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Out and About
Something for the weekend

Junk tripThe Junk Trip


Gone are the days of every company owning its own junk, so enjoy this perk if you are on the payroll of one that does.  Hong Kong junk trips can easily become legendary; the right group of friends (and the inevitable visitors we all love so much), a “bring a dish” lunch, and a cooler full to the brim with wine and beer are a great recipe for hazy but good memories.

If you’re not lucky enough to have friends with a junk then rally a group of people together and split the cost of a rental with them.  There are a number of good reliable companies whose boats all come with experienced but maybe not English speaking captains and boat boys (don’t forget to tip them at the end of your voyage).  Have them pick you up somewhere convenient to you; popular spots are Pier 9 in Central (the Star Ferry Pier), the piers at Stanley or St Stephens Beach, or from their home base in the Aberdeen Typhoon Shelter.


Viking Charters

T: 2814 9935

Competitively priced and very helpful, speak to Wendy.


Jaspas Party Junk

T: 2792 6001

Feeling lazy?  Jaspas is all inclusive; boat hire with onboard chef & waiter service, unlimited drinks and lunch.


Saffron Cruises Junk Hire

20/F Teda Building, 87 Wing Lok Street
Sheung Wan,
T: 2857 1311

Run by salty Brit Garry Smith, Saffron has HK’s widest variety of boats (even a replica of The Bounty for example) available for charter for both a Sunday lunch and a special occasion. 


And once you are afloat, you could point the bow towards…


Po Toi Island: lying to the south of Hong Kong Island, this small island has a few hiking trails and seafood restaurants.  The one immediately in front of you as you disembark at the pier serves great food, don’t miss their garlic prawns.


Junk dayTai Long Wan: An almost deserted beach in the Sai Kung area that can be reached by boat in just over two hours.  Catch it on a clear blue day and it is world class.  Have lunch onboard, then swim from the boat to the beach.


Tai Tam: A shorter voyage if you only have an afternoon to spend on the water.  Drop anchor and bob around in the bay admiring the headland.  Should that get too tame flag down a passing wakeboard boat for a high speed, high risk, blurred view of Tai Tam Bay.


Walk, then eat.


HikersThere are loads of great places to hike around Hong Kong, from a leisurely stroll to an exhausting uphill trek.  And of course, the more calories you burn off on your walk, the more you can reward yourself at the dinner table!


Seafood lunch in Lamma

Take the ferry from Central Ferry Pier 4 to Yung Shue Wan.  Start with a pre-lunch walk to Sok Ku Wan (1 hour gentle hill walk) and then enjoy lunch at one of the many Lamma seafood restaurants.  Return home from the Sok Ku Wan Ferry Pier to Central.


Dragon’s Back Hike and Lunch in Shek O

Depending on how keen you are either start the walk by Parkview or from Stanley.  As you head over Dragon’s Back (above Shek O) take in the fabulous views watching out for the paragliders taking off from its steep slopes.  Then head into Shek O, the last remaining old village on the island, for a well earned cheap Thai meal and beers.  Post lunch check out Shek O beach, head back through the village and have a beer at the back beach bar, you may well run into those aforementioned aviators celebrating a safe landing.  And if you get lost, simply ask a Shek O local.

Tai Long WanHike to Tai Long Wan beach and dine in Sai Kung

Head out to Sai Kung by bus or taxi.  Get dropped at the reservoir in Sai Kung Country Park and hike over to Long Ke Wan beach (takes about 1 hour), have a break and a swim before setting of to Tai Long Wan beach (about another 3 hours).  Once you have recovered take the path back to the main road and head back to Sai Kung for (hospitalisation or) a well deserved lunch at one of the restaurants listed in our Beyond Central section.

For hiking trials information click through to the following websites:

Agriculture Fisheries and Conservation Department

Enjoy Hiking

Doc Martin's Hong Kong Hiking

Hiking Hong Kong

or download a number of walking maps from the Hong Kong Tourism website.


