A Beginner-Friendly Guide to Water Sports in Hong Kong

Last Updated:

4 min read

water sports hong kong

Want to make the most of the summer but getting weary of the city’s unbearable heat? Or find the comfort of staying indoors too tempting to resist? Instead of binge-watching TV shows and letting your “inner couch potato” get the best of you, what about venturing out to the sea to ignite your adventurous spirit?


Don’t fret yet! Not all adrenaline-inducing water sports are extreme and dangerous. You’ll be surprised there are actually plenty of easy, beginner-friendly options at your disposal. You can definitely find something “cool” to your liking in this guide! 


Kayaking & Canoeing in Hong Kong


woman canoeing on lake


Kayaking and Canoeing always make the perfect breezy day trips and tours in Hong Kong. The city is home to a plethora of kayaking destinations with shores of rare and stunning geology. Sai Kung, for instance, is a local favorite for its fabulous scenic routes reaching spots such as Pak Sha Chau & Sharp Island, Hoi Ha Wan Marine Park and Yim Tin Tsai.


The best thing? There must be something for everyone, whether you are a beginner, intermediate or expert paddler. All tours and rentals come with a ready set of life jackets and essentials, so you can fully enjoy paddling away with your friends and family right away! 


Wait… What's the difference between kayaking and canoeing?


front of a kayak


Before you have a go, make sure you don’t have kayaking and canoeing mixed up! Even though these two sports seem pretty much the same, they require different types of paddle and have different sitting positions for the paddler — kayaking requires the paddler to be seated and use a double-bladed paddle to propel on alternate sides, while canoeing requires paddlers to kneel and use a single-bladed paddle. 

Take care of your health
Get the best tips. Sign up now!
By signing up, you agree to our T&Cs and Privacy Policy.

Wakeboarding/wakeboard in Hong Kong


wakeboarding on the sea


We’ve all heard about it. It’s all the rage now, but not without reasons. With the pull of a speedboat, you get to glide on the water and ride the waves, playing fancy, grand tricks out.


Though wakeboarding is an extreme sport that drains a lot of energy, it is also known as one that can be picked up fast and easily. Also, precisely because of its high intensity, wakeboarding can boost your metabolism and burn fat. If you are looking for some rapid bursts of full-body exercises, wakeboarding may be the answer to tone your core strength up. 


While Sai Kung is again many’s go-to place for wakeboarding, inclusive package offers can also be found at Tai Po, Tai Tam, Deep Water Bay and Tolo Harbour, etc. Novices may start with a speed of 12 mph (for children) and 18mph (for adults). 


There is no specific limitation in age and weight to play this sport. So, as long as safety precautions are taken and you get along with the water, you can go ahead and make a splash! 

Wakesurfing in Hong Kong


man wakesurfing


Similar to wakeboarding, riders in wakesurfing trails in the wake of a boat but with the absence of bindings or tow rope. Wakesurfing is a low-impact water sport that’s easy on the body due to the slow pace of the boat (usually not more than 12mph) that is within reach of the boat. Wakesurfing is another option to try out if carving fast turns and riding with bindings in wakeboarding is not up your alley. 

Scuba diving in Hong Kong


undersea world with corals and fish


Last resort to beat the scorching heat — take the plunge and dive into the cold ocean water. Trust us, it works like magic. Along the way, you will be amazed by what the “hidden paradise” holds for you: be it the sense of weightlessness, the sensation of breathing underwater or the amazement of being surrounded by incredible marine species.


The requirement of an appropriate PADI (professional Association of Diving Instructors) certification to go open water may stagger you, but the diving course actually only takes a few days to complete, during which a professional coach will equip you with the knowledge needed to kickstart your underwater exploration. 


Hong Kong may not be the poster image when it comes to scuba diving, but it certainly doesn’t disappoint. Hoi Ha Wan, Marine Park, Sharp Island…to name a few are some prime diving spots with pristine water. 


Numerous companies offer diving trips and boat rides from Sai Kung. While it is common to share the costs with strangers, you should always dive with a buddy as a helping hand may be key in case of emergency.

Snorkeling in Hong Kong


woman snorkels to see clown fish


If commitment and risks in scuba diving don’t bode well for you, you may find snorkeling — peeking into the ocean in the shallow water — a more suitable alternative. Unlike diving, which takes you wherever you want to go underwater, snorkeling will have you stay close to the surface every now and then to gasp for air. Put on your mask and flippers and — off you go!

Paddle boarding/stand-up paddleboarding in Hong Kong


two men paddleboarding


Let’s end this list with paddle boarding, also known as stand-up paddleboarding (SUP) — the laid-back water sport you are truly searching for. With just a bit of effort, you are guaranteed to have fun in no time. Get moving on your board by balancing on your knees and gradually standing on your feet. Once you have got the hang on of it, paddle around in the calm, flat sea as you soak up the sunlight (and to get vitamin D). 


One of the must-visit spots in the list of paddle boarding is Sha Ha Beach. To spice it up, you can try doing yoga poses or a plank on the paddle board to challenge your balancing skills.

As you take a dip and try your hand at some watersports against a backdrop of breathtaking natural attractions in Hong Kong, you’ll enjoy a range of benefits for both your mental and physical well-being: building muscle strength, improving chronic conditions, promoting relaxation and so on.


Coaches and local organizations will supply you with necessities for you to have the safest time on and in the water. Nevertheless, you should always stay alert and watch out for rapid changes in water, wind and weather conditions. If you go for rentals on your own, stay within a safe distance and set a time limit with the rental company in advance in case you go missing. 

Healthy Matters

Join Now, It's Free!

Join the Healthy Club: access to 1,000+ healthy tips & guides, plus special discounts! Start your journey.

Already a member?

This article was independently written by Healthy Matters and is not sponsored. It is informative only and not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. It should not be relied upon for specific medical advice.

Share on