We all love the outdoors, but sometimes the difficult thing with heading out to places like Lamma Island and Cheung Chau is not knowing where to grab a bite and rest your feet. So, to help all you island hoppers out there, we've put together a list of our favourite cafes and restaurants in Hong Kong's outlying islands. By Sarah Moran & Josephine Lau
Best cafes in Hong Kong's outlying islands
Named after its opening days – Saturdays and Sundays – Sun Sat Store is a small shop tucked away at the end of Wing Hing Street, near the south side of the harbour. The place is a treasure trove of local handicrafts as well as vintage collectables sourced from flea markets around the world. Sun Sat also doubles as a café with a table made from parts of an old sewing machine in the alfresco area set aside for customers to wind down and relax.
Looking over Lamma Island’s lively harbour and floating fish-farm rafts is Lamma Rainbow, an open-air restaurant serving local seafood specialities. Their seafood is sourced daily and cooked fresh, with award-winning dishes like fried lobsters and giant mantis shrimps. On sunny days and nights alike, this waterside restaurant is the perfect way to experience the food culture of a traditional fishing village that still hangs on to its old fishery ancestry customs and traditions.
Tai O’s best café is Solo, where you can wash down some delicate homemade cakes with a cup of smooth, smooth coffee (which you can opt to have spiked with liquor – woohoo!). The best part, however, is Solo’s cute little terrace, where you can sit and watch people and boats go by.
You wouldn’t think that a small, sleepy neighbourhood like Mui Wo would be the place to go for authentic Turkish fare but that’s exactly what you get at Bahce, a local favourite for years now. Simple, unfussy, generous on portion sizes and bursting with flavour – this personable little eatery is well worth the ferry ride alone.
Not only is Tai O a fishing village, it’s also an island of cats – they were originally used for pest control but have since populated the island. For the purr-fect day out, pop into Tai O Fei Mao Li, which invites locals and tourists alike to gather at its shop to have a light meal and to play with the cats. They only ask $25 per half an hour. Don’t miss the semi-regular workshops or special events that aim to promote and celebrate the culture of Tai O and its local artists.
Cheung Chau is a longtime street-food paradise, but these days, it’s making way for hip cafes. Valor Cheung Chau is a hipster coffee shop offering unique – and incredibly Instagrammable – java creations including coconut ice-dripped coffee served with a whole coconut. With a wall of coffee beans contained in glass filters as well as beautiful latte art, there’s plenty of great brews and photo-ops waiting for you at this outer island cafe.
Sitting on the edge of Discovery Bay's harbourfront, Zak’s is a resort-like diner that offers stunning panoramic beachside views with a relaxing alfresco ambience. The restaurant features an extensive menu of contemporary Asian and Western culinary delights such as their signature Zaks Zinger Prawn Roll and legendary banoffee pie. With 400 seats, two floors and an upstairs patio, you don't have to worry about cramped spaces. Come here on a weekend and enjoy a glass of wine while a live band sings all your favourite 90s' hits in the background.