After exploring the bright lights and towering skyscrapers of Hong Kong Island, we opted for a relaxing escape to the natural beauty of Lamma Island, a short ferry ride away from the hectic downtown area. If you want to do some easy hiking in Hong Kong, as well as explore a cool little village and relax on pristine beaches, a day trip to Lamma Island should be on your Hong Kong itinerary.
Yung Shue Wan
We arrived at the bustling village of Yung Shue Wan on a sunny Sunday afternoon. The streets were crowded with local day trippers in search of a meal before hitting the beaches. There are some great eating options in town — we went for some Thai BBQ which I highly recommend. There are lots of small shops and even an expat bar in Yung Shue Wan — it’d be worth visiting for a meal and a look around even if you aren’t interested in hiking or visiting the beaches.
Hiking to Hung Shing Yeh Beach
The first section of the hike took us past craft shops, locals on bikes and a canvas of rural Hong Kong life. There are no cars on Lamma Island, but you will have to dodge little motorised carts (and people on bicycles). The first section of this Lamma Island day hike is fairly easy and is mostly flat.
Hung Shing Yeh Beach
This is one of the best beaches in Hong Kong and is definitely worth a visit, even if this is as far as your hike on Lamma Island takes you. Hung Shing Yeh beach is only around 20 minutes from the port in Yung Shue Wan and it fills up with people looking for some weekend sun. It’s probably very quiet during the week, but even on a Sunday the crowds were manageable. There’s a big power plant visible in the distance, but it’s easy enough to ignore (and it does make for an interesting backdrop). Unfortunately, we didn’t bring anything to swim in, but there were a few people in the water so I guess it’s fairly clean.
FURTHER READING: 10 of the Best Beaches in Hong Kong
Hiking to Lo So Shing Beach
After relaxing at the beach for a while we headed uphill on what was one of the hardest sections of the hike (mostly due to the roasting sunshine). We got some great views over Hung Shing Yeh beach and other sections of Lamma Island’s rocky coastline. We also passed through a small village featuring a cool painting of a pig on the side of a building, and not long after the village of Sok Kwu Wan came into view. That village was where we would finish our hike, but there was still a lot more to see. Soon a turnoff guided us towards another one of Lamma Island’s beautiful beaches.
Lo So Shing Beach
This quiet little beach is a great place to rest while hiking on Lamma Island. It’s a lot quieter than Hung Shing Yeh beach and the water is also more inviting.
Lo So Shing Beach to Shek Pai Wan Beach
After resting our legs for a while, we headed towards Sok Kwu Wan, where we would be catching a ferry back to Hong Kong Island. Just before the village we veered right and followed a path up a steep hill. We walked all the way to a series of viewpoints high above the coastline. From there we headed down the other side of the hill towards another group of beaches.
FURTHER READING: Backpacking in Hong Kong: Costs, Tips and Places to See
Shek Pai Wan Beach
Our first impression of the beaches on this side of Lamma Island wasn’t a good one. The first beach was full of trash — it would have been really nice otherwise though. There was a bit more trash further around but then we got to the main beach which was excellent and didn’t suffer from the trash problem (I guess it has something to do with the tides).
Shek Pai Wan Beach to Sok Kwu Wan
The sun was hanging low as we made our way to Sok Kwu Wan. We walked through the quiet countryside, occasionally passing by abandoned houses. Before long we were in Sok Ku Wan watching the sunset while we waited for the ferry back to Hong Kong Island.
A day trip to Lamma Island: The details
The hike took us between three and a half hours and was fairly easy — good shoes aren’t really required as the tracks are pretty much all concrete. The ferry back to Hong Kong Island got pretty busy — if we hadn’t have lined up early we would have had to wait for the next one. There are lots of seafood restaurants in Sok Kwu Wan, so you could consider staying for dinner and taking a later ferry back to the city. To get to Lamma Island go to pier 4 at Central Ferry Pier (Hong Kong Island), the boat trip takes around half an hour and costs HK$14 from Monday to Saturday and HK$19 on Sundays and Public holidays. Check out the timetable for more information.
Lamma Island is the perfect place to do some hiking in Hong Kong. The scenery is great and it’s a relaxing way to spend a day away from the city. It’d be worth visiting Lamma Island for the beaches alone — so consider visiting even if you’re not planning on doing the whole hike.
Have you been hiking in Hong Kong? What are your favourite trails? Let me know in the comments below
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