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Your guide to the best beaches in Sai Kung

By Celia Lee 14 October 2022

Header image courtesy of Kobe CHENG (via Wikimedia Commons)

Although the city has stepped into October, the weather has hardly changed since the beginning of summer. Luckily, Hong Kong’s concrete jungle does not span every inch of the city, and there are abundant natural resources for us to stay cool in the hot months.

And what better place for a relaxing day than Sai Kung? Known as Hong Kong’s back garden, Sai Kung’s natural scenery has countless gorgeous beaches on offer alongside the district’s rich variety of restaurants, shops, and attractions for locals and visitors alike to enjoy. Catch the last of the warm weather with our guide to the best beaches in Sai Kung!

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Photo: Big Dodzy (via Unsplash)

Tai Long Wan

Experienced beach bums are sure to be familiar with Tai Long Wan and its four main beaches: Sai Wan, Ham Tin Wan, Tai Wan, and Tung Wan. Literally meaning “Big Wave Bay” in Cantonese, the beach is best known for its killer waves. With strong rip currents found at Tai Long Wan, the beach is one of the most popular destinations for surfers in the city.

However, the same waves that bring much of its surfer traffic are also why the beach is not suitable for swimming. It is also not gazetted, meaning that there are no lifeguard services on offer and no shark nets surrounding the beach. If surfing isn’t your thing and you’d much prefer a quick dip in the sea, consider some of the other beaches on our list.

How to get there:

Get to Sai Wan Pavilion by minibus 29R from Sai Kung Town Hall, or by taxi. You can also arrive at Tai Long Wan by speedboat, which docks at Sai Wan or Ham Tin Beach.

Photo: hnching (via Unsplash)

Long Ke Wan

Another popular destination among beachgoers, Long Ke Wan has a variety of activities on offer for its visitors. If you’re looking for a nice and secluded getaway from the hustle and bustle of urban life, Long Ke Wan is your beach of choice. What’s more, it is recognised as one of the most beautiful beaches in the world, which is surprising considering the urbanised metropolis Long Ke Wan is a part of. Nestled between the volcanic hills of the Hong Kong UNESCO Global Geopark, the white sand beach is clean, rustic, and surrounded by little to no civilisation. When we say secluded though, we mean it. Unlike other beaches in Sai Kung, or even those in other parts of Hong Kong, Long Ke Wan has no establishments of any type on the beach. Be sure to pack some food and water for a day out.

How to get there:

Get to Long Ke Wan directly by speedboat (with tickets available at the kaito and operator kiosks along the Sai Kung promenade), or take a taxi to the end of the East Dam on the High Island Reservoir, then walk downhill to Long Ke Wan. You can also take bus 94 or minibus 7 from the Sai Kung Bus Terminal to Pak Tam Chung stop, walk along the High Island Reservoir to the East Dam then downhill to Long Ke Wan, or hike to Long Ke Wan from the Maclehose Trail—the beach is located between stages one and two of the trail.

Photo: Chong Fat (via Wikimedia Commons)

Hoi Ha Wan

Hoi Ha Wan, also called Jove’s Cove, is another secluded beach in Sai Kung. Located in a sheltered bay, you can safely get your last tan of the year by lounging on a floatie just off the beach. Hoi Ha Wan is best known for its prime water quality—think bright blue waters that fade to a gorgeous, deep turquoise further out to sea—which is perfect for a quick dip.

For more adventurous beachgoers, you can try snorkelling or diving at Hoi Ha Wan! The little bay has a rich marine population of corals and fish underneath its clear surfaces. Strap on your rebreathers and grab your waterproof cameras for an underwater wonderland!

How to get there:

Take bus 94 from Sai Kung Bus Terminal to Tai Tan stop and head down Route 2 to reach the Tai Tan Country Trail. Alternatively, you can take minibus 7 from Sai Kung Bus Terminal to Hoi Ha Village stop and head down to the beach.

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Sharp Island beaches 

Those familiar with Sai Kung will have noticed an island just off its coast, across the Inner Port Shelter. Named Sharp Island, this little piece of land is home to a fountain of natural, gazetted beaches, country trails, and geographic phenomena perfect for curious beachgoers to explore. You can access Sharp Island on foot through Kiu Tau Country Park during low tide seasons via a tombolo—a natural sand levee made of centuries of sediment.

Photo: Nhk9 (via Wikimedia Commons)

Kiu Tsui Beach

Located along the northwestern coastline of Sharp Island, Kiu Tsui Beach is a quiet beach overlooking the Inner Port Shelter towards Sai Kung Town. When you arrive at Kiu Tsui Beach, you might spot one or two fishing boats brimming with local fishermen dotted around the secluded beach. Kiu Tsui Beach’s excellent water quality is not only perfect for swimmers, but also the ideal condition for various species of saltwater fish. Don’t be afraid to take a dive beneath the surface if you want to see these fish in action during your visit!

Kiu Tsui Beach is a short walk from the sand levee connecting the Sharp Island mainland to the Sharp Island Geopark off the west coast of the island. The tombolo, a natural sand levee of sediments, is above sea level during low tide. So, if you fancy a walk almost on water after a day at the beach, head across the ocean to Sharp Island Geopark to see some unique and peculiar volcanic rocks. These formations are dubbed “pineapple bun rocks” for their resemblance to the well-loved pastry. Be sure to make it back before high tide!

