Hong Kong's Top 10 Beaches

Hong Kong has about 40 public beaches with shark nets, showers, BBQ grills, changing rooms and lifeguards, and hundreds of private and public parkland beaches. The parkland beaches are the kind of empty and natural beach you can hike to and be alone.

Picking out the top 10 beaches isn't easy since there are so many good ones. Hong Kong has a variety of beaches, so we have taken a cross-section of the best. No matter what kind of beach you like, there will be something for you to enjoy in our list of top beaches.

Popular Big Public Beaches

1) Repulse Bay Beach

  • Location: Repulse Bay, on southern Hong Kong Island near Ocean Park.
  • Features: One of Hong Kong's most popular free public beaches; with clean, good public facilities such as bathrooms and a free playground. The beach is surrounded by high-rise residential buildings and is next to a public country parkland for hiking.
  • Activities: sunbathing. swimming, eating, hiking, barbecuing, and relaxing.

This popular beach is often crowded, and it is regarded as one of the most beautiful public beaches for its crescent shape. The beach draws huge crowds when the weather is good during the hot summer months.

Part of the reason Repulse Bay is so popular is because the water is relatively clean. The bay is on Hong Kong Island's southern coast and so out of the way of pollution from China. The lifeguards keep watch for problems and any dangers.

2) Shek O Village Beach

  • Location: southeastern Hong Kong Island.
  • Features: One of Hong Kong's most popular free public beaches; clean, good public facilities such as bathrooms, BBQ grills and tables, a life guard station, and shark nets. There are bars and restaurants in a seaside Chinese village and rentable equipment, such as body boards and lilos. There is a small golf course and a paraglide lift.
  • Activities: sunbathing, hiking, sightseeing, swimming, eating, barbecuing, rock climbing, golfing, relaxing, surfing, body surfing, and paragliding.

This popular public beach is known for its fine sand, clean water and waves. It is known as one of the more beautiful public beaches, and it is less crowded than Repulse Bay. It is near Big Wave Beach that has better surfing.

The Shek O Country Club (石澳鄉村俱樂部) is built around a private golf course (par 65). Shek O Village presently has a resident population of 200 people. It is surrounded by Shek O Country Park. This area is so beautiful and quaint that it is a popular setting for making Cantonese music videos.

Surfing Beaches

3) Big Wave Bay Beach

  • Location: southeastern Hong Kong Island near Shek O Beach.
  • Features: Clean, good public beach with facilities such as bathrooms, free showers, BBQ grills, tables, café, lifeguard services, and shark nets. There is a small golf course nearby.
  • Activities: sunbathing, hiking, swimming, eating, barbecuing, golfing, relaxing, surfing, and body surfing.

Big Wave Bay lives up to its name when there is a storm out at sea. When the weather is right, you can enjoy fine sun and big waves and great scenery.

Surfers know of better places to go than this public surfing beach, but for most people, the facilities and convenience, and the availability of rental equipment and restaurant food, make it among the top choices in Hong Kong.

Some of Hong Kong's best hiking trails are nearby. One of the highlights of the beach is its scenic location near the Dragon’s Back Hiking Trail. It is surrounded by the Shek O Country Park. You can take a 45 minute hike up the hill around the Shek O Golf and Country Club to go to Shek O Beach and the restaurants in the village there.

4) Pui O Beach

  • Location: southern Lantau Island near the village of Pui O.
  • Features: Clean, good public beach with facilities such as bathrooms, free showers, BBQ grills, tables, café, tent camping site, lifeguard services, and shark nets. There is an outdoor adventures team venue, and a kiosk for renting surfboards and other equipment.
  • Activities: sunbathing, hiking, kayaking, canoeing, swimming, surfing, eating, barbecuing, camping, relaxing, surfing, and body surfing.

This big, beautiful, and scenic beach is great for surfing and other kinds of outdoor adventures. The beach is broad and sandy and quite long with no rocks, so it's safer. When the waves are right, it is one of the best surfing beaches.

It is also great for other outdoor adventures like tent camping or kayaking to other places since kayaks can be rented. There are small islands and inlets around it that you can row out to. The trails in the area go up to some of Hong Kong's best camping and hiking areas.

Pui O is close enough for getting food and drinks, but there is a fine café run by the adventure staff for Western food like grilled hamburgers, fries and beer.

Secluded Wild Park Beaches

5) Lo So Shing Beach

  • Location: Lamma Island.
  • Features: Clean, empty public beach with excellent water quality, lifeguard services, bathrooms, changing room, BBQ grills, and shark nets. Its remote location means it is relatively empty.
  • Activities: hiking, swimming, barbecuing, having solitude, relaxing, fishing.

Sometimes people just want to go for a hike and a swim somewhere beautiful and natural and be alone. Lo So Shing Beach (盧鬚城泳灘) may be your favorite because it combines remoteness with facilities. It is on a good hiking trail about 50 minutes hiking from the Yung Shue Wan pier.

