The Tanka people, ethnic to Southern China and Hong Kong, traditionally dwell in the boats and are sometimes called "sea gypsies". Many generations grew up in floating villages and have preserved their traditional lifestyle. Some still live in their boats and maintain the livelihood of fishing.
Tai O Fishing Village
Tai O is one of the few remaining Chinese fishing villages. It is located on Lantau Island and has picturesque stilt houses built on shallow water. Hop on a boat excursion to discover this unique place from a vantage point. Also, visit the vibrant Tai O market for fresh or dried seafood, and a famous shrimp paste. In late June the village hosts Tai O Dragon Boat Water Parade which is a great occasion to visit the area.
Aberdeen Fishing Village
Traditional fishing village stubbornly thrives in the Aberdeen Harbor right next to the modern high rise buildings and yachts. A sampan ride is the best way to take a closer look at the ancient culture and also spot some pink dolphins. You'll find plenty of Sampan Ride Stations along the Aberdeen Promenade. Visiting the local fishing market is also a must.
Stanley Fishing Village
Another tranquil place to view fishing boats and rest from the city is located on the south of the Hong Kong Island. Stanley used to be a fishing village before tourism turned it into a market town. The area offers less authenticity than Tai O or Aberdeen, but still provides an alternative to the concrete jungle. Consider visiting Stanley during the Dragon Boat Festival in late June. The energetic and colorful event is a favorite celebration held in the area.
When to visit
Generally, the best time to visit Hong Kong's fishing villages is after the rainy season from October to December when the villages are truly floating and the weather is the most delightful. However, you can come at any other time a year.