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Hong Kong Day Trip: My walk across Lamma Island

Last Updated on 12 November, 2020

I’ve always felt that Hong Kong was way too busy for my liking – some people like the buzz, but it’s not really my thing. So on this particular trip to Hong Kong, I took the time to venture to Hong Kong’s outlying islands beyond the central area, venturing to Cheung Chau and Lamma Island. My verdict? They really aren’t difficult to get to and I enjoyed it quite a bit. I never thought of Hong Kong as a place with much nature before this, but it definitely has some beautiful natural sights to offer beyond the typical food and shopping. Here’s what my day trip to Lamma Island was like and what you can expect to see.

As always, a handy map to show you my route on Lamma Island. I didn’t cover all of Lamma Island, just the Family Trail from one ferry terminal to the other. I’ll share a bit about what you can see along the way.

How to get to Lamma Island

Head to Central Ferry Pier #4 to catch the ferry to Lamma Island. It’s where IFC Mall is located and the start of the Mid Level Escalators, and right where the Hong Kong MTR station is located.

Lamma Island is a half-hour ferry ride away from Central Ferry Pier and has 2 piers:

  • Yung Shue Wan on the northwestern end
    • Ferries run every 20-30mins in morning and evening, 45-60 minutes in afternoon
    • HK$17.80 (S$3) on weekdays and HK$24.70 (S$4.30) on weekends
  • Song Kwu Wan on the southeastern end
    • Ferries run every 75-120mins

See the timings of the ferries at the HKKF website.

I really like that you can just use your Octopus Card to pay for the ticket, just tap and go like you’re taking the MTR.

Hong Kong Central Ferry Pier Boat
Central Ferry Pier

Lamma Island Family Trail

Lamma island is also known as Pok Liu Chau, but should probably be called Laidback Island people go there to get away and enjoy nature, so don’t visit Lamma Island expecting a ton of activity. We basically walked around and soaked in the view, and I’ll be the first to say that I’m not usually one for trekking, but this was quite manageable for a casual walker like myself, and while it can be a bit tough on the slopes, it was a really pleasant walk overall.

Hong Kong Lamma Island Family Trail Map
A shot of the Lamma Island Family Walk map along the way

Yung Shue Wan

We took the 10am ferry that brought us to Yung Shue Wan Bay in about 40 minutes. Perhaps it was the timing or that the bay is quite shallow, but we had to walk a little way to get from the jetty to the main village. It was quite a lovely idyllic view save for the chimneys of the nearby Hong Kong Electric Power Station. It’s an unexpected sight given the quaintness of the squat village buildings and the rolling green hills in the distance, but this is actually the 2nd largest of Hong Kong’s power stations.

Hong Kong Lamma Island Yung Shue Wan Bay
Yung Shue Wan Bay just as we arrived
Hong Kong Lamma Island Yung Shue Wan Power Station
Power station in the distance. There’s actually a beach near there called Power Station Beach
Hong Kong Lamma Island - Yung Shue Wan Cat
Spotted this cute set up on the way to the village – I picked up a cat postcard

We decided to embrace the slow life and enjoy the serenity of the bay by having a dim sum breakfast with a waterfront view at Sampan Seafood Restaurant. While its name might not make it the obvious place for dim sum, it had a really inviting looking counter piled high with dim sum baskets so we just had to sit down there for a quick but surprisingly filling breakfast. It also had a really nice view of the bay.

Hong Kong Lamma Island Yung Shue Wan Dim Sum
Some of my dim sum must haves: siew mai (dumpling with shrimp and minced meat), har gao (shrimp dumpling), chee cheong fun (rice sheet roll?) and pai gu (pork ribs)

Completely stuffed from all that dim sum, we decide to go exploring after our brunch. Make sure you wear a good pair of shoes as you will do a lot of walking on Lamma island. As with many other places in Hong Kong, it can be pretty hilly at points. We took the Family Trail and enjoy the greenery and quiet of the island.

Hong Kong Lamma Island Family Trail Road
So vehicles aren’t allowed on Lamma Island, but they do have some small trucks and is probably a service path
Hong Kong Lamma Island Tai Peng Old Village
Tai Peng Village sits above Yung Shoe Wan and is split into an old and new village

Lamma Winds

We took a detour off the main Family Walk path to see the Lamma Winds, which is really a rather fancy name for the one wind turbine on Lamma Island that is 71m tall and impressively tall up close. You’ll see it at various junctures during the walk, and it always seems like you are right next to it because of its sheer height! They definitely picked one of the windiest spots on the island to put this turbine at.

