Hong Kong is known for its natural beauty amongst the concrete jungle. There are 41 public beaches managed by the Leisure and Culture Services Department, which monitors, cleans, and stations lifeguards. These are called gazetted beaches, or beaches categorized as bathing beaches by the government gazette.

As a law, dogs over 20 kg must be leashed no longer than 2 meters in all public places, which is why they’re not allowed at most public beaches. But that is not to say that there aren’t a great many other gazetted and non-gazetted beaches where you can bring your pet on an adventure. Some are further away and great for day trips, while others are easier to swing by for a few hours or half a day. Let’s discover some of the best dog-friendly beaches.

Hairpin Beach — Stanley

hairpin beach stanley
Hairpin’s known for its choppy waves Prosperity Horizons via WikiCommons)

The Southside of Hong Kong island is considered the more relaxed side, where you can find great sea views, markets, promenades and beaches. Stanley Main Beach, St. Stephen’s Beach, and the smaller Hairpin Beach are all gazetted beaches.

Sitting adjacent to Stanley’s Main Beach in the Stanley Peninsula, among the most popular beaches in Hong Kong, Hairpin Beach is a small, pebbly beach. It’s gazetted which means there are showers, toilets, and barbecue facilities. Hairpin is known for its strong currents, and as lifeguard services are currently suspended there, swimming is not recommended. However, this is a great place to throw a ball and for your furry friend to run around.

Just a five-minute walk down from Stanley Main Beach, Hairpin Beach can be reached by following the shoreline. You will pass by Stanley Stone Chair, a hiking spot along one of Hong Kong’s trails.

Public transportation to Stanley:

  • New World First Bus: 14 (from Sai Wan Ho), 63 & 65 (from North Point Ferry)
  • Citybus: 6, 6A, 6X, 260 (from Central), 73 (from Cyberport),  973 (from TST)
  • Green minibus: 16M (from Chai Wan MTR station)

Rocky Bay Beach Shek O

Dogs enjoying the water at Shek O, Rocky Bay (© Wikipedia)

A popular destination for day trips, Shek O boasts a seaside resort vibe with its open-air eateries and barbecue pits. It is packed on sunny days with families and hikers that trek down to the peninsula from the popular Dragon’s Back trail in Shek O Country Park.

Just a stone’s throw away from Shek O town there is a small beach where you can have fun with your dog. Rocky Bay, this smaller, less busy beach is a five-minute walk away from the main Shek O Beach. Walk north from the main beach, and you’ll pass by an old bus terminus. If you walk just behind it, you’ll also pass a health centre: keep walking past it, descend some stairs, and you’ll reach Back Beach. Once there, you and your pets can sit at Ben’s Back Beach Bar to enjoy a drink.

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Getting there:

  1. Take the MTR to Shau Kei Wan station (exit A3).
  2. At the bus terminus, board No. 9 RMB (red minibus). Get off at the old bus terminus just before entering Shek O town; if you see restaurants and the roundabout, you’ve gone too far.

Sha Ha Beach — Sai Kung

sha ha beach
(© yfchang — Flickr)

Popular with locals who are into water sports and visiting dog owners, there are also some outdoor pet-friendly restaurants lining Sha Ha Beach. There are kayaking, canoeing, and windsurfing rentals and tours conveniently meters from the water. Because the rentals are cheap and easily accessible, this beach gets very busy on the weekends.

Getting there:

  1. Take the MTR to Hang Hau station (exit B1).
  2. Get onto the 101M GMB (green minibus).
  3. Once you arrive at Sai Kung town, turn left at the pier and follow the shoreline for 10 minutes.

Sharp Island — Sai Kung

sharp island tombolo
250 metre tombolo leading from Kiu Tsui to Kiu Tau (© Hong Kong Geopark)

AKA Kiu Tsui Chau, Sharp Island is home to Sharp Peak, which is considered the steepest, most difficult hike in the city. The island has two beaches: Hap Mun Bay and Kiu Tsui. It is also home to a tombolo that reveals itself at low tide, which connects to an island called Kiu Tau. You can venture over the revealed path while your pup splashes in the water. Low tide times vary throughout the year, so check what time low tide ends that day to give yourself enough time to come back.

Getting there:

  1. Take the MTR to Hang Hau station (exit B1).
  2. Get on the 101M GMB (green minibus).
  3. Take a speedboat from Sai Kung Pier.
  4. Walk 2 minutes from Kiu Tsui Pier to Kiu Tsui Beach.

Long Ke Wan — Sai Kung

long ke wan geological features sai kung
Fascinating geological features at Long Ke Wan (© CNN Travel)

A picturesque bay in Sai Kung East Country Park, Long Ke beach boasts beautiful views as it lies next to Hong Kong UNESCO Global Geopark. There are multiple ways to get to what CNN Travel calls “one of the most beautiful beaches in the world.” If you fancy a hike, you can either hike the entire first stage of MacLehose Trail from Pak Tam Chung to Long Ke Wan or take the shorter route through the geopark along a much shorter portion of the trail. However, make sure to bring water for you and your puppy during the hike.

