A 72-seat, lightweight all-metal tramcar was introduced in 1959
before the Peak Tram began service in its present form in 1989
following a HK$60-million overhaul to upgrade it to a microprocessor-controlled
electric drive system. Governor Sir David Wilson officiated at
the reopening on September 20, 1989.
Commemorative stamps were issued by the General Post Office
to mark the Peak Tram's centenary anniversary in May 1988.
From its earliest days of operation, The Peak Tram has been
the focus of artists and photographers who have tried to capture
its spirit while simultaneously documenting its service. From
amateur shots meant to preserve a personal memory, to professionally
prepared views intended for commercial sale, The Peak Tram has
proven itself a particularly compelling subject. The early years
of operation seem to have produced the most varied scenes, with
shots taken not only at both the upper and lower stations, but
also at many points along the way. These views were reproduced
by a small number of Hong Kong printing companies as black and
white postcards which were then hand-coloured to enhance their
beauty. From all evidence they were highly popular, with elegantly
handwritten notes sent around the world commenting on the remarkable
views and surprisingly efficient and comfortable service.
By the end of the Second World War, photographers seemed less
enthralled with the tram as subject matter. Perhaps its novelty
was wearing thin in the face of new advances in transportation,
or was overshadowed by Hong Kong's rapidly changing skyline.
Cards from the late 1960s and 1970s focussed more on the newly
built Peak Tower and the panoramic vistas that some visitors
claimed yielded views as distant as Macau.
Throughout its long history, The Peak Tram has remained one
of the most visited and photographed sights in Hong Kong by offering
not only an enviable view, but also a quiet respite from the
You can learn more about Peak Tram History at Peak Tram Historical