel of each set of escalators and travelators (moving walkways) is reversed in sequence starting from the top of the system at Conduit Road, taking about 20 to 25 minutes for the final travelator connecting Wellington Street with Queen's Road Central to be reversed.

You can enter and exit the system at various points to head to the many restaurants and shops that line the path that the escalator system runs through.  For those who are keen on getting in some exercise, you can also walk all the way up the hill rather than taking the escalators.

When we arrived, the escalators were still moving downhill so we had to walk up for a distance and then we rode them down....before the 10a reversal time. 

It was quite the walk uphill and when we had had enough, we had a few minutes rest on the way down.

On to our next destination which was just a short walk away - Man Mo Temple.