HONG KONG (AFP) - The Olympic torch made a trouble-free journey through the streets of Hong Kong on Friday, kicking off the final Chinese leg of a worldwide journey marred by angry protests over Tibet and democracy. After weeks of demonstrations that turned the torch relay into a public relations nightmare for Beijing following its crackdown in Tibet, the flame was greeted here with pomp and celebration - and only a minimum of agitation. Police detained a handful of people amid scuffles and scattered protests, but said they were later released. There were no serious incidents, and even the early morning rain held off for the rest of the day. "The torch relay day is a day of joy, so I don't think it's a good idea to protest today," said Vivien Lai, a Hong Kong nurse who came out with her family and boyfriend to cheer on the torch. The peaceful relay was welcome news for Chinese authorities, who hoped the run-up to the Olympics would highlight the country's "peaceful rise" but were instead buffeted by international criticism of their handling of Tibet. A spokesman for exiled Tibetan spiritual leader the Dalai Lama meanwhile said two envoys would head Saturday to China for the first talks with Chinese officials since Beijing's crackdown following unrest in mid-March. Friday's eight-hour relay came to a close at Hong Kong's Golden Bauhinia Square, site of the 1997 ceremony where colonial power Britain formally handed Hong Kong back to China. The torch criss-crossed the city - carried by 120 different people, rowed on traditional dragon boats and even ferried across the city's famed Victoria Harbour, escorted by a fireboat shooting jets of water into the sky. The tour through Hong Kong, which has a degree of political freedom absent in the mainland, was seen as the last chance for major demonstrations like those that disrupted the relay in London and Paris. Instead the day became a show of Chinese solidarity and patriotism. Tens of thousands of spectators lined streets, piers and riverbanks across the city, most dressed in the red of China and many visiting from the mainland. Windsurfer Lee Lai-shan, Hong Kong's only Olympic gold medallist, began the relay, carrying the flame on the homestretch to mainland China, which is hosting the Olympics for the first time from August 8-24. While there were only a few scattered protests, those people who did speak out where often shouted down and had to be protected by police. People in the crowd shouted "Go home" at protesters and even foreigners, amid a backlash following the criticism over Tibet. While Tibet has been the focus of many demonstrations, critics have also taken aim at China on a range of issues - even as Beijing has repeatedly insisted the Games should not be "politicised." US actress-turned-activist Mia Farrow, also in Hong Kong, used the occasion to press China over its links with Sudan, whose government has been blamed for failing to stop the bloodshed in its Darfur region. "It isn't a pretty way to say this, but China is underwriting the atrocities in Darfur," said Farrow, who also lashed out at most of the corporate sponsors of the 2008 Games. "History will note their silence," she said. "I'm disgusted." On Saturday, the torch will be paraded through the gambling haven of Macau before being flown to mainland China for the rest of its journey - including through Tibet - before the August 8 Games opening ceremony. The demonstrations that have dogged the relay were sparked by the crackdown in Tibet after protests against China's rule of the Himalayan region erupted into violence on March 14. Tibet's government-in-exile says more than 200 people were killed in the Chinese response, which included sealing off the region to