• Travellers who are affected by the fire at the residential and commercial building, New Lucky House (Address: 15 Jordan Road, Jordan, Kowloon), may contact the Hong Kong Tourism Board at +852 8102 8020 for assistance. 

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About Tai O

For generations, the people of Tai O — a small, bustling fishing settlement at the foot of steep hills on the far western end of Lantau Island — have built their houses on stilts over shimmering tidal waters. These charming waterfront homes, clustered along a series of canals, are connected by a maze of interconnected wooden bridges and boardwalks. They give the village a unique, timeless atmosphere and character, while the area’s stunning coastal vistas offer endless photographic possibilities. This is where you can take a peek into Hong Kong’s fishing heritage, sample delicious local snacks and seafood delicacies at waterfront cafes and restaurants, and also get close to nature.


The village’s traditions are encapsulated in the annual Tai O Dragon Boat Water Parade, which was inscribed onto the third national list of Intangible Cultural Heritage in 2011. On the day of the Dragon Boat Festival, members of the three fishermen’s associations in Tai O place deity statues on their watercraft towed by dragon boats, and parade along the canals while giving blessings to their fellow villagers.

Recommended Sights around Tai O

Refuel

Tai O Village is home to many great places to eat, from stalls serving street food, such as fish balls and giant cuttlefish braised in marinated sauce, to popular seafood restaurants. There are also many relaxing cafes serving tea, coffee and snacks, some of which even have tables overlooking the water.

Tai O Village

Flanked by a coastline of steep green hills, the heart of Tai O Village is the square in front of the ornate Kwan Tai temple. Narrow streets fan out in all directions, lined with shops selling local produce such as dried seafood and homemade shrimp paste. Food stalls — often with long queues of visitors — offer fish balls on skewers, pastries and tofu dessert. Old-fashioned businesses and houses open directly onto the street, adding to the area’s enticing buzz. There are also areas with traditional two-storey shophouses, including one fine example at 60 Kat Hing Street. Step inside the farmers’ co-operative-run shop in this Grade 2-listed 1930s building to admire its architectural features, including a curved balcony. You can also browse its locally sourced farm and specialty produce such as dried chillies, XO sauce — a spicy and savoury sauce consisting of dried seafood and ham, chilli, shallots and garlic — preserved radish and ginger tea. Narrow alleys, raised boardwalks and drawbridges wind their way above the canals while twisting around groups of stilt houses to offer Instagrammable views at every turn.

...See more

Tai O Creek Pedestrian Bridge

One distinctive feature of Tai O is that no motor vehicles are allowed. Stand on the pedestrian bridge over the main creek to get your bearings and take in the charm and beauty of the village in all its glory while watching the water traffic go by. Boats pass under the bridge as walkers and cyclists bustle across it. From the landing steps beside the bridge and several other points along the creek, small boats are waiting to take you on a tour of the village, where you’ll skim between the gangplanks and stilt houses.

Come back in the evening for the golden sunset over the water, flanked by nearby hills and dotted by the profiles of little boats and the breakwater. On festive days, the bridge is decorated with lanterns and transformed into a cinematic scene at night.

...See more

There is no better way to explore Tai O than with a boat excursion. You will find vendors selling tickets for boat rides by the waterfront. The price for a 20-minute sightseeing tour is around HK$40 per head.

Tai O Promenade

By the waterfront near the bus terminus, you will find the Tai O ferry pier, recognisable for its pavilion with multiple wooden roofs. This is also the starting point of the Tai O Promenade, which extends from the main creek and out along the seashore, bordering a large area of mangroves. The tropical plants thrive in salty water and are an important nursery habitat for many species, including fish, mudskippers and fiddler crabs. They were planted here in Tai O’s old salt pans, which fell out of use decades ago.

Near to where the promenade adjoins the village, you can visit the Tai O Rural Committee Historic and Cultural Showroom, which features a fascinating exhibition of historic photos and artefacts found in the area.

...See more

Tai O Heritage Hotel

Strike out west from the village square, passing the open-air market, to find the way to the historic hotel. There’s a lot to look at as you walk along this coastal path: stilt houses, flowering gardens, prowling cats, ruined stone cottages, banana groves and Earth God shrines. The path ends at the village’s old pier, with Tai O Heritage Hotel perched on the hilltop right above it. The building was originally Tai O’s marine police station, built in 1902 to combat the pirates who raided Lantau Island at that time. Sensitively restored, it’s now a boutique hotel with nine guest rooms. Its first-floor, glass-roofed restaurant, Tai O Lookout, gives a nod to its local heritage by using shrimp paste as an ingredient in several dishes, such as the signature Tai O Fried Rice and homemade Pork Chop Bun marinated with Shrimp Paste.

...See more

Fu Shan Viewing Point

On your way back from the hotel, turn into the courtyard in front of the Shaolin Martial Arts Centre. The signposts point to Fu Shan (Tiger Mountain), a hill providing great views not only of Tai O but also the wide, rippling waters of the Pearl River Estuary. The Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macao Bridge curves its way across the channel, while on the horizon you can see the high-rise towers of the two cities on the other side of the estuary. The pavilion perched atop the green hill dotted with white-grey boulders has binoculars that point out to sea; further on, a wooden platform offers an ideal perspective on the waters below, which presents another chance to glimpse a Chinese white dolphin from afar.

This stone-paved trail is also another much-loved spot among Instagrammers looking to capture the sunset in Tai O, with the signature red railing and the profile of the tree-covered slope in the foreground.

