Hong Kong, April 2018: Waking up to reasonable weather for a change. Out-brakes of sunshine are occurring quite frequently which until now has been at a premium. To make the most of this good weather then, a trip out to one of Hong Kong’s many Islands today. Trouble is, which one? The most popular Island is Lantau to the west. The place has big hotels, Disneyland and a plague of tourists queuing for the cable car ride to see a giant Buddha statue according to some quick research. No, I wont be going there then. A quick scan of some names on Youtube comes up with Cheung Chau as a pretty decent place for a day trip. A ferry leaves Central about every 30 minutes and costs about £2.50 single trip ticket. So, today’s excursion is a visit to Cheung Chau Island which lies southwest of Hong Kong Island. (Google Map)
How to get to Cheung Chau from Kowloon takes a bit of research and the consensus from around the web is one needs to be on Hong Kong Islands Central Pier number 5 for the ferry. This of course necessitates another ride on the Star Ferry which conveniently docks at Central Pier number 7. As ever, everything around here is well signed and labelled so even Karl Pilkington (An Idiot Abroad) couldn’t get it wrong and end up on a ferry to China! In a nutshell – purchase a token for 2.7 HK$ which will allow one through the turnstiles and onto the Star Ferry Pier Kowloon. Once at Central turn right and pier 5 is the second on the right. Depending on the timings (may have to wait) purchase an out and return ticket to Cheung Chau and wait for the next ferry.
There appears to be 2 types of ferry service – fast or slow. The next one to leave is at 9.45 and is a fast service costing 50p more than the regular slow boat which leaves in 66 minutes. Fast boat then to Cheung Chau for £5.36 return although the ticket office is empty right now! With just 15 minutes before departure the ticket office finally opens and thankfully I’m first in the queue with what seems like hundreds behind. Not many tourists, a few, but mostly the local population going about their business between Cheung Chau and Hong Kong.
A very comfortable air-conditioned ride away from Hong Kong and southwest to Chenug Chau Island. For those that like boat spotting, well there’s plenty to see such as the Macau casino shuttle and a plethora of ferries heading to Hong Kong’s outlying islands. A 25 minute ride before reaching the harbour at today’s destination, and what a picturesque sight it is!