SAI KUNG TOWN AND SAI KUNG COUNTRY PARK
Often referred to as the “leisure garden of Hong Kong” the picturesque Sai Kung Peninsula in the north-east New Territories is a complete contrast to urban Hong Kong and represents the best of rural Hong Kong being a natural recreational area with stunning scenery, tiny hamlets, abandoned villages, country parks, hiking trails, lofty peaks, rugged coastline, a national geopark featuring unique spectacular hexagonal rock columns, idyllic beaches, reservoir and a colourful fishing town in a sheltered bay populated by dozens of tiny pristine islands. The administrative district also includes much of the Clearwater Bay Peninsula including Hong Kong University of Science and Technology and of the district population of 410,000 around 88% live around the new town of Tseung Kwan O.
The name "Sai Kung" came into being around the early days of the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644) when the Emperor Chengzu (also known as "Yongle Emperor", 1402-1424), ordered an official named Zheng He to make seven voyages to the "Western Oceans". After one of those epic voyages, many countries in regions of today's South-East Asia, the Middle East and East Africa started paying tributes to or trading with China. Sai Kung was just a port of call at that time, while its name means "tributes from the West" in Chinese.
SAI KUNG TOWN
Sai Kung town was a small undeveloped fishing village until the fishing industry declined in the 1970’s and many fishermen moved into other businesses such as fish farming, eco tourism and seafood restaurants. A major reclamation project between 1978 and 1993 led to subsequent development of new buildings, shops, promenade, piers, public swimming pool and other facilities. Improvements to roads and public transport have seen the town grow to become a commuter town popular with ex-pats but the town still retains much of its old charm and fishing village atmosphere. Sai Kung Town has a population of about 13,000 and in addition to being a tourist destination in its own right is also a convenient starting point for hiking trips and beach excursions in the country park and for exploring the Sai Kung Volcanic Rock Region of the Hong Kong Geopark. Throughout the year Sai Kung sees a number of colourful events and festivals including the mass greeting on the fourth day of each Lunar New Year, celebration of Tin Hau (Goddess of the Sea) in High Island on the 23rd day of the third lunar month, ritual performance of Cantonese opera as well as the ceremonious float procession of Tin Hau.
Sai Kung Promenade
The town is dwarfed by the hills and peaks of Ma On Shan Country Park to the west with Pyramid Hill (Tai Kam Chung) and Ma On Shan Peak dominating. Located at the foot of the hills the old town stands to the south whilst most of what is now central Sai Kung Town comprises more modern buildings, shops, café’s, restaurants, swimming pool and modern sports stadium. The promenade alongside the scenic harbour overlooks numerous small islands including Sharp Island (Kiu Tsui Chau) and Kau Sai Chau where the 158-hectare Jockey Club Public Golf Course, one of the most scenic in Asia and Hong Kong’s only public golf course with two 18-hole courses designed by Gary Player is located. The colourful harbour is always a hive of activity and sampans line the promenade selling catches of seafood direct to the public and local seafood restaurants. The promenade has two piers along which visitors can stroll, Sai Kung Public Pier which is being expanded to accommodate additional berths for boats and more space for pedestrians, in a project which commenced in August 2014 and is due for completion in mid-2016, and Sai Kung New Public Pier.
Fresh seafood can be bought from a floating market of fishing boats moored alongside the promenade
The seafood restaurants are located mostly along the southern end of the promenade on Man Nin Street and outside many of these restaurants are banks of live fish for purchase and which can be taken into a restaurant to be cooked. Along the promenade are three piers, Sai Kung Public Pier, popular with anglers and from which some ferry services to offshore islands operate, Sai Kung New Public Pier which opened in 2009 and the Jockey Club Golf Course Pier.
Sai Kung's colourful and busy harbour is home to all types of craft
At the northern end of the promenade at Sha Ha is a watersports centre fronted by a small narrow strip of beach. Sai Kung Old Town to the south of the town centre has some quaint narrow streets and alleyways and fine buildings including the finely preserved Tin Hau Temple and Kwan Tai Temple on Po Tung Road. During the Qing Dynasty people worshipped both the Tin Hau Goddess and Kwan Tai (King Kwan) and in 1916 these temples which were once on the waterfront were combined and became a centre for community affairs.
