Sai Kung - A Hong Kong Gem

26 October 2012

While in Australia, Hong Kong local Wah On Lee prefers to go by his adopted name of Alfred. This gregarious traveller left his homeland six years ago to finish high school in Auckland, before crossing the Tasman to call Brisbane home. He currently studies architecture at QUT.

And while he loves his new life in Australia, Alfred recalls his childhood growing up in a beautiful part of Hong Kong - an area that's largely over-looked in favour of the more famous Kowloon and Hong Kong.

 Sai Kung District

Sai Kung, situated in the north-east of Hong Kong, grew into prominence as a fishing harbour but today is a tranquil residential district that enjoys a picturesque setting.

"Sai Kung is known as, 'the garden of Hong Kong,' because it's very peaceful and there are not many tall buildings. It's hard to imagine that it's only 30-minutes by bus to bustling Kowloon," said Alfred.

Alfred believes that when most people think of Hong Kong, they only think of the dense urban areas. However he's quick to point that over 65 per cent of his homeland is forested bushland and greenery. And luckily for Alfred’s love of hiking, his home district of Sai Kung is located close to the Sai Kung West and East Country Park.

"I love to walk through the nearby mountains, just to wander and spend time alone. The paths are all paved and as such they’re family-friendly; to encourage people to explore the natural side of Hong Kong. The views are marvellous in the Sai Kung West Country Park."

And it's not only the bush walks that make Sai Kung beautiful - the natural harbour is also spectacular.

"The only time Sai Kung gets busy is when scenic cruise boats stop in the harbour and the tourists disembark for the day. Walking along the promenade is a great way to spend your time. You can walk all the way to the beach and there's a barbeque to cook your own lunch overlooking the ocean," he said.

For travellers who'd prefer an authentic seafood experience prepared by great chefs, Alfred recommends the Chuen Kee Seafood Restaurant.

"I love going there for yum cha during the day. I go with my parents all the time. At night, they have a great menu. Personally I like the boiled prawns and when they're dipped into soy sauce with chopped fresh chilli they are absolutely delicious. Sai Kung is well known for its seafood restaurants."

Aside from Sai Kung, Alfred's other favourite place is Stanley, on the south side of Hong Kong Island.

"I like the Stanley promenade because I love water. However, travellers will like the markets and the bars. You can basically buy anything in the markets including art works, clothes, souvenirs. From Causeway Bay or Central the mini-bus takes about 30 - 40 minutes."

 Alfred with his friends in Hong Kong

Lyndon Barnett

Guided by curiosity and a sense of adventure, Lyndon travelled independently to 69 countries on six continents. As such, travel is Lyndon's only addiction. He enjoys with equal measure - scaling the peaks of a South American mountain at altitude, attending opera in a European Opera House or hunting for a bargain in an Asian market.