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- The Dragon's Back Trail is one of the most popular urban hikes in all of Hong Kong. Located in the Shek O Country Park, this is an easy, well-surfaced and maintained trail with a few moderately difficult ascends. As such, you will find hikers and walkers of all fitness levels doing this hike, including families with little ones.
Most begin at the southern end of the trail near Tei Wan Village and make the roughly 8km hike north to Big Wave Bay. Bus route 9 from Shau Kei Wan (MTR Exit A) to Shek O has a drop off at To Tei Wan at the Dragon's Back trailhead. At Big Wave Bay, you can take red minibus to 'Shau Kei Wan' or call in a taxi when ready to head back to the city.
The Dragon's Back Trail is particularly impressive in the southern section where it winds a ridge and provides rewarding views the Shek O Peninsula and sea to the east. To the west, you will be able to see much of the southern side of Hong Kong Island. When sky conditions are favourable, the views are outstanding.
The northern half of the trail is very flat and easy for walking, it winds through forested and some exposed parts. There are a few places with tables to rest and public toilets. You'll also find a couple of places to link up with other trails such as the Pottinger Road and Gap north of the final descend into Big Wave Bay.
Overall, Dragon's Back is a good trail. It is accessible, easy to hike, views can be outstanding on clear days. Unfortunately, this means heavy foot traffic as well, particularly on weekends and public holidays. Keep that in mind if planning on including this hike during your time in Hong Kong.Written January 5, 2022This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
- There're some offshore islands good for day trip and I picked Lamma Island for my nephew last Sunday. We took ferry from Central pier and the ride was very cozy with excellent air con (very important these days) and less than 30 mins.
Our route was from Yung Shue Wan (some western restaurants) to Sok Kwu Wan (some Chinese seafood restaurants) via the Hung Shing Yeh Beach.
The path was flat with a bit uphill, we walked awhile, ate awhile (eg the famous Ah Po Tofu) and took a rest in the kiosks on the way. We had lunch in the Concerto Inn which is next to the Hung Shing Yeh beach.
It's a sunny hot day. Felt so good to sweat 💦 We spent nearly 7 hours in the island. This place is less crowded than Cheung Chau, another popular island.Written July 26, 2021This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
- This is one of Hong Kong's famous long-distance trails, stretching 70 kilometers across and around Lantau Island, starting and stopping at Mui Wo. The trail is partitioned into 12 sections with a range of distance and degree of challenge. It skirts coastline, mountain ridges and crosses several of HK's tallest peaks.
There are distance markers throughout the trail around every 500 metres. The trail is well marked and easy to follow. Probably the most famous sections are #2 (Nam Shan to Pak Kung Au) taking in the strenuous hike up to Sunset Peak and #3 (Pak Kung Au to Ngong Ping 360 village) similarly taking in Lantau Peak which is also referred to as Sunrise Peak. These are some of the highest peaks in Hong Kong, affording hikers outstanding views.
Note: You will find public toilets at the start/finish of the trail sections as well and bus stops - transportation to/from Mui Wo or Tung Chung, depending on where you are accessing various trail sections. The trails that scale Lantau's peaks are exposed to the weather elements so do come prepared with adequate hiking wear, sunscreen, hats as well as sufficient food and water for your hike.Written April 28, 2022This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
- The MacLehose Trail is one of Hong Kong's four long distance trails. It runs 100 km east to west mostly through dedicated country parks situated across the New Territories. It is broken down into 10 sections of various lengths and difficulty and covers all manner of geography from rocky coastlines, heavily wooded forests, scrubby hillsides and mountain ridges. Hikers will experience some of HK's tallest peaks, very best viewpoints and delightful nature and scenery. The trail is an outdoor wonder in Hong Kong and is recognised by Nat Geo as being one of the World's 20 Dream Trails.
Section #3 of the MacLehose Trail is a less trafficked 10.3 km hike across the Sai Kung West Country Park. It is overshadowed by Section #2 which is regarded by many as the finest stretch of hiking and coastline scenery in Hong Kong. As such, many weekend hikers flock to Section #2, leaving Section #3 much less crowded.
The trailhead is located at Pak Tam Au on the Pak Tam Au Road which splits the two Sai Kung Country Parks between East and West. It transects the country park from east to west, ending at Sai Sha Road, the boundary road that separates the Sai Kung West and Ma On Shan Country Parks. This is also the starting point of Section 4 of the trail.
The Section 3 link includes a couple of long upward ascends as well as several other minor climbs. The peak summits have low brush and tree lines, affording really great views. Around halfway across the country park, you are afforded near 360 degree panoramic views of Clearwater Bay, Sai Kung, Mirs Bay, Tolo Harbour, Ma On Shan Country Park. When sky conditions are favourable, the views are stunning.
During the trail, you walk through a fair amount of wooded area with proper shade. However, you will ascend above the tree lines several times and have periods where you are exposed to the elements so do be prepared with hats, plenty of sunscreen and drinking water.
There are very limited facilities. You'll find public toilets and water refill stations at the start and end of the trail. After your first hour of hiking, you will encounter a small village area of Cheung Sheung. There are toilets there and a local shop called the Hui Lam Store where you can buy a cup of coffee, have a light Hong Kong style breakfast and buy extra water here if needed. There is are campsite grounds here as well. If hiking on the weekend, you'll notice quite a few tents setup in front of the store.
Best to allow around 4 hours minimum to hike Section #3 of the MacLehose Trail. Faster hikers and trail runners can clear it in 3 to 3.5 hours but allowing time for rest or picnic breaks as well as quite a few stops to enjoy the scenery, viewpoints and any wildlife that you might encounter, you can easily and quickly exceed 5 hours on this trail section.Written April 7, 2022This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
- There are numerous ways to visit Victoria Peak from the Central area, one being the Old Peak Road, a preferred walking path for those interested in getting a bit of exercise by walking up to the Peak.
The path starts just beyond the HK Zoological & Botanical Gardens following the street that winds up through parts of the Mid-Levels. In short time, the path becomes closed to vehicular traffic. From that point forward, it is for pedestrians only. You will pass some one of the remaining Boundary Stones and come across a handful of clearings in the trees, providing views of the HK Island skyscrapers and eventually Victoria Harbour.
Allow 30-45 minutes depending on your fitness and the amount of rest or photo stops you intend to make. It is a steady uphill climb with few flat areas so best to be in decent shape before giving this one a try. Before you know it, you will be approaching the Gap where the Victoria Peak attractions and circular walks like Lugard Road are found.Written April 24, 2022This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
- Tai Mo Shan is the highest peak in Hong Kong at 957 metres above sea level. This was once an active volcano during the Jurassic period that is found in the Tai Mo Shan Country Park more or less in the middle of the New Territories. Interestingly, while being the highest peak, Tai Mo Shan is not difficult to visit and is something that even families with children can do if wanting to get outdoors and take in a bit of exercise.
There are several ways to approach Tai Mo Shan with the most convenient being from the west along Tai Mo Shan Road. Upon entering the country park from Twisk Route, you simply follow the road past the Visitor Centre all the way up to the Weather Radio Stations at the Peak. It is a simple and straight-forward upward approach along paved road.
Hikers will likely prefer to use the MacLehose Trail (section 8) from Lead Mine Pass (to the east) or the same Tai Mo Shan Road & Twisk Route junction (to the west) to visit the peak. The trail to the west skirts through some of the hillside and forested areas and stays near the Tai Mo Shan Road until around the half way point, then simply joins the road as it becomes a series of switchbacks up the mountainside.
Regardless of taking the road or the MacLehose Trail, you will see nice forests, hilly landscapes with tall grass and as you get higher, quite a few lookouts with landscape views. Once you reach Tai Mo Shan, you can walk around the Station and enjoy views of all of Hong Kong. You are only limited by sky conditions.
Note: For Hikers wanting a bit more challenge, on the east side, after clearing the designated car park area, there is a grey trail that heads straight up the peak, instead of the longer, winding road. You need to have hiking apps on your mobile phone ready if you want to try this approach. It is much shorter but vey steep. The trail is overgrown at times and the ground not always firm and stable. As such, proper hiking shoes are important while trousers and gloves can be useful as well if wanting to take this route up the final stretch. Note: Along this grey trail, you'll find impressive boulders, a couple that you can sit on and have picnic while enjoying views, mostly on your own as very few people take this trail compared to simply using the road down below.Written March 15, 2022This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
- Very easy to access with family friendly route suitable for all ages. There are stores to provide beverages & snacks for refreshment mid-way. The latter part towards the coast are featured with Hong Kong’s oldest light house, sea cave, cliff & pretty coastal landscape. The entire trip takes around 3 hours only.Written April 9, 2022This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
- Shing Mun Reservoir (originally named Jubilee Rservoir) is located within the Shing Mun Country Park which is situated between the communities of Tsuen Wan and Sha Tin. It was constructed between 1933-37 as part of a water supply scheme for the growing population and increasing need for fresh water supply at that time. Upon completion, the dam created capacity to hold around 13.6 billion litres of water.
The Country Park and reservoir make for a popular weekend destination for Hongkongers who enjoy the leisurely 6.5km trail, fine forests and nice scenery. Around the lake there are some really nice wooded areas including a Paperback Tree forest on the west side north of the Pineapple Dam Nature Trail.
There are probably a dozen BBQ and picnic sites around the reservoir. Unfortunately, there are numerous troops of macaques that are found around the lake, eager to knick your food if you try to enjoy a picnic. These little buggers are amusing when you encounter them but best to not encourage nor feed them. It is against the law and not good their health and well being so just enjoy seeing them, keep your food items hidden in your daypacks and then continue to move along the trail.
There are wild pigs around the reservoir and quite a few birds and butterflies. One stop you can make on the west side of the lake is a Butterfly Paradise Garden. It is a hit or miss depending on the season. You'll see plenty around the lake anyway so not a big deal if you give this stop a pass.
For those who want to learn about the history of the Shing Mun area, there is a Country Park Visitor Centre on the west side of the lake just north of the Shing Mun Road at the mini-bus drop off point. It is open on weekends and public holidays from 9am to 5pm. They have a nicely organised setup with exhibition displays that walk briefly through the history and biodiversity of the area. This is worth a 10-15 minute visit if they are open when you pass by.
Heritage and history buffs will be interested to see the Waterworks structures around the Gorge Dam of the reservoir. You will come to these on the southeast end of of the lake. Also on the south end, east of the Dam, you can do a short add-on hike called the Shing Mun War Relics Trail from BBQ Site #5. Here you can see WWII era relics that formed part of the Gin Drinker's defensive line, which was constructed in the 1930s before the onset of the war.
Overall, Shing Mun Reservoir is a nice place to spend half a day away from the busy streets of the city. It is conveniently located and easy to get to from much of the Kowloon Peninsula and New Territories. Thus, do expect some crowds while here (and plenty of macaques).Written March 28, 2021This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
- The Wilson Trail is one of four long distance trails in Hong Kong and is 78 kilometres in length. The trail was designated in 1996 and is named after former Hong Kong governor David Wilson (1987-92). It transects Hong Kong from South to North and is divided up into 10 sections, taking in numerous country parks, rural patches (green lungs) surrounded by city, war relic lined ridges, mountainous areas and old villages. The Wilson Trail starts at the seaside village of Stanley on the southend end of Hong Kong Island (Section 1) and finally ends at Nam Chung Village (Section 10) near the border with mainland China.
One of the most popular stages of the Wilson Trail is Section #9 between Cloudy Hill and eastern end of the Pat Sin Leng mountain range in the Pat Sin Leng Country Park. This is a challenging hike but one that offers remarkable views from the numerous peaks and high elevation ridges that you will traverse along the route. Many consider this trail to be amongst the finest hiking opportunities in all of Hong Kong.
Note: Section #9 of the Wilson Trail requires a certain level of hiking experience and fitness to complete with comfort. It is not one I would recommend to new hikers or for your first hike of the season. There is a long, steep and steady ascent during the first half of the the hike and numerous shorter ascents up the series of 8 peaks at the east end. The trail is in good condition but requires stamina and fitness, plenty of water, especially during the warmer summer months, and sunscreen (very little shade). Further, you will be exposed to the elements throughout so it is important to know weather and hiking conditions and to have adequate hiking attire before attempting Section 9. Lastly, there are almost no facilities between the start and finish of this section of the trail.
Note: Best to upload Hiking Trail HK app to your mobile phone and to have printed maps for these long distance trails in Hong Kong. This stage of the Wilson Trail is very well marked and signed throughout, making it easy to follow. However, still better to come prepared with basic navigation equipment and maps just to be safe.
Section 9 is 10 km in distance between starting at Cloudy Hill (end of Wilson Trail Section #8). You will quickly pass a small and attractive, S-shaped reservoir at Hok Tau before beginning a long and steady ascent up to the mountain range which you will traverse across the country park. After your initial climb, the trail mostly levels off as you trek along a line of mountain ridges and through short passes until you reach the eastern end and have to clear the 8 monumental peaks of Pat Sin Leng. Interestingly, these are named after the Eight Fairies of Chinese Mythology. Each peak has signage identifying the peak name and location. Views from the ridge lines and peaks throughout the trail are outstanding on days with good visibility.
After clearing the eighth peak, you have finished Section #9 and will begin a steep downward descent until you intersect the Pat Sin Leng Nature Trail which you can use to carry on to either Bride's Pool Road or Tai Mei Tuk, both of which are a further 2 km away. For those finished with their hiking for the day, best to go right towards to Tai Mei Tuk where you'll find a major bus transportation hub with regular and frequent transportation to the Tai Po Market MTR Station. For those wanting to press on to Section 10 and the final leg of the Wilson Trail, technically, this Section started at the descent from Pat Sin Leng, take a left at Nature Trail intersection and continue onward towards Nam Chung Village.Written April 6, 2021This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
- The Ping Shan Heritage Trail in the New Territories gives relief from the crowds if you're staying in HK long enough to have covered the touristy bits and are interested in history. Go to the Tourist Info Office at the Kowloon side Star Ferry and ask for the free information sheet and map to guide you through the trail. You take the MTR to Tin Shui Wai station Exit E. The trail is easy to find and easy to walk. It has historic buildings, some of which are in a bad state, but still worth seeing. I was fascinated by the remains of the 200 year old wall which originally enclosed the village: the bricks are of various shapes, sizes and colours. The ancestral halls were built in the 13th and 16th centuries. There is a cafe in the village (I didn't go in) and reasonably clean loos in the market square. If you're interested in history and a 'different' HK experience my advice is not to miss this, but don't go if you're only there for the bright lights and shopping.Written March 27, 2018This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
- Lamma has a wonderful old-world island village atmosphere and some great easy hiking trails. The most popular hike is the Family Trail which takes you up and over the island from Sok Kwu Wan to Yung Shue Wan.
Ferries go to both villages so you can arrive at one end of the island, hike over the island and catch the ferry home from there. It works equally well whichever way you do it. Although it is worth noting that the seafood restaurants are better at Sok Kwu Wan and the ferries are more frequent from Yung Shue Wan.
For this reason, we prefer to start with lunch at Sok Kwu Wan, then do the hike so that we end up at Yung Shue Wan. In this way, we don't have to watch the time and we never have to wait very long for a ferry home.
The Hiking Trail is well sign-posted and there are several large boards along the route that show the same map and also indicate the sights. For the most part, it is a paved concrete path with some steps but there are no difficult stretches or horribly steep sections. If you start at Sok Kwu Wan, there is a long uphill stretch at first but this is the only steep-ish part. Overall, it’s an easy walk and very manageable for children. You should allow around an hour.
The walk is not isolated and in fact on a Sunday, it’s almost the reverse and can be too crowded.
A lovely lookout and pavilion just near the Kamikaze caves is worth stopping at. The views across the harbour are panoramic. However if you see a sign for another pavilion down a small side-path, don't bother following it. This one is completely overgrown and has no view at all (just a lot of steps).
Along the way, you will see the Kamikaze Cave and Tin Hau temples. The temple at Sok Kwu Wan is the most interesting because it has a rare and freakish giant oar fish on display. You will also pass Hung Shing Ye Beach, the main beach where you can stop for a drink or buy ice creams, frozen pineapple on a stick, water and other snacks. There is a large public changing room and toilet block.
GETTING TO LAMMA: Public ferries run regularly every day from Central Pier 4. No need to book ahead because you can buy your ticket at the machines near the gate or use an Octopus card. Ferries are much more frequent to/from Yung Shue Wan and take 20 min. The Sok Kwu Wan ferry takes about 25 min. Tickets vary in price depending on which ferry and whether it's a Sunday or public holiday but they are around $20 HKD each way for an adult.Written March 2, 2021This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
- ...from the QRE area linking Wan Chai to Causeway Bay, taking you very steeply but quickly up to by Stubbs Road. You’ll gain elevation very quickly here and the views across the immediate area are pretty good.Written November 29, 2020This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
- This is an excellent 5 km hike through the Tai Tam Country Park. The walk is centred around the 4 main reservoirs and dams that were built here between 1888-1917. The walk also takes in 22 historic structures and relics related to the dams, including stone bridges, masonry dam walls, valve houses, pumping stations and aqueducts. The views and surrounding area are very scenic.
LEVEL – it is a moderate to easy hike. You definitely don't need to be an experienced hiker. It is suitable for families. Kids might find it a bit long (5km) but being able to run across the bridges and aqueduct can keep them engaged and make it more interesting.
TRACK CONDITIONS–The terrain is varied. From Parkview, it starts with an easy, downhill stretch of road. Mostly you will be on paved paths but at other times you will walk along dirt bushland tracks which have quite a lot of gnarly roots but are otherwise pretty good. There are stairs and these can be uneven and roughly made. You don't need hiking boots but a decent pair of runners is advisable.
SIGNAGE - The path is well marked with clear signs and maps. There are also detailed information boards positioned along the route, describing the history of the reservoirs and the other structures. This is a really excellent feature of the walk.
FACILITIES - there are several BBQ and picnic spots and a few public toilets
WHAT TO TAKE - water, sunscreen and a hat are essentials. Also snacks if you want them because you cannot buy anything inside the country park.
STARTING POINT: The trail begins at the entry gates to the country park, just past the Parkview residential complex. As you approach, you will notice signs for the Wilson Trail and other tracks but keep going past these until you get to the black and white gates at the start of the park, where you will see wooden signs for the Tai Tam Country Park and the Heritage Trail.Written March 12, 2021This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
- The Hong Kong Hiking Trail is one of “The Big 4” hiking trails that together cover the whole of the island. This trail stretches over 50km, running from Victoria Peak to Big Wave Bay and crossing over 5 different country parks.
It is broken into 8 clear sections, making it very easy to choose the sections you want to do and pick up the start of that trail. Be aware that the different sections vary quite a lot in difficulty.
Overall, the trails are really well marked and sign-posted. Each 500 metres, there is a standardised metal plaque so you can easily gauge how far you’ve come. Every once in a while, you will also come across a large map board which is handy to stop at and check your position, especially as some of the big trails intersect and overlap.
None of the trails are loops so you will have to return via public transport or taxi to your starting point.
The paths are generally easy to follow but they also vary enormously, from paved paths or roads to bushland dirt tracks which can be rocky or gravelly and stairs.
Stage 8 is one of the most popular walking trails and is more commonly known as Dragon’s Back. I love this hike. It’s a moderately easy walk and is a good one for families. Although there is one long, steep stretch of stairs at the start, the rest of the walk is along the ridgeline. From here, you get the most wonderful views of the coastline and outlying islands and you end up at Big Wave Bay. It’s stunning and on a clear day, the views are just incredible. For tourists who have a few days here and want to see another side of Hong Kong, this walk is unbeatable.
Stages 5 & 6 take you through Tai Tam Country Park but they are quite different hikes. Stage 5 is difficult whereas Stage 6 is an easy amble, over a long stonework dam and past the Tai Tam reservoirs and water catchments.
All the country parks are free to enter.
NOTE: Make sure to take plenty of water, sunscreen and hats with you as depending on which stretch you are doing, there may not be much opportunity to buy things or fill water bottles.Written March 21, 2021This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
- Approachable from minimally 3 entrances (there could be some dirt tracks I don't know about), this is actually a combination of the Kwai Tsing Reunification Health Trail and a district parks department improvement of old paths leading up the mountain from Tsing Yi village, dubbed Tsing Yi Nature Trails.
Most websites and blogs would have a person enter at the north (Liu To Rd water treatment plant) and leave at the southeast at a section of Tsing Yi Road West 400 meters uphill from the bus stop leading back to Tsing Yi MTR via Maritime shopping mall.
My first attack on this short but stair-heavy and very mountainous hike was made from the path leading out of the Tsing Yi village (large area of village houses around Tsing Sum St), following the stream, and leading to the right, close behind the massive Mount Haven Luxury flats. I gotta let you all know that this part of the Nature Path (though labeled) is a very poorly maintained, if verdantly shaded, route offers 1) refreshing views of nature, 2) some delightful drama as you walk beneath the span of elevated Tsing Yi Road West, and 3) several opportunities to slip and fall on the poorly designed paving during even a sunny day during the rainy season.
Streams of water are allowed to rush over the path due to lack of weeding. These spurs up to join the Reunification path are a highly dangerous situation, and, unlike the North-South macadam/sharp pebble path of the Reunification trail, the materials (granite blocks and untreated concrete) are awful. I imagine that the design phase and material purchasing was given more care for the historic Reunification trail project than the district's launch of Tsing Yi Nature Trail improvement. Probably in the heart of the dry season (hiking season) the Nature Trail spurs will be safe.
Environs of pavillions 1 and 2 afford fabulous views of the Tsing Ma Bridge and Ma Wan channel, all the way past Discovery Bay and the airport, Lamma island and others, on a clear day.
The Ting Kau Bridge, with its feathery cables, can be seen early on from the ascent from the North entrance, but I didn't go on that spur. Saving that for dry season.
Hugely popular on weekends, posted videos, blogs, and photos show that you will not be alone on this path, and there are even bottlenecks and areas of crowding. Even on a hot Saturday that began with rain showers, this trail system was quite popular, and it was virtually impossible to socially distance in any of the pavillions and picnic areas. The north half of the Reunification path offers lots of areas to rest on a bench or even pause to stretch on a bar. It was quite steep there.Written September 19, 2020This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Frequently Asked Questions about Hong Kong
- These experiences are best for hiking trails in Hong Kong:
- Plover Cove Bicycling and Hiking Waterfall Adventure
- Tai Mo Shan Waterfall Adventure Hike
- Green Hong Kong private tour - Hikes and hidden gems
- Small Group Hiking Day Tour to Lamma Island Hong Kong
- 5-Hour Hiking Tour in The Green to Lion Rock in Hong Kong