In the 19th century, Cheung Chau Island was a haven for pirates like the notorious Cheung Po Tsai, whose treasure cave is reportedly on the island's southwest tip. The temple here is dedicated to Pak Tai, the god of the sea, who is supposed to have rid the island of pirates. The renovated temple originally dates to 1783, when an image of Pak Tai was brought to appease the spirits of people killed by pirates, thought to be the source of bubonic plague outbreaks. Apparently
he did the trick: he remains the island's favorite deity. Beside the main altar are four whalebones from the nearby sea. Make a full day of your trip to Cheung Chau, a gorgeous island with several temples. A walk around the island takes in several temples and the pirate cave. New World First Ferry sails to Cheung Chau twice hourly from Central Ferry Pier 5. Normal ferries take 55 minutes, fast ones 35. Turn left from the Cheung Chau ferry pier and walk ½ km (¼ mile) along waterfront Praya Street, until you see the temple to your right, over a playground.