GOING GREEN IN HONG KONG – Lamma Island

Looking down on Sok Kwu Wan fishing village, where a seafood meal awaits.

Looking down on Sok Kwu Wan fishing village, where a seafood meal awaits.

Yes, it is possible to escape the madding crowd in this town.

For one of the most densely populated parts of the planet, Hong Kong has a surprising amount of green space. Most people live literally on top of each other in high rise apartment towers, concentrated along the shore of Hong Kong Island.

Behind them are forests leading up to the Peak, which absolutely must be scaled, by foot or by cable train, by every visitor. Except for us.

We find our Hong Kong green space on one of the outer islands.

Lamma Island is a 30-minute ferry ride from Hong Kong Central Pier. It’s an interesting ride, since it’s the first chance we get to see Hong Kong from the water.

We file off the ferry in the scruffy little village of Yung Shue Wan, traipse along the waterfront past the seafood restaurants, where staff gently invite us to sit down and drink something, if not to eat some of the sea creatures squirming in tanks.

Note the fish drying in Yung Shue Wan village.

Note the fish drying in Yung Shue Wan village.

Then we follow the small groups of day-trippers along the Family Walking Trail – a well-made and marked path across the island towards the village of Sok Kwu Wan.

The Family Walking Trail across the island was sponsored by a power company...

The Family Walking Trail was sponsored by a power company…

...presumably the same company responsible for the power station on the island.

…presumably the same company responsible for the power station on the island. There’s a single windmill on Lamma of which they seem very proud. We guess the power station generates far more electricity.

It’s not a difficult walk. We reach Sok Kwu Wan in a couple of leisurely hours, even on a warm, humid day, with pauses to admire the views across to Lantau Island. We can best compare it to a stroll around the fringes of Sydney Harbour – some nice bushy bits, a pleasant beach, nothing really spectacular.

Live and wriggling, ready for the pot and the plate.

Live and wriggling, ready for the pot and the plate.

Rainbow Seafood Restaurant makes it into all the Hong Kong guidebooks and lists of top eating places. I suspect its location on the beach, looking out on the fishing rafts moored in the bay has much to do with its success though, judging from the lobster and crabs we tried, the food is good too.

It’s casual dining, sitting on plastic chairs, and we’d have to say the service, like much we’ve found in Hong Kong, is pretty casual and unfriendly too. People do their job efficiently enough, though nobody’s going out of their way to please. 10% service charge is added to the bill anyway, so there’s no need to impress. And we’re just tourists anyway; they’ll never see us again in their lives.

Have others had this experience too, or is it just us?

Lobster from the Rainbow Seafood Restaurant.

Lobster from the Rainbow Seafood Restaurant.

Main Street, Seafood Street, Sok Kwu Wan.

Main Street, Seafood Street, Sok Kwu Wan.

Real Hong Kong is just across the water, but very different from here.

Real Hong Kong is just across the water, but very different from here.

All in all, a good day.

3 Comments

Filed under Hiking, Hong Kong

3 responses to “GOING GREEN IN HONG KONG – Lamma Island

  1. In our experience Hong Kong service is all about money. It is the ultimate utilitarian society. The only way to crank a smile or a pleasant word out of anyone is to pay for it. Having said that, we still have managed to enjoy that place but only as spectators.

  2. Olga

    Richard, your posts on Hong Kong are great! Please write more! We are going there in Autumn. I m creating itineraries 🙂

    Thank you for writing

    Olga

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