Twin Tin Hau and Kwan Tai Temples on Po Tung Road
Tourists wishing to explore some of the harbour can take the Jockey Club Golf Course ferry to Kau Sai Chau and visit the golf centre or explore the island. Although the golf course occupies the northern half of the island the southern part is undeveloped and a haven for wildlife including eagles, herons, egrets and deer. Hung Sing Temple at the southern tip of the island is believed to have been built during the Qing Dynasty prior to 1889 and is classified as a Historic Building by the Antiquities and Monuments Office. However the island is hilly and the walk from the golf course pier to the temple is strenuous. The golf centre has a restaurant and café open to the public and there are usually special combined ferry and lunch/afternoon tea/weekend lunch buffet deals on offer. In 2010 the golf course replaced the existing ferries with solar-hybrid catamarans which are something of an attraction in themselves. This initiative results from an environmental partnership with The Hong Kong Jockey Club Charities Trust for which HK$350 million has been earmarked. The 100 passenger capacity 24.13 metre catamarans have solar-powered electrical and diesel-powered engines which can operate in parallel and are estimated to reduce fuel usage by 50%. The electric motors are used for berthing and whilst at the pier to keep emissions and noise to a minimum. The solar panels on the roof have a 15-year lifespan. The golf club has also introduced solar-powered golf carts.
During 2010 the golf club introduced solar-hybrid catamarans to ferry golfers and tourists to Kau Sai Chau
The journey takes about 15 minutes from the pier at Sai Kung and shuttle bus connects with the ferries at Kau Sai Chau for the short journey to the golf centre. Ferry fare is paid on the island either at the golf centre or at the pier before returning to Sai Kung (not on the outward journey). Ferries operate from Sai Kung every 20 minutes (every 30 minutes after 8pm) from 6-40am to 7pm Monday to Thursdays, 6-40am to 9pm Fridays to Sundays and on public holidays with last ferries back from Kau Sai Chau at 9pm Mondays to Thursdays and 10pm Fridays to Sundays and public holidays.
More information is available on the golf course website;
Scenic view of Sai Kung Harbour and islands from balcony of Jockey Club Kau Sai Chau Golf Centre which visitors can reach by frequent ferry services from Sai Kung
There are numerous other small islands within the harbour area and Hong Kong Geopark which tourists can visit, some of which have beaches and BBQ areas, including Sharp Island, Jin Island (Tiu Chung Chau), Pak Sha Chau, Tai Tau Chau and Wong Yi Chau, and can become particularly busy at weekends. There are either infrequent or “on demand” ferry services to several islands although at weekends, particularly Sunday, ferry services operate much more frequently and several boat operators provide tours.
However a good alternative option for tourists is to employ the services of one of the numerous Hakka ladies operating sampans in the harbour and touting for business on the promenade at Sai Kung. Take a map to point out the islands you wish to visit and negotiate a fee and these ladies are more than happy to meet your requests. As an example, for hire of a sampan to Sharp Island, one of the nearest islands to the town, with one hour ashore on the island, expect to be asked for a fee of HK$150.
About 1km south of the town centre just off Hiram's Highway lies the Lions Nature Education Centre. The centre which is run by the Lions Club of Hong Kong and Macau features an arboretum, bamboo grove, rock display, ponds, Chinese herbal garden, nature trail and an indoor display area with permanent exhibits. During 2021 its Agriculture Hall underwent a major renovation. Newly designed interactive exhibits and games aim to stimulate students' interest in agricultural science. The Agriculture Hall features models of local premium vegetable and fruit crops as well as insects, simulated organic farms and major projection and motion sensing games. Among these, "Story of a seed" showcases the whole process of tomato planting (including sowing seeds, growth of seedlings and harvesting) step by step to visitors by using a hologram technique. The Hall also provides information on science education for kindergartens as well as primary and secondary schools.
The refurbished Agriculture Hall which reopened in December 2021 at Lions Nature Education Centre
The centre has a cafe, staffed by employees with hearing disabilities, which has panoramic views of the peaks of Ma On Shan Country Park. The centre is in a scenic location and there are several paths and trails in the surrounding area from where there are coastal walks to Ma Lam Wat, Trio Beach, Sha Tsui and Ma Lam Wat.
