You’ve no doubt heard the drumming of the practice sessions out on Sai Kung waters for the past few weeks, ahead of the team’s big day on June 9. The national holiday, also known as Tuen Ng, will see spectators flocking to beaches and waterways all over the territory to cheer on local teams as they power their way along the race course. The best way to enjoy the festival is to take part. Join a dragon boat team and fast track your exercise regime, which will give you a toast-rack tummy and a great upper body workout. If you’re not ready to get involved in the action, mingle in the festivities and throw back a few cold beverages on a hot summer’s day.
Join the club
Blue Sky Water Sports Club
This hard-working club trains all year and runs men’s, women’s and mixed teams, as well as a youth training programme. Training takes place Monday, Wednesday and Saturdays at Sha Ha Beach. Details at 2791 0806, www.bluesky-sc.com.
A ladies-only team comprising mainly Sai Kung mums that regularly takes the competition by surprise. The team is coached by Hong Kong coach Ray Chan, training takes place on Sha Ha Beach. Contact Pauline Dear for more details, firstname.lastname@example.org.
Coached by Karin Maddox and Benjamin Thomas, HKA Dragonflies is a mixed team made up of Hong Kong Academy teachers, staff and friends. Training takes place twice a week in Sai Kung. hkadragonflies.weebly.com.
Hong Kong Dragon Boat Association
A large association that organises competitions, rents dragon boats and organises training sessions in Cantonese and English in Sha Tin. Details at 2504 8332, www.hkdba.com.hk.
Way Young Dragon Boat Club
A non-profit sporting organisation with a women’s and men’s team that trains in Pak Sha Wan. Details at 2566 9988, www.wayyoungdragon.com.
The dragon’s back
Sai Kung Dragon Boat
Get in on the festivities at Sai Kung waterfront promenade. Races start in the morning from 8am to about 2pm, with a festival continuing on in the afternoon.
Sha Tin Dragon Boat
A major event held along Shing Mun River in Sha Tin sponsored by the Sha Tin Sports Association. Races run from 8am till 1pm.
Hong Kong International Dragon Boat Races
A three-day event with local and international teams taking on Victoria Harbour, held from June 10-12. There will be entertainers, marching bands and lion dances. East Tsim Sha Tsui waterfront, free admission.
The 14th Sai Kung Summer Vigor
A full-day of mini dragon boat races as local teams battle it out at the Jockey Club Kau Sai Chau Public Pier, Sai Kung. September 18, racing runs from 8am-4pm. dragonboat-hk.org