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Getting there:

Hiking:

  1. From Sai Kung bus terminus, take 94 RMB (red minibus) to Pak Tam Au.
  2. Hike MacLehose Trail Stage 1 (11.5 km, approx. 3 hours).

Taxi:

  1. From Sai Kung bus terminus, take a green taxi to High Island Reservoir East Dam.
  2. Walk 20 minutes downhill to the beach.

Bus:

  1. From Sai Kung bus terminus, take KMB 94 or 7 GMB (green minibus) to Pak Tam Chung stop.
  2. Walk along the reservoir to the East Dam.
  3. Walk 20 minutes downhill to the beach.

Ham Tin Wan — Sai Kung

Dogs enjoying a day out at Ham Tin Wan
Dogs enjoying a day out at Ham Tin Wan (© Dan Hung – Flickr)

Wide and expansive, this beach is perfect for letting your pups tire themselves out. There are two local restaurants, but it is advised to bring what you need with you from Sai Kung, as the choice can be limited, especially if you need some snacks for your furry friend. Pack a cooler with refreshments and nibbles. The waves can be choppy, so getting there on a speedboat is not advised for those who are susceptible to motion sickness.

Getting there:

  1. Take the MTR to Hang Hau station (exit B1).
  2. Get on the 101M GMB (green minibus).
  3. Take a taxi to the east dam and hike 2-3 hours OR from Sai Kung pier, take a 30-minute speedboat.

Tap Mun (Grass Island) — Tai Po

There’s plenty of space for your dog to exercise in Tap Mun (© Michael Cheung – Flickr)

Located at the very northeastern corner of the Sai Kung Peninsula, Grass Island is a faraway islet known for its population of former fishing village residents and wild cows. The peaceful isolation of this island is well worth the trip out, although it’s become a more and more popular destination with casual campers in the last years.

Getting there:

From University MTR station:

  1. Go to University MTR station (exit B).
  2. Walk 10-15 minutes or taxi to Ma Liu Shui Ferry Pier.
  3. On weekdays, there are only 2 ferry departures: at 8:30 a.m. and 3:00 p.m. On weekends, there’s another departure at 12:30 p.m.
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From Sai Kung town:

  • At Sai Kung bus terminus, take 94 RMB (red minibus) to Wong Shek Pier.
  • From the pier, take a speedboat or ferry (departing every two hours on weekdays and every hour on weekends) to Tap Mun.

Tung Lung Chau — Clearwater Bay Peninsula

tung lung chau island pier
Tung Lung Chau pier 57Andrew Flickr)

Nearby the coast of the Clearwater Bay peninsula, Tung Lung Chau island has a beautiful unspoiled landscape that is popular with hikers. The island is largely uninhabited and it features a number of historical sites, including Tung Lung Chau Fort and a large ancient rock carving. There are two quiet beaches on either side of the north pier, ideal for bringing your pets.

Getting there:

  1. Ferries from Kowloon: Sam Ka Tsuen Pier, Lei Yuen Mun, Yau Tong
  2. Ferries from Hong Kong Island: Shau Kei Wan Typhoon Shelter, Sai Wan Ho

Silvermine Bay Beach — Mui Wo

Silvermine Bay Beach in Mui Wo is a large sandy beach where dogs are allowed (© Gregor Vand – Unsplash)

Located on the eastern coast of Lantau Island is Mui Wo, that is situated along Silvermine Bay. Right at the end of Silvermine Bay Beach, you can walk through the grass to an open area where you can let your dog off the leash. It is a lovely 15-minute stroll from Mui Wo Ferry Pier along the coastline.

Getting there:

  1. Take the ferry from Central Pier to Mui Wo (30 minutes).
  2. Turn right when you come out of the ferry pier and follow the water; you will cross a bridge at one point.

Power Station Beach — Lamma Island

lamma island power station beach
Hong Kong Electric Power Plant looms in the background (© Os Ishmael – Flickr)

Lamma Island is laid-back and has a wholesome village feel. For a day out in the sun with your dog, head to Power Station Beach. Your dogs can run around and socialize without restraint there, as well as on the other non-public beaches around the island but not at Hung Shing Yeh beach. Remember to bring some water and snacks when you cross Yung Shue Wan, as there are not many shops nearby Power Station Beach.

Getting there:

  1. Take the ferry from Central Pier to Yung Shue Wan (25 minutes).
  2. Turn right when you come out of the ferry pier and follow the water. You will pass by the public toilets and line of seafood restaurants before you enter Yung Shue Wan.
  3. Follow the signs along Yung Shue Wan Main Street for 10 minutes (you will need to walk through some trees just before stepping foot onto the beach).

We’re not limited to gazetted beaches in Hong Kong as there are beautiful beaches spotted all over the surrounding islands for you and your pets to explore. Now that you know which ones are pet-friendly, go out and set your furry companions loose! If you’re looking for more places to bring your pet, check out our guide to Hong Kong’s pet-friendly parks.

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