Known as the ‘back garden of Hong Kong’, Sai Kung is the gateway to the beautiful Hong Kong UNESCO Geopark and many islands in the Sai Kung Sea. Its relatively remote location makes it a popular day-trip destination on the weekend and a great jumping board to hikes, islands and seaside escapes.
We have no doubt that you’ll be heading to Sai Kung yourself this summer, which is why we’ve written this eco guide featuring the best places to eat, drink, shop and see in the area – enjoy!
Where to Eat & Drink
2084 is a plant-based restaurant in Sai Kung, which has strived to put together a menu that combines the best of what’s available and sustainable. Their meat-free menu is two-thirds vegan, features no GMOs and only uses plant-based milk. Here, you’ll find a fusion menu of Tibetan momos, Peking tacos, burgers and curries. They also offer direct delivery with a promise to use zero plastics for their takeaways.
2084, 5 Sha Tsui Path, Sai Kung, Hong Kong
Singaling’s is a restaurant founded by Sing and Wai Ling, two Sai Kung natives who are passionate about bring the freshest food to diners. They’re a dependable place to find vegan and gluten-free food with an extensive international menu that includes burgers, fajitas and pizzas, plus Mediterranean bites like falafels and hummus.
Singalings, 60 Po Tung Road, Sai Kung, Hong Kong
Hushush Ice Cream Coffee
Hushush is a small local cafe that serves up homemade ice cream and specialty coffee in an increasingly eco-friendly way. They use recyclable containers for their coffee beans and each batch of ice cream is homemade. Their tea ice creams are a must try; look out for the Pu’er tea flavour!
Hushush Ice Cream Coffee, Shop 33, Ko Fu Building, 58-72 Fuk Man Road, Sai Kung, Hong Kong
Where to Shop
Live Zero is one of the first zero-waste stores in Hong Kong and their branch in Sai Kung is a great pit stop for snacks and other plastic-free goodies. It’s a small but compact shop with all the essentials, so don’t forget to bring your own containers.
Live Zero, 22 Yi Chun Street, Sai Kung
Read also: 8Shades Of… Tamsin Thornburrow of Live Zero
Seed stands for ‘Saving the Earth Every Day’. It’s another zero-waste bulk store but this time tucked away in the backstreets of Sai Kung town. While the shop itself is small, there is a good range of bulk food and toiletry items to shop from.
Seed, 29 Sai Kung Yee Kuk Street, Sai Kung, Hong Kong
What to See
Yim Tin Tsai
Yim Tin Tsai is a historic island in Sai Kung that’s only a short ferry ride from the main town. It was once a village with a majority Christian population that has slowly emptied, with its inhabitants moving to the mainland or immigrating overseas. However, it’s currently being revived to showcase its cultural heritage: the legacy of salt farming and its religious past.
Look out for a blue tent close to the seafood restaurant at the Sai Kung seafront to buy ferry tickets and entry tickets from the official stand.
Find out more about Yim Tin Tsai and check its ferry schedule
Sharp Island is a unique site within Sai Kung Geopark. The island was once at the edge of caldera, a collapsed magma chamber of a volcano, and formed a tombolo – a sandbank that only appears during low tide, connecting the smaller island of Kiu Tau to the main island. There are regular ferries operated by private kaito (wooden ferries) services from Sai Kung pier that shuttle people over to the island, a journey that takes less than 20 minutes.
Find out more about Sharp Island
Sai Kung Geopark has many amazing hiking trails! From the hexagonal column by the East Dam Highland Reservoir to Stage 1 to 4 of the 100km-long MacLehose Trail, there are endless choices. For beginners, I’d recommend the Shui Yiu Country Trail to spot some heritage sites as well. Intermediate hikers can try Tai Tun Shan by Pak Tam Chung, while Sharp Peak is ideal for advance hikers.
Find out more about Hong Kong Geopark
Hoi Ha Marine Life Centre
Run by the WWF, Hoi Ha Marine Life Centre is in a protected marine area that’s popular with kayakers and snorkelers. No motorised boats are allowed access except for those from the centre. In addition to looking round the visitor centre itself, you can take an educational coral observation tour aboard their glass-bottomed boats, but pre-booking is required.
Find out more about Hoi Ha Marine Life Centre
See also: 8Shades’ Eco Travel Guide to Singapore
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