World famous for its towering skyline and as a thrumming oriental global city, it is often surprising for first time visitors to discover how many beaches there are in Hong Kong, both on Hong Kong Island itself, and beyond, on its outer islands. 

Hong Kong takes water safety very seriously, and most of its gazetted beaches are patrolled by lifeguards and are now encircled with safety nets, including all those listed here, resulting from an unhappy period between 1991 and 1995 when a series of shark attacks caused great panic and claimed 10 lives.  

There have been no reported attacks since June 13th 1995, but the authorities remain vigilant and occasionally some un-netted beaches are temporarily closed on a precautionary basis whenever sightings occur. 

On Hong Kong Island, the beaches are to be found along the southern coast, from Deepwater Bay eastwards. Because of the ease of transport from the city, Deepwater is the island’s most popular beach and consequently suffers from poor water quality. Next along, Repulse Bay, Middle Bay and South Bay offer much better and cleaner alternatives, each successively quieter and far better suited to swimming, and among the very best Hong Kong has to offer.    

Next along, Stanley Main Beach and St. Stevens Beach are the attractions either side of Stanley Village and are a good social hangout spot, well supported by their many bars and restaurants, while continuing along the coast, Turtle Cove Beach is pleasantly secluded, but with minimal facilities.  

Turning up the east coast, the fine stretch at Shek O Beach has good water quality and facilities, and is one of the island’s finest beaches, though less suited for child swimming owing to the strength of the waves. Further up the coast, Big Wave Bay Beach provides a quieter alternative and the best surf. 

On Lamma Island, Hung Shing Yeh Beach and Lo So Shing Beach both have excellent water quality and provide a great getaway from the main hub of Hong Kong, with Hung Shing Yeh’s powdery sands and shallow roll-off particularly well suited to children. 

On Cheung Chau Island, Kwun Yam and Tung Wan beaches are the attractions of this small island, while on larger Lantau Island, relaxed Silver Mine Beach, Pui O Beach, and Cheung Sha Beach, Hong Kong’s longest, all provide picturesque scenery, quietude and clean waters. 

Along the western south coast of the New Territories, the areas of Tsuen Wan and Tuen Mun both have a cluster of beaches, though they are quite a distance to travel from the main island. Tuen Mun is also known as Hong Kong’s Gold Coast, and has the better and cleaner beaches such as Golden Beach, Cafeteria Beach, Kadoorie Beach Castle Peak Beach and Butterfly Beach, of which Butterfly Beach and Golden Beach are the best. 

The beaches of Tsuen Wan are the least attractive, closest to the industrial area of the new Territories and although now reopened because of recent improvements in water quality, the beaches were closed for several years due to pollution. 

On the eastern coast of the New Territories, the area of Sai Kung is home to several good beaches, well away from industrial areas, the best of which are Hap Mun Bay and Clearwater Bay.


Macau has two beaches, both located at the southern end of Coloane Island, both of which have good facilities. Hac Sa is the largest, and easily most popular and highly suited to swimming. Adjacent to the Westin Hotel, Hac Sa, as its name translates, is a dark sand beach, but due to erosion, the sand has been reinforced by the imported addition of golden sand. A little way to the west, the smaller gold sand beach of Cheoc Van is a little quieter.