Arriving in Hong Kong and seeing all the skyscrapers and busy markets, who would ever guess a beach community exists on Hong Kong Island? But there are many, Repulse Bay is one of the closest to central; just fifteen minutes by taxi or 30 minutes by bus and you will be transported. Repulse Bay is a residential enclave on the south side of the island with a long, relatively clean strand of beach which has a playground on its’ southern end. Several staircases above, there is also a shopping and restaurant arcade (see Repulse Bay Part II). It is a nice area to spend a few hours and experience what living in Hong Kong, as an expat would feel like. The convenience of the area attracts American, Australian and French expats, although there is certainly a local community intertwined.
The beach is wide and has trees for shade. There is an enclosed area for swimming and platforms in the water for rest stops; but be warned, those rest stops feel further when swimming than they look from the beach. Also, the beach gets quite crowded on weekends and holidays. Attached to the beach are two small playgrounds, which allow for a pretty view. They are conveniently located near the restrooms, which are as wet and sandy as one would expect for a beach restroom.
Needing a little culture? There is also a Buddhist temple past the playground that is open to the public. This temple is dedicated to Tin Hau, Goddess of the Sea and Kwun Yam, Goddess of Mercy. It is incredibly colorful with statues of the deities and of fish, Fu dogs, lions, monkeys and many more. I feel like I catch another detail I have missed each time I go, there is so much to look at. Don’t forget to walk across the Longevity Bridge; legend has it the walk adds three days to your life. I have spent many days with my kids going back and forth over the bridge, once we added three months to all of our lives and walked off a fair bit of energy too!!!
Details: Address: Beach Road, Repulse Bay, Hong Kong. Bus Lines: 6,6A, 66, 260 from Exchange Square Terminus to Repulse Bay Stop. Bus route goes up Queens Road East and there are many stops to pick bus up there also.
Stay tuned for Part II of Repulse Bay when you will find out where to shop and eat…