select - Harbour Views
Written by Brian Johnston Illustration by Melanie Armstrong
Real estate agents talk about location, location, location – and these three cities have it in spades, offering some of the world’s most dazzling harbour views, whether from the summit of neighbouring peaks or at water level from a local ferry.
Undoubtedly the highlight of Hong Kong is The Peak, reached by a rack railway that climbs dizzyingly behind the skyscrapers to reveal dazzling sights of the city and harbour. Other views of one of the world’s most spectacular harbours can be enjoyed from the equally iconic Star Ferries, which shuttle between Kowloon and Hong Kong Island in seven minutes. But more tranquil scenery may be found farther afield on Hong Kong’s outlying islands, which provide glimpses of country China, with farms and gaggles of geese. Even Lantau, part of which has been reclaimed for Chek Lap Kok Airport and Disneyland, retains remote beaches and miles of walking tracks through whispering forests. Po Lin Monastery has ornate temples painted with writhing dragons, while a nearby 250-tonne Buddha gazing serenely over the South China Sea is another site for a contrasting view of the sea approaches to Hong Kong harbour.
Nature and human endeavour combine to produce one of the world’s most amazing harbour landscapes.
Hong Kong lies on the south coast of China on the Pearl River Delta, overlooking the South China Sea.
HOW TO GET THERE
Qatar Airways has daily flights from Doha to Hong Kong.
The 25-minute ride on the Staten Island public ferry affords splendid sights of New York Harbour. The ferry departs from Whitehall Street in Lower Manhattan and chugs past the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island, where millions of 19th-century immigrants first set foot on American soil. Views of Manhattan’s skyscrapers and Brooklyn Bridge are brilliant, especially after dark, when lights glitter and seagulls swoop. Easily one of the world’s best ferry rides, it is certainly the cheapest – absolutely free. Two other New York icons provide spectacular water views: the ascent to the Statue of Liberty crown, and a walk across Brooklyn Bridge. Walkers (and cyclists) along the bridge can use a boardwalk elevated above the roadway, which allows an excellent up-close look at this surprisingly beautiful engineering triumph. Benches along the way encourage sitting to contemplate the bridge and views over East River and Manhattan.
New York not only provides superb water views but, with Miss Liberty gracing the harbour, a modern icon too.
New York lies on the Atlantic coast of northeast USA, halfway between Washington, DC and Boston.
HOW TO GET THERE
Qatar Airways has daily flights from Doha to New York.
When it comes to harbours, Cape Town lays claim to the world’s most breathtaking setting, surrounded by scalloped bays and overlooked by rugged peaks such as Table Mountain. The cable car to the summit provides a sweeping panorama and a surprisingly wild and rugged landscape. If you have a car, head along the coast to Chapman’s Peak Drive, one of the most dramatic roads in all Africa.
One of the world’s most renowned harbour cities is surrounded by unbeatable ocean and mountain scenery.
Cape Town’s dramatic landscape unfolds in the southwest corner of the African continent, along the Atlantic coast.
HOW TO GET THERE
Qatar Airways flies from Doha to Cape Town four times a week.