How to get there:

As Sharp Island is not connected to Sai Kung by land, you will have to take the kaito from Sai Kung Public Pier to Kiu Tsui Pier, which is located on the left side of Kiu Tsui Beach.

Photo: Kobe CHENG (via Wikimedia Commons)

Hap Mun Bay

Hap Mun Bay, also named “Half Moon Bay” due to its curved coastline resembling the shape of a half moon, is another beach on Sharp Island. Unlike Kiu Tsui Beach, however, it is more popular. Expect plenty of people traffic on weekends, holidays, and hot days. Much like Kiu Tsui Beach and other beaches at Sai Kung, the water quality at Hap Mun Bay is perfect for swimming and snorkelling. For explorers, there’s a hidden ocean pool next to Hap Mun Bay—ideal for those who want a bit of privacy while relaxing. There’s no footpath to this natural swimming pool, but you can reach it by kayaking to it or coasteering along the coast.

How to get there:

Once you get to Kiu Tsui Pier on Sharp Island, you can follow the Kiu Tsui Country Park Trail, which practically begins at the pier. You will find Hap Mun Bay at the end of this trail. You will also pass the sand levee connecting the Geopark islet to the mainland on your way down to Hap Mun Bay if you want to give the volcanic rocks a visit. For those not keen on starting their day with a hike, take the sampan or kaito from Sai Kung Public Pier.

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Nam Fung Wan

Nam Fung Wan is another secluded beach in Sai Kung that you may not have heard of, located next to the High Island Reservoir West Dam and the first stage of the Maclehose Trail. It sports many features found in other Sai Kung beaches, particularly the iconic white sand, clear waters, and surrounding volcanic rock formations that envelop the beach.

Nam Fung Wan is definitely a beach for gathering with friends. Also dubbed “Millionaire’s Beach,” Nam Fung Wan attracts crowds that may be livelier than most you see on other beaches in Hong Kong. If you’re looking for a secluded place for a night of speaker-blasting fun with plenty of beers, Nam Fung Wan is the place to be!

How to get there:

From Sai Kung Country Park Visitor Centre, you can hike through the Sheung Yiu Country Trail to get to Nam Fung Wan (Yuen Ng Fan) Campsite, where you can find a short trail leading down to the beach. You can also take a kaito from Sai Kung Public Pier.

Trio Beach

Located along the coast of Hebe Haven, Trio Beach is a secluded stretch of sand with two sections, separated by a rocky patch of coast and a lifeguard tower. Once again, this is a white sand beach with the softest grains and the clearest waters, making Trio Beach a popular destination for beachgoers in the city. The secluded bay is surrounded by nature, meaning that the concrete jungle that is Hong Kong is nowhere in sight from Trio Beach. You can also get a good view of Clear Water Bay from the beach. At Trio Beach, it’s chill vibes all around, so, pack a book and be prepared to fall asleep reading it under the sun!

How to get there:

Take bus 92, 96R, or 792M to the Tai Chung Hau stop. Walk ahead to Che Keng Tuk Road, following signs for Sai Kung International Pre-School. The start of the country trail is next to the school; simply follow the trail until you see a signpost for Trio Beach. You can also reach the beach by sampan from Pak Sha Wan or Hebe Haven Pier.

Photo: Underwaterbuffalo (via Wikimedia Commons)

Clear Water Bay beaches

No guide to Sai Kung beaches is complete without the two most well-known beaches in the back garden of Hong Kong. Clear Water Bay’s first and second beaches are separated only by a short, rocky stretch of coast, but connected by a footpath. If you arrive at the first or second beach and find it wanting, you can simply pack up and head to the other one.

While the two beaches are similar, the first one is smaller and the second is usually less busy than the first. If you’re looking to host a beach-side cookout with family and friends, the first beach is your destination—only the first beach has barbeque pits installed, whilst the second only has kiosks selling refreshments on the beach.

How to get there:

Take bus 91 to Clear Water Bay stop, and you’ll find a tree-lined stairwell down to the beaches. You can also take a taxi directly to the Clearwater Bay beaches.

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Photo: Prosperity Horizons (via Wikimedia Commons / CC BY-SA 4.0)

Silverstrand Beach

Silverstrand Beach is a narrow beach located on the Clear Water Bay Peninsula. It is the only beach in this guide connected to a residential area instead of a country park or, simply, the sea. It also means Silverstrand Beach is usually crowded with residents living in estates and villas nearby, so expect a crowd at during your weekend visit. Much like the other beaches in this guide, Silverstrand Beach is another picturesque location with beautifully contrasting white sand and clear blue waters—a miniature version of all the other beaches off the coast of the metropolis. It’s no wonder it’s so popular with residents around the area.

How to get there:

The easiest way to get to Silverstrand Beach is to get yourself to Hang Hau. From there, you can either take a taxi straight to Silverstrand Beach, or buses 91 and 103 to Silverstrand Mart stop, where you can walk from the shopping mall to the beach.

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Celia Lee

Staff writer

Born and raised in Hong Kong and educated in the UK, Celia is passionate about culture, food, and different happenings in the city. When she’s not busy writing, you can find her scouting for new and trendy restaurants, getting lost in a bookstore, or baking up a storm at home.

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