Picture of Skyfair Balloons Ocean Park in Hong Kong, China.
Hong Kong is a largely self-governing territory of the People's Republic of China, facing Guangdong province to the north and the South China Sea to the east, west and south.
Hong Kong is a global metropolitan and international financial centre, and has a highly developed capitalist economy. Beginning as a trading port, Hong Kong became a crown colony of the United Kingdom in 1842, reclassified as a British dependent territory in 1983, and remained so until the transfer of its sovereignty to the People's Republic of China in 1997.
Under the "one country, two systems" policy, Hong Kong enjoys high degree of autonomy in all areas with the exception of foreign affairs and defence, which are the responsibility of the PRC Government.
Although the population is predominantly Chinese, residents and expatriates of other ethnicities form a small but significant segment of society. With a population of 7 million people but land area of only 1,108 km2 (428 sq mi), Hong Kong is one of the most densely populated areas in the world.
Ocean Park Hong Kong is a theme park in the Southern District of Hong Kong. The marine-themed amusement park covers the area of Wong Chuk Hang and Nam Long Shan on Hong Kong Island.
The park, ranked 100th in 'The World’s Most Popular Amusement Parks’ by Forbes in June 2006, had 4.38 million visitors in the fiscal year 2005/2006. Ocean Park also ranked 16th in the TEA/ERA Theme Park Attendance Report 2007 with approximately 4.9 million visitors, higher than Hong Kong Disneyland at 21st place with 4.1 million visitors.
It covers an area of 870,000 square metres. The different parts of the park are connected by a gondola lift system (or cable car system), as well as the world's second longest outdoor escalator. The theme park currently has over 14 rides and other attractions such as aquariums. Besides housing two roller coasters, Ocean Park also features a Giant panda exhibit, a jelly fish and Chinese sturgeon aquarium, as well as a four-story aquarium displaying more than 2000 fish.
The official mascot of Ocean Park is "Whiskers"—a waving sea lion. Besides being an amusement park, Ocean Park Hong Kong also operates observatories, well developed laboratories, an education department and a Whales And Dolphins Fund.