Tung Lung Chau – literally Eastern Dragon Island (東龍洲) – is located off the southern tip of Clear Water Bay Peninsula in the New Territories. Reachable by a 40-minute ferry ride from Hong Kong Island, this little island has a rugged coastline and is very popular with campers and rock climbers.
There’s no village on the island, but only a handful of supply stores that will happily serve you a quick meal and provide you with whatever you need for the open barbeque pits. You’ll pass by the stores on the walk from the ferry pier to the camping area. The campsite itself is located next to the ruins of Tung Lung Fort, a declared historic monument that was built 300 years ago. Other than on weekends and public holidays, there is no regular ferry service to the island, so don’t miss the last boat back to civilization! In fact, hardly anyone lives on the island – turns out that many of our fellow passengers on the first ferry were store owners and regular weekenders.
After pitching our tents near the cliffs, we did some exploring and ended up befriending the owners of one of the eateries. They provided us with our very own charcoal BBQ area, nicely sheltered from the wind and drizzle, and away from the typically roudy Hong Kong camp crowd. More importantly, they had proper running water and washroom facilities (the campsite has dry toilet pits). This was a much better dinner alternative than the public barbeque pits, especially when it started to rain. The store even had private access to a secluded beach area.
In terms of hiking trails, there’s not much to choose from – just one that loops around the island, and another that reaches a peak outcrop called Hen Hill. Both have good views of the surrounding waters and craggy coastline – weather permitting. I’ll describe those in detail in the next update.