Sha Tau Kok Pier opens for group tours (with photos)
Sha Tau Kok Pier, within the Frontier Closed Area (FCA), is open to group tours from today (June 3) to tie in with the direction of the Northern Metropolis Development Strategy (NMDS) and to facilitate the tourism development and promote the local culture of Sha Tau Kok and the North East New Territories.
The NMDS puts forward the progressive opening of Sha Tau Kok Pier for tourism activities. To tie in with this policy direction, the Security Bureau, together with relevant departments, formulated a six-month trial scheme in which Sha Tau Kok Pier will be open to registered local tour groups for travelling to neighbouring scenic spots such as Lai Chi Wo and Kat O by water vessels on each holiday during the period. The Government has also added various facilities around the pier to introduce the features of Sha Tau Kok. These include the new landmark Cape of Sha Tau Kok, which is located at the easternmost corner of Sha Tau Kok, where one can enjoy views of Hong Kong and Shenzhen simultaneously, and a replica of a boundary stone which features an ancient poem describing the beautiful scenery of Sha Tau Kok. Residents of Sha Tau Kok are also provided with an area to sell specialty goods in order to let tourists experience the unique history and culture of Sha Tau Kok while enjoying the picturesque scenery.
The Chief Executive, Mrs Carrie Lam, officiated at the opening ceremony of Sha Tau Kok Pier this morning, viewed the displays introducing the development of Sha Tau Kok and visited the stalls selling souvenirs and snacks with Sha Tau Kok features. Mrs Lam was also briefed by the Secretary for Security, Mr Tang Ping-keung, on the implementation arrangement of the trial scheme and the new facilities.
Addressing the opening ceremony, Mrs Lam said she expected the project to create a multiple-win situation that would enable the development of Sha Tau Kok-centric tourism with the passing on of culture and nature conservation at its core, injecting impetus into the Sha Tau Kok community. In addition, the project is also expected to provide the public with the opportunity to experience personally the real facets of Sha Tau Kok, travel to neighbouring scenic spots for sightseeing more conveniently from Sha Tau Kok Pier, and appreciate the cultural features and natural landscape of the North East New Territories more comprehensively.
Mrs Lam added that since the announcement of the NMDS last year, a significant step has already been taken in Sha Tau Kok town in less than a year. Mrs Lam expressed the hope that the coming term of Government would continue to avoid no difficult tasks, strive for the well-being of the people, and explore more opportunities for the future of Hong Kong.
Under the trial scheme, there are two sessions on each holiday to accommodate three local tours in each session. Upon the completion of the trial scheme, the Government will carefully review the outcome of the scheme, evaluate the impact on the aspects of traffic and security, and consider the views of residents in order to examine the way forward in further opening up Sha Tau Kok town (except Chung Ying Street), including considering the requisite ancillary facilities and formulating suitable measures.
Other officiating guests at the opening ceremony included Mr Tang; the Chairman of the Sha Tau Kok District Rural Committee, New Territories, Mr Benjamin Lee; the Chairman of the Hong Kong Tourism Board, Dr Pang Yiu-kai; the Chairman of the Travel Industry Council of Hong Kong, Mrs Gianna Hsu; and the Founding Chairman of the Hong Kong Shine Tak Foundation (co-organiser of the Sha Tau Kok Pier opening pilot scheme), Mrs Tung Ng Ling-ling.
Other attending guests included the Secretary for the Environment, Mr Wong Kam-sing; the Under Secretary for Development, Mr Liu Chun-san; heads of government departments; and tourists from the first three local tours setting off from the Sha Tau Kok FCA. Members of the public interested in joining the sightseeing tours departing from Sha Tau Kok Pier to neighbouring scenic spots can visit the website of the Travel Industry Council of Hong Kong (https://www.tichk.org/en/sha-tau-kok-frontier-closed-area-local-tour) for relevant information.