A lot of people never heard of it, but its cleanliness and location on Lamma Island make it ideal for swimming, hiking and getting away. The public facilities make it convenient, and the lifeguards and shark nets help to make it safer for swimming.

6) Tai Long Wan Beach

  • Location: Sai Kung area.
  • Features: Big, clean, wild beach. It is remote and reachable via hiking on foot or taking a boat or yacht. It is probably the biggest and most beautiful wild beach and is often noted as Hong Kong's best. Small café.
  • Activities: hiking, surfing, relaxing, wild camping, and enjoying solitude.

The beach is legendary among hikers in Hong Kong. It is still unspoiled, but its fame is starting to draw hiking groups and developers. But the advantage to being secluded and undeveloped is that it is still perhaps the most beautiful and biggest beach.

It is a country park beach meaning that there are no public beach facilities or shark nets. The current may be too strong at times for all but the best swimmers and surfers.

The hike there on the Stage 2 of the MacLehose Trail is one of its highlights as is the beautiful scenery and lack of litter. It is an excellent place to camp on overnight. When most hikers leave, you may have the big bay to yourself and the stars and moon.

It is close to two other beaches you can hike to. Han Tin is smaller, and Tai Long Sai Wan was equally as big and legendary, but recent development is spoiling it.

Family Beaches

7) Cheung Sha Beach

  • Location: southern Lantau Island west of Pui O Beach.
  • Features: Huge, clean, sandy public beach. Good child-friendly facilities such as bathrooms, free showers, BBQ grills, tables, cafés, lifeguard services, shark nets, and a big natural park adjacent with campgrounds to explore.
  • Activities: family fun, water splashing, floating, hiking, swimming, body boarding, eating, barbecuing, camping, relaxing, and body surfing.

If you want to take your kids to a safe beach with refreshments, showers and public facilities that is safe for swimming, Cheung Sha Beach (長沙泳灘) on Lantau Island is a good place to go.

It is close enough to the main city, and the transportation system makes it conveniently accessible for family groups. This is especially true if you are coming from the airport or other parts of Lantau Island. From the Central piers, it is about an hour and 15 minutes journey by the Mui Wo ferry boat and bus.

But it is still remote enough so the area is mostly undeveloped natural country park. You might have a long stretch of beach to yourself. It is considered the longest beach in Hong Kong at 3 kilometers long.

8) Tung Wan Beach

  • Location: Ma Wan Island.
  • Features: Family-friendly public beach with clean sand. Good kids-friendly facilities such as bathrooms, lifeguard services, and shark nets. A variety of many good but not pricey restaurants for refreshments and meals line it. It is next to the Noah's Ark Amusement Park and the free family and love themed Ma Wan Park.
  • Activities: family fun, water splashing, floating, swimming, eating, barbecuing, and visiting the nearby theme park facilities.

This long and narrow sandy clean beach is good for families partly because the scenery is unusually good and interesting. The water is clean. It's safe for kids because it's in an upscale resort complex area, and it's a public beach with lifeguard services.

The scenery is so good that it has become a favorite site for people making wedding photos. You can see the Tsing Ma Bridge and another bridge of one of the world’s biggest construction projects close by it.

It's unusual in Hong Kong for its scenic natural and man-made sights and its family friendly novelties.

Swimming Beaches

9) Middle Bay Beach

  • Location: southern Hong Kong Island.
  • Features: Safe, clean water. Lifeguard services and facilities such as bathrooms, free showers, tables, and shark nets. Less crowds. Restaurant.
  • Activities: swimming, relaxing.

Swimmers need a place to swim that isn't crowded, has good facilities, and has safe and clean water with soft sand. Middle Bay Beach is a small public beach with lifeguard services and public facilities with relatively few people, so it makes for a better swimming beach.

Due to pollution, the beaches in Kowloon are not rated as safe by the government. The government regularly checks the water quality of their managed beaches, and the safe ones are ranked Grade 1.

The only Grade 1 Beaches are along the southern coast of Hong Kong Island and on other islands. This is among the most readily accessible Grade 1 swimming beaches.

10) South Bay Beach

  • Location: Southern Hong Kong Island.
  • Features: Safe, clean water. Sandy. Lifeguard services and facilities such as bathrooms, free showers, tables, BBQ grills, and shark nets. Less crowds.
  • Activities: swimming, relaxing, sunbathing, and watching the sunset.

Visitors are relatively fewer here than on other beaches in the Southern District. It is better for swimmers who wish to enjoy serenity, sunbathe or see a lovely sunset. However, there is not public transport to it. It is a short walk from neighboring Repulse Bay or Middle Bay Beach.

If you are going to be swimming in the water a long time, it is important to go to a beach with clean and safe water. The government of Hong Kong regularly checks the water quality of the managed public beaches, and this is ranked Grade 1.

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I updated this article on October 14, 2013
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