Island Hopping in Hong Kong

 

I had written a post on Dayre on the various Hong Kong islands recently so I thought it’ll be useful if I do a post on these islands that make good respite from the busyness of the main areas. This post is made up partly from my own experiences and partly from research I did for potential day trips too.

Even though they make relaxing destinations, it's important to check the ferry schedules beforehand to ensure you have a ferry back to Hong Kong because getting stranded on an island after the last ferry leaves does not only happen in Hong Kong dramas but in real life too! The ferry schedules can be found here http://www.hongkong.net/transportation/ferry.

 

Lamma Island

Lamma Island is about a 30 minutes boat ride from Central pier. It has a laid-back atmosphere and many go there for day trips to relax, hike and to have fresh seafood close to the sea.

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This is Yung Shue Wan pier, the starting point of most walking and hiking trails on Lamma Island. I had followed the trail on http://www.discoverhongkong.com/seasia/see-do/great-outdoors/hikes/lamma-island.jsp and proceeded to explore after that!

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Lamma Island is still rather pristine without much development and yet there is good signage and paths to explore the island on.

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While walking around, there is the presence of aquaculture with modern development in the background as well!

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Lamma Island has a few beaches that are quite peaceful and empty too! 

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While going up towards the hilltop pavilion, one of Lamma Island's viewpoints, you can see a lot of green around you.

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This is the pavilion! It isn't very hard to climb for this route because most of the sloped parts are made up of stairs so it's ok if you're not a seasoned hiker because I'm not one too haha. All you need for this is perseverance to get to the top!

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The terrain is generally quite hilly so it's good to wear proper shoes to explore here too.

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This is the view from near the hilltop pavilion, this is probably Sok Kwu Wan pier.

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Lamma Island is also home to a few wind turbines called the Lamma Winds. They have information on the wind turbines as well as how wind energy is generated and how is this related to Lamma Island and Hong Kong.

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On the way to Hung Shing Yeh beach and Sok Kwu Wan pier, there is this place that sells soya beancurd called 阿婆豆腐花 and this tastes rather different from the ones we usually get in Singapore because they use ginger syrup instead of just sugar syrup.

Getting there: Ferries go from Central Pier to Yung Shue Wan and Sok Kwu Wan (the two piers on Lamma Island) quite regularly. 

 

Cheung Chau

While Lamma Island is a great place to explore and appreciate nature, Cheung Chau is rich in culture. This is where the TVB drama "Slow Boat Home" was filmed too. There are ferries here from Central Pier too!

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A good time to go to Cheung Chau is during the Cheung Chau Bun Festival, which falls on the fifth to the ninth day of the fourth lunar month. This is the bun scrambling competition, where people start climbing up the bun tower and keep as many buns as they can in their bags. This festival is a huge event on the island and it is part of the island's traditions too. 

Picture taken from: https://www.interesly.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/05/290F656C00000578-3096127-The_12_specially_chosen_contestants_have_three_minutes_to_collec-a-37_1432565145510.jpg

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Cheung Chau is more developed and more populated than Lamma Island so it is more lively here.

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There's a bit of chaos here with many people cycling but that means you can also cycle around to explore the island too. This was quite an awakening for me after going to the peaceful Lamma Island haha.

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I wanted to see the sunset so I had started making my way to the North Lookout Pavilion, a famous sunset viewing spot!

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The path to the pavilion was blocked so I had captured this randomly from the highest point I could get. 

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There's a lot more Cheung Chau has to offer, such as Cheung Po Tsai cave where a pirate used to hide in the 19th century.

Picture taken from: 
https://i0.wp.com/magazine.foodpanda.hk/wp-content/uploads/sites/9/2017/03/CC4.jpg

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There is also Tin Hau temple, an important temple for locals who worship the Goddess of the Sea. I couldn't find a good enough photo so here's an illustration from https://static1.squarespace.com/static/597f732bdb29d6f4bab997b6/598036c57131a5eb04feb1e7/59803c73e6f2e111656f5e67/1504019079696/Temples.Cheung.Chau.Temple.300dpi.6x9in.jpg?format=1500w.

Getting there:
Ferries run to Cheung Chau from both Central Pier #5 in Hong Kong Island and ferries can take 35 and 55 minutes depending not the type of ferry. Ferries run about every 30 minutes in the day and only 4 ferries run between midnight and 6am. There is also a inter-island ferry route that goes to Mui Wo on Lantau, Peng Chau, and Cheung Chau. 
For more information, you can visit http://www.cheung-chau.com/how-to-get-to.html#.Whz8crap0cg.

 

Lantau Island

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There are many ways to get to Lantau Island but a more scenic way is by taking the Ngong Ping 360 cable car.

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One of Lantau Island's famous attractions is the Big Buddha which you can see from the cable car just before reaching Lantau Island's cable car station.

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A less mentioned attraction on the island is the Tai O Fishing Village! You can take bus 21 from Ngong Ping Village or bus 11 from Tung Chung MTR station to get here. 

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The streets here look like taking a step back to the past and they make a good place for taking photos too!

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This is a common sight because this fishing village has many shops selling dried seafood.

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One of Tai O fishing village's signature food is the beancurd. The beancurd is smooth and silky, paired well with the. ginger sugar syrup too!

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Fragrant grilled squid can be found as you walk towards the river too.

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The main highlight of the fishing village is the stilt houses that you can see from the suspension bridge. There are also boat rides available that you can take to explore the area!

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From the fishing village, you can also hike up to Man Cheung Po infinity pool. Unlike what's shown in this photo, they have closed off the pool so people can't swim in it anymore :(. The views are still enjoyable though! This blog provides detailed directions on how to get there and it's where I got the above picture from too!

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If you're taking the cable car back from Lantau Island, it'll be great if you were to take it near sunset hour. I'm usually not a fan of cable cars but taking the cable car during sunset had really stunning views!

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The mountains in the background make such a stunning view too!

Getting there:
Ngong Ping 360 cable car station is located near Tung Chung MTR station. There are also ferries that go to Lantau Island from Central Pier, Cheung Chau and Peng Chau that go to Lantau Island too.
For more details, you may refer to
 http://www.hongkongextras.com/_lantau.html.

 

Peng Chau

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I've never been to Peng Chau but this website provides a rather detailed guide and itinerary of the island! You can refer to it if you need more details on each location.

peng chau food

This fried macaroni and fried fish on toast is from 金源冰室! It is part of this food list I found and these are the signature dishes from this cafe!
Photo taken from feelingfeeling on instagram.

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This prawn toast (三角蝦多士) is a signature of 祺森冰室, another famous food place in Peng Chau.
Picture taken from https://www.getreadyhk.com/leisure-and-fun/place-to-go/item/780-peng-chau

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There's also a famous bread shop called 麵包舖 and they are famous for their soymilk sesame cookies!
Picture taken from this blog

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Peng Chau is also famous for pottery and people go to Chiu Kee Porcelain Factory (超記瓷器 to paint and design their own ceramic products! 
Picture taken from bootion on Instagram.

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After all the eating, a nice spot to climb up for views of Peng Chau is Finger Hill (手指山), and this is a good sunset spot too!
Picture taken from this blog post.

Getting there:
Ferries operate from Pier 6 of Central Ferry Pier to Peng Chau. The ferry schedule can be found here.

 

Hong Kong has many outlying islands where you can escape the hustle and bustle of the main city, hopefully these places can help you with planning for day trips if you would like a change of scenery or just to explore a new place!

 
TravelEthel TanTravel, Hong Kong