Cheung Sha beaches, Lantau
Cheung Sha Wan (長沙灣) on the south coast of Lantau Island boasts one of Hong Kong's longest beaches - stretching around 2km from east to west, though almost split into two by a tiny headland.
There are clusters of buildings at Lower Cheung Sha village, beside the eastern end of the beach. Here, too, there are popular restaurants in former village houses just above the high tideline. The Stoep is especially popular (see article on Hong Kong Al Fresco Restaurants and Cafes); there are also a couple of more local style places, and the News bistro.
It seems the restaurants are favoured by expats arriving by junk, but they're also easily reached by public transport - lying little more than a hundred metres from the main road along south Lantau. (Just west of the main bus stops for Lower Cheung Sha.)
Chilling out at eastern Cheung Sha
Eat in these restaurants, and you can look out at the beach, and contemplate whether to get up to anything active, like swimming, kite surfing, or even just walking on the beach.
It seems, though, that while kids like to play on the beach, many a grown-up is content to chill out, unwind from city life. (If you visit, maybe don't play in this pool - reportedly has some sewage from the village; some kids have had skin problems after romping here.)
Even on Sundays (and public holidays?), eastern Cheung Sha can be far quieter than beaches on Hong Kong Island, say.
Western Cheung Sha: Lantau's long, lovely beach
And the longer, western stretch of beach - just across the small headland from Lower Cheung Sha - is quieter still. Though the road isn't far away, this stretch seems relatively wild; the only building beside it is a (rather ugly!) government building, housing lifeguards and some facilities for swimmers.
This building lies at the westernmost end of the beach. There's a bus stop just above it (buses from Tung Chung or Mui Wo, bound for Tong Fuk, Tai O and Ngong Ping, can stop here) - and you can enjoy a pleasant outing by alighting here, then walking along the beach, and over the headland to Lower Cheug Sha, perhaps arriving in time for lunch.
For some reason, the government's Lantau Developmen Taskforce has come up with an idea for a boardwalk along the beach; quite ridiculous, given this such a wonderfully unspoilt stretch of coastline, and the fine sand is magic for walking on (barefoot).
Though the road is close by at first, the beach is surprisingly peaceful.
A small stream drops to this beach.
Inland, Sunset Peak forms a fine backdrop to views from the beach; there's also a sea sports centre just above the beach.
Late on a fine afternoon, you can look back along western Cheung Sha from a pavilion atop the headland. Then, it's time to drop down to Lower Cheung Sha, perhaps to call in at one of the restaurants. A jug of sangria, maybe? Sounds good to me.