Cheng Chau Island, Hong Kong
It is always a little strange going back as a tourist to a country you have lived in for many years. Last month we spent a few days in the wonderful city of Hong Kong. We decided last minute to escape the skyscrapers and spend a day at Cheng Chau Island, and what a great decision that was.
Cheng Chau is a small island south-west of Hong Kong Island with a population of just over 20,000. It has been a fishing village since the Ming Dynasty and fishing continues to be the main activity on the island today. As with much of Hong Kong’s island dining scene seafood dominates and while it is hard to recommend a particular restaurant you’re unlikely to have a bad meal and prices are generally cheap.
The island is ideal for ambling along the waterfront, wandering the back streets or sitting outside a café on the square watching island life go by. There are temples and beaches, hills to climb and trail walks, ancient rock carvings, the mini great wall and the infamous annual Cheung Chau bun festival.
We recommend you hire a bicycle from the shops nearby the pier to allow you to explore the island at leisure. Cheung Chau is tiny and its streets are very narrow, so walking is also an enjoyable option. To walk the whole island will take about four hours or less. It is very safe, there are virtually no cars on the island and the charm is no matter which way you head you will never really get lost or be far from the ferry dock.
There are regular ferries from Central ferry piers to Cheung Chau. They run at 30 min intervals – except later in the evening – and take between 40-60 mins.
Our highlights include:
Sipping frozen watermelon crushes at the delightful Cheung Chau B & B.
Lunch at the hidden treasure, Italian restaurant ChocDuck bistro
Discovering an old dilapidated cinema in the laneways, beautiful!
An ocean dip with a view, albeit a hazy one!
Very quirky arts and crafts shops.