Two weeks ago, on August 21st, 30 third-year junior high school students from Itoigawa departed on a study tour of Itoigawa’s Sister Geopark, the Hong Kong Global Geopark.
During their stay in Hong Kong, the weather was cloudy and rainy. They had initially prepared themselves for Hong Kong’s stifling heat but, thanks to the clouds and rain, were spared from the burning August sun.
On the 2nd day, the group toured the Hong Kong Geopark, located within Hong Kong’s surprisingly rural New Territories. In addition to a boat tour of the Geopark, they were also given an opportunity to land on and visit two islands which house traditional villages far removed from the skyscrapers and bright lights of Metropolitan Hong Kong.
The scenery on the islands and within the villages of the Hong Kong Geopark were like nothing the students had ever seen.
After dinner, the students went to view the nightscape of Hong Kong, but the fog was heavy and so the summit of Hong Kong’s famous Victoria Peak was not visible. Sadly, the fog ensured that Hong Kong’s famous “Million Dollar View” could only be appraised at about 500 grand that night.
On the 3rd day, the students from Itoigawa had an opportunity to meet with local students from Hong Kong and tour more of the Geopark together. At lunchtime shyness got the better of the students and they said very little to each other, but by the end of the exchange they were exchanging mail addresses and promising to write each other! Hopefully some closer friendships will develop through continued correspondence.
On the 4th day of their stay in Hong Kong, the group toured the city of Hong Kong and learned more about how people live there. While they spent the entire day in the city, enjoying a wide range of sights and visiting many landmarks, the students reported that it felt like they were there for only a moment. They certainly want to visit again to experience more of this beautiful city.
It was a great five days for the students who participated and they learned a great deal about our Sister Geopark in Hong Kong. Through programs like this we hope to continue to foster close relationships with other geoparks both here in Asia and aroud the world!