Annie Bananie en Europe

A blog about travel, life, and everyday tidbits

Cheung Chau, the dumbbell island

The “dumbbell” island of Cheung Chau, so nicknamed because of its shape on a map, is one of the many tourist attractions near Hong Kong. By ferry, it takes about 40 minutes (an hour by slow boat) to reach from Hong Kong island, making it a perfect day trip. When my friend suggested it, she caught my interest by telling me that Cheung Chau would be a food lover’s heaven. In addition to an island breakaway, it’d also be a food hunt! Of course I more than gladly accepted because HEY, who wouldn’t want some super-sized mango mochi and giant curry fish balls?

Upon arriving at the ferry terminal, we realized that clearly we weren’t the only ones who were going after the mango mochi and curry fish balls, as the crowd waiting the board the ferry was huge! OK, they’re probably not all tourists, but I do wonder if this mass exodus from Hong Kong to Cheung Chau occurs on a daily basis. On the way to the island, my friend and I took the slower ferry with a travel time of one hour.

Meet my travel buddy Sharon, who could almost qualify as a true local! I hadn’t seen this girl for 3 years before this very anticipated meet-up! Always a fun time with my lovely Canadian-Chinese lady from Martinique XD What kind of mischief were we up to that day?

Arrival in Cheung Chau – time to explore! The name “Cheung Chau” literally means “Long Province”, and as I had mentioned in my previous post, Cheung Chau is a fishing village on one of the outlying islands in the Special Administrative Region of Hong Kong.

The most prominent thing about Cheung Chau that was immediately noticeable upon arrival was that there were lots of boats! Well, what else did we expect? It was a fishing village. It kind of reminds me of Tai-O, another fishing village located on Lantau Island in Hong Kong.

Another thing, aside from boats, that you would see a lot in a typical fishing village is of course…fish! Or seafood in general. A lot of the items on sale in shops and booths are dried seafood, and we even saw dried starfish :O As we strolled along the streets of Cheung Chau, we also noticed the ordinary lifestyles of the people on the island. They dry their laundry by hanging them on racks – the way that it should always be done – but even then, signs of fish are apparent. Do you see the row of fish hanging with the towels and bed sheets, and that one big fish that almost seemed to have camouflaged with the laundry? 😉

Alright, time for food! Everything in Cheung Chau seemed to be supersized. Supersized mango mochi – what my friend came specifically for – the size of your palm, supersized curry fish balls almost the size of tennis balls, supersized stuffed oysters, and supersized bowls of shaved ice – yakult/matcha and mango/vanilla in the photo. And this was only a part of what we managed to hunt down. So delicious!

In the midst of a very hot day, I was searching for an ice-cold drink and stumbled upon a stand where a cute guy was selling home-made “ice-dropped” coffee. Absolutely irresistible. Oh I’m talking about the coffee, though the cute guy was also quite irresistible and perhaps a part of the reason I got the coffee 😉

And a sip of the cold brew was heavenly when I was already sweating. Thanks, cute guy! (A photo of the cute guy with his face partly covered can be found in my previous post ^_^)

We passed by a church on one of the streets but didn’t have enough time to head in for a look. As it was Easter when I was visiting, a lot of celebration was going on. Behind the old lady, a sign semi-humourously says, “Jesus says, ‘I am the resurrection and the life.’ Congratulations on the resurrection of Jesus! Mr.Jesus is treating everyone to dinner!” There is also something about Efraim, but I’m not sure what it referred to. I wonder whether Christianity is quite big on the island…?

Another thing we chanced upon was a grand event of some sort, possibly a wedding. Sharon remarked that the girls in those thick blue dresses must have been suffocating in the hot weather! What dedication, ha!

Finally, Cheung Chau has its very own love padlock fence too, like many other places (Paris, Cologne, even Toronto). And how colourful it is! I could never comprehend the concept behind these locks but hey…at least they’re pretty to look at.

As I’m completing this post, I’m waiting for my flight from Brussels to Beijing, which will ultimately end up in Hong Kong…again! This time I will only have a day and a half in Hong Kong, one of which will be spent in Macau! As always, Hong Kong is not the main destination and for the first time in my life, I’m heading to Southeast Asia! Excitement doesn’t even begin to describe it. I’ll have to endure my upcoming 10-hour flight though…bring it on!

5 responses to “Cheung Chau, the dumbbell island

  1. mrs_suvi December 21, 2015 at 08:20

    I really enjoyed this post and the photos. I want some of that shaved ice 🙂


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