Thursday, Oct. 16, 2008

Cheung Chau

Physically, the tiny island of Cheung Chau is just a 12-km (7.5-mile) sail southeast of Hong Kong by scheduled ferry. But temporally — especially when seen in the right sort of light — it's an age away. Expect a living, not touristic, fishing community and a harbor crammed with working craft. Just off the Praya (an old colonial word meaning "waterfront promenade") is a traditional Chinese market, its stalls, ancestral halls and narrow lanes a good facsimile of how a traditional Chinese community might have looked decades ago. Take a peek at the 18th-century Pak Tai temple, stroll along the beach, then sit down to a seafood meal at one of the Praya restaurants. Ferries depart from Pier 5 in Central (nearest MTR: Central).