1. Peng Chau Island – Hong Kong

    I’m always looking for new places to visit during my almost monthly trips to Hong Kong and earlier this year I read about the Outlying Islands of Cheung Chau and Peng Chau which are both easily accessible by ferry from Central. As my next trip to Hong Kong was over a holiday weekend, I decided to get away from the crowds and hustle and bustle of Hong Kong Island for a few hours and visit Peng Chau as I had read that the more popular and much bigger Cheung Chau gets very busy and crowded over a weekend.

    Peng Chau is located 8km west of Hong Kong Island and to get to there is incredibly easy. You need to take Exit A from Central Station on the MTR and follow the signs for the piers. Ferries to Peng Chau depart from Pier 6 and you can find the ferry timetable online here. As I took a Fast Ferry at a weekend, my fare was HK$41.80 which I paid using my Octopus Card.

    It was a beautiful albeit humid day so after buying a cold drink in the terminal, I boarded the ferry and made my way straight upstairs and to the outdoor deck as once we started sailing, the breeze felt heavenly. This also meant that I was able to take some great photos of the amazing Hong Kong skyline. The journey to Peng Chau took just under thirty minutes.

    Once the ferry had arrived in Peng Chau, I let the crowds rush off ahead of me before making my way ashore. There was a Wellcome supermarket right by the ferry pier so I bought another drink to take with me on my walk around the island.

    I left the ferry pier and made my way along the waterfront to Tai Lei Island to watch the fisherman on the bridge as well as out on their boats.

    Close to the bridge to Tai Lei Island is the start of the Peng Yu Path and the Peng Chau Family Trail which leads to Old Fisherman’s Rock.

    From the beaches along Peng Yu Path, you look straight across the water to Hong Kong Disneyland. I will admit that this view is one of the reasons I wanted to visit Peng Chau. I have read that you can get a good view of the nightly fireworks from here.

    The beaches along the Peng Yu Path are absolutely beautiful – it is hard to believe you are in Hong Kong when you are so used to seeing the iconic cityscape of Kowloon and Hong Kong Island. One of the only giveaways that you are so close to Hong Kong (apart from the Disney hotels) is the view of the Tsing Ma Bridge in the distance. The peace and quiet was amazing and whilst I was at the beaches, I only saw a handful of other people – some of whom were having a family picnic on the beach.

    Old Fisherman’s Rock is located in the top right hand corner of Peng Chau at the end of the Peng Yu Walk. Due to the fact that you can see across to Hong Kong Island and Kowloon, there were a lot more people here – some just taking photos like I was and others just sitting and listening to music.

    The Peng Chau Family Trail continues from here on a path leading inland. As there was nothing else that I wanted to see on this trail, I walked back along the Peng Yu Path towards the ferry pier. I also stopped at Wellcome again to buy another cold drink.

    After sitting in the shade for a few minutes with my cold drink, I walked along Peng Lu Street to Tin Hau Temple before exploring Wing On Street which was full of small shops, cafes and restaurants.

    On the eastern side of Peng Chau is Tung Wan Beach. I was surprised to see it as quiet as it what it was as I expected it to be a lot busier.

    My next destination was Finger Hill which at 95 metres is the highest point on Peng Chau. From Tung Wan Beach, I walked uphill before climbing over 350 steps. It is not a difficult climb but I had to stop several times to drink some water as it was so humid. The journey from the beach to the top of Finger Hill took me just under thirty minutes.

    The view from the top of Finger Hill overlooking Peng Chau and across to Discovery Bay was beautiful although due to the surrounding foliage being very high and overgrown, it was not the 360 degree view of the whole island that I had read about.

    There was another shorter staircase down from Finger Hill which lead to the Peng Chau Family Walk on the eastern side of the island and from here, there is a path on the left which leads to the Lookout Pavilion.

    From the Lookout Pavilion you can see Hong Kong Island, Kowloon, Lantau Island, Tsing Yi and Lamma Island.

    After taking many photos, I left the Lookout Pavilion and made my way back to the pier to catch the ferry back to Central. I had about twenty minutes to wait and once again it cost me HK$41.80 as it was a Fast Ferry service. If you want to carry on exploring, you can also take a ferry from Peng Chau to Hei Ling Chau, Mui Wo and Cheung Chau.

    The peace and tranquility of Peng Chau is a world away from Hong Kong and a great escape from city life so I would definitely recommend a visit to anyone. As the island is so small, you will only need a few hours to see everything and you can do as little or as much as you want whilst you are there.

    Next stop…Cheung Chau!

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