If you’re not crazy about hiking here in Hong Kong (it does get pretty hot in the summer months!) then a visit to Cheung Chau Island may work for you: it has a nice beach, which I’ve covered in this post, and a great lookout point that I’ll cover separately.
It’s one of the smallest inhabited islands within Hong Kong’s territory and there’s basically nowhere to hike to..!
Here’s where Cheung Chau island sits in relation to Hong Kong Island:
Cheung Chau Island is home to a large fishing community and it’s pretty densely populated compared to Lantau Island or Lamma Island.
It’s a bustling, busy, colourful community with narrow lanes and low-rise buildings – mostly no more than 3 storeys high.
And, of course, wonderful seafood!
Getting to Cheung Chau takes between half an hour (fast ferry) and an hour (slow ferry) from Central Pier 5.
This is what you see from the ferry as you enter Cheung Chau harbour:
Getting to the beach
Once your ferry has docked you need to look for that blue building to your right as you exit the ferry terminal:
From there head up the lane to the left of that building until you get to the village square:
Cross the square, heading to the top left corner, where you’ll see this pathway heading towards the beach:
And literally within 2 minutes of leaving the ferry you will come to the beach, from where (on a clear day) you can see Hong Kong Island in the distance:
That picture, and the one below, were taken during the week, so the beach was fairly empty. But it gets a lot busier over the weekends!
There are not many refreshment stalls on the beach, so once you’ve had your fill of sand, sea and sun I recommend wandering back into the village to explore the lanes and stop for a seafood lunch.
So head back to the square:
From the square there are several narrow lanes leading off to the left and right, with local traders selling their products:
. . . and:
Once you’ve had a look around, I recommend settling down in one of the many seafood restaurants for a delicious lunch. Cheung Chau is home to a large fishing community so the seafood is superb!
There are restaurants throughout the village, but I recommend going back towards the ferry pier and then turning right (that’s the ferry pier on my left in this picture):
All the way along that road in the picture above you will see restaurants offering different types of food but, if you go past those and keep going for about 5 minutes, you’ll come to these:
That’s where I’d recommend you settle down, because you get this view of the harbour while you eat:
The seafood is wonderfully fresh, but my only complaint is that if you like your prawns cooked in Sichuan style, it’s not really spicy enough – in fact, it’s rather bland.
You can soon take care of that, though, with some chopped chili..!
Getting to Cheung Chau Island is very straight-forward: The ferries leave from, and return to, Central Pier 5, on Hong Kong Island.
There are two types of ferry: Ordinary (meaning slow), which takes around an hour, and fast, which takes around 30 minutes.
The ordinary ferries have an open deck at the back where you can get a 360-degree view as you make the crossing. This is a great way to make the trip when the weather is good (neither too hot nor too cold).
If it’s the middle of summer, though, and you’re not used to the heat, then I’d recommend the fast ferry because they are air-conditioned.
You can get the details of the ferry costs and times on this page.
Have you visited Cheung Chau? Tell us what you thought!
The Expat Traveller