Organic Garden at Lions Education Centre
In September 2009 the Hong Kong National Geopark Visitor Centre opened at the Lions Nature Education Centre and after a short closure in mid-2010 reopened in September 2010 as part of the Lions Nature Education Centre Geo-hub which merged the Geopark Visitor Centre, Rock Academy, Rock Classroom and Preparation Room for rock, mineral and fossil specimens. For more information see the Geopark website;
HONG KONG GLOBAL GEOPARK VOLCANO DISCOVERY CENTRE
The Volcano Discovery Centre opened in July 2014 at the site of the former Sai Kung Geo-Heritage Information Centre. The 1 000-square-foot Centre showcases a 1:1-scale hexagonal exhibit to show the size of the rock formations. A range of rock specimens, with some collected locally and many others from other places around the world, are also on display. Visitors to the Centre can take a look at the huge columns before they depart for a visit to the Geopark.
Hong Kong Global Geopark Volcano Discovery Centre, located at the waterfront park next to Sai Kung Bus Terminus
The exhibits enable visitors to better understand the geological background and uniqueness of Hong Kong's hexagonal columns. The hexagonal rock columns, which are a major feature of the Geopark, were produced by a series of violent volcanic eruptions in Sai Kung 140 million years ago.
The Centre offers trilingual counter services in Cantonese, Putonghua and English to assist local and overseas visitors, and offers comprehensive information to advise on the best ways to explore the Geopark. The centre offers a 45-minute guided tour once a day on weekdays and twice a day during weekends and public holidays. For further information see;
DINING IN SAI KUNG – Sai Kung has a huge variety of cafés and restaurants ranging from fast food outlets, coffee bars and small cafés serving to international restaurants and Michelin-rated seafood restaurants, many with al fresco dining. On Chan Man Street adjacent to each other opposite the public car park are Starbucks and a 24-hour McDonald’s and close-by is a branch of Pizza Hut. Around the main square along Sha Tsui Path and Wan King Path are a host of café’s and restaurants with outside tables. The best known are the highly-rated Jaspa’s, Sauce and Cru all international restaurants with Western and Asian menus. Also on Sha Tsui Path (next to Jaspa’s) Ali Oli Bakery offers pies, pastries, sandwiches, salads and light meals and Sushi Ten Ku is Sai Kung’s only sushi bar. Pepperoni’s Pizza on Po Tung Road (the main road through Sai Kung town centre) has a reputation for generously sized pizzas and Italian recipes and also on Po Tung Road is Lyn’s Café Restaurant serving set lunches and a full dinner menu including pasta, salads, steaks and fish.
The highly-rated Jaspa's and Ali Oli are two of several restaurant/cafe's with al fresco dining in the square along Sha Tsui Path
Steamers Bar Cafe on Yi Chun Street (below Pets Central) serves mainly Western food but does offer some international dishes including a highly regarded Indian curry. At the Waterfront Park between Sai Kung Public Pier and Jockey Club Golf Club Pier is Sai Square Restaurant with floor to ceiling windows and patio tables overlooking the harbour and serving lunches and international cuisine. Anthony’s Ranch, a two-storey restaurant decked out as an Alabama slophouse on Yi Chun Street serves prime American steaks and burgers. However Sai Kung is most famous for its seafood restaurants in particular Chuen Kee Seafood which has two adjacent restaurants overlooking the harbour on Hoi Pong Street and is one of only two seafood restaurants listed in the first Hong Kong and Macau edition (2009) of the famous hotel and restaurant guide. Here you can choose from an enormous range of live seafood swimming around in tanks and order it steamed, poached or wok-fried. Also lining the harbourside close to Chuen Kee are other reputable seafood restaurants, Tung Kee, Hung Kee, Fu Ah, Kam Fai and Sai Hing whilst in The Big Red Building on Sai Kung Tai Street, a branch of the well established Sing Kee Seafood Restaurant opened in early 2009.
