Looking for a great day trip in Hong Kong to get away from the bustle of city life? Look no further than our guide to things to do in Lantau!
We’ve given you guides on what to do on outlying islands like Cheung Chau and Peng Chau. And now here’s a ready reckoner for what to do on Hong Kong’s largest island – Lantau – where there’s everything from family-friendly picnic and barbecue spots to intense hiking trails and serene stargazing spots. Here’s your guide to things to do in Lantau.
10 best things to do in Lantau
1. Hong Kong Disneyland
It may be the smallest Disneyland in the world, but there’s still plenty of ground to cover when you head to what is arguably Lantau’s biggest tourist attraction. The park was closed for part of last year due to the coronavirus pandemic but has since reopened (only five days a week, and with capacity limits, so be sure to check in advance). There are rides to suit all ages, from the classic It’s A Small World in Fantasyland to the adrenaline rush-inducing Toy Soldier Parachute Drop in Toy Story Land. Various food stalls and restaurants provide lots of snack and dining options, and there are several spots where you can take pictures.
Hong Kong Disneyland Park, Lantau, p. 3550 3388
2. Tung Chung
This is the commercial centre of Lantau and is easily accessible by MTR and bus. At the heart of it is Citygate Outlets, a sprawling mall that houses high-end retail outlets and restaurants, as well as the more budget-friendly Fu Tung Plaza with its wet market and local fare. There are several other dining options in the neighbourhood, including Mexican and Indian restaurants, which is a testament to just how cosmopolitan this island is.
3. Ngong Ping and the Tian Tan Buddha
Take a cable car from Tung Chung to Ngong Ping – we suggest the Crystal Car for breath-taking views of Chek Lap Kok and the Ngong Ping Trail. Once there, explore the environs of the century-old Po Lin Monastery and the Tian Tan Buddha (aka, the Big Buddha). As with all places of interest in Hong Kong, there are many places to grab a bite and snap an Insta-worthy pic.
Read about some other Hong Kong tourist attractions.
Ngong Ping 360, 11 Tat Tung Road, Tung Chung, Lantau, p. 3666 0606
4. Discovery Bay
This resort town in east Lantau has all the right ingredients for a day trip: two beaches, several restaurants, outdoor and indoor playgrounds for kids, a park that’s great for picnics, and a new mall and skating rink. It also has some great hiking trails to Trappist Monastery and Mui Wo, and if you visit on a Sunday, you can check out the market events organized at the Discovery Bay Plaza or the North Plaza. Don’t forget to claim the Dine ‘N Ride promo, where if you have a meal at one of the restaurants, your ferry ride is free!
Discovery Bay, Lantau Island, p. 2987 4242 (DB Plaza), 2987 1379 (DB North)
5. Cheung Sha
Looking for a beach in the 852 that doesn’t come with the trappings of excessive commercialisation? Then head to South Lantau, home to the longest beach in Hong Kong: Cheung Sha Beach, which is divided into two parts by a headland. Lower Cheung Sha Beach has a small grocer’s, dining establishments and restroom facilities, while Upper Cheung Sha Beach has, well, none of that! The area in general is popular for kayaking, surfing, weddings, and glamping. It’s also a great place for stargazing and catching meteor showers.
Cheung Sha, South Lantau Road
6. Lantau Trail
If you get a high from hiking in Hong Kong, then you’re going to love the Lantau Trail. This 12-section 70-km-long loop is the third-longest trail in Hong Kong. It’s considered one of the best trails in the territory because it has varying levels of difficulty, the route is well-marked, and there are ample visitor facilities. The highlights of the trail are Lantau Peak (934 m) and Sunset Peak (869 m), the second- and third-highest peaks of Hong Kong, respectively.
Lantau Trail, begins and ends at Mui Wo
7. Tai O Fishing Village
Tai O – which is divided between an island just off western Lantau and Lantau Island itself – is touted to be Hong Kong’s oldest fishing village. It’s called Little Venice, mostly because its denizens inhabit either stilt houses or boats. Walk through the market and take in the sight of dehydrated puffer fish suspended from shop entrances and the aroma of the village’s famed shrimp paste drying in the sun. If you stroll to the end of the pier, you will see the village’s former marine police station that is now a 9-room hotel: The Tai O Heritage Hotel.
Read our full guide to exploring Tai O here.
Tai O Heritage Hotel, Shek Tsai Po Street, Tai O, Lantau, p. 2985 8383
8. Mui Wo
If Tai O is the Little Venice of Hong Kong, Mui Wo could well earn the moniker of the territory’s Little Amsterdam. As soon as you get off the ferry or bus when you arrive in Mui Wo, you will see a large parking lot for bicycles and dedicated bike lanes on which residents peddle away. The highlight of this former silver-mining village is its cooked food market (seafood being the most popular pick among diners), Silver Mine Bay Beach, Silver Mine Falls, and that it’s the starting point of the Lantau Trail.
Mui Wo, East Lantau
9. Pui O
Searching for a place that’s the epitome of sleepy village life? Then head over to Pui O, which is known for its wetlands, mangroves, and water buffalo! This chilled-out hamlet also has a thriving nightlife scene, complete with restaurants and bars. However, the highlight of the area is the beach, with its famed black and yellow sand and camping potential. It is also on one of the less challenging sections of the Lantau trail.
Pui O, South Lantau Road
10. Inspiration Lake
Spread over 12 hectares in Penny’s Bay, this is the largest artificial lake in Hong Kong. It is part of the Inspiration Lake Recreation Centre and is linked to the Hong Kong Disneyland Resort. This is considered one of the best picnic spots on Lantau as it has picturesque waterfall cascades and fountains, a variety of flora and fauna, and a boat rental centre. However, there aren’t any restaurants – only a convenience store – so make sure you pack everything you need to keep hunger pangs at bay. Entry is free.
Inspiration Lake Recreation Centre, Penny’s Bay, Lantau, p. 3550 3388