Our top beachside destinations make for a perfect quick weekend getaway — in less than four hours, you could be kicking back on a golden-sand beach.
One of the many things we love about living in Hong Kong is its close proximity to so many other incredible destinations. Coupled with the generous number of public holidays you get per year, we’re certainly no stranger to a quick weekend getaway from Hong Kong. As long as you plan ahead, cheap flights should be available, saving on cost and on the number of annual leave days you have to take! It’s time to fish out your passport and start planning a short trip to one of our favourite beach getaways.
Taiwan – 90-minute to 2-hour direct flights to Taipei or Kaohsiung
While our tiny island neighbour might not immediately spring to mind for a beachside holiday, with frequent (and affordable!), direct flights to both Taipei and Kaohsiung and more than 1,600km of coastline, there are easily accessible strips of sand just waiting to be discovered. From Taipei, make a beeline for the 3km golden stretch of Fulong Beach. It’s an easy one-hour train ride from the city centre.
Sassy Tip: Visit from June to October to catch the annual Fulong International Sand Sculpture Arts Festival.
If you’d prefer to fly into Kaohsiung, Cijin Beach is popular for surfing followed by cheap seafood eats and is just a 10-minute ferry ride away!
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Vietnam — 2 to 3-hour direct flights to Da Nang, Nha Trang or Phu Quoc
It’s no secret that this is a go-to destination for Team Sassy. Often overlooked, Vietnamese beach towns get our vote for their pristine coastlines, range and affordability of accommodation, delicious fresh food and activities. Fly direct to Da Nang, Nha Trang (HK Express is currently flying direct four days per week) or Phu Quoc (Vietjet has currently resumed flights three times a week) for quick and easy access.
Sassy Tip: If you’re looking to get a bit off the beaten path, consider Ho Tram, an up-and-coming coastal destination around 2.5 hours out of Ho Chi Minh City, or hop on a one-hour connecting flight to the stunning and remote Con Dao islands off the southern coast.
Japan — 2.5-hour direct flight from Hong Kong to Okinawa
Your mind may instantly think of bustling cities or thrilling winter escapades but there’s more to this captivating archipelago nation! Prepare to be amazed by the glorious beaches and distinctive charm on offer in Japan. Fly direct to Naha, Okinawa, where you can swim, snorkel and scuba dive in crystal-clear azure waters, relax on unspoiled beaches or explore verdant forests teeming with rare flora and fauna. The southern isles hold a treasure trove of natural and cultural wonders and with a whopping 160 islands beckoning you, this coastal paradise will call you back, time and time again.
Sassy Tip: Watch out for the eagerly anticipated revival of direct flights to Ishigaki, another gem nestled within Okinawa Prefecture, serving as your gateway to unparalleled scuba diving adventures.
The Philippines — 2.5 to 3-hour direct flights to Manila or Cebu
The irresistible allure of the Philippines needs no introduction. While some of the islands require layovers in Manila, you can make a beeline for tropical Cebu. There are lux beach resorts, idyllic snorkelling, scuba diving and watersports all on offer. Of course, with literally hundreds of islands to explore, it’s well worth venturing a bit further afield if you do have a bit more time up your sleeve.
Korea — 3-hour direct flight to Jeju Island
Prepare to be swept away by the awe-inspiring beaches of Jeju Island, a true paradise in South Korea. Nestled amidst the pristine waters of the East China Sea, spend your days exploring the enchanting coastline, adorned with dramatic cliffs, hidden coves, and secret caves waiting to be discovered. Take a refreshing dip or even learn to surf! Don’t forget to indulge in mouthwatering seafood delicacies while you’re there. This is one quick weekend getaway that promises to draw you in with its charm.
Sassy Tip: Don’t miss the spectacular Jeongbang Waterfall that drops directly over the cliffs into the sea!
Malaysia — 3-hour direct flights to Kota Kinabalu
A quick weekend getaway to the tropical paradise of Kota Kinabalu could just be the answer to your wanderlust cravings. Just a short hop from Hong Kong, you’ll be completely surrounded by nature. Think diving into pristine waters, exploring lush rainforests and cascading waterfalls. Don’t miss treating your tastebuds to the fresh flavours of local seafood or giving yourself time for a pampering spa session.
Sassy Tip: Gaya Island sits a short boat ride off the coast and makes for an excellent weekend away!
Thailand — 3 to 3.5-hour direct flights to Phuket and Koh Samui
Whether you’re after a romantic getaway, a wild beach party, a packed weekend of watersports or a restorative retreat, there’s a Thai beach escape to suit! Sassy favourites like Phuket never disappoint, but it’s well worth considering nearby Khao Lak or Krabi (1 to 2 hours drive) to escape the masses. Alternatively, fly direct to Koh Samui (currently three times a week on Bangkok Airways) or take a road trip from Bangkok to Hua Hin. The options really are endless!
Main image courtesy of Getty, image 1 courtesy of Taiwan Tourism Bureau, image courtesy of James Donaldson via Unsplash, image 3 courtesy of Sho K via Unsplash, image 4 courtesy of Emjeii Beattie on Unsplash, image 5 courtesy of Getty, image 6 courtesy of Getty, image 7 courtesy of The DK Photography on Unsplash.