Run, run away to Macau


There are a number of reasons for escaping to this former Portuguese colony – but it's probably best we don’t list them.  Getting there is easy; just don’t forget your passport or ID card, and don’t worry about changing money, the Hong Kong dollar is accepted everywhere.

If you are heading to the main city of Macau then it’s best to take the TurboJet. Or if an hours journey is too long a wait before hitting the tables then hop on the Sky Shuttle helicopter service which takes a brief 16 minutes.  If however you are heading to Taipa or the Cotai Strip (location of The Venetian, The Four Seasons, City of Dreams etc) then the Cotai Jet will take you door to door.  Both ferry services are very frequent, particularly at peak times, and they both now run through the night – so no “I missed the last boat” excuses anymore.  On the Hong Kong side all three services leave from the Shun Tak Centre on the waterfront in Sheung Wan.

Beyond the obvious temptations of many casinos and varied nightlife there are a number of activities and sights to enjoy.  We would suggest a quick stop by the Ruinas de Sao Paulo (Ruins of St Paul’s Cathedral) before heading to Fernando’s for a long Portuguese lunch, 9 Hac Sac Beach, Colôane.  T: +853 2888 2531.  They don’t take reservations but you can sample plenty of Portuguese wine while waiting for a table.  It ‘aint fancy but its one of those institutions that just keeps going and going.

If you are in the mood to make a weekend out of your trip, then check into one of the many hotels there.  Here are a few that tick most of the boxes (who was it that said “expectations are just premeditated resentments”?)

Altira Macau (used to be the Crown Macau)

Avenida de Kwong Tung
T: +853 2886 8888

There are four signature restaurants in-house and a large luxurious new spa in this revitalised hotel turned resort.  The view over Macau from the contemporary Italian, Aurora, is pretty spectacular.

The Four Seasons     

Estrada da Baía de N. Senhora da Esperança, S/N,
T: +853 2881 8888

Dominated by its attached luxury shopping mall The Four Seasons has five swimming pools and a great spa.  It doesn't quite have the beauty of some of its sister properties but you know you are going to be looked after. 

Mandarin Oriental Macau

Avenida Dr Sun Yat Sen
T: +853 8805 8888

As yet not road tested, but its unlikely that hospitality experts at Mandarin would get a new build site wrong.

The Venetian  

Estrada da Baía de N. Senhora da Esperança, S/N,
T: +853 2882 8888

Vegas comes to Macau but on an even grander scale if that’s possible.  And The Venetian is home to the world famous Cirque Du Soliel’s amazing show ZAIA. 

For current details of events in Macau, check Macau Tourist information on T: 2857 2287 or www.macautourism.gov.mo


Get thee to a beach.


Hong Kong has loads of great beaches, many of which have facilities for swimmers, including changing rooms with toilets and showers, lifeguards and shark nets.

Swim in Big Wave Bay

Where you’d normally turn right into Shek O, turn left towards Big Wave Bay.  Relax on the beach, rent a boogie board and catch some waves, or check out the local surfing scene.  When you have had enough sun, head back into Shek O for dinner at the Black Sheep or a pizza at the local pizzeria.

Sunny days

South American attractions in South Beach

The public beach at South Bay manages to attract the younger Mediterranean and Brazilian beach crowd.  The affordable delights of the café bar with its cheap rosé and rudimentary snacks loosens them up.  The right DJ soundtrack sets them free.

Forget where you are...

...in Tai Long Wan.  Hidden on the coast of the Sai Kung Country Park lie a number of long white sand strands.  On foot paradise is a 90 minute picturesque and strenuous hike away, however the views along the way make it worthwhile.  The more relaxed alternative is to sail there on a junk and if you still want the sand between your toes you can swim to the beach from your anchorage.  If the surfs up there's a primitive restaurant on the beach that also rents surf boards.

Water sports in Tai Tam

Go down to Repulse Bay or Tai Tam Piers and you can rent a ski boat, driver and equipment by the hour for water skiing and wake boarding. Tai Tam is the better location of the two as the water is cleaner and you can also organise lessons. 

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