This is perhaps
the most attractive area in the New Territories. Located on the
eastern edge of Hong Kong, Clear Water Bay coils around the side
of the Kowloon mountain range, and then down the peninsular past
smart villas and compact villages to the aptly named bay itself.
During summer, the bay is swamped with revelers on company junks
and the beach is packed with avid swimmers and sunbathers.
Brothers Movie Studio
Clear Water Bay, a road leads past this movie studio, which is a
foundation of the local film industry. The stars of the films shown
here are all Chinese celebrities who enjoy a following that can
rival that of any Hollywood elite.
Down the road
is the exclusive Clearwater Bay Golf and Country Club, a distinct
landmark with its odd pyramid-shaped clubhouse. Visitors can play
the course, but green fees are very high.
section in the shoreline forms Joss House Bay, which comes alive
once a year during the birthday of the sea goddess, Tin Hau. Myriad
of fishing boats and sampans head over to pay their respects to
the Queen of Heaven and Goddess of the Sea. The temple was constructed
by two brothers who were allegedly saved by Tin Hau when their junk
was destroyed by a typhoon in the 11th Century. While lost at sea,
both brothers held on to the statue of Tin Hau, prayed for her help,
and finally reached the nearby Tung Lung Island alive. Years later,
after the brothers became rich, they built the temple on the island
and devoted it to the deity who had rescued them.
Sai Kung town
is a charming seaside town with fine harbor-front seafood restaurants,
Western cafes, and pubs. Hiram's Highway branches off Clear Water
Bay Road, leading down to the town of Sai Kung. City folks often
come here to get away from the bustling atmosphere and to enjoy
the natural beauty and trails of the area. Golfers and windsurfers
also flock here to indulge in the facilities available.
The most fascinating
part of the town is found behind the Tin Hau temple off Yi Chun
Street. A labyrinth of narrow alleys lead past traditional herbalists
and noodle shops that are scattered with ordinary family homes,
which house several generations under one roof. Saunter around for
a glimpse of village life.
Sai Chau Golf Course
Catch a ferry
from the harbor to the Kau Sai Chau Golf Course, which is popular
among golf enthusiasts. As it is a public course, green fees are
not as pricey as those in private clubs. The course is relatively
splendid. Its design include excellent facilities and landscaping,
and has turned the place into one of the most popular and beneficial
recreation spots in the whole of the territory.
Kung Country Park
Trail is the starting point of Sai Kung Country Park's trail. Stretching
100 km, the trail goes past open country, from one side of the New
Territories to the other, across hills as far as Tuen Mun. The trail
is well-marked and there are camping grounds along the way. Some
parts are slightly steeper, but it should not be a problem for those
used to hiking.
At the end
of the Country Park is Hoi Ha, a small stretch of sand on the edge
of a marine reserve. The nicest beach of Sai Kung is Tai Long Wan,
which is accessible through an hour's walk on the trek, either around
the High Island Reservoir or by cutting across the hills along the
MacLehose Trail from the road at Pak Tam Au. Surfing is excellent
over on this beach. There are also a few stalls selling cold beer
and hot noodles. However, avoid swimming too far out because of
the strong undercurrents.
Pak Tam Au, the road swoops down through woods and little villages
to Wong Shek pier. Wong Shek is noted for its terrific windsurfing,
with a Jockey Club water sports center that supply dinghies and
windsurfing boards at reasonable rates. On most Saturdays and Sundays,
the harbor is dotted with small sails. Picnics and barbecues are
popular here, as there are many superb sites with ample barbecue
pits to meet the demands of visitors.
The place is
quieter on weekdays, which is advantageous for those who prefer
more privacy. If one is adventurous enough, bargain with one of
the local boat owners on the pier and make a trip around the point
to Chek Keng, which is a more secluded area of Hong Kong that even
the residents know little about. The place is relatively traditional
and maintains a lifestyle similar to that of centuries ago.
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