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‘While Hong Kong isn’t known for the best waves, when the stars align it can be a lot of fun,’ avid local surfer Bo Alfheim tells The Style Sheet. Here Bo — who offers surf lessons through his company HK Waterman — shares the top areas to head in search of a barrel.

Image by YKevin1979 / flickr

1. Tai Long Wan Bay, Sai Kung

Biggest drawcard: It’s one of the most beautiful spots in Hong Kong, so you’re not going to be disappointed after making the trek, even if it’s not a perfect day for waves.

Biggest con: As it’s quite remote, you won’t find any lifeguards on duty.

Best season for surf: Winter

How to get there: Take minibus 29R or a taxi to Sai Wan Pavilion in Sai Kung Country Park. From Sai Wan Pavilion, hike about 40 minutes to Tai Long Wan Bay, which is well signed. While there are sampans that go from Sai Kung Pier, if you’re planning to surf, it’s probably not an option — they only run in peak season and in stable weather conditions, which won’t help you in winter or around a typhoon, which is when waves are best.

Insider tip: You’ll need to walk about 10 minutes to buy water or any basic supplies, the closest being Hoi Fung Store. You can also buy plates of noodles and fried rice if you’re in need of a post-surf meal.

Image by Roger Price / flickr

2. Big Wave Bay & Shek O, Hong Kong Island

Biggest drawcard: The beaches are easily accessible and have all the facilities you need, including a number of shops where you can rent a surfboard.

Biggest con: Being so accessible, both beaches can get busy on weekends (particularly Big Wave Bay) and you might need to wait in line for a wave.

Best season for surf: Winter

How to get to there: Take the MTR to Shau Kei Wan, then jump on bus number 9, which goes to both Shek O and Big Wave Bay Village.

Insider tip: For beginners, or those wanting to brush up on their surf skills with someone who knows their stuff, you can organise one-on-one or group surf lessons with HK Waterman any morning of the week at Big Wave Bay.

Image by Tiger King / flickr

3. Cheung Sha & Pui O, Lantau

Biggest drawcard: The southerly swell makes these the best spots if you’re looking for waves during the summer months.

Biggest con: Even in summer, you’ll need a fairly big swell to get the waves working.

Best season for surf: Summer

How to get there: Take the ferry from Central Pier 6 to Mui Wo, then either bus 1 or 2 to Pui O (about 20 minutes) or Cheung Sha (about 30 minutes). There’s a taxi stand at Mui Wo pier but finding a cab tends to be challenging, even if you call in advance.

Insider tip: Given that South Lantau is only accessible by public transport, if you want to avoid lugging your own board with you, hire a board at one of the rental spots along the beach instead.

We also asked Bo to share his top three surf forecast apps for checking wave conditions for Hong Kong.

Used by everyone from pilots to governments and rescue teams, this website and Android and iOS app gives accurate forecasts via a detailed, intuitive visualisation map.

Magic Seaweed Surf Forecast

Offers surf forecasts and stats for surf spots all around the globe such as swell height, wind speed and direction, period and direction and temperatures.


A specialised wind and weather forecast for windsurfing, kitesurfing and other wind-dependent sports.