Entrance to Sai Kung Hoi Pong Square along the promenade where many of Sai Kung's seafood restaurants are located
Chuen Kee is one of only two Michelin-listed seafood restaurants in Hong Kong
Wandering around the streets will reveal many more restaurants including Okapi (European), Fernando (Italian) and May’s Sawaddee Thailand on Man Nin Street, Italiano’s (mussels flown in from New Zealand) on Yi Chun Street, Dia Indian Restaurant on Fuk Man Road and Japanese restaurants Kitaro and Ryo-Zan Paku on Po Tung Road. For those wishing to combine a scenic ferry ride through the harbour with terrace or indoor dining and panoramic views The Jockey Club Kau Sai Chau Public Golf Course Coffee Shop & Bar/Lounge has lunch buffet packages including the ferry ride most days and at weekends and on public holidays also has buffet dinner packages which often include complimentary use of the driving range (check the notice board outside the ferry pier for details).
GETTING TO SAI KUNG
(i) MTR to Choi Hung MTR Station then from station exit C2 take Green Minibus 1A (24 hour service approx every 3-5 mins – journey time about 25 mins) to Sai Kung Minibus Station (next to the promenade). KMB Bus 92 (see below), also stops outside exit C2 of Choi Hung MTR Station.
The green minibus stop for Sai Kung is located about 50-metres to the left, on reaching street level from exit C2 of Choi Hung MTR Station
KMB Bus 92 to Sai Kung, which starts at Diamond Hill Station (see below), also passes Choi Hung Station, where the bus stop is located about 50-metres to the right, on reaching street level from station exit C2
(ii) MTR to Diamond Hill MTR Station then KMB bus service 92 (approx every 12/20 mins – journey time about 40 mins) to Sai Kung Bus Terminus (next to promenade).
(iii) MTR to Tseung Kwan O MTR Station or Tiu Keng Leng MTR Station, then from the bus terminus at either of these stations, take NWFB bus service 792M (every 20 mins – journey time approx 40 mins) to Sai Kung Bus Terminus (next to the promenade).
(iv) if travelling from other parts of the New Territories KMB BUS SERVICE 299X from Sha Tin Central Bus Terminus (under New Town Plaza and Sha Tin MTR Station) via Ma On Shan Town Centre to Sai Kung Bus Terminus may be useful. Buses operate at about 10 minute frequency and the journey takes about 35 minutes. The journey includes a scenic stretch above the shores of Three Fathoms Cove and below the peaks of Ma On Shan Country Park.
NEW SERVICE (effective from 11th August 2019). KMB route 92R Sundays and public holidays only. Sai Kung Bus Terminus to Star Ferry Pier Bus Terminus, Tsim Sha Tsui via Choi Hung Station and Hung Hom Station. Departs Sai Kung at 17-10, 17-30, 17-50 and 18-10. Journey time approx 48 mins
Red Minibus from Mong Kok - a 24 hour frequent red minibus service operates between Dundas Street, Mong Kok and Wai Man Road Minibus Terminus, adjacent to Sai Kung Waterfront Park. The fare at February 2019 is HK$18 and Octopus Card is accepted on most minibuses operating this route.
A 24-hour red minibus service operates between Dundas Street, Mong Kok and Sai Kung
SAI KUNG COUNTRY PARK
Sai Kung Country Park covers almost 7,500 hectares of the Sai Kung Peninsula and is divided into Sai Kung East Country Park and Sai Kung West Country Park. A road running through the park from the outskirts of Sai Kung Town to Wong Shek Pier effectively divides the west and east sections of the park. A good starting point for visitors wishing to explore the park is Pak Tam Chung on the border of the west and east country parks and where the Sai Kung Country Park Visitor Centre is located. There are also picnic and BBQ areas, toilet facilities and a refreshment kiosk at Pak Tam Chung.
SAI KUNG WEST COUNTRY PARK
The park (3,000 hectares) is located just north of Sai Kung Town and borders Sai Kung Harbour, Three Fathoms Cove, Tolo Channel, Hoi Ha Marine Park, Long Harbour and Pak Tam Road. In 1996 the park was extended to include the remote Wan Tsai Peninsula which was formerly a burrowing area and incorporated into the country park when burrowing ceased.
