Stroll Along the Waterfront
Strolling the waterfront’s a good way of soaking up the island’s atmosphere – way more laid-back than the hustling, bustling city. There are fishing boats in the harbour on one side; three-storey buildings with shops, restaurants and bars on the other. From here, you can explore further.
The island’s main temple – left from the ferry pier, it faces across basketball and a soccer pitch (both of which become main sites for the Bun Festival each spring). Pak Tei is like the patron saint of Cheung Chau; perhaps as he once helped residents battle plagues, or maybe some benefit against pirates.
|There are other temples, too, mostly dedicated to Tin Hau – goddess of mercy, who is said to aid fishermen in distress.
Roam the Streets
Cheung Chau’s narrow streets are often little more than footpaths, which twist and turn between the densely packed housing within a few minutes’ walk of the ferry pier. Walk the main streets, and you’ll find a host of small shops, plus some restaurants, and even rocks that are supposed to house spirits that look after the neighbourhoods.
Head for the Beach
The main beach, Tung Wan, is just across from the ferry pier. In fine weather, especially summer, it’s good for swimming and sunbathing – there is a lifeguard service, plus changing rooms and showers.
There’s another, smaller beach just to the south: though the facilities aren’t so grand. The water is usually cleanest around high tide
|Cheung Chau’s renowned in Hong Kong for being the birthplace and early training site of the territory’s first Olympic medal winner, Lee Lai Shan (won gold in windsurfing, in Atlanta Olympics 1996). As well as windsurfing, you can kayak and kiteboard; places with gear for rent include Lee’s uncle’s place, the Windsurfing Centre, between Tung Wan and Kwun Yam Wan.
There are some fine coastal trails, especially on the southeast coast of Cheung Chau – including the Mini Great Wall (!), and on the southwest coast near Cheung Po-tsai Cave. See more info on this site.
Cheung Chau is home to one of Hong Kong’s main fishing communities, so seafood is an island speciality. Restaurants abound, including along the waterfront; the best are well patronised by locals, as well as by visitors.
Chill Out with a Drink
There are several bars and cafes where you can enjoy drinks including cold beers. They include the tiny bar at Kwun Yam Wan – right above the tideline – and the nearby Windsurfing Centre. Bars, restaurants and cafes along the waterfront are especially pleasant late on a fine afternoon, when you can enjoy a drink, and watch the sun drop over the sea and (in summer) Lantau, beyond the harbour.