Hiking in Hong Kong is actually a popular activity, despite what you may think about the urban landscape lacking scenic routes for this outdoor pastime. The city of Hong Kong is renowned for a number of aspects, including its deep history, lively culinary experience, architectural blend of ancient and modern, and, of course, it’s prominent horizon. Though that’s not all it has to offer.
This asphalt island is surrounded by rolling green forests, beautiful beaches and parks and incredible rock formations. The perfect chance to experience the island in all its scenic beauty is, indeed, a helicopter tour. However, hiking in Hong Kong allows you to explore its breathtaking views and beauty on foot, and at your own pace. Here are some of the best spots for hiking in Hong Kong, depending on your skill level.
Dragon’s Back is well-known as one of the finest urban hiking trails, and for good cause. It’s easy to get to and has a stunning view of the Southern Island and coast. The trail also comes to a close at Big Wave Bay, where you can cool off in the water or enjoy a meal at one of the beachside cafes.
Distance: ~8.5 km
Duration: 3 hours
Difficulty level: 2.5/5
To get there: Take the MTR to Shau Kei Wan Station and use Exit A to Shau Kei Wan Bus Terminus. Take bus No. 9 or the minibus with the sign “Shek O” next to the bus terminus. Alight at To Tei Wan, Shek O Road.
Lion Rock, nicknamed for its similarity to a lion’s head, is one of the best hikes in Hong Kong. Lion Rock has been cited in many Cantopop songs and TV shows, since it is claimed to represent the essence of Hong Kongers. Hikers will have an undisturbed 360-degree view of Kowloon and Hong Kong Island (south-facing) as well as the New Territories from the top of 495 meters (north-facing).
Distance: ~6 km
Duration: 2-3 hours
Difficulty level: 3/5
To get there: Go to Wong Tai Sin MTR station and take exit B3, before hopping on the 18M minibus to Temple Hill Fat Jong Temple.
Rhino Rock Trail
The Rhino Rock is one of Hong Kong’s most amazing geological formations, with an eerie similarity to a rhinoceros. It’s a quick hike in Stanley which is less than a kilometer long in both directions. This is really a perfect mini-adventure for a beautiful day, with breathtaking views of the coastline. Che Pau Teng is another name for this trail.
Distance: 2 km
Duration: 30 minutes
Difficulty level: 1.5/5
To get there: The Stanley Fort bus stop marks the start of the Rhino Rock Trail. Take the train to Sai Wan Ho station and then the No. 14 bus to your destination. Alternatively, take the No. 6A bus from Central Exchange Square. Both routes will drop you off at the same Stanley Fort Bus stop, which is the route’s final stop. When you exit the bus, look for the steps next to the fort’s security entrance.
Devil’s Peak Hike
Devil’’s Peak is located next to Lei Yue Mun, a well-known seafood market and fishing village. The trail got its menacing reputation from nearby pirates in the Ming Dynasty and the British Army within the twentieth century, who used it as a vital navigational route to Victoria Harbour. At Devil’s Peak, the ruins of a redoubt and batteries can still be seen. To get the best picture, arrive at sunset.
Distance: 3.5 km
Duration: 1.5 hours
Difficulty level: 2/5
To get there: Take the 24S minibus from Yau Tong MTR Station and get off at Lei Yue Mun sporting center, or walk 15 minutes along Ko Chiu Road to get to Lei Yue Mun. At the end of your hike, descend along the road and walk toward Lei Yue Mun Estate housing where Yau Tong MTR station is nearby.
The Peak Trail
The Peak, highly recommended attraction in Hong Kong, is well-known for its amazing scenery of Victoria Harbour and the island. Aside from viewing the overlook, the best way to discover The Peak is to take a simple hourlong stroll around it. The Harlech and Lugard Road Circular Walk starts near Peak Tower and provides a panoramic picture of the area.
Distance: 3.5 km
Duration: 1 hour
Difficulty level: 1/5
To get there: Take the tram from the lower Peak Tram terminus on Garden Road, or take the No. 15 bus from Exchange Square bus terminus and alight at The Peak.
Don’t forget to bring your sunscreen, as there are patches of open ground on the climb even though there are some trees that provide shelter on most hikes. Additionally, even though some of the trails may seem short, you should bring a minimum of one liter of water per person to make sure you are properly hydrated during the journey. Happy hiking in Hong Kong!
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