Sai Kung (West) Country Park entrance at Wan Tsai Peninsula
The park has mountainous terrain and undulating hills. Stage 3 of the MacLehose Trail runs through the park from Pak Tam Au to Kei Ling Hau on the shores of Three Fathoms Cove. This 10.2km stretch along mostly earth and stone tracks and steps includes the ascent of Cow’s Ear Rock Mountain (Ngau Yee Shek Shan), the stroll along Cheung Sheung, a hidden plateau populated by cattle, Jacobs Ladder, a long steep descent down steps into a sheltered valley followed by the strenuous climb up Rooster Mountain (Kai Kung Shan) from where there are panoramic views of Three Fathoms Cove, Tolo Harbour and the surrounding hills and peaks including the towering Ma On Shan Peak. At Hoi Ha Wan on the northern coastline lies Hoi Ha Marine Life Centre and Marine Park in a sheltered mangrove lined bay with over 60 coral species and about 120 coral fishes.
Mangroves, Hoi Ha Marine Park
This is a popular place for scuba divers and snorkellers. Around Hoi Ha Village are the remnants of ancient lime kilns.
Lime kiln built by the villagers of Hoi Ha in the early 20th century and restored in 1982.
Kilns were used to burn corals and shells to make lime. Lime production was once a prosperous local industry in the villages of Sai Kung but demand gradually fell after the Second World War when modern cement was introduced
Overlooking Hoi Ha Wan is the Wan Tsai Peninsula with its breathtaking scenery and extraordinary coastal rock formations.
SAI KUNG EAST COUNTRY PARK
Located to the north-east of Sai Kung Town Sai Kung East Country Park covers an area of almost 4,500 hectares and includes within its borders the huge High Island Reservoir, High Island, Tai Long Wan, Wong Shek Pier, Pak Tam Au and Sheung Yiu. Both visitors and locals are attracted to this park by its idyllic coastline with pristine beaches, hills and peaks, hiking trails family walks and tree walks and outstanding scenery. Stages 1 (10.6km) and 2 (13.5km) of the MacLehose Trail which starts at Pak Tam Chung encircle the park via the western and southern shores of High Island Reservoir, Long Ke, Tai Long Wan and Chek Keng before reaching the start of stage 3 and the Sai Kung West Country Park at Pak Tam Au. The trail is mostly along well maintained concrete paths and steps and apart from one or two short stretches not too strenuous.
Start of the 100km MacLehose Trail at Pak Tam Chung. The well-maintained trail is the main hiking route through the country park
From the Sai Kung Country Park Visitor Centre about 30 minutes walk along the Pak Tam Chung Nature Trail leads to the Sheung Yiu Folk Museum. The museum is located in a restored area of an abandoned Hakka village which was once engaged in the manufacture of lime, bricks and tiles. Outside the museum the remains of a lime kiln and both the village and the kiln are declared historical monuments. The museum has an exhibition illustrating the daily life of the villagers and items on display include pots, agricultural implements and furniture. For more detailed information about Sheung Yiu Folk Museum see MUSEUMS- NEW TERRITORIES.
Sheung Yiu Folk Museum on the Pak Tam Chung Nature Trail
About 90 minutes walk along the MacLehose Trail from Pak Tam Au lies Tai Long Wan, a stunningly beautiful bay and one of the most scenic areas of Hong Kong. Here a series of beaches at Sai Wan, Ham Tin Wan, Tai Wan and Tung Wan combine with rolling emerald surf-flecked seas, pristine white sands and a backdrop of forested hills and peaks to make this a truly magnificent spot. These beaches are often deserted on weekdays and although busier at weekends never become crowded. There are small café’s at Sai Wan and Ham Tin and just inland at Tai Long there are a couple of shops open at weekends.
Tai Long Wan has Hong Kong's finest beaches including Ham Tin (foreground), Tai Wan and Tung Wan beyond. Sharp Peak is top left.
Although only Hong Kong’s eighteenth highest peak at 468m the aptly-named conical Sharp Peak dominates the park and can be accessed by taking a diversion from the MacLehose Trail.
Sharp Peak dominates most of Sai Kung East Country Park
For more energetic hikers a popular trek is the circular hike from Pak Tam Au along the MacLehose Trail to Tai Long Wan and then from Sai Wan to Chui Tung Au and along Sai Kung Sai Wan Road which runs above the northern shore of High Island Reservoir to Pak Tam Chung. The reservoir which took ten years to build and was completed in 1978 has a capacity of about 273 million cubic metres and was formed by joining High Island (Leung Sheung Wan) to the mainland by means of three dams. At the eastern end of the reservoir is a small coffer dam with giant concrete dolosses protecting the wall from the ocean. Outside the west dam wall is another cofferdam which is home to Chong Hing Water Sports Centre which is popular for its windsurfing, canoeing and kayaking facilities. Construction of the reservoir enabled the Sai Kung East Country Park to become much more accessible as this led to the roads being built to Pak Tam Chung and Wong Shek Pier. Prior to this the road ended at Tai Mong Tsai, about 3km before Pak Tam Chung. The road from Pak Tam Chung to Wong Shek Pier which runs through the heart of the country park is a private waterworks road and closed to all traffic (including cyclists) other than buses, taxis and authorised vehicles. Bus 94 from Sai Kung (see below) offers a scenic ride through the country park. Wong Shek Pier on the northern coastline of the park is set in a beautiful bay surrounded by wooded hills with panoramic views out to Tap Mun (Grass Island), the Wan Tsai Peninsula, Ko Lau Wan and the towering Sharp Peak. A major reconstruction of the pier was completed in 2007 and there are kaido ferry services from here to outlying islands such as Tap Mun and various points on the Sai Kung Peninsula. There are a number of family trails and nature walks in the area and next to the pier is a BBQ area and watersports centre which has a refreshment kiosk open at weekends and sometimes on weekdays.
Loading provisions on to the Wong Shek - Chek Keng - Ko Lau Wan - Tap Mun kaito at Wong Shek Pier
GETTING INTO SAI KUNG COUNTRY PARK FROM SAI KUNG TOWN;
KMB BUS 94 TO WONG SHEK PIER
The 94 bus at Sai Kung Bus Station. The journey to Wong Shek Pier provides visitors with a scenic ride through Sai Kung Country Park
From Sai Kung Town KMB (Kowloon Motor Bus) service 94 is an excellent way to travel into the country park whether for walking/hiking, to visit the beaches or just for a scenic ride. The bus operates at a frequency of about every 30 minutes from 6am (7am on Sundays and public holidays) until 9pm with the last bus back from Wong Shek Pier at 9-35pm. The journey takes about 30 minutes. The section of journey from Pak Tam Chung to Wong Shek Pier is along a private road along which only buses, taxis and authorised vehicles are allowed access. The full route and bus stop details can be viewed here;
Travelling to the terminus at Wong Shek Pier enables visitors a scenic ride through the country park and then time to explore the area of outstanding scenery around the pier, walk the short trails in the area or simply sit and relax at the BBQ area and enjoy the views. Visitors wanting to visit Sheung Yiu should disembark at Pak Tam Chung or Sheung Yiu and follow the Pak Tam Chung Nature Trail. Pak Tam Chung is also the start (stage 1) of the MacLehose Trail which leads along the western and southern boundaries of High Island Reservoir before joining stage 2 at Long Ke and following the Tai Long Wan coastline and then turning inland to Pak Tam Au. For visitors wishing to reach the beaches of Tai Long Wan the most convenient bus stop to disembark at is Pak Tam Au and then follow the MacLehose Trail stage 2 for about 90 minutes to the beaches. Pak Tam Au is also the beginning of stage 3 of the Maclehose Trail through the Sai Kung Country Park West towards Three Fathoms Cove and Kei Ling Hau.
BBQ site and wild buffalo at Wong Shek Pier
GREEN MINIBUS 7 TO HOI HA
From Sai Kung Minibus Station Green Minibus 7 operates a 30 minute frequency service (every 20 minutes on Sundays and public holidays) from 8-15am to 6-15pm to Hoi Ha in Sai Kung West Country Park. This service is useful for visitors wishing to visit Hoi Ha Marine Life Centre, Marine Park, the new Hoi Ha Visitor Centre (opened June 2021) and the Wan Tsai Peninsula. The journey takes about 35 minutes.
GREEN MINIBUS 9 (for Lady MacLehose Holiday Village)
From Sai Kung Minibus Station Green Minibus 9 operates a 30 minute frequency service from 6-15am (6-45am on Sundays and public holidays) until 9-15pm to Lady Maclehose Holiday Village. The minibus follows Pak Tam Road through the country park to the holiday village which is located just off this road a short distance past Pak Tam Chung.
SAI WAN VILLAGE SERVICE R29 (NR29*) MINIBUS
There is a minibus service from Sai Kung Chan Man Street (outside McDonald’s) to the pavilion at end of Sai Kung Sai Wan Road above High Island Reservoir in the Sai Kung East Country Park enabling visitors to get as close as is possible by public transport to Tai Long Wan and its beaches. *Although the service has been re-numbered NR29 by the Transport Department (the service is categorised an authorised resident's service), the service is still known and referred to locally as 29R. The bus seats 29 passengers and the one-way fare is HK$17. Octopus Card is accepted. The service is available for the public to use as well as villagers living in the remote village of Sai Wan and is popular with hikers. The journey takes about 25 minutes and the bus is one of only a few authorised vehicles allowed to use Sai Kung Sai Wan Road. From the pavilion where the bus terminates is a 2.2km walk (about 30 mins) along a well maintained concrete path to join the MacLehose Trail stage 2 at Sai Wan Village with the bay and beach just beyond. Sai Wan is the southernmost beach of Tai Long Wan and the beaches of Ham Tin, Tai Wan and Tung Wan can be reached by following the MacLehose Trail northwards along the coastline and occasionally over steep headlands. On Mondays to Fridays departures from Sai Kung are at 8-30am, 9-15am, 11-30am and 3-30pm and from the end of Sai Wan Road at 9am, 9-45am, 12 noon and 4-45pm. On Saturdays, Sundays and public holidays departures from Sai Kung are at 8-30am, 9-15am, 11-30am, 3-30pm, 4-15pm and 4-45pm and from the end of Sai Wan Road at 9am, 9-45am, 12 noon, 2-15pm, 4-45pm and 5-30pm.
The starting point for minibus 29R is outside McDonalds on Man Chan Street in Sai Kung Town.
29R minibus, popular with hikers, at its terminus at the pavilion at the end of Sai Kung Sai Wan Road above High Island Reservoir in Sai Kung (East) Country Park
SUNDAY AND PUBLIC HOLIDAY ONLY SPECIAL BUS SERVICES;
There is are special recreational bus services 96R from north Kowloon to Wong Shek Pier and 289R from Wong Shek Pier to Sha Tin on Sundays and public holidays only;
KMB SERVICE 96R operates from Diamond Hill MTR Station to Wong Shek Pier via Sai Kung Town at 12/20 minute frequency from 7-30am to 6-20pm (last return journey from Wong Shek Pier at 7-30pm). Full route details can be viewed here;
KMB SERVICE 289R (from 24th March 2019) - One-way express service on Sundays and public holidays only from Wong Shek Pier to Sha Tin Central Bus Terminus. Every 30 mins from 15-00 to 19-00. via Pak Tam Chung, Tai Mong Tsai, Sai Sha Road and City One Shatin.
GREEN MINIBUS 9A - From Sunday 22nd July 2018 a new green minibus route 9A began operating on a trial basis on Sundays and public holidays in Sai Kung Country Park between Pak Tam Chung and the East Dam of High Island Reservoir from 3pm to 6pm at a frequency of 20 to 25 minutes at a one-way fare of $11.30. Following reviews by the Transport Dept the operating hours have been extended from 10th October 2021 to provide an all-day service with departures from Pak Tam Chung every 20 mins from 9-30am to 6-40pm and from the East Dam every 20 mins from 10am to 7pm;
Note - Citybus 698R Sunday and holiday recreational service which operated from Siu Siu Wan on Hong Kong Island to Wong Shek Pier ceased operating with effect from 16th November 2014.
Green New Territories taxis are allowed along the roads in the country park and destinations useful to visitors are Wong Shek Pier, Sai Wan Road above High Island Reservoir, Sai Kung Man Yee Road along the western side of High Island Reservoir via Chong Hing Watersports Centre to the east dam wall and Hoi Ha. A taxi from Sai Kung Town to these destinations costs HK$100/110.
SAI KUNG MAGAZINE - Information and features about Sai Kung and Clearwater Bay district. Published monthly. Online version of free print edition;