If you live on Hong Kong Island it’s likely you will frequently suffer from ‘Island Fever.’
This is the severe condition of needing to escape the confines of this crazy concrete jungle and just GET OUT!
Ok, so that’s a bit dramatic!
But the sheer pace of Hong Kong and its densely populated neighbourhoods do get a bit much for me and I often need a holiday or just a day trip.
The good news is that Hong Kong provides lots of great options for day trips, including the small yet colourful island of Cheung Chau.
Last weekend James and I caught the fast ferry to Cheung Chau, about a 30-minute trip from Central Ferry Piers.
Upon arrival we immediately felt a holiday vibe kick in and the pace of life slowed right down.
I was on a mission to ride a bike and we eventually found a place that would rent us 2 bikes without showing ID (we left all forms of ID at home…oops!).
For $100HKD (plus a $200 deposit) we got our bikes and rode off into the sunset….or more like the hoards of Chinese tourists.
I loved riding up and down Pak She Praya, admiring all the fishing boats, seeing what kind of restaurants were available and just generally feeling free!
(My other half did grumble about the amount of people….mostly about the visiting Mainlanders…but I just pedaled faster so I couldn’t hear him!).
After a short ride we found Pak Tai Temple and took our time to wander around whilst enjoying the sun.
Apparently the temple was built in 1783 and is now listed as a Grade 1 historical building. However, it looked pretty new to me! It must’ve had a recent facelift!
It’s definitely worth a visit though.
As the temperature rose we made a plan to find the beach, and considering Cheung Chau is pretty small, it wasn’t hard to do!
We first came to the popular Tung Wan Beach where even caged birds hang out!
There are a few seaside cafes and restaurants along this strip, which by the end of the afternoon were well frequented.
I had heard that there was a better beach spot so we kept going around the corner to Kwun Yam Beach. This small alcove was much quieter and the water looked cleaner, although we still didn’t get in!
We enjoyed just laying on the sand, listening to the ocean lap the shore and watching the medi-vac helicopter come and go (that wasn’t so relaxing!).
But we did see the world’s smallest ambulance that somehow fits 5 people inside!
Once we felt rested and restored we jumped on our bikes and headed back through all the narrow and noteworthy lanes of the island.
James and I joked that Cheung Chau is the Mykonos of Hong Kong!
I loved seeing into the locals’ homes, whizzing past others on their bikes and smelling all of the delicious local food.
Unfortunately I was detoxing and the only thing I consumed was a fresh mango and apple juice. Although, it was super delicious.
The next time I go back I’m definitely going to hit up the famous fish balls on a stick and enjoy a seafood meal and a glass of wine overlooking the water!
Tips for Visiting Cheung Chau
- If you plan to hire a bike take your ID so you can actually rent one AND you don’t have to pay a deposit.
- If you plan on circumnavigating the island (we didn’t) hire a mountain bike, as there are hills. We had super heavy ‘Mary Poppins’ bikes with no gears so we didn’t do much riding at all!
- If you aren’t a huge fan of tourist groups maybe try and head to the island on a weekday
- The ferries run quite often but I would suggest being mindful of the fast ferry times so when you’re keen to leave you don’t have to wait around!
Do you have any cool island escapes here in Hong Kong? I’d love for you to share any tips in the comment section belong?
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