...See more
Dried Shrimp under the sun

Tai O Village

Flanked by a coastline of steep green hills, the heart of Tai O Village is the square in front of the ornate Kwan Tai temple. Narrow streets fan out in all directions, lined with shops selling local produce such as dried seafood and homemade shrimp paste. Food stalls — often with long queues of visitors — offer fish balls on skewers, pastries and tofu dessert. Old-fashioned businesses and houses open directly onto the street, adding to the area’s enticing buzz. There are also areas with traditional two-storey shophouses, including one fine example at 60 Kat Hing Street. Step inside the farmers’ co-operative-run shop in this Grade 2-listed 1930s building to admire its architectural features, including a curved balcony. You can also browse its locally sourced farm and specialty produce such as dried chillies, XO sauce — a spicy and savoury sauce consisting of dried seafood and ham, chilli, shallots and garlic — preserved radish and ginger tea. Narrow alleys, raised boardwalks and drawbridges wind their way above the canals while twisting around groups of stilt houses to offer Instagrammable views at every turn.

Next: Tai O Creek Pedestrian Bridge
Tai O Water Village under sunset

Tai O Creek Pedestrian Bridge

One distinctive feature of Tai O is that no motor vehicles are allowed. Stand on the pedestrian bridge over the main creek to get your bearings and take in the charm and beauty of the village in all its glory while watching the water traffic go by. Boats pass under the bridge as walkers and cyclists bustle across it. From the landing steps beside the bridge and several other points along the creek, small boats are waiting to take you on a tour of the village, where you’ll skim between the gangplanks and stilt houses.

Come back in the evening for the golden sunset over the water, flanked by nearby hills and dotted by the profiles of little boats and the breakwater. On festive days, the bridge is decorated with lanterns and transformed into a cinematic scene at night.

Next: Tai O Promenade
Wide Shot of Tai O Promenade

Tai O Promenade

By the waterfront near the bus terminus, you will find the Tai O ferry pier, recognisable for its pavilion with multiple wooden roofs. This is also the starting point of the Tai O Promenade, which extends from the main creek and out along the seashore, bordering a large area of mangroves. The tropical plants thrive in salty water and are an important nursery habitat for many species, including fish, mudskippers and fiddler crabs. They were planted here in Tai O’s old salt pans, which fell out of use decades ago.

Near to where the promenade adjoins the village, you can visit the Tai O Rural Committee Historic and Cultural Showroom, which features a fascinating exhibition of historic photos and artefacts found in the area.

Next: Tai O Heritage Hotel
Aerial Shot of Heritage Hotel

Tai O Heritage Hotel

Strike out west from the village square, passing the open-air market, to find the way to the historic hotel. There’s a lot to look at as you walk along this coastal path: stilt houses, flowering gardens, prowling cats, ruined stone cottages, banana groves and Earth God shrines. The path ends at the village’s old pier, with Tai O Heritage Hotel perched on the hilltop right above it. The building was originally Tai O’s marine police station, built in 1902 to combat the pirates who raided Lantau Island at that time. Sensitively restored, it’s now a boutique hotel with nine guest rooms. Its first-floor, glass-roofed restaurant, Tai O Lookout, gives a nod to its local heritage by using shrimp paste as an ingredient in several dishes, such as the signature Tai O Fried Rice and homemade Pork Chop Bun marinated with Shrimp Paste.

Next: Fu Shan Viewing Point
Fu Shan Hiking Trail and Viewing Point

Fu Shan Viewing Point

On your way back from the hotel, turn into the courtyard in front of the Shaolin Martial Arts Centre. The signposts point to Fu Shan (Tiger Mountain), a hill providing great views not only of Tai O but also the wide, rippling waters of the Pearl River Estuary. The Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macao Bridge curves its way across the channel, while on the horizon you can see the high-rise towers of the two cities on the other side of the estuary. The pavilion perched atop the green hill dotted with white-grey boulders has binoculars that point out to sea; further on, a wooden platform offers an ideal perspective on the waters below, which presents another chance to glimpse a Chinese white dolphin from afar.

This stone-paved trail is also another much-loved spot among Instagrammers looking to capture the sunset in Tai O, with the signature red railing and the profile of the tree-covered slope in the foreground.

Start again

Transport

Getting to Tai O

Leaving from Tai O

From MTR Tung Chung Station Exit B, take bus 11 at the Tung Chung Bus Terminus and get off at Tai O. Alternatively, you can take the ferry from Central Pier No. 6 to Mui Wo, then take bus 1 and alight at the last stop.
Take either of the bus routes back to the city: to Tung Chung Bus Terminus (bus 11) or to Mui Wo Ferry Pier (bus 1).

Getting to Tai O

From MTR Tung Chung Station Exit B, take bus 11 at the Tung Chung Bus Terminus and get off at Tai O. Alternatively, you can take the ferry from Central Pier No. 6 to Mui Wo, then take bus 1 and alight at the last stop.

Leaving from Tai O

Take either of the bus routes back to the city: to Tung Chung Bus Terminus (bus 11) or to Mui Wo Ferry Pier (bus 1).

Local Tour

A full-day eco and cultural tour is a one-stop-shop for experiencing all that Tai O has to offer. These excursions include a boat trip, a visit to the mangrove forest beds and a salted egg workshop. You’ll be picked up in Tung Chung at 9am and brought back there at 5:30pm. ​

Go Green Travel​
Website: http://www.gogreentravelhk.com/index.asp
Enquiries: +852 2111 1880​

Disclaimer:​
Details of the local tours are subject to the terms and conditions of the operators. The Hong Kong Tourism Board and the local operators reserve the right to amend, change or cancel any details concerning the tours at any time without prior notice. Customers can refer to the local operators if they have any enquiries.

Feature stories

Explore Hong Kong with insider tips

Feature stories

Explore Hong Kong with insider tips

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