CHEUNG CHAU BUN FESTIVAL 2024 (Main events - Piu Sik Parade and Bun Scrambling Competition Wednesday 14th May 2024)


The event attracted around 1,650 spectators, who witnessed 12 finalists scrambling up the bun tower to gather as many buns as they could within a three-minute time limit to vie for the championships.  

In addition to the individual race, there was also an invitation relay in which three teams from Shenzhen, Zhuhai and Macao competed against seven local teams from Cheung Chau.
The results were as follows:


Champion: Yip Kin-man, 776 marks

First runner-up: Chung Yuk-chuen, 771 marks

Second runner-up: Leung Wan-chung, 759 marks


Champion: Kung Tsz-shan, 842 marks


Kwok Ka-ming (Number of buns gathered: 136)


Champion: Shenzhen Mountaineering and Outdoor Sports Association 02:47.99

First runner-up: Zhuhai Climbing Association Team 02:59.97

Second runner-up: Hong Kong and Kowloon Floating Fishermen Welfare Promotion Association (Cheung Chau Branch) 03:31.85


Finalists scrambling up the bun tower to snatch as many buns as they can within a three-minute time limit


Yip Kin-man (left) was the male champion and Kung Tsz-shan (right) won the women's individual contest


Sunday 7th April - 9am to 7-30pm - 200 climbers for the individual event receive training on bun tower climbing and from 10am to 1pm Bun Scrambling Competition Invitation Relay participants receive training on bun tower climbing from China Hong Kong Mountaineering and Climbing Union at Pak Tai Temple Soccer Pitch.

Sunday 14th April- 2pm to 6pm - selection contest for the 12 Bun Scrambling Competition finalists at Pak Tai Temple Soccer Pitch

Sunday 5th May - noon until 6pm - Climbing Carnival at Pak Tai Temple Playground Soccer Pitch

Wednesday 15th May - 2pm to 4pm - Piu Sik Parade

*15th May - 11-30pm to 12-30am (16th May) - Bun Scrambling Competition at Pak Tai Temple Soccer Pitch

Thursday 16th May - 9am - Distribution of Buns at Pak Tai Temple Plaza

Thursday 16th May - 2pm - Ceremony to return the deities on Cheung Chau to their temples

* Admission to the Bun Scrambling Competition is by ticket only. Four spectator zones will be set up on the night at the soccer pitch of Pak Tai Temple Playground, which can accommodate about 1,650 people. Members of the public are requested to queue up at Pak She First Lane, next to Cheung Chau Fire Station, and along Ping Chong Road to get free admission tickets. The distribution of tickets will start at 10pm. Each person can obtain one ticket on a first-come, first-served basis while tickets last. Spectators who have got their tickets should wait for instructions from the Police and staff of the organisers for admission, which is expected to start from 10-30pm. Spectators should enter Zone 1 to Zone 4 in sequence.

For further information see;

Notices will be posted at Central Pier 5 informing the public of the schedule and arrangements of the event. Notices and enquiry counters will also be set up at Cheung Chau Ferry Pier and the entrance of Pak Tai Temple Playground, where staff will be on hand to address public enquiries.

Organisers will monitor the weather conditions on the night. The Bun Scrambling Competition will be cancelled in case of inclement weather, including thunderstorms, to ensure public safety. As stipulated in the prospectus, awards would then be determined based on the results of the selection contest and a prize presentation would be held immediately. Since the Bun Scrambling Competition is traditionally held at a specified period during the Cheung Chau Jiao Festival, no replay of the competition would be organised in such circumstances.




For details of ferry services to Cheung Chau see further down page

Sun Ferry announced that up until 8pm on the day of the festival it carried about 51,300 passengers on its ferry services operating between Central and Cheung Chau.


Bus companies will operate a special bus route No. 104R from Central Pier 5 to Mong Kok from about 1-10am to 2-30am on 16th May. In addition, overnight bus routes including Citybus route Nos. N8X (to Siu Sai Wan) and N90 (to South Horizons), Cross-Harbour Tunnel route Nos. N182 (to Kwong Yuen), N619 (to Shun Lee) and Kowloon Motor Bus (KMB) route Nos. N373 (to Fanling), N368 (to Yuen Long West) will be diverted via Central Pier 5 from their first departures on 16th May. The diversion arrangement will last until about 2am (for route No. N8X) and about 2-50am (for remaining routes aforementioned) on the same day. Citybus overnight bus route Nos. N930 (departure at 1-35am to TsuenWan DiscoveryPark), N952 (departure at 1-25am to Tuen Mun Chi Lok Fa Yuen), N962 (departures at 1-15am and 1-45am to Tuen Mun Lung Mun Oasis) and KMB overnight bus route No. N960 (departure at 1-25am to Tuen Mun Kin Sang Estate) will also be diverted via Central Pier 5. 