Hong Kong Lamma Island Lamma Winds Turbine
The lone Lamma Winds turbine in the distance
Hong Kong Lamma Island - Lamma Winds Tall
Right at the turbine’s base are a bunch of panels that explain more about its presence
Hong Kong Lamma Island Lamma Winds View
Head on over to the lookout point right next to the Lamma Winds – here we are overlooking the Tin Wan area on Hong Kong’s central island!

Hung Shing Ye Beach

Rejoining the Lamma Island Family Trail again, we continued walking until we ended up at Hung Shing Ye beach which seemed to be where most of the island’s visitors head to. There was a really popular barbeque area and lots of big groups arriving with large bags of skewers and food when we were there. The water in the bay was too cold for swimming in March though I did dip my feet in the water for a bit before we continued along the Family Walk.

Hong Kong Lamma Island Hung Shing Ye Beach Power Station
The power station is visible in the distance – Hung Shing Ye beach was surprisingly uncrowded when we strolled through
Hong Kong Lamma Island Hung Shing Ye Beach
Apparently this place gets packed on weekends! There are shark-prevention nets in the water which is… mildly concerning

Sok Kwu Wan Lookout Pavillion

After we left the beach, it was more uphill climbs as we headed inland, cutting across the island towards the east coast. This bit was definitely more tiring but had excellent views of the surrounding sea. We were probably lucky that it was kinda cloudy so it was good walking weather even if the photos aren’t as pretty.

Hong Kong Lamma Island Trail View Hung Shing Ye
Looking back at Hung Shing Ye Bay and the sloping path that we walked
Hong Kong Lamma Island Trail View Kat Tsai Wan
A view of Kat Tsai Wan Bay which is a bit further down from Hung Shing Ye before the trail shifted to the other side coastline
Hong Kong Lamma Island Trail Greenery
More greenery and less sea views as we walked inland

We keep walking amidst the greenery and finally stopped for a rest at the Sok Kwu Wan Lookout Pavilion which overlooks the sea and lo and behold, we could see the village of Sok Kwu Wan in the distance. The good news for anyone walking is that everything else from this point on is thankfully downhill, phew!

We could also have taken a detour west to Lo So Shing Beach, but we were aiming to catch the ferry back so we kept going.

Hong Kong Lamma Island Sok Kwu Wan Lookout View
I didn’t take pictures of he Lookout Pavilion which is a Chinese-style pagoda of sorts because I was pretty tired by then. That’s Sok Kwu Wan Village in the distance!

Sok Kwu Wan

Finally we reached Sok Kwu Wan! One of the popular things to do here in Sok Kwu Wan is have a feast at one of the many seafood restaurants here, but because we were there at an odd late afternoon time it was pretty quiet.

The Family Walk continues eastwards to Mo Tat Wan, or you can go further down south to Tung O and Shek Pai Wan where there is another jetty, but we had to head back to the main island that evening for some Art Basel events, so we ended our journey at Sok Kwu Wan and waited for the ferry to take us back to Central Pier.

Hong Kong Lamma Island Sok Kwu Wan Bay
Back at sea level. Here’s the crazy thing – I apparently missed out on seeing the famous Kamikaze Cave here…
Hong Kong Lamma Island Sok Kwu Wan Tin Hau Temple
A tiny Tin Hau temple en route to Sok Kwu Wan jetty

Essentially our visit to Lamma was one very long walk – all in all I think we walked a good 5km that day! It is a pleasant way, easy and affordable way to spend a day in Hong Kong if you want to get away from the hectic city centre.

Hong Kong Lamma Island - Sign
At Sok Kwu Wan Ferry Terminal

I also visited another outlying island in Hong Kong called Cheung Chau that I personally thought was more interesting, or read more about where else I went in Hong Kong.

You can also read an article I wrote for Turkish Airlines Skylife magazine about visiting the outlying islands in Hong Kong.

Ketki Shah

Friday 30th of October 2015

Wow! The beautiful place of Lamma Island has caught my attention! Thanks for the informative post and marvelous photographs that talks about the place so nicely. I add it to my bucket list and wish to visit this place at the earliest!

Jaclynn Seah

Saturday 31st of October 2015

Thanks Ketki - happy travels and hope you get to visit Lamma Island soon :)

Sarita Banerjee

Tuesday 27th of October 2015

I love travelling and exploring new destinations with my family and kids. The informative description about the Lamma Island along with eye-striking pictures make me to add this place in my bucket list. The map and the guidelines provided to reach this place will be of great help to all.

Jaclynn Seah

Tuesday 27th of October 2015

Thanks Sarita, glad you found the info useful! :)