Earlier in the spring in March, my favourite time of the year in Hong Kong, I did a little exploring and ventured over to Discovery Bay, a place I’ve always heard about. Since it was my first visit, it took me completely by surprise because what I thought was exaggeration was actually true.
By the way, if you’re thinking that these photos look nothing like Hong Kong, you’re right. To me, there is nothing about Discovery Bay that feel, sound or look like Hong Kong, but maybe, that’s the whole point?
I figured the best way to start talking about Discovery Bay is to explain what and where exactly in Hong Kong it’s located. Discovery Bay is a residential town (or the PR sounding version on Wikipedia – “upmarket residential development”) located on Lantau Island.
Lantau Island is the biggest island in Hong Kong, and if it sounds familiar, it’s because other commonly known landmarks (like the Hong Kong International Airport, Hong Kong Disneyland, Ngong Ping Village etc.) are also located on Lantau Island!
There are several ways to get to Discovery Bay, but I took the ferry from Central Pier 3. The ride takes 25 minutes each way, and the ferry costs HK$40 per ride.
I went to Discovery Bay during a weekend, so there was a good crowd of people there, mostly foreigners/expats, with a few local Hong Kongers probably exploring like me, but it was still way more spacious and relaxing compared to a regular weekend crowd in urban Hong Kong. :)
The restaurants and cafes were all pretty full and there was an overall lively vibe around the whole place, great for the weekend! I chose to visit on a Sunday because I wanted to check out the Discovery Bay Sunday Market as well. It was very bustling and there was plenty of handmade items and organic food for sale. I didn’t manage to find anything for myself though, but it was pretty fun to wander around. Check out the crowd!
Discovery Bay felt like a brief refreshing escape from Hong Kong, away from the crowds, the polluted air, the noise, the endless movement around you… It had plenty of greenery, fresh air and it was even more quiet and peaceful when I took a bus to the other end of the town, to DB North Plaza.
Apart from the prettiness of the town, here are also some interesting things I spotted! First up is this picture perfect Wellcome branch which looks nothing like a normal Wellcome supermarket! It’s amazing, the wording was all in shiny gold, the interior looked like a fancy organic store favoured by expats, and there was even a dog waiting area right outside! I’ve never seen anything like this and it’s extremely amusing to me!
Fun graffiti wall art!
I was also quite fascinated by this contraption! I’m pretty sure it’s an outdoor elevator that goes up and down that slope which leads up to the apartments above!
Before leaving for the day, I popped by a Pacific Coffee with the friendliest staff I have ever encountered in a Pacific Coffee in Hong Kong, who took my order leisurely and with a smile. I really was starting to wonder if I was still in Hong Kong…
Weekend trips do come to an end though, so it was time to go. I got on the ferry and fell asleep (I can’t be the only one who gets sleepy on ferry rides!). Next thing I knew, the ferry was reaching Central Pier, the doors weren’t opened yet and already nearly everyone was off their seats and standing right in front of the door. Clearly, it’s back to Hong Kong life now – hello reality and goodbye Discovery Bay, you beautiful, expensive, refreshing little town. ;)