A temporary bus stop for the routes concerned will be designated outside Central Pier 5.


The twelve 2023 finalists in the Bun Scrambling Competition racing up the bun tower to gather as many buns as they can within a three-minute time limit to vie for the championships

The attendance for the 2023 Bun Scrambling Competition was about 1,400 and the competition results were;



Champion: Chung Yuk-chuen                                 954 marks
First runner-up: Yip Kin-man                                  804 marks
Second runner-up: Wong Chi-kit                             628 marks


Champion: Wong Ka-yan                                        684 marks

Winner of "Queen of Queens" (three times champion in the women's division since 2016: Wong Ka-yan

Winner of "Full Pockets of Lucky Buns; Lai Wai-Chun  (Number of buns grabbed: 121)


Chung Yuk-chuen (left) was the male champion and Wong Ka-yan (right) won the women's contest. Wong, who has been the champion three times in the women’s division since 2016, became the first "Queen of Queens" of the competition

In addition, six local Cheung Chau organisations were invited to take part in the Bun Scrambling Invitation Relay. The three-member teams competed in the relay, which was held immediately after the individual competition.



THE CHEUNG CHAU BUN FESTIVAL WAS CANCELLED IN 2020, 2021 AND 2022 owing to public health concerns in connection with the COVID-19 pandemic

The Cheung Chau Bun Festival is one of Hong Kong's major cultural events and takes place during a three week period, culminating with the Piu Sik Parade ("Floating Children Parade") and finals of the Bun Scrambling Competition on the 8th day of the fourth moon in the lunar calendar, which is also the Buddha's Birthday and a public holiday in Hong Kong. The festival, also known as the Jiao Festival has, since June 2011, been one of four cultural events in Hong Kong which have been placed on the People’s Republic of China Ministry of Culture national list of intangible cultural heritage. The festival is held in honour of Pak Tai, the Daoist deity and god of the north and is intended to purify the community and pacify the spirits of islanders who died in the plague of 1894. The plague was finally wiped out after Pak Tai’s image had been paraded through the streets of the island. The 2019 Bun Festival is jointly organised by the Hong Kong Cheung Chau Bun Festival Committee and the Leisure and Cultural Services Department with the support of the Cheung Chau Wai Chiu County Association Limited, the Cheung Chau Rural Committee, the Islands District Office and the Hong Kong Mountaineering Union, and sponsored by Lukfook Jewellery, Watsons Water and the Islands District Council. Events run from 14th April to 13th May 2019.

"Floating" children are a highlight of the spectacular Piu Sik Parade

Until 1964 the festival was celebrated at Tung Wan (East Bay) Beach but since 1965 the focal point has been the Pak Tai Temple, one of Hong Kong’s oldest temples, built in 1783. The event has become a major attraction for thousands of visitors from Hong Kong and overseas and in recent years up to 70,000 visitors have joined the island’s 30,000 population during the festival period. A makeshift theatre is erected opposite the temple for Chinese opera performances and other events throughout the festival include lion and dragon dances, martial arts performances and variety shows. Tradition dictates that for three days of the festival only vegetarian food is eaten with meat and seafood only becoming available after all the buns have been removed from the tower. However whilst visitors will find that restaurants take meat off the menu and McDonalds offers veggie burgers, the vegetarian tradition is nowadays mainly observed by indigenous islanders with many shops and food vendors cashing in on the tourist market.

The main events are the Piu Sik (Floating Colours) Parade and the Bun Scrambling Competition which traditionally take place on the 8th day of the fourth moon in the lunar calendar (22nd May in 2018). The colourful street parade from 2pm to 4pm attracts huge crowds. At the 2018 festival, the number of visitors travelling to the island on the day of the parade and Bun Scrambling Competition was about 20,000, a decrease from about 25,000 the previous year, largely attributed to extremely hot weather. The parade features “floating” children representing revered gods and current political figures, and who are carried shoulder high, appearing to be unsupported in mid-air. The 2013 parade first broke with tradition by featuring a non-Chinese child in the parade in a concession to promotion of healthy eating when two British brothers, aged 6 and 5 depicted British celebrity chef Jamie Oliver and a farmer. The parade is accompanied by over 20 decorated floats, musicians, flag-bearers, gongs. At the front of the procession red sedan chairs carry deities from all the temples on Cheung Chau, led by Pak Tai. The 2015 Bun Scrambling Competition was cancelled owing to adverse weather although the Piu Sik Parade earlier in the day did take place that year.

Newly-elected Chief Executive of the Hong Kong SAR, Carrie Lam, represented in the floating colours parade at the 2017 parade

A Chinese Horn player, one of the many musicians participating in the 2017 parade

Cantonese Opera performances in a temporary bamboo theatre in front of the Pak Tai Temple are one of the features of the Bun Festival

Map of the parade route;

The Bun Scrambling Competition is the climax of the Cheung Chau Bun Carnival.

Until 1978 the Bun Scrambling Competition had been a “free for all” but during that year’s competition one of the three bamboo towers collapsed resulting in injuries to over 100 people and the competition was suspended for 27 years and the buns handed out instead. In 2005 the competition was reintroduced but under strict safety conditions. The three bamboo towers have been replaced by a single steel tower and the number of climbers is limited to twelve who undergo training from Hong Kong Mountaineering Union.

On the stroke of midnight the twelve participants race up the 14-metre tall, 3-metre diameter conical bun tower to grab as many buns as they can collect within the three minute time limit. The bun tower is divided into three zones from top to bottom and buns each carry a score of nine, three and one respectively. Words in green, yellow and red are printed on the bottom of the buns for identification. The scores for male and female contenders are ranked separately. The contestants who obtain the highest total score in three minutes are the champions. Trophies are awarded to the champion, first runner-up and second runner-up in the men's team event the champion in the women's team event and the winning teams in the Bun Scrambling Invitation Relay. The "Full Pockets of Lucky Buns" award is given to the participant who grabs the most buns.

All contestants have to follow the rules of the competition. They are not allowed to carry any hard objects or any objects that can be used as offensive weapons. They must scramble up vertically and are forbidden to climb sideways or climb with the aid of others and are not allowed to pull other participants' clothing or safety gear or step on any parts of other participants' bodies.

In order to increase the appeal of the event, a Grand Award has been introduced with effect from the 2016 competition under which any male or female athlete who has won first prize three times in the Bun Scrambling Competition will become the "King of Kings" or "Queen of Queens" of the competition. 

The real buns on the tower have been replaced by 9,000 plastic replica “buns” for reasons of hygiene. Redemption coupons are issued to spectators and these can be used to claim one of the replica buns as a souvenir with the remaining “buns” being cleaned and saved to be re-used the following year. The following day about 20,000 real white buns with lotus, red bean or sesame fillings, are made by local bakeries, each stamped in red with "Ping An" the Chinese character for peace, are handed out. In a further concession to public health precautions, at the 2011 carnival, the Food and Environmental Hygiene Department banned the practice of the local bakeries stamping the buns outside their premises and lack of space inside the bakeries resulted in a substantial reduction in the number of buns baked. However, since the 2012 carnival the Department has issued temporary licences to bakeries allowing tables to be set up outside their premises, where buns could be stamped with the message for peace. For the 2016 festival, for the first time on Cheung Chau a food processing machine was used speed up making the buns. The HK$400,000 machine, brought in by the owner of Kwok Kam Kee Cake Shop which produces about 60,000 buns each year for the festival, was manufactured by Rheon of Japan and can produce 20 buns a minute, double the number which can be made by hand.

Owing to the Covid-19 pandemic the festival was cancelled in both 2020, 2021 and 2022 and the Bun Scrambling Competition and Piu Sik Parade did not take place although some of the smaller events did survive including Cantonese opera performances and in 2020 about 12,000 visitors still travelled to the island by ferry on the day and in 2021 about 8,400 ferry passengers visited.

The twelve finalists competing for the 2019 men's individual championships


The attendance for the 2019 Bun Scrambling Competition was about 1,800 and the competition results were;



Champion: Kwok Ka-ming 966 marks
First runner-up: Chung Ching-man 763 marks
Second runner-up: Wong Kam-man, Samuel 648 marks


Champion: Kung Tsz-shan 675 marks

Winner of "King of Kings" (three times champion in the men's division since 2016: Kwok Ka-ming 

Winner of "Full Pockets of Lucky Buns; Kwok Ka-ming (Number of buns grabbed: 112)

Fireman Jason Kwok Ka-ming (right) was the male champion for the seventh time since 2005 and also became "King of Kings". Nursing student Kung Tsz-shan (left) won the women's contest for the first time at her fourth appearance in the final



Shenzhen Mountaineering and Outdoor Sports Association 2 minutes and 42seconds

First Runner-Up: 

Zhuhai Climbing Association Team 2 minutes and 46 seconds

Second Runner-Up:

HK & KLN Floating Fisherman Welfare Promotion Association (Cheung Chau Branch) 3 minutes and 38 seconds


Cheung Chau is served by the Sun Ferry service from Central Pier 5 on Hong Kong Island, Maris Ferry Company service from Aberdeen Promenade on Hong Kong Island and also by the Sun Ferry Inter-Island ferry service which connects Cheung Chau with Chi Ma Wan and Mui Wo on Lantau Island and Peng Chau.



Visitors intending to take the “Fast Ferry” service should arrive at the pier well before departure time. Passengers are counted on board and standing is not allowed. The “Fast Ferry” may leave before scheduled departure time if full. On 14th May demand will be very high and additional ferry services operate with the number of sailings increased to 5 or 6 per hour at peak times.


Sun Ferry Triple-Deck Ordinary Ferry from Central in Cheung Chau Harbour


Sun Ferry operates an additional “Ordinary Ferry” service from Cheung Chau to Central at 1-15am , after the conclusion of the Bun Scrambling Competition. 


For more information on Outlying Island Ferry Services see FERRIES-OUTLYING ISLANDS



Accommodation on Cheung Chau during the Bun Festival is likely to be difficult to find unless booked well in advance. Cheung Chau has one hotel, the 66-room three-star WARWICK HOTEL on Tung Wan Beach; 


Opened in late 2018 in an elevated location opposite Cheung Chau Police Station this brand new three-storey hotel operated by B & B Cheung Chau offers 19 modern well equipped double, triple, quadruple and group rooms. Some rooms have balconies and sea views. The Sunset Terrace has panoramic views over the bay. Rates include breakfast in the hotel's nearby Eggenberg restaurant. Free Wi-Fi is provided. This friendly and homely hotel is shortly to add a Coffee Corner and BBQ to its facilities.

Lychee Sunset Hotel, 94-95 Lai Chi Yuen, Cheung Chau. Tel (852) 2986 9992 (reception 24 hours), e-mail What's App (852) 2986 9980; 

B&B CHEUNG CHAU, established 2006 has expanded and grown in popularity. An excellent and popular modern mini hotel. It has 39 rooms at four sites including its main premises on Tung Wan Road just two minutes walk from the ferry pier and one minute from Tung Wan Beach, including rooms above its Eggenberger Bar and Western and Thai restaurant, rooms at Pak She Street near Pak Tai Temple and rooms and apartments at its new Lychee Hotel on Police Station Path. Advance booking essential during the Bun Carnival;

Vienna Room at B & B Cheung Chau

MIAMI RESORT - budget accommodation in numerous flats near Tung Wan Beach. Miami Resort has booking kiosks outside Cheung Chau Ferry Pier;

SEAVIEW HOLIDAY FLATS have 10 flats in various locations. This is mainly basic budget accommodation although one de-luxe flat is available;

PRAYA STREET ACCOMMODATION BOOTHS. Located outside the ferry pier entrance are several kiosks which are usually manned from mid-morning and often until about midnight. These are operated by various owners including Seaview Holiday Flats (see above) offering flats ands room with budget accommodation. Visitors can view photographs of the accommodation in display albums at the stands.


In previous years Gray Line Tours of Hong Kong Limited have operated a Bun Festival Tour which includes private boat to Cheung Chau, vegetarian meal and reserved seats for the official grandstand for the afternoon parade. It is not known at this stage whether the tour will operate for the 2024 festival. See the company's website for latest information;