Sunday, 13 October 2013

Visit to Cheung Chau

We took the Xin Fei or "New Flight" over to Cheung Chau
After shaming me for not having ever visited Cheung Chau in the combined 10 years I've lived in Hong Kong, YTSL finally took me there with two other friends.

Lots of trinkets for sale including Cheung Chau "buns"
We took the 12.15 ferry over and tried to sit out in the back but there were no more seats and when we tried to take the plastic chairs from inside, we discovered they were bolted down -- probably to prevent them from falling overboard.

Many people like visiting this outlying island because it's not too developed though in recent years more and more people come to hang out particularly on the weekends and special events like the Cheung Chau Bun Festival.

Thankfully the humidity has dropped in the last few weeks so it was very pleasant to walk around despite it hovering around 30 degrees. From the ferry pier we walked to the left and along the praya saw many small shops selling Cheung Chau bun coin bags, cushions and key chains, fish pockets made of fabric and dried seafood.

Our steamed fish that cost HK$100!
Further down were a series of restaurants, mostly offering seafood on the menu. We headed to YTSL's favourite eatery here and promptly ordered lots of food: Steamed fish, squid stir-fried with garlic, steamed prawns with chillis and soy sauce, seafood soup, a plate of tong choi and some deep-fried vegetable wrap with mayonnaise that she raved about.

Everything was pretty good, particularly the seafood soup that included fish, that made the broth sweet, as well as tofu, mushrooms and some small vegetables. The steamed fish was only slightly overcooked, while the prawns and squid were fine. Deep-fried vegetables dipped in mayonnaise weren't my thing so YTSL had my share...

Cooked chickens hanging out on the way to the beach
We were pretty full with rice and a bottle of beer and amazed that the bill came to HK$410.

To walk off our lunch, we headed towards the beach and saw a few temples, large and small along the way, as well as some chickens hanging about...

The beach wasn't crowded but had many people taking in the sunshine and kids making sand castles. There were also some people para-surfing, which looked like a total body workout. Further down the beach is an area where Olympic gold medallist Lee Lai-shan's uncle has a windsurfing school and there are windsurfing memorial parks, with the word "memorial" a bit strange...

A para surfer catching some strong winds
Around the corner was a snack street and here people were snapping up all kinds of traditional Chinese puddings, or next door was an intriguing potato chip on a stick -- a potato peeled in such a way that the swirls wrapped around a stick and were deep-fried and customers could add their own toppings. There was also frozen fruit on a stick, or popsicles made with watermelon juice and a few bits of fruit inside it too.

We walked back towards the ferry pier and in the square there was a massive line up for fish balls, apparently the most famous shop on the island. I've heard mixed reviews, some saying they're fantastic, others that the fish balls are nothing special. But there were so many people in line so you have to wonder...

A cute little fire services truck going past the ferry pier
It was already 3.45pm when we boarded the fast ferry back to Central. I'm sure there's many other parts of the island I still need to explore, but it was enough to give me an idea of why people love the place (laid back and quiet). Though I have to say my favourite was seeing the small ambulance and fire truck! Almost like toy cars!

2 comments:

  1. Am glad you enjoyed your first trip to Cheung Chau and hope there'll be more on the cards. I like the walk to the right along the long promenade to the temple in the southwest. A round-the-island hike's also recommended! ;b

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    1. This visit demonstrates